Moving an existing project from Scrivener 3 to 2 and back to 3

Dear all,

I have to bring my Macbook Pro 2017 in for repairs (yes, the keyboard …), it could be away for up to two weeks.

I’m working on a Scrivener project on a deadline. It’s all set up in Scriv 3.
I still have my mid 2009 Macbook Pro as a back up, it’s on Mavericks and runs fine. Scrivener 2 is installed on this computer.

My question: do I risk losing anything (structure, notes, anything) by exporting my project as Scrivener 2 project, work on it in Scriv 2 and load it back into Scriv 3 when the repair is done?

I know things should run smoothly, all updates from Scriv 2 projects to Scriv 3 were fine.

I just want to ask if I can do the back-and-forth conversion without a headache.

P.S. - I know I could use a patch to install Sierra on the 2009 Macbook, but I don’t want to tinker around with these things, I just want to keep on working.

P.P.S: Dear Apple, your Butterlfy Keyboard is a disaster, but I guess you already knew …


The biggest concerns, if you’ve used these features much so far, would be:

  1. Compile settings.
    If you’ve customized compile settings, and they’re in the “My Formats” section of the compile listing, then you might want to edit the format and put them in the “Scrivener Formats” section by using the “Save To” drop-down under the format name. These formats aren’t upgradable, so down-grading likely means those settings will just go away.

    I’ve come to rely on these heavily. As far as I’m aware, Document bookmarks might be turned into Document References, so they won’t be as visible, but the documents they’re pointed to will still be wherever they were in v3 (binder items will still be where they were, and external files will remain where they were, hopefully with a reference link to them). Project bookmarks are more flexible than the old Project Notes section, in that you can bookmark anything (pdfs, web URLs, external files, etc…), so I don’t know what happens to them when you down-grade a project to v2. Might want to experiment by installing v2 alongside v3 on your current Mac and seeing what the downgraded project changes.

Aside from that… I can’t recall anything else that’s changed that wouldn’t be backward-compatible. I’m sure I’m missing something… Oh! Special types of custom metadata. If you’re using pop-up lists, date formats, or check-boxes in the custom metadata fields you’ve created, those won’t translate very well. They might be converted to text fields, but once again, you should convert your project and open it in v2 to see.

Don’t forget styles! Styles won’t survive the round-trip. And preferences. And section types. I suggest you save each of these to disk for re-application later.

Thanks a lot for your valuable hints! I did a test run and it works fine enough now for my purpose. Meanwhile, the space bar has started working again (sort of, just the left side). So I’ll try and finish the first draft on the new laptop and get the repair done while wating to hear back from my editor. I’ll keep you posted!