Does Scrivener on Dropbox lose data if the computer sleeps?

There are various awful warnings about not syncing, but my computer goes to sleep frequently automatically.

What happens to my Dropbox files/Scrivener project?

There is no upload or download between the hard drive on your computer and the Db server when the computer is asleep.

Why not increase the time before it goes to sleep?

In theory, nothing should happen.

But as a practical matter, I would recommend shutting Scrivener down if you plan to be away from your computer long enough for it to sleep. That ensures that any necessary housekeeping and backup tasks are completed.

In particular, there have been some reports of strange behavior if the computer’s environment changes significantly while it is asleep, for instance if removable media is removed or the internet connection changes.


More than anything else, I’m worried about just slapping the computer shut which should sleep it immediately

I would recommend not doing that unless you’ve first confirmed that Dropbox finished synchronizing.

If that’s not feasible, I would recommend not using automatic synchronization.

Data stored locally should be fine, but your scenario practically guarantees incomplete synchronization will occur at some point, which in turn is quite likely to lead to synchronization conflicts.

IMO, an iOS device is a better choice than a laptop for the “make quick note, put device away” scenario, because iOS Scrivener is designed with that use case in mind.


Slapping it shut isn’t really happening “automatically”, is it?

If it goes asleep on its own it’s because you haven’t done anything for a while, and that should give the Db app time to sync. Slapping it shut with Scrivener open and possibly right after having done something somewhere in an open project is almost guaranteed to create problems.

A basic rule: Always close the project before “slapping the computer shut” so you at least have all changes saved locally, and turn on Backup on Close in Preferences.

And if you for some reason have to “slap the computer shut” in the middle of something, remember NOT to open iOS Scrivener at all until you have had time to wake the laptop again and close the project or perhaps even all of Scrivener and check for the Db app to have synced everything.

Thanks…I was doubtful about this–several times I’ve wanted to just put machine to sleep to answer the door or keep a cat out of it.

It seems it won’t cope well with that, so I’m going to have to be more disciplined in it.
Thanks for confirming that

Note that you can set a “hot corner” on your Mac: dragging your mouse there will immediately lock the screen. That will protect whatever you’re working on from prying eyes and wayward cats, without interrupting whatever your computer might be doing.


… and ctrl+Command+Q does the same thing, it only locks the screen. No need to put it to sleep.

I’ve never experienced dropbox syncing issues due to a computer just going to sleep on its own. Even when I ran the battery all the way down and it “hibernated”, everything was fine when I plugged it in and rebooted. I’ve been using Dropbox for over a decade now.

I’m curios–where are these warnings coming from? Is the application itself warning you of sync issues, or are people circulating this information?