Can't open file

Hi, I’m writing a shared book project on my pc with a friend who’s writing on mac. So far he’s been saving a copy for me to edit, which worked fine the first few times.

But now I can’t open the .scriv-file he’s sending me. Nothing happens when I double click the file or try to open it from the scrivener interface. And when I say nothing, that’s what I mean. No error message. Just nothing.

Did we miss the fact that pc vs mac doesn’t work or does anyone else have a suggestion? I even reinstalles Scrivener. And he’s been trying to save new editions of the project. Same negative result.


My first guess is that the .scriv project has a second .scrivx inside it, usually the result of a sync conflict if you’re using something like Dropbox to share the project. On a Mac the second .scrivx will get ignored and the project will still open, but on Windows it throws the program for a loop and you end up with nothing happening when you try to open the project. Fix in this case is just to remove the extraneous .scrivx from the project’s .scriv folder. You’ll want to keep the newer one, so check the modified date on them, and I recommend just moving the extra file to somewhere outside of the project rather than deleting it, just in case it turns out you need something from it.

If this is the problem, it’s likely there are other files in the project that also have multiple versions, usually labeled “conflicted copy” or similar, so you and your writing partner may want to spend a little time looking through those to make sure that you don’t have forked copies of your work, with some changes in one copy of an RTF and different changes in its conflicted copy. Since this is the first time you’ve run into a problem working with the project, though, it’s probable that this hasn’t happened, and that the conflict happened just on this latest sync. Cleanest and fastest way to deal with this then is to move the corrupted copy of the project out of Dropbox, then have your writing partner on the Mac restore from a copy of his most recent backup (accessible from a button in Scrivener > Preferences > Backup). He can copy the backup file from the Backups folder, double-click to unzip it, then move the project’s .scriv file into Dropbox. It will take a little while for that to sync from his machine and then from the cloud to your machine, since it’s syncing the full project all over again, so make sure you watch the Dropbox icon and allow the sync to complete before you open the project.

For Dropbox (or other sync service) collaboration, also check out this article, which goes over the guidelines for a safe sync: … th-dropbox

Hi Jennifer,

Thanks for your reply and good advice. Removing the older .scriv file did the trick immediately. Everything is now up and running again. Perfect.

We’ll read up on the dropbox advice so we avoid any conflicts in the future - understanding the reason for the conflict happening in the first place should also be a big help along the way.

Thanks again!