Failed to load web archive error

Suddenly, all my imported webpagesin scrivener are blank wit a “failed to load web archive” error. Maybe it is connected to Mojave most recent update (OS 14.14)? or Safari update (12.1). I trashed Scrivener and reinstalled it, but made no progresses…
The file/ import web page function doesn’t work either!
Anybody has had that experience too? What to do?
In the meantime, I am working with the web page imports on my iPad, but I wish I could keep on working on my Mac.

I would tend to blame the Mojave update, as Scrivener uses system tools to load and display web pages. Do newly created archives also fail?


A couple of things I can think to try:

  • Keep Console open when attempting to import this file, while searching for “Scrivener” in its toolbar. Report any error messages that pop up during or after the import attempt.
  • Try using another program that is capable of importing from a URL, creating a WebArchive file in doing so. There are a number of candidates with free trials you could use:

[list][*] DEVONthink

This will test third-party software in general, to see if there is a security condition that is making direct import impossible. It would also reveal whether macOS asks permission the first time you try with a particular program. Maybe that question came and went with an habitual denial click. I’m not sure where that would be undone, but generally it can be, and seeing how a second program attempts to create a .webarchive may help.

Update: it looks like this is an easy one to reproduce, so we can at least see what is going on easily ourselves. So don’t worry about testing this one any further yourself.

OK, my best wishes for the test, crossing my fingers for an easy fix!

Just a note the same thing going on with me. And definitely it began with Mojave update, because I was working in the same project the days before and after the update.

I’m having the same ussue–receiving the “Failed to Load Web Archive” error. I just purchased Scrivener3 yesterday and attempting to import web pages into the Research folder is the only issue I’m experiencing. (I had Scrivener 2 on a previous Mac and didn’t experience any issues.)

Same problem on MacOS. Fortunately, the pages I saved on the Mac show up properly on the iPad version after I sync. Rendering engine weirdness.

I also just bought Scrivener a few days ago and have dozens of web pages all showing this error. It was definitely the Mojave 10.14.4 update.

Thanks everyone. In case it wasn’t clear from before, we have a handle on the problem and know that it reproduces on all Macs that have had Apple’s latest update applied.

If it is at all possible, you could consider downgrading back to 10.14.3. Alternatively you can simply hit ⌃⌘O to Open in External Editor and view the file in Safari.

the ⌃⌘O shortcut works well,

Can we soon expect an update to Scrivener that dialogs well with Mojave 10.14.4? Or is it Apple that will have to correct their OS?

Is there a way we can get an email when this issue is fixed - ??

user name writerdad

In your Help menu there is a “Keep Up to Date…” link for subscribing to our newsletter. That will be the closest thing to an email. We don’t always send one out for every minor update though.

A more reliable approach is to just have your software let you know when an update is available. You’ll find the settings for that in the General: Startup preference pane. If you don’t see the setting to automatically check for updates, then you probably purchased through Apple’s Mac App Store. Such software must be kept up to date through that tool, rather than individually.

I dropped by to see if there’d been any updates regarding this issue or perhaps an estimate of if/when it might be fixed?

I understand that it might take some time to remedy and if that’s the case I can save research links into Evernote or similar so that the info I’m looking for is readily available. If an estimate is available, that would be helpful.


I’m having this issue too – just discovered it, after imported webpages were working perfectly before. I’m right in the middle of a huge project, so I really need this to work (as I’m sure others do, too!).

I’ll make sure I’m subscribed to updates, but in the meantime I wanted to chime in and add my name to the list of those affected by this issue.

Scrivener 3 on MacBook Air running Mojave 10.14.4

Dearest Scrivener,

Given that you have a “handle on the problem”, two reasonable questions by Kopi on April 1 are still unanswered:

  • Can Scrivener can fix this?
  • If so, when?

Another subsequent request for a timeframe has gone unanswered as well.

It is starting to seem like you don’t understand the pain this is causing users. I starting using Scrivener a month ago and I hope this isn’t indicative of future customer engagement and support. :confused:

See this thread:


I just upgraded from Scrivener 2 to Scrivener 3 on Mojave and am experiencing this same issue. All my web pages were fine earlier today on Scrivener 2. I’m wondering if this is the same problem everyone else is having, or can the files from Scrivener 2 just not be read by Scrivener 3?

It’s the same problem. Scrivener 3 will have automatically converted your projects to the new format.

The workaround is to open the link in the browser of your choice.

If you haven’t already, I’d recommend taking a look at our upgrade guide for Scrivener 2 users, here: … date-guide


Having this same problem and I noted that you referred to this as a minor error – for me it is not minor, as I often work offline. I hope you’ll update soon to fix this.