Help with syncing through Dropbox

A while ago our computer died with only enough time to deactivate Scrivener. Since then I’ve been solely using Scrivener on IPad (which I was using before synching through Dropbox) Now I’ve got a new computer (Windows 10j and I’ve set Scrivener up again. When I tried to set up synching to Dropbox it said I couldn’t synch to the original Scrivener file and I had to set up a new file. My iPad is synched to a file in Dropbox that has all my projects on while my computer is synched to a completely different new file

How do I continue with the projects I’ve been working on on my IPad but being able to go between my IPad and the computer? Any help would be much appreciated but please bear in mind that computers are a complete mystery to me :slight_smile: Thanks

Can you post the actual error message that you’re receiving – either a literal transcription or a screenshot? Unless you’re locked out of your Dropbox account, we should be able to help you get your new Scrivener installation syncing with your existing Dropbox account.

Failing that, you can move your synced Scrivener files between your Dropbox-visible storage area and your local storage area on your iPad.

There’s also the possibility that you created new projects on your iOS Scrivener instance, which would create them in v3 format that would be unreadable by your Scrivener for Windows 1.9.x release (which uses v2 format.)

Seeing the actual error message will help us figure out what exactly is going on and how to help you get back to writing ASAP.

Another alternative is that the OP created a new Dropbox account on the new computer…

Can you post the actual error message that you’re receiving – either a literal transcription or a screenshot? Unless you’re locked out of your Dropbox account, we should be able to help you get your new Scrivener installation syncing with your existing Dropbox account.

[attachment=0]screenshot 2020-10-25 15.39.32.jpg[/attachment]

This appears when I attempt to sync with Dropbox itself and with the specific Scrivener 1 file Thank you for any help you can give

Don’t use Sync with external folder!

To open a project created on the iPad, in Mac Scrivener choose File → Open → navigate to the project in your Dropbox folder, and open it.

Tried this and nothing came up I’m using Scrivener on Windows 10 is it the same? Looking at my files the project I want to open is a compressed zipped folder so its not actually showing up as a .scriv file If I do get this method to work will it sync any changes I make to the project when I open it back up on my Ipad?

You don’t want a ZIP file. Scrivener can’t open that.

Rather, you want to be running the Dropbox software on the Windows system, which will allow Dropbox to upload and download as needed to keep the project in sync.

Detailed set up instructions can be found here: … g-with-ios

A troubleshooting guide for iOS synchronization can be found here: … os-syncing


Thank you Kewms I shall definitely give those a read So glad I’ve got a week off work before NaNoWriMo starts to get this sorted :smiley: Thanks again

If it’s a zip file, did you do something special on the iPad, apart from setting up Dropbox sync?
(Project screen, Edit, gear wheel at the bottom, Dropbox settings, decide to where in Dropbox you want to sync your projects, back out, tap sync, wait for sync to finish, done)

Not that I recall it’s a little while since I set it up but I really don’t know anything about computers/IPads apart from the basics so I wouldn’t know how to do anything special All I know is I click the Project on Scrivener on my IPad and it opens

Thank you for this but I am so confused :confused: Both of these articles are about setting up on IOS but as far as I know I am set up on IOS. I have been able to open my project on IOS Scrivener with no problems for possibly 4 years (the project I’m working on is titled Nanowrimo 2016) and on my old computer I was able to go between IPad and the computer quite easily. Now I’ve downloaded Scrivener onto our new Windows 10 computer I cannot sync to the Scrivener 1 file in Dropbox on my computer and get the message posted above.

Also when I look in Dropbox on my computer the only file I can see with the same title as my project is a zipped folder but the link above says I shouldn’t be able to open a zipped file on IOS but it opens easily on my Ipad

My head is spinning with all this as I don’t really understand any of it Any help is very much appreciated Thank you :slight_smile:

Do you have a Dropbox folder on your computer, or are you looking at Dropbox via the web interface?

If you have a Dropbox folder on your computer, create a brand new Scrivener project, save it to that folder, and see if it successfully synchronizes to the iPad.

If you don’t, contact Dropbox support for assistance with your configuration.


Thank you for the reply Yes I do have a Dropbox folder on my computer I’ll try to save a new project as soon as I get onto the computer Do you mean save it to just the Dropbox file or to the Scrivener1 file?

I have news! I’m currently on my IPad and having a quick search about and I have found all my current and not so current Scrivener projects in my Files app under On My Ipad There was a Scrivener file and inside that a Dropbox file and all 4 of my projects were inside (not as zip files). I went to Dropbox and found them in a file called Apps which had a Scrivener file inside. I don’t know if this will help with synching with Windows but at least I know there out there somewhere :smiley:

Yes. Now, on your PC, you need to install the Dropbox client and logon with it to the same Dropbox account. When the client is done syncing your files, you should see a Dropbox folder under your user home directory, and under that Apps\Scrivener. Inside there, you will see those 4 projects now resting nicely on your PC. Open them from there with Scrivener and edit them in place – and when you are done, close the projects in Scrivener (if you don’t just close Scrivener outright). At that point, the Dropbox client will sync the updates to the cloud. LET IT RUN AND COMPLETE before you turn off your computer or attempt to open those projects in your iPad.

The basic rules of thumb to sync successfully and avoid corruption:

  1. Never try to open the same project on both the iPad and the PC at the same time! Open it, edit it, and close it in one side at a time.
  2. In iOS Scrivener, always sync your files from Dropbox before opening your projects, to make sure the latest files are copied from the Dropbox cloud servers. Perform your edits. Now, save your projects back to Dropbox when you’re done working. This takes all the changes that you made to your project(s) on the iPad and saves them back up to the Dropbox server in the cloud. Then, your PC can start copying those changes down from the cloud copy.
  3. In PC Scrivener, always make sure that Dropbox has copied all of your changes (that it says it’s up to date with no pending sync actions) before you open Scrivener to edit files. When you’re done and close your projects (and Scrivener), wait a few additional minutes for the changes to sync back up to Dropbox and for the client to report that once again it is up-to-date.

If you follow these steps, you will have the best chances of having a trouble-free syncing experience.

Yes! Thank you! I already had Dropbox downloaded on my computer and found the Apps folder (Never thought of looking in there) I have just successfully opened and edited a (less important) project in PC Scrivener and then opened and edited again on my Ipad and re-opened on the PC Everything seemed to work beautifully

One quick follow up question If I start a new project on PC Scrivener do I just save it to the App file?

Thank you to everyone who offered help and suggestions to a complete computer novice NaNaWrimo here I come (no excuses now :smiley: )

Yes, Exactly. That Dropbox\Apps\Scrivener folder is the top of where your iOS device will be looking for Scrivener files, so any project you intend to sync with your mobile device should be there or in a subfolder there. If you create a new project in Dropbox\Apps or even Dropbox, the Dropbox app on the PC will see it and sync it to the cloud Dropbox servers, but your iOS device won’t see it and sync it down to your device.