Possible to save projects to a external hard-drive?

Hello, I’m new to Scrivener and installed it on my computer. I would like to store all project related files to an exterior hard drive and keep from filling up my computer’s storage. Would I need to install Scrivener on the exterior drive?
Thanks for your help and information.

Hi CSB. Welcome to the forum!

Saving Scrivener projects to an external drive will not be a problem. There is no need to install Scrivener to the hard drive. As long as the drive appears as a regular lettered-drive on your computer, Scrivener should be able to find it – provided it is connected.

When the drive is not connected, projects saved on it will not appear in the Recents list when Scrivener first starts (and possibly not in the Favorites list, too; not sure) because Scrivener only shows projects it has access to. Once you connect the drive, those projects should again appear in the list.


Hey, thanks so much for your input. I will set up a Scrivener projects folder on my Passport and give it a go. If I understand correctly, I can install the software itself on the Passport? Or just route the projects to it.
Thx again!

All you need to do is point Scrivener to the folder on your Passport where the project is saved. There is no need to install Scrivener on the Passport, nor much reason to, since there is no portable install option for Scrivener.

Got it, I just set it up, works perfectly. Once again, thanks so much!

As Mad_Girl_Disease said, the scrivener install is to be on your computer. (C: / program files / …)

One advice :
Since you already have your projects on your external drive, it would be a good idea to have the backup feature of Scrivener place those backups on your computer directly, so you have a real backup (elsewhere than where your projects are) in case something unfortunate happens to your external drive.

For just writing project size is small. I have a book at 100000 words and as zip file is under 14000 kb. Some storage should not be an issue. Use Dropbox as well

Good point, Vincent_Vincent. Thank you for the reminder.

Thank you GoalieDad, I have another reason for wanting to use my Passport Drive. That being so it can move it with me to my other computer, or to my daughter’s computer when I’m with her. At 930 GB I prefer to have it moving around with me and not using up local storage. I don’t have a dedicated writing computer as of yet.

I use Dropbox to save zip files of project and work at home on my tower and my house by the beach with laptop and as long as let file sync to Dropbox no need to carry portable drive. I’ve done this for two years without any issues. Dropbox is preferred cloud storage, if use others ALWAYS use a zip file to save your file, takes up less space too.

In that case, you might want to keep on your Passport things like your Scrivener dictionary and preferences, settings, etc, so that your work environment can be the same on each device.

I use passports for backups and archives. I’ve never had one fail and they always just work. But in fact, they don’t actually get much use, given what I use them for, and they mostly sit on a shelf. When I need to keep actual live work of mine (like a Scrivener project) on portable media, to be accessed on different devices, I try to use a solid state device, like a flash drive, which will be just that much less fragile. Not to be paranoid or anything. :slight_smile:


Don’t for get to install a copy of Scrivener on those computers too, so mayby placing installation files and Serial Number on the External harddrive are advisable as well.

Hi AntoniDol, yes I’ve got that part covered, but great suggestion on the Serial Number. Such a pain that it isn’t included with the program in “About”. I have the number written, typed and now in my iPhone, just to keep it available. Excessive, but it works. lol!

If the serial number were stored with the program, then it would be possible to duplicate an installation across multiple systems without re-registering. Since you are an honest person, you probably haven’t considered the opportunities for piracy that this would create.

Good point, and you are correct, no pirate in this gal! Not only am I a Believer…I also believe that what goes around, comes around!