How to Use Scrivener with Cloud Services

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Let me show you how to set up Scrivener properly with cloud services, so you can enjoy all the advantages, like working from wherever you want, without the risk of destroying your project because of choosing the wrong service or setting it up the wrong way. You will also learn how to deal with slow Internet connections.

I’m going to cover these cloud services (click to jump ahead):

Google Drive

Literature and Latte, the creators of Scrivener, definitely advise against using Google Drive. The reason for this is that Google Drive attempts to convert text files and other files you upload. Since your Scrivener project in reality is a bunch of folders that hold many, many text files, altering the messes with scriveners project integrity, and therefore will destroy your work. Or at least make it very hard to recover it.

So, stay away from Google Drive!!

Microsoft One Drive

If you’re on Windows 7 or Windows 10 you should be able to use it. However, if you’re on Windows 8, make sure that SmartFiles are deactivated.

How to configure Windows to use your files off–line

Swipe from the right side of the screen, tap “Settings”. If you are using a mouse, go to the lower–right corner of the screen, move upwards, then click “Settings”.

Type or click “Options”, turn on “Access of files off–line”.

How to configure Scrivener to work with One Drive files

Locate the Scrivener application file on your disk. This is usually one of the following folders:

C:\Program Files\Scrivener

C:\Program Files (x86)\Scrivener

  • Right–click on scrivener.exe and select “Properties”.
  • Select the “Compatibility” tab
  • Check “Enable this program to work with One Drive Files”

In case you’re having trouble on Windows 8, for example if you’re getting an error message that says “Incompatible with this version of Scrivener”, or you are not seeing your changes, you should switch to a different service.

iCloud

In an earlier statement, Literature and Latte said that iCloud sync wasn’t supported because it’s features weren’t sufficient for Scrivener’s project structure. Therefore iCloud is not supported officially. However, I can report that I never had problems using it. It has to be said though, that I only use it to backup complete projects. I am not working actively in an iCloud folder.

Scrivener Dropbox Sync

Although Literature and Latte recommend using Dropbox, keep in mind that no cloud service is 100% safe.

A Word on Collaboration

You should never try to open the same Scrivener project on two different locations at the same time. It will mess up the internal database and destroy your project integrity.

If the project is open on another machine, Scrivener will warn you. Take it seriously. If Scrivener warns you although the project is not open on another machine, for example if it crashed the last time or if it was copied while it was open, you may open it, but only if you are 100% sure the project has been closed. If you are unsure, make a copy of the project.

After closing the project, always wait until Dropbox has fully synced your files before shutting down your computer.

Use local backups for obvious safety reasons.

On slow Internet connections, lower the auto safe intervals in the scriveners settings.

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