Getting Ready for iOS

So really excited and trying to contain that but its so hard! I’ve been trying to set everything up so I’m ready for Wednesday and I think I’ve got it right. Maybe.

  1. Updated scrivener to v 2.8
  2. Signed up for a dropbox account
  3. Downloaded the Dropbox App’s & set them on my Mac, iPad & iPhone
  4. In Scrivener on Mac I hit the Save As option and saved my project to Dropbox
  5. Renamed the version I’ve been using that is on my computer’s hard drive so I don’t confuse the version stored on my computer with the version on drop box.
  6. Closed my scrivener project down & scrivener itself then reopened and selected the file to work on that is now stored in Dropbox.

Is the above correct? Is there any other steps I should do before Wednesday? Or should I delete everything and start again because I stuffed it all up?


Yup! That’s all you have to do if you wish to use Dropbox.

There is only one small quibble I would have with that checklist. When you use “Save As…”, the end result of that command is to end up editing the new copy of the project. It not only copies the project to a new location, but ends up with you editing from that new location. For a command that creates a copy of the project but leaves you “in” the original, File/Back Up/Back Up To… is what you want (and for this purpose, with the zip compression option disabled as we want a live project in Dropbox).

Like I say, that’s just a quibble, because you went on to close the new project and then open the new project, which has the same effect as not having closed the new project. :slight_smile: Just for future reference.

Oh, I thought to have the manuscript sync to multiple devices it had to be done with dropbox. Its the only reason I set up the dropbox account in the first place.


With multiple devices (assuming you mean a Mac and at least two other iOS devices), using Dropbox will be the easiest way. If you’ve just got one device and a computer, then you can also just copy projects on and off the device using a file manager, like iTunes. It would probably be a little awkward to copy projects around between multiple devices. I more often use AirDrop. You can export the project off of the tablet and send it wireless to your Mac, then do the same in reverse when you’re ready to head out of the day.

You might as well give the Dropbox method a try since it’s set up anyway, though. Like I say, that will be the most convenient. Instead of sending the project or copying it one way or the other, you just tap a button when you start and again when you’re done (and on the Mac you don’t even have to do anything at all, just stand up and walk away from the computer so long as Dropbox is running).

One other minor thing: you say you saved the project in Dropbox. Make sure it’s not in the root Dropbox folder but in a subfolder of it. E.g:



/Dropbox/My Scrivener Projects

You will choose this folder when you set up syncing in iOS, and it’s recommended that you only store Scrivener projects inside the folder - you cannot choose the root /Dropbox folder, you have to choose a folder inside it. (The default folder Scrivener for iOS recommends is /Dropbox/Apps/Scrivener, so you could set that up, but you don’t have to - you can just create a folder named whatever you like.)

I set mine up as Dropbox/Scrivener/My Series Name

With the scrivener file for the 1st book in the series saved in the series folder. That will work right?

Yep, that will work fine. You would just set up Scrivener to sync with the /Dropbox/Scrivener folder and you are sorted. E.g. suppose you have this structure:

    /My Series Name
        /Book 1.scriv
        /Book 2.scriv
    /Other Writing

In Scrivener on iOS, your projects screen would show:

Book 1.scriv
Book 2.scriv

Is there a reason why this should be exclusive, or are you just being cautious?

EDIT: and shouldn’t your example be:

/Dropbox /Scrivener /My Series Name /Book 1.scriv /Book 2.scriv /Other Writing /A.scriv /C.scriv :question:

Oops, yes, that’s right.

Awesome thanks, I was so worried for a bit that everything had to be all mixed up in one folder. That would be a pain!

On the bright side it’s Monday 18 July, so only a couple more days to go. Woohoo!

Ok, now I’m confused. I have a folder on Dropbox with all sorts of writing files: Scrivener files for blogging, books, etc, Curio files, Omnioutliner files, Flying Logic Pro Files, DevonThink files, Bookends files and Aeon Timeline files. I use it to sync between my MBA and Mac Pro. I put all the business of writing stuff, which is mostly pdf and docx files, in an entirely different folder. I have a separate file for Scrivener backups, which I also store on Dropbox. Dropbox is almost transparent, and it works well.

Do I need to revise this so that only the Scrivener files I want to sync with my iPad are in a separate folder? I sync the whole shooting match – the entire writing file – right now. I even sync it to my iPad, although writing on the iPad has been too much trouble before Scrivener for ios. I don’t know why I never changed that, but I didn’t. I am selective about what I sync to my iPad and my laptop, since my Dropbox has a lot of things, including photos, and runs over 500 gb.

If I do need to set aside a folder just for Scrivener stuff that I am working on right now, I assume I could make that a sub-folder of the existing writing folder. Is that right?





One thing I’ve found useful for organizing my Scrivener projects and also accommodating the iOScriv requirement of having projects in one folder (and no other files, preferably), is to use file shortcuts (aka aliases). Once you’ve located your Scrivener projects in a place where the iOS version can access them, create a Windows Shortcut or a Mac Alias to your project. Then move that shortcut/alias to the original location of your project, among any related files that you had stored outside of the project.

For the Windows version, be sure to create a shortcut to the .scrivx file, not the .scriv folder. That’ll make opening the project from the file explorer more convenient.

Thanks I’ll create aliases. Should be very helpful.

Also, a nit-picking question: I’ve got two Scrivener files I work on daily. One is a book I’m writing, the other is where I write my blogs. Can I put them in one folder for syncing with iOS, or does each of them need it’s own folder?

They can go in the same folder, or you can put each of them in a sub-folder of the one your iOS device syncs to … on your iPad/iPhone they will appear exactly the same way.


After thinking about it, I decided to just put each file in its own folder and be done with it. Also, I’ve started using Hazel to color code all files for a project, so I can see them, no matter where they are.

Hopefully, I’m now ready for IOS DAY!!! :smiley:

Thanks for the quick answers. You’ve both been very helpful and I appreciate it.

I currently use Dropbox for zipped backups of active Scrivener projects. When I go iOS and make myself a neat little Scrivener/Projects folder on Dropbox, and move my active projects to that from their current folder, where, then, do my backups go? Other than the nightly Time Machine to an external HD, and the weekly SuperDuper to a different external HD. Still to the Backups folder on Dropbox? Feels a bit . . . I dunno. Chancy? Eggs in boxes and all that?

My backups are zipped and go to iCloud Disk, where I’ve got plenty of space. I’ve never actually had to access a backup, mind you.

Before this move, my live projects were in Cubbies and the backups were on Dropbox, but I was running into space problems there.


Even if your project is in Dropbox, Scrivener will back up to its default location on your hard drive, e.g. /Users//Library/Application Support/Scrivener/Backups, whenever you close a project or select File > Back Up > Back Up Now. If you want extra backups independent of Dropbox, you could use ‘Back Up To’ in Scrivener for Mac to save a copy to iCloud - as I understand it, the problem with iCloud is one of syncing individual files within a changing project, not of file storage per se.

I’m not sure how you would redundantly back up if iOS is your main platform, as I’m still waiting for the app to land. I rather feel that iOS + cloud is never going to be a bulletproof platform, though; for me what appeals is the convenience of having my project with me everywhere, not abandoning my Macbook altogether!