Are 2 licenses needed?

Good evening’

I’m quite new to Scrivener. I’ve only been using the trial version for PC (Windows) for a week now. I’m definitely considering buying this gem soon. My questions are:

  • Since I owe both a Mac and a PC, is one license enough for both my computers? Or do I need to buy one for each?

  • Are the project files intercompatible between both OS? As I have now a couple of projects on my PC, will I be able to open them and work on them on my Mac? And vice versa?

I have read a topic from 2011 saying that 2 licenses were needed. But since 6 years have passed, I was wondering if things may have changed regarding this matter…

Anyway, thanks in advance for your answers.


Each separate environment (Mac OS, Windows, iOS) requires its own separate license.

Each one then can be installed on multiple machines – up to 5, I believe.

Thank you for your answer, Devinganger!

And can the project files be opened and modified on all environments? For example: if I start a project on Windows, can it be modified on Mac OS and finished on iOS?

That is my understanding, yes.

Projects in the current Mac version (version 2) will work with the current Windows version (v1.97?) and they’ll both work with the current iOS version…

But… Version 3 for the Mac will be out very soon and it uses a different file format. When you first open a project from Version 2 or the Mac, it will convert it to the new format (seamlessly and it creates a backup), but the V3 file will not then be readable by Version 2 or by Windows for the time being. V3 files work with iOS of course.

A new version 3 for Windows will appear next year and then all the platforms will be interoperable again, but for the time being Mac V3 project files won’t work on Windows.

All this means is that if you’re going to want to use a project on both the Mac and Windows, you should not upgrade the Mac version until the new Windows version 3 is available (next year).

That’s my understanding anyway, but perhaps someone from L&L can confirm?

L&L has stated several times that a beta version of Win-Scriv 3 will be released about the same time as v 3 for Mac.

Thank you so much everyone for your answers!

I assume there is no way to do any kind of “downgrade”, right (going from V3 to V2)?

Yes, that’s right.

I think I’ve read somewhere that there may be a Save As V2 feature, but I’m not sure — in any case that’s probably not something you’d want to do as a daily workflow thing.

Thank you, Brookter!

That matches my recollection – and opinion – as well, so if you’re mistaken about it Brookter, you’ve got company. :slight_smile:

A little more info–

The EULAs are generous. They actually don’t specify the number of licensee computers desktop Scrivener may be installed to, and they also include family members (household) as defined.

As it stands, if you have a license for desktop Mac or Windows Scrivener and you wish to get the other, a discount is available ($15.00). There’s a link at the destination: … ac-version

Or direct link to/at the Web Store: … atalog.htm

On working between Scrivener 2 and 3, the boss said an export will be available:

Scrivener 3 - common file format with earlier versions?

As far as I know, he hasn’t explained the ins-and-outs beyond that.

Wow, thanks a lot for those informations, Scshrugged!

I didn’t know about that discount which is indeed really interesting.

As far as intercompability goes between V2 and V3, it’s always good to know that there will be a way to export from V3 to V2.

Have a nice day!

Resurrecting this question again, I have the same issue - are two licenses needed for Mac and PC versions of Scriv3?

Yes. Generally, it seems when small software companies support multiple platforms, you either need to buy a license for each OR pay a subscription for all. I prefer the former model myself.

But there is no Win v3 production version yet. There is current production version Win v1.9 , and there is the Windows Beta. On Mac, there is current production Mac v3, and there is Mac v2.9, primarily provided for folks who cannot upgrade yet to Mac v3.

The posts above are all still accurate, although due to compatibility differences, there are a few different scenarios/options for you to consider.

  1. Work with Mac v3 and Win v1.9. These are not directly compatible. When moving from Mac to Win, you’d need to “Export to v2” your project. When moving from Win to Mac, you’d need to “upgrade” your project. ETA: Your Win v1.9 license will also include a free upgrade to Win v3, when it’s released.

  2. Work with Mac v2.9 and Win v1.9. These are directly compatible, but you’ll lose v3 functionality. ETA: Your Win v1.9 license will also include a free upgrade to Win v3, when it’s released.

  3. Work with Mac v3 and Win Beta. These are directly compatible. You wouldn’t need to buy a Win license yet. But it’s a beta, so there’ll be bugs.

Hope that helps.