Preferences from PC to Mac

I have been working with Scrivener on a Windows PC for quite some time. I have customized my preferences quite a lot, such as changing text and background colours for more comfortable work, etc. I now have a MacBook and have purchased Scrivener for it as well. I am using SpiderOak to sync between PC and Mac, and that seems to be working fine. But I can’t figure out how to move my preferences/options over to the Mac.

It seems I have to get these preferences set the same, because if I edit a document in a project on the Mac, and then Open it on the PC (after sync is complete) the colours a messed up. Is there a way to get them to play nice without having to revert to default settings? I tried Manage/Save Preferences on the PC and then Manage/Load Preferences on the Mac, but it’s not working and nothing changes.

Mac and Windows use different formats for saving the preferences, and have some different options, so you’ll need to just sit down set them all manually on the Mac to match whatever you have on Windows as much as possible. If you’re working on projects cross-platform, you’ll want to be careful about choosing default fonts for rich text areas that are available on both your computers–some that are default on the Mac won’t be on Windows and vice versa. These can be changed within the document, of course, but it’s easiest if your defaults transfer nicely so you don’t have to constantly worry about it.

Generally speaking, appearance colours are global and shouldn’t be affected by moving back and forth–that is, projects opened on Mac should always look the way the Mac preferences set them and projects opened on Windows should look the way Windows set them, regardless of what things were like on the other machine. In contrast, text colours in rich-text areas (the editor, the document and project notes), should be part of the text per-document and not be switching around.

The exception is that on Windows can have “no color” as a setting, whereas the Mac text system always has a colour. Thus text that looks black on Mac is black, though on Windows you could have text that isn’t coloured and just lets a default appearance colour show through, so to speak. Windows lets you provide an appearance colour to text in the editor, for instance, which just affects its appearance without actually making the text that colour–if you copy the text to another rich-text area, it will not have that colour set. On Mac this isn’t possible; assigning a colour to text makes it that colour. This is why Mac doesn’t offer any text colour options for rich-text areas in the Appearance settings.

As a flip to this, once you’ve edited text on the Mac, the text colour will become an attribute of the text rather than just an appearance overlay, so it will stick once you bring it back to Windows. So text that was previously “no color” on Windows and showing whatever your editor text default colour was may have been set to “black” on Mac and now is remaining black on Windows instead of the appearance colour you’re used to.There’s no way to strip the colour setting other than manually selecting the text and choosing Format > Font > Text Color > Remove Color (also in the context menu or from the format bar). If you like working on a dark editor, you could set the text on Mac to use a light colour by default (in the Formatting pane of Scrivener > Preferences); you’ll just need to remember this is set, so you can deal with the consequences when you print or take text elsewhere. There’s an option in the Transformations section of Compile to remove text colour, so that will let you still get black text out, regardless of what you’ve set it to in the editor.