Error message on importing and splitting a docx file using a documents outline structure

I was unable to import and split a docx file using a document’s outline structure. After I used MSWord to resave the document with compatibility turned off scrivener was able import the document.

I have no way of testing this directly, would you be able to provide a sample document that produces the error you describe? It can be as simple as a few headings in some lorem ipsum text.

Amber - the process to create the bug:

  1. Compile a document from Scrivener to Word
  2. Open in Word and re-save with ‘compatibility with previous versions of word’ ticked
  3. Attempt to import and split this resaved/edited document using structure. This triggers the error.

I have attached a cut down version of the Word file which still triggers the error.

I was unable to trigger the error if I attempted to create the document from scratch in Word. The latest version of MS Word (Windows) appears to have turned off compatibility mode, or buried it so deeply I can’t find it. It would therefore appear to be the case that the bug may have been introduced into the .docx file during the compile.

Anyway, knock yourself out. If you end up needing the original Scrivener project I can send it to you, but not on a public link.



For the Honor of the Agency v5 (TEST CLEANED).zip (21.8 KB)

Thanks, the problem is that I do not have MS Word.

So strangely enough this works fine for me. The only thing that’s a bit odd is that it cut what appears to be an attribution on a quote into a separate document, and from what I can see in LibreOffice this style isn’t a part of the outline. So that’s a bit off—but that aside it still imported a nested tree that otherwise conforms to the document outline.

Are you sure you are up to date with the software? If so, go into the General: Warnings tab of options, and enable error logging. Restart the software and try importing again. If you get anything useful in the log, copy and paste what you can into a response.

Hi Amber, OK, having the error log turned on indicated that the file was locked by another process (in this case Word). As I was testing the process of compiling, re-formatting, sending the manuscript to an editor, then re-importing the file to Scrivener, I didn’t see the need to close Word before re-importing.

So can we agree that there isn’t a bug, but that there possibly was an valid expectation by the user that READING a locked file should have worked (as other programs eg: Open Office 4, Calibre will open a locked Word file, although OO4 will throw up a warning) so when it didn’t it appeared as a bug?

Anyway, my thanks for your interest in this, and at least I am confident that the process I was testing will work.


Okay! That makes a lot of sense. I’ll see if there is something we can do to at least improve the reporting of what happens when attempting to read from a file locked by the system.

I’m wondering if Scrivener is trying to open the file for read/write by default – which, I agree, doesn’t make a ton of sense for an import – instead of read-only.