Installation Problem

I am sorry that I have been unable to solve this problem on my own, I am sure it must have a simple fix. Tolerance much appreciated!

I have successfully downloaded Scrivener for my new Apple Macbook Pro. Please be advised that this is the first time I am using an Apple computer — I have been a PCer for decades, but am trying to switch over.

After I open Scrivener.dmg, I click the “Agree” button on the licence agreement. I get the “opening Scrivener” screen, then the black background screen that tells me to drag and drop the icon into Applications folder. That works fine. Then I eject in the Applications folder, as directed by the installation instructions received with the confirmation of my purchase.

Then when I try to open it in Applications, I get this error message:
The alias “Scrivener” can’t be opened because the original item can’t be found.

I have tried pressing “Delete Alias”, and the icon disappears from Applications. I then reaccept the license, and try pressing “Fix Alias” instead. I get a “Select New Original” screen, asking me to “Select the item I want alias “Scrivener” to open”. But it won’t let me select Scrivener, that option is greyed out.

I have tried uninstalling everything, emptying the trash, then redownloading, all to no avail. I appear to be stuck.

Can you help me fix this? I would love to start writing…

Thank you!

Welcome to Scrivener, and the forum.

The Scrivener file within the Applications folder is the Scrivener application file that you do need to keep. What you can eject is the scrivener.dmg file, which should still be in your downloads folder. This is the “container” in which your application arrived. You may also find an alias for it towards the foot of the sidebar in the Finder, with an icon beside it that looks like a dark triangle on top of a dark rectangle; click on this icon and the .dmg file will eject. You may also possibly find an alias for it on your desktop; right-click on it if it’s there and you’ll be offered a menu with “eject” as an option. Any one of these actions will eject the .dmg file; that’s all you need to do.

I should re-download, and start again.

Hi Hugh, thank you for your response!

I have searched for the options you describe, and find none of them. My computer is brand new, might that make a difference?

The only place I could do an eject is from the left side bar of the Application folder, when I scroll down to Removable Devices to where Scrivener is pictured, with an icon that looks a bit like a small external hard drive. It has a small black arrow pointing downward to the right of the icon, which looks to me like the symbol for an eject button.

What I have been thinking may be part of the problem since I wrote my original post is that the icon I get on my desktop after accepting the license is the same small external hard drive. I have seen in other posts that a black “S”-type logo is what some have on their desktop. I have never seen that on my machine, except in the notification that says to drag and drop the icon from the desktop to the Application folder.

Another befuddling matter is when I pull up the details for the Scrivener icon in Application, there is a side bar on the right that shows the same external hard drive picture, small bent black arrow on the bottom left (which in PC terms means it is a short cut – same on a MAC?), and the first row of text below says “Alias - 255K”.

Putting those last two paragraphs together, I am thinking I have only managed to successfully download the icon, and the software itself is still inaccessible.

Thoughts welcome!

For the future, that sidebar that you say is the sidebar of the Applications folder is in fact the sidebar of the Finder as a whole, and the Scrivener file under the heading Removable Devices is the .dmg file that you can indeed eject. (In that sidebar, your Applications folder is likely to be listed together with several others, so you need to find it in the sidebar and click on it to reach the Applications folder itself.)

However, it’s unclear to me why that leaves you with a Scrivener alias in the Applications folder, rather than the application file itself. No doubt someone better qualified than I to help you will be along shortly.

The video linked below (just for you) shows Scrivener for Mac being installed on the latest version of OS X, having been downloaded from the L&L website.

Your Mac should be a lot faster than my old machine from 2008.

If you take a look at the video, can you explain where / how your instal differs?


Briar Kit

Well Mr. Kit, problem solved! Thank you so very much! Your idea to provide a video was excellent.

I was not dragging the black “S” icon on the instruction screen towards the blue Application folder icon on the right-hand-side of that same window, rather I was dragging the icon on the desktop that looked like an external hard drive into the Application folder itself, within Finder.

Silly me. I will attempt to save face by chalking this up to having spent too much time with PCs, where one often must work through the background rather than try the obvious.

Very much appreciated!! Tomorrow, I begin writing.


Good news.

Happy writing

Briar Kit