(Optional) loading of a Window Layout on startup

Would be nice to have this option, either in Preferences or in the Window Layout manager. Probably the latter, since the layouts are machine specific anyways.

You mean for the project not to reload in its last visual state?

Yes, that’s what I mean (kind of). In my specific use-case: Same project, synced via Dropbox, two different machines with different screen resolutions. Launching Scrivener on a different computer, it loads the last open project(s), which naturally fucks up the window layout, and then I’ve to switch to my “perfect” layout for that machine. It’s just a keyboard-combo, but it gets annoying over time. So this being a fictional option, it would’ve to load the designated Window Layout after re-opening projects.

But how do you designate the “right” layout? There is, by design, no machine-specific information in the project. (Unless you create a machine-specific link.) There is, also by design, no project-specific information in Scrivener’s local settings. To implement your request, there would need to be a programmatic way for the project to “know” which machine was opening it.

Or, the installation doesn’t care what project it is loading…
It’d just load the layout, no matter what.

I can already see a big downside to it tho.
Good if it is optional – but still…

“Just load the layout no matter what” seems potentially disastrous to me with complex layouts and/or complex projects. And (pure self-interest here!) a support nightmare to boot.

Personally, I wouldn’t use that. I have a macro set across my machines, recalling their own “default” layout.
But I can think of so many issues (or just a big one engulfing them all, if you prefer) if loading the project in the same machine it was last opened in.
Just like for so many things, I want full control, and prefer to trigger such things manually.
Hence, +1 to the OP for thinking of the (Optional) part. :wink:

I would have to set it up first, like with the “…When Entering Full Screen”-option (imagine there would be another one where the green arrow points to, “…At Program Start”):

The Window Layouts are machine specific, aren’t they? (Saved in the local Scrivener installation or library folder). Maybe I lack the imagination, but what could go wrong when it already works that way, just by switching to my preferred layout manually instead of me telling Scrivener to do it? :thinking:

Yes, the window layouts are machine specific. So how is a project supposed to know that on this machine it should switch to this specific layout? Even though when it was last opened – on whatever machine – it had a completely different configuration?

Aside from the challenge of actually saving the information, I can think of two ways for this to go wrong.

The first is that you move things around and tweak the layout on the current machine, close Scrivener, come back, and instead of taking you back to what you were doing, Scrivener obliterates that with whatever your “local default” layout was.

The second is a crash: some versions of Mac OS and some hardware configurations simply can’t handle certain options. If the layout is local to the machine, you can work around that. If it travels with the project, what happens when you try to automatically launch a layout that simply won’t work with the current hardware?

My previous point, exactly.
(Whether it is a blind load of a layout, or a layout that follows the project, making no difference here.)

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Surely Scrivener knows what operating system it’s opened on, at least. That could be useful in places.

It doesn’t. And it can’t (in any meaningful way). Your concerns are valid. That’s why it should be a setting attached to the local Window Layouts of a specific machine. Like suggested in the screenshot here: (Optional) loading of a Window Layout on startup - #8 by November_Sierra

True. It already does exactly that if you forget to save your desired Window Layout, close and open Scrivener again, and manually load the old layout. Does it suck? Yes. But it’s a user error and Scrivener doesn’t know if the user tries something stupid.

Again, it’s a proposed setting that is stored with the Window Layouts on a specific machine. Not in any way saved with projects. Scrivener loads the layouts. It finds one that the user deliberately marked as “load after startup” (after the projects) and does it automatically.

Perhaps if the option was called: “Override project layout” or something like that it would be clearer what you are requesting. (Unless I’m not understanding what you are asking for).

I, for one, have different projects for completely different purposes and they need different layouts. It’s enough that Scrivener reopens each project with the layout in use when last closed, irrespective of machine.

My ½ p.


@xiamenese I can see why you’d have no use for this option. (And it wouldn’t affect you anyways.) But I’m curious. Do you open those projects on machines with different screen resolutions?

I think a good and convenient compromise (and that yes, I would most certainly use) would be the ability to assign a layout to an icon on the toolbar.
So this way there is at least one confirmation step. And it solves the potential downsides.

@Vincent_Vincent I wouldn’t say no to such buttons (you mean different buttons for different layouts, because there’s already one available for all layouts?), but that also wouldn’t address my problem in terms of “efficiency”. I’ve already assigned a keyboard shortcut via macOS. So it would be a click replacing a clack. :slightly_smiling_face:

Yes, M1 MBA and 5K iMac. My collaborator in China uses a Windows laptop of unknown (to me) specifications.

For me, the only thing I might want to change at times is the size of the window on the iMac, not the layout. I never use the iMac in full screen. On the M1, I hide the menu bar, but I don’t use full screen as basically my Desktop has no icons on it by default, so if I’m working between two apps (in separate screens) any files shared between them, or if I’ve been sent a document that I need to import into Scrivener, those are saved to the desktop temporarily to be easily accessible for drag and drop.

Here’s a typical desktop on the MBA, with the dock showing, though it’s normally hidden… minimalist, only apps currently running appear in the dock. :laughing:


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Thanks for sharing! Looks like we have the same devices in common. But your workflow is quite the opposite of mine, involving different layouts and even a third party working on the same projects.

I haven’t reached your level of minimalism (yet), but it gets “worse” year after year. Was quite confused when Apple introduced the desktop “stacks” feature, because on my desktop ususually there’s nothing to stack. For others, it seems to be a life saver.

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I’m not sure if by “getting worse” you mean you would not wish to reach my level—using spotlight to open apps, ForkLift for file management, though Cmd-N, Shift-Cmd-A and Opt-Cmd-L, open Finder, Applications and Downloads windows if needed—is not what you would want, or if your desire for minimalism is increasingly frustrated. :laughing:

I generally follow closely all developments, but I’ve missed that one, unless I know it as something else. But it doesn’t sound like anything I’d need. I have 5 desktops (with different images) on each machine and use three-finger swipe between them. Key apps are set to open in specific desktops.


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