Working off of network drives (MobileMe, thumb drives...)

ll
llmember
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Tue Apr 07, 2009 4:14 am Post

Some good advice.....I got from another Forum. But first, I've been using Dropbox for about 3 weeks for my Scrivener Project and its worked flawlessly. I don't "do" anything, it just syncs from my Laptop to my Desktop and vice-versa. But remember....

1) DON'T have Scrivener OPEN on BOTH computers at the SAME time. That goes for any program files or folders you put in Dropbox I suppose.

2) Always do ZIP saves, every day if you work on your project every day. Like Amber said in the first post, to do this, Go to File, then "Backup Project To....", then be sure there's a CHECKMARK in "Backup as Zip File". Easy does it.

Another good thing to know is....Dropbox does not sync your whole project every time it does a sync. It only syncs the changes you've made since the last sync. So if you add only one page to your project, it only needs to sync that little change.

Anybody with new information, please chime in. :)

That's all I know. I appreciate this discussion, because I DON'T want to be told I have to stop using Dropbox. Wahhhhhh! Now just in case something ever "does" go wrong, I'll have those Zips...it's easy to forget them, so don't forget. :)
How do I love Scrivener? Let me count the ways......

Si
Sirmausalot
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Wed Apr 08, 2009 12:13 pm Post

Despite my rosy predictions of success, I have now twice encountered material that failed to sync properly over drop box. One I assumed was user error, but this morning I know I finished syncing the other computer. The last time I simply had to return to the other location to retrieve the lost work. I'm hoping I can do the same. But I did just make a print out. So, I think it's to the thumb drive for me. Maybe Google's GDrive will work seemlessly

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Jaysen
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Wed Apr 08, 2009 1:24 pm Post

I really hate to sound like a broker record on this, but cloud storage should not be trusted. Yes it is convenient, yes I use it. One must always assume that the data will be invalidated in transit. Or worse modified by issues on the cloud side.

G-Drive is no exception to this (if the world knew more about google folks would not be as trusting).
Jaysen

I have a wife and 2 kids that I can only attribute to a wiggle, a giggle, and the realization that she was out of my league so I might as well be happy with her as a friend. 26 years marriage later, I can't imagine life without her. -Me 10/7/09

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sh
shp
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Sat Apr 11, 2009 3:37 pm Post

I haven't had any problems working on a project on two computers synced via Dropbox over the last 6 months or so, perhaps because I do this:

I never work directly on the live package within Dropbox.

Instead, I copy the working package from my Dropbox folder to somewhere else on the hard disk, work on it, then when I'm finished I copy it (with a new datestamp in the filename) back to my Dropbox folder. It syncs, and is then reliably available on my other computer, where I do the same thing.

YMMV.

Edit: much as Jaysen recommends on the previous page, though with the extra safety net of creating a whole new package each time. (I don't use the "Backup to..." feature.)

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AmberV
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Sat Apr 11, 2009 6:29 pm Post

What do you mean by creating a whole new package? Unless I misunderstand, that is exactly what Backup To does. Do you mean fabricating a new project from scratch and dragging everything over into it from one Binder to the other? That seems to me a bit excessive.
.:.
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sh
shp
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Sat Apr 11, 2009 10:30 pm Post

No, that sounds crazy. ;) I just mean duplicating the .scriv project in the Finder and incrementing the datestamp in the filename before copying that one to the Dropbox folder, so a whole new package gets uploaded to Dropbox at the end of the work session.

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Jaysen
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Sun Apr 12, 2009 1:16 am Post

while a good method, it is a bit overkill and inefficient. Just for kicks, try creating 2 copies to upload. The first should be your current method. The second should be a reused name (say the project name minus the date). By the third of fourth upload you should start noticing a distinct speed increase for the reused name. This is the glory of these types of sync programs.

Big thing: stick with your current method for so you can try them in parallel. This is a good backup method, just not horrible efficient with these types of services.
Jaysen

I have a wife and 2 kids that I can only attribute to a wiggle, a giggle, and the realization that she was out of my league so I might as well be happy with her as a friend. 26 years marriage later, I can't imagine life without her. -Me 10/7/09

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sh
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Sun Apr 12, 2009 8:56 am Post

I understand that that should work in theory, but I got into the habit years ago of keeping daily revisions of large projects or chapters thereof as separate files with dates in the filenames (kind of a manual Subversion routine), and I'm too paranoid to abandon it now. 8) For me it's a couple of seconds of extra housekeeping at the end of the working session, and since my current project is only 2Mb the space to keep all those versions is not a problem. (I can see how my method might be inefficient for a 50Mb project, though.)

Dropbox does a great job of keeping changes synced with things like single .txt files that I keep just in the Dropbox folder and edit "live", but when I started using it I thought there might be some extra risk with complex packages and so began doing it this way. Overkill? Maybe. But it's my book and I'd rather not take even a small risk of losing a day's work. (Did I mention I also backup each version to a thumb drive and another internet drive? ;))

ja
janra
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Sun Apr 12, 2009 3:59 pm Post

If you're copying the entire scriv project and moving that to and from the dropbox folder for sync vs. work, you could also speed the sync process by using Scrivener's "backup project to" feature and having it create a zip file that has a date stamp already in the file name.

Much smaller file, especially if it's mostly text as you said yours is, and much faster sync. Also less chance of accidentally opening the project from the dropbox folder.

sh
shp
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Sun Apr 12, 2009 5:43 pm Post

That's a good point, though since I will continue to make a new .scriv file on my hard disk every day it is as easy to do it my way. And in my ultraparanoid mind, going through zippings and unzippings of the working file between computers is just another thing into which a gremlin might creep. ;)

jo
joshua
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Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:10 pm Post

What do you think about using a flash drive to store one's work?
Last edited by joshua on Tue Apr 14, 2009 10:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Jaysen
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Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:51 pm Post

I know I am not amber, but flash is less safe than hard disks. USB for the sake of these conversations refers to flash.

The best rules to follow are:
1. Work on local (internal) copy
2. Copy to external media/sync service once scriv is closed.
3. Use a solid backup solution to redundant media.
Jaysen

I have a wife and 2 kids that I can only attribute to a wiggle, a giggle, and the realization that she was out of my league so I might as well be happy with her as a friend. 26 years marriage later, I can't imagine life without her. -Me 10/7/09

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ni
nicolinux
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Sat May 02, 2009 12:37 pm Post

Hi !

I use Scrivener with Dropbox everyday, and it works perfectly well. So thanks to those here who made me discover Dropbox.

I've also written a review of Dropbox in general (not only of Dropbox and Scrivener, but I mention Scrivener) on MacGeneration. Among other things, I tried to explain how to sync applications using symbolic links. It's in French, by the way...

> Read the review

si
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Sat May 02, 2009 2:29 pm Post

nicolinux wrote: I tried to explain how to sync applications using symbolic links. It's in French, by the way...


applications as in .app files? :roll:

ni
nicolinux
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Sat May 02, 2009 3:21 pm Post

No, not exactly. I wanted to sync the data used by applications. Generally, it means a folder in Application Supports.

For instance, this is the configuration for The Hit List :
Image

But that should work with app files too...

Sorry for my bad english... :oops: