Can't open .scriv file moved from Mac to Win XP


Maybe there’s a simple solution and I just can’t see it. If I move a .Scriv file from the Mac over to my PC running XP, it’s perceived as a folder and I can’t open it, even from within Scrivener. If I create a file inside Scrivener on the PC and save it, I can open it using the Open Recent option. But again, I can’t open it by double clicking on the .scriv (file or folder), or open it in in any other way that I can see.

What’s the way through this conundrum?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help.


You need to open the project.scrivx file or whatever it’s called with that extension which is inside the .scriv folder.


All of my Mac hardware is now 15-20 years old, so I can’t be sure of this. But I have been told that the .scriv “file” on the Mac is, in fact, actually a folder. So I am not surprised that it looks like a folder on a Windows machine, because it actually is a folder.

But as Mark says above, you need to click on the “project.scrivx” file that is inside the project folder that you moved from the Mac. The “.scrivx” file type should have been associated with Scrivener (by the Scrivener installer, I’m guessing). Clicking on that file will cause the Scrivener project to be opened.

This sounded great. Unfortunately it doesn’t work. Doubleclicking the project file inside the .scriv folder doesn’t open it into scrivener and trying to open it from inside scrivener doesn’t work either.

One thing I notice is that the project file has a .scriv extention, not a .scrivx extention. Also, weirdly, there seems to be two project files in the .scriv folder. One has the current version name, one has an older version name (i.e. “30” and “11”) (though when I look under properties of “11”, it has the same version name in there as the other one: “30”.)

It’s very strange. Projects created in the PC version do open in Scrivener when the project file inside the folder is doubleclicked. So it’s something to do with bringing the project over from the mac…

It aught to work easily. Any further help would be much appreciated.


At what point do the instructions in the following list break down for you? Getting to this level of detail may help someone understand your issue a little faster…

On you PC:

  1. Launch Scrivener
    2a. If it opens with a project, go to File->Open
    2b. If it opens with a “Create New Project” window, select the “Open Existing Project” button at the bottom of the window.
  2. Navigate to your copied Scrivener project.
  3. Select the .scriv folder and click OPEN, which will take you into that folder.
  4. Select the .scriv/.scrivx and then click OPEN.

Got it. The solution was to delete the other project file inside the .scriv folder. The one with the earlier version name. I wonder if this is some kind of error that the Mac program has created. Should I delete the older project file inside the .scriv package on the Mac side as well? It’s opening up fine over there.

I just went and did it, opening up the package contents on the Mac side and deleting the older project file inside – and it opened up just fine afterwords.

It must be some kind of bug. Heads up Scrivener tech folks: you might want to look into it.

One more question: Am I safe moving a project back and forth between windows and PC?

Thanks for the support!



Glad you got it working. Are you using Dropbox or any other sync services on either your PC or your Mac? The extra .scrivx file might’ve been caused by a conflict with something like that.

You should generally be safe going back and forth, but there are still a few inter-OS quirks that are getting worked out, so make sure you keep backups especially while the Windows version is still in beta. At the moment, there are still some bugs with comments/annotations and footnotes going back and forth–annotations created in Windows or that are in a document viewed in Windows will not appear correctly once the document is opened in the Mac version (you’ll see the code surrounding the annotation text, rather than it all appearing properly as an annotation); inspector comments and footnotes created on the Mac side I believe are not yet properly converted to inline notes in Windows. (In any case, the Windows version doesn’t yet support the inspector notes, so until it does you’ll want to just work with inline notes anyway since they’ll all be converted to that as soon as you open the document in Windows.)

Script mode is also still getting a lot of kinks out in the Windows version, so working with a script back and forth at this point is may run into some issues with elements not being recognized properly. And compile settings for both versions are quite different at the moment, so you won’t have all the same options if you set up a special compile on the Mac and then bring the project to Windows (ultimately Windows will catch up, but at the moment if you need more control than the Windows settings can give you, you’re better off just always compiling from the Mac version and saving your compile settings).

So, some minor bugs are still being ironed out in beta but ultimately, yes, transfer between the different systems should be smooth, even with the feature differences; no information should be lost, even if you’re not able to take advantage of all the additional options the Mac version provides.

Thanks for the detailed response.

When you say “script” mode, you mean for screenplays, yes? That’s exactly what I am using it for, so perhaps I should wait a while to use the PC version until all the kinks are worked on with that…


Yeah, screenplays would be it. :wink: I’m not saying it certainly won’t work–if you’re willing to play around a bit or put up with some quirks you could make a backup of your project and then bring it over to Windows and check it out, type in it a bit and then bring it back to the Mac and see how it holds up; it may be just fine. But scriptwriting is definitely an area where the Windows version is not yet up to speed, so it’s more likely you’ll run into little hitches. By the official release, the back and forth shouldn’t pose any problems.