Project disappeared

I have a large project on Scrivener that I sync between two machines using SugarSyn. Yesterday, I closed the project, and opened the relevant folder on my other machine, only to find that it had not synced. I went back to the first mac and noticed that the project was no longer in its folder. I opened scrivener and was unable to find the project in the recent projects list. Neither can I find it with spotlight. I checked mySugarSync (the online thingy) and it is not there. Is it gone? Was this a problem with Scrivener? Is this a known SugarSync problem? There’s no point in asking SugarSync because their customer service is virtually non-existent. The other machine had the previous save on it, of course, and and as soon as I started the machine, it synced it to my DTP, which didn’t help at all, as this now appears as the most recent S project. I received no error messages. Is there a retrieval solution? I lost a lot of work. Should I switch to dropbox or Zumodrive, or go back to ethernet cable, like the old days? And another thing, why does Poirot walk like that?

I don’t know much about SugarSync, but with DropBox web interface, there is a way to reveal removed files and restore them. They don’t keep them around forever, but for a few days if you accidentally delete something and that deletion propogates to all of your machines, you can get it back via the web interface. Another thing it does is let you step back to prior versions (kind of like TimeMachine). If SugarSync has anything like this, that’s where I would check first. Next I’d check the Trashes on all of the machines that are hooked together. One of them must have removed the file, if that removal was done with ordinary Mac tools like the Finder, then it ought to be in the Trash. Last thing I’d do, at that point, is check TimeMachine. If SugarSync stores files right on the hard drive like DropBox does, then TM should have a copy available. The trick is finding a copy from a time when you are certain the project was closed in Scrivener.

I rather doubt it’s Scrivener’s fault. It doesn’t have any code in it that manages projects like this at the filesystem level. It doesn’t move or delete projects, just works with them while they are open. Nearly without fail, when this type of thing happens, it’s because some kind of automagic synchronisation application is running in the background. Switching to DropBox will not necessarily alleviate the problem.

What I recommend, as I always have, is to keep all of your important files in places that automatic functions are not allowed to touch. Copy things to these areas, take advantage of how convenient they are to keep all of your computers on the same page, but think of them as a transfer protocol, not a working area, and that will mitigate nearly every single problem I’ve ever seen with them. I go even further and only store zipped backups of my Scrivener projects in the DropBox folder. Haven’t had a single problem that way, and I’ve had corrupted files trying to store them plain.

Thanks, Amber. I’ll take your advice. I’m now rewriting the missing bits. Cheers.

You’re welcome, and sorry you couldn’t find a backup copy to get your work from.