Losing Scrivener regularly

I’m fairly new to Scrivener, which is on my Windows 7 laptop. Recently I bought an additional Windows 10 laptop to write on (but didn’t install Scrivener on it as I didn’t want to risk corrupting it.) Instead, I write in Word and then email the work over to my main laptop and paste into Scrivener there.
Since doing so, I keep getting the following scenario. I open Scrivener, only to get a message saying that Scrivener cannot be found. Obviously, the first time I panicked! Fortunately I save to Dropbox in a back up file, so learned how to extract the info from this and go to the last backup. But this keeps happening!
Can anyone shed any light on why it should be, and how to stop it?
Many thanks,

Where do you keep your Scrivener projects, and how do you start Scrivener when you get that message?

Scrivener the application cannot be found, or individual Scrivener projects?


I keep my projects backed up to Dropbox, so when I get that message I go to Dropbox, extract the file and I’m back in Scrivener.

Um, I’m a bit of a technophobe and can’t remember the exact words of the message, but basically every time I click on the Scrivener icon on my desktop, this message comes up saying it can’t be found. I only have one project in it.

Yes, but where do you save your live projects?

Sorry, Lunk, I’m not sure I understand your question (being a technophobe!) - when I’m working in Scrivener I just hit File/Save every now and again and when I close it, it automatically backs up to Dropbox.

You don’t have to hit Save. Scrivener saves automatically every time you stop writing for a few seconds.

The destination of your backups is set in your Scrivener settings. When you close Scrivener it saves the project to the place where you decided to save it, when you created the project.

Open Scrivener from the Start menu, choose File in the menu and you should see the project at the top of the list of recent projects

Thanks for trying to help me, Lunk, but the problem is that when this happens and I open Scrivener from the Start menu, I just get a box saying it can’t be found.

I would recommend using Windows Explorer’s search tools to locate all .scriv folders on your system. Not knowing where your work is saved is potentially extremely hazardous to your data.

Once you have located your project, look inside the .scriv folder for the .scrivx file. Double-click that to launch the Scrivener application. Does it do so successfully?

It is possible that the Scrivener icon on your desktop is connected to a project that has moved or no longer exists. If you are getting error messages like this routinely, there is something wrong with your file management practices and you should learn enough about your system to figure out what is going on.


Oh no! I did what you suggested and found a Scrivener file via Windows Explorer - and when I clicked on it, it transferred an old back up to my current Scrivener project and lost EVERYTHING I wrote today… I don’t know what’s going on. :frowning: And because I’ve backed up so often in today in an attempt to sort this out, I no longer have a back up of what I did earlier today. This is horrible…

This is not what happened. You might have opened an old backup file, but that file did not “overwrite” the current Scrivener project. The current version of the project should still be on your system, findable via the search function.

I would recommend sending an email to our support address, as resolving this is likely to require a good amount of back and forth about how files are organized on your system. windows.support@literatureandlatte.com


Sorry, had a terrible panic there. I refound my work, thank goodness! I guess I just don’t have the technical know-how at the moment, as you suggest. Will keep trying…

Thanks, Katherine. :slight_smile: