Locking scrivener

Hi. Probably asked and answered but I can’t find it, looking to lock my scrivener file down. Share a computer with 3 kids and (1) don’t want them accidentally deleting/modifying my draft and (2) don’t want them reading it yet. Anyway to put a pass code type lock on a scrivener file? I know I could always lock my whole os x account down, maybe even encrypt the scrivener file itself, but those are kind of extreme. TIA

Honestly? Lock the whole account down. For your security and theirs.

Among other things, that keeps all your passwords and cookies for the web safe, including the ones to things like financial sites that you may not want them to access. And it lets you configure separate “adult” and “child” permissions for both the web and the computer itself. For example, you might want to let your own account install software, but not theirs. If you’re sharing a computer with kids, a lost Scrivener file is the least of your potential worries.

(We have several nephews, all of them brilliant. We’re the designated cleanup crew when they get too much inadequately supervised computer access. Trust me on this…)


Another option is to use a password-protected disk image - you can create on using Disk Utility. Place anything you don’t want the kids touching on that. Of course, they could still delete it by accident, so I’d still recommend a separate account to which they don’t know the password.

All the best,

How old are they? If they aren’t old enough to start exploring beyond the surface, the old dot-folder trick might be sufficient enough. Any folder with a period in the front is going to be hidden from Finder completely. Though you can get to it if you know where it is, with the Go/Go to Folder... command. Just navigate to the place where the hidden dot folder is, use that command, and type in its name (including the dot). Keep everything in there you want “hidden”.

This isn’t really protecting a file to be clear. A dot in front of the name is a UNIX standard used to keep main listings clear of files you don’t use often; it is trivial to view the whole list. So it’s only going to keep things hidden from young kids. Once they learn where Terminal is and what it does, game over. Within the OS X layer, you can’t navigate to them without knowing where they are (or changing a preference flag in Finder to cause it to always show hidden files) and anything inside of them won’t be added to Spotlight.

To make a dot folder, you have to use Terminal, because Finder tries to be smarter than you and fails. By default Terminal starts up in your home folder, which might be good enough. If you want it in Documents, then type in cd Documents and hit return. Okay, to make it type in mkdir .projects, and press return. The “projects” part can be changed to whatever you like, it’s the period in front of the name that matters. With that done, go to Finder and navigate to the folder where you created it. Use Shift-Cmd-G and type in “.projects”. Now you can drag projects into this folder and obscure them. You’ll also want to disable recent documents in the system preferences, General/Appearance pane.