Do I need to save multiple Bak files?

Hi - After I’ve published an eBook I generally end up with, say, 10+ Bak up files. Do I need all of these?Should I keep all of them, or only the most recent one, including the Scrivener master file?

Thanks - James

To make sure we’re on the same page, you are referring to a file name like, “The Name of My”? If so, it sounds like you might be working directly inside your backup folder? You wouldn’t ordinarily encounter “bak” files on a regular basis, and by default the software would keep them rotated to a maximum of five anyway. That rotation behaviour is however disabled if you go in and work inside the backup folder itself. It’s a protective measure against rolling off the very backups you are opening and closing, looking for the thing you want to restore.

Examine your Backup preferences pane settings. You can set how many bak files should be retained, when they should be made, and where. Make sure the “where” points to some spot that isn’t where you work.

As for whether to save multiple backups and how many, that’s up to you. I prefer to take several backups per day, so I keep the last 25—storage is plentiful and cheap. And ordinarily, they are entirely invisible as well, and only only becomes aware of how many there are when they need to go into that folder. There are generally speaking far fewer negatives to having too many backups when compared to the negatives of having too few. :slight_smile:

Thanks, Amber. Makes sense!

I’m a little confused by this (and couldn’t figure out how to post a new topic, so am posting here)… I have five backups (,, etc.) per project, and understand I can change in preferences how many save, but can I manually delete some of these backups from within the Application Support folder, without breaking anything? (Especially for a current project I’m working on.)

What confuses me is that the most recently modified or created backup might be .bak2, whereas .bak4 looks older, so the backup numbering doesn’t match modification/creation dates, at least in my case. Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Here, for example, is what I mean (second column from left is “Date Modified” and third from left is “Date Created”):

The numerical sequence shouldn’t be relied upon to convey chronological information—in part because it is safe and okay to manually delate a backup yourself. If you know it was made redundantly or that it is of no use to you (maybe you just opened the project to check something and accidentally did some action that activated the backup tripwire), then your file naming sequence will no longer be coherent.

But even just in ordinary usage, Scrivener will reuse numbers when it removes the oldest from the stack, meaning that number now represents the newest backup.

If you want a more coherent naming scheme, I would recommend the date stamp option. I prefer that mode myself, as it makes it possible to leave folder sorting by name, meaning project backups remain clustered together and sorted chronologically within that cluster.

Awesome. Thanks! That’s really helpful. So I can delete any backups without causing problems? I also changed Preferences to save just 3 from now on.

The only problem I can think of with deleting backups is that you’ve deleted a backup. :wink:

(This is coming from someone that keeps 25, and backs up those 25 to an external drive every hour, daily to an offsite location, and monthly rotates external drives, mind. :mrgreen: )

Ha! Okay, thanks for the help.