DropBox shared project file extension changes from .scriv to .scrivx when downloaded on shared machine, and won't open

I’m experiencing difficulty sending a scrivener project file from my mac to a collaborator using a mac via DropBox. I’ve saved the project to a shared DropBox subfolder on my desktop. That file syncs with DropBox online as a .scriv project and shows up on my collaborator’s DropBox as a .scriv project. However, when the collaborator “downloads” the project from his online DropBox to his mac desktop (he does NOT use the DropBox desktop app for a variety of reasons) it comes down as a zipped file, which when unzipped has a .scrivX extension which he cannot open. Any clues what we’re doing wrong?


If you have shared the folder with the project, your collaborator should see it in Finder on his Mac, provided he has the Drpbox app installed. There is no need to download anything.
So exactly what is your collaborator doing?

Thanks, Lunk. But he does NOT use the DropBox app and is not interested in using it. Does that make a difference? If so, why?

Yes, it changes things. Then you need to zip the project and he needs to download the zip file and then unzip it, to make sure you share the complete file structure.

The .scriv project is in reality a folder, not a file. That’s what changes things.

Thanks again, Lunk. I am aware that the .scriv project file is actually a folder. But still unclear why downloading a .scriv project folder directly from DropBox results in the folder being converted to .scrivX extension, while allowing the DropBox desktop app to perfom the same function would not. The project folder sits online with a .scriv extension. Then when downloaded directly from DropBox, without the use of the DropBox desktop app, it gets unzipped by my collaborator’s Mac when he attempts to open it and converted to .scrivX extention. Thoughts?

When I look at the web interface, I can’t see how you can tell it to download a complete folder with all it’s content, both files and subfolders. Are you sure he isn’t navigating into the folder and downloading the .scrivx file?

The Dropbox app on your Mac uploads an exact copy of what you have in your Dropbox folder in Finder, all folders, subfolders and files.

That’s what I thought, too. And, yes, as far as I know he’s downloading the project folder exactly as it sits in his online DropBox account. But when he opens it — or rather tries to open it — something gets hosed and it tries to unzip the file and converts it to an “unopenable” scrivX file. Weird.

I’ll try sending him a zipped project file via DropBox to see whether that makes any difference. And he’s considering installing the DropBox app. Problem is he stores thousands of video files on DropBox that he does NOT want on his desktop machine. Thanks for your thoughts…

How does he download a folder theough the web interface? I can’t find any such command. The only available command is Open…

And about Dropbox accounts. Why not have two different accounts? One syncing through the dropbox app and the other not.

Dropbox isn’t “changing” the extension. You simply aren’t seeing the complete project. The .scrivx file is the master index file, located inside the .scriv folder.

The Dropbox app is different from the web interface in that it automates the process of downloading an entire folder (with subfolders).

It’s hard to say exactly what’s happening without more information, but I would suggest the following test, taking Dropbox out of the equation entirely:

  • On your system, use the File → Backup → Backup To command, checking the box to create a ZIP backup.

  • Email the resulting file to your colleague.

  • Double-click to unZIP. He should just see a .scriv folder.

  • Double-click on that to launch the project. All good?

If that works, then the project is fine and Scrivener is behaving correctly.


The Dropbox application has a selective sync option for exactly this purpose.


Thanks, all. He has installed the DropBox app and all seems to be working — at least, for now! Appreciate your assistance.