Noticable lag after upgrading to 1.9


I’ve been quite satisfied with Scrivener up to today. After following the recommendation to upgrade to 1.9 and waiting for an existing project to be converted to the new upgrade format I noticed a persistent lag. That is to say when I begin typing few to several words to complete a sentence my cursor will disappear and no letters appear even though I am keying them in on the keyboard. After a pause of a few seconds the letters I last keyed in appear and the cursor reappears on the screen.

I’ve never experienced this issue in Scrivener before and not sure what to make of it. After ensuring my software was not uploading, scanning or excessively using resources in the background the lag was significantly less pronounced but remained when I attempted to move the cursor to a different section of the same page after writing three or four sentences.

Is anyone else having similar occurrence and is there a way I can revert back to the 1.8 version?
I’m using Windows 7 Home Premium with all the latest security updates. 64bit, 8GB Memory, Quad-AMD A8-3800 APU, 2.40 GHZ



  • I think I found the issue – my project was in a flash drive. When I moved the project onto my computer all delays described stopped. I hope this was it. It seems so.

Sorry for any trouble or confusion from the initial post – lessons learned for anyone having similar concerns.

The question still stands – is there a way to revert to a previous version if the user desires to do so?



Note that flash drives have a limited number of write cycles - typically between 10,000 and 100,000. This is generally plenty to last for as long as people use them before replacing them with a bigger one, since people generally write to them periodically, even if that’s several times per day. But with something like Scrivener that auto-saves changes as often as every few seconds, you’ll burn through those much more quickly. I would recommend not working directly off the flash drive, but backing up to it or copying the project back onto it after you’ve worked on it locally.

Alternatively, to preserve the convenience of working directly off the flash drive but reducing the number of writes, you can go to Tools / Options, and change the “Save after period of inactivity” value from 2 seconds to something much higher, maybe a few minutes. This is not a per-project setting, however, so it will affect all projects on that PC, whether stored on a flash drive or not.

Pick a value that works for you, depending on your typing style and how often you pause to ponder (or refill on coffee, or tea). You don’t want it so low that it auto-saves every time you pause for a mere 2 seconds, but you also don’t want it so high that it won’t auto-save until you’ve been idle for 72 hours, and then lose months of work because you never took a break that long (or saved manually)!

Again, note that this isn’t how often it will save, but how much idle time (no keyboard/mouse activity) to allow before auto-saving. So, setting it for 30 minutes means it will auto-save if there are changes after 30 minutes of no activity.

Hope that helps!

Even when one is not using a flash drive, Blue Ninja’s considerations are valuable. Awhile back I got tired of the program saving every time I put in a comma and thought for 2 seconds about what came next. I wanted it to give me a chance to revise what I’d just written, for instance, before saving it; I also wanted to decrease the wear and tear on my hard drive (though I don’t know how much a factor that really is any more). So I adjusted it (Tools > Options, or F12, then the General tab) to 15 seconds. I find that if I pause for 15 seconds, I’m definitely done writing what I was just writing. And if I’ve just put down something particularly brilliant and there’s a lightning storm going on, I can always hit Ctrl+S for an immediate save. Of course, if reducing writes to a flash drive is the major goal, then something much higher than 15 seconds might be desirable.

Blue Ninja and DavidR have covered the frequent saves/flash drive concerns, so just to quickly fill in the other question–you can download the previous version of Scrivener from the link in the change log. You cannot downgrade a project that was created or updated to 1.9, but the upgrade process will have created a backup of the project in the earlier format, so you can extract that backup and use it in 1.8.6.

All very good and helpful input. I find Scrivener to be a rather affordable, high-end, versatile and multi-faceted platform for writing, researching and finalizing a manuscript.

Thank you all for your kind sharing on the topic and answers.

So much to learn and so little time.