Controlling which pane is used for documents

Is there a way to fix Scrivener so that when you switch to a new item in the binder, items in the Drafts folder always open in the top pane, and items in the Research folder always open in the bottom one (or vice versa)? In my view, the option to do this would greatly improve the usability of two-pane working. Working with two panes is potentially powerful, but I am forever finding that I am opening documents in the wrong one. For example, if I am writing something in the top window, and decide I need to refer to a source, I instinctively click on the source, without remembering I have to shift the focus to the bottom pane first, and the result is that the document I am writing gets closed and I have to open it again.

Another solution would be to have a “lock” button, so that a single click would lock a pane to a the currently open document, and a second click would unlock it. If one pane was locked, any new document clicked in the binder would open in the other one.

Apologies if the procedure for doing this, or some other solution, is documented and the problem is just that I have not been able to find it.

“Lock in place”: right-click on the icon to the left of the title of the document in the left or right-hand editor, and it’s at foot of the menu that appears.

Edit: as brookter says below, this should be “left-click”.

First of all, make sure the option in the Navigation pane of Preferences ‘Binder selection affects other editor when focused editor is locked’ is checked.

You can lock documents with View > Editor > Lock in Place (cmd-opt-L). You can also left click on the icon in the header bar to get a context menu with this command on. The editor header bar will turn a different colour to reflect that it is locked.

Now, when you lock a document in split view, a single binder click will navigate to the other editor.

If you want to streamline this a bit more, you can define a saved layout (you only need to do this once).

  1. Select a document (any one, because this is just a dummy to set up the layout).

  2. Cmd-opt-; to split horizontally.

  3. Click on the top editor to give it focus and lock it with cmd-opt-L.

  4. Make any other changes to the layout you want (e.g. widths of Binder / Inspector etc).

  5. Window > Layouts > Manage Layouts or shift-cmd-)

  6. In the dialogue box, click the plus sign in the bottom left corner to add a new layout based on your current layout. Name it something obvious (I use “Top Lock”). It will now appear in the Window > Layouts menu.

  7. (Optional) In OSX System Preferences > Keyboard Shortcuts, add a new Scrivener shortcut called “Top Lock”.

Now all you need to do to use the configuration in future is to highlight the first document and type your shortcut to get it into the top editor and locked. From then on a single click in the binder populates the bottom editor.



Thank you very much for these comments. I could not get right-clicking on any icon (whether the icon in the binder or in the title bar of the editor pane) to work. However, cmnd-opt-L, combined with ticking the box in preferences does precisely what I wanted. I will try out the keyboard shortcut some time, though right now this is enough.

Thanks again.

For some reason, you have to LEFT click on the icon in the header bar, not right click, to access the menu.

Glad it works for you…