[Quick Look preview] Struggling bringing a Scapple file into Scrivener

I thought that in the past (almost a year ago) I was able to import a Scapple Mind Map type file into my Scrivener file and see the mind map when I clicked on it in the Research folder and then open it in the “Editor” (Scapple). But now when I import I see nothing when I click on the file (I have updated Scapple to the latest version) and can never get to the external editor. I’m sure I’m missing something.

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I have exactly the same problem. I have a number of Scapple boards in a Scrivener document that have before now always become visible when selected, but which all now produce a blank screen.

Scrivener: 3.2.3
Scapple: 1.40.1

The Scapple update last week seems to be the obvious culprit.

Confirmed here:

  • 2015 5K iMac, (Intel, MacOS 12.3.1, Scrivener 3.2.3, Scapple 1.4.1) has a blank area of the background colour of the .scap file but no notes.

  • 2020 M1 MBA (MacOS 12.3.1, Scrivener 3.2.3, Scapple 1.4.1) merely shows a black version of the app icon but doesn’t attempt to load the file.

Both Scrivener and Scapple bought directly from L&L.

Hope that helps.


Yup, this is a macOS specific bug that crept into the latest release. Scrivener makes use of Quick Look to display anything it doesn’t know how to display, and it is that plugin that got broken in the update. We’ve already figured out what went wrong and will have it fixed in the next update for Scapple.

This also impacts Finder, and anything else that uses Quick Look (like Devonthink).

Hello, I am a new user of Scapple.
After the update in May, I found the file of Scapple cannot be previewed.
Is this normal or just my problem with my Mac?

Thank you

Any ETA for the QL bug fix?

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… standing by here as well
(just posted same question – then saw here this seems of more general interest)

I import i Scapple file to research map in Scrivener. Its all blank.
The pdf-version is visible.

In the manual I can read:

9.5.4 Importing Your Scapple Document into
Scrivener As-Is Instead of importing your Scapple document into Scrivener as a static PDF file,
you can simply drag the .scap file itself into Scrivener’s binder (placing it anywhere
except in the Draft folder). The system will generate a preview of the .scap board, much like having a PDF, only it will update when the file changes, …”

Have I got something wrong here?
Mac OS Monterey
Version 12.5.1
Scrivener version 3.2.3
Scapple version 1.4.1

As Ioa (AmberV) says above, it’s an Apple bug, and Lit&Lat haven’t yet released their upgrades to get round it.



Thanks for answer. Lets wait and see then…

Shouldn’t be too much longer! We’re mainly working on compatibility issues (for the upcoming macOS 13 release which is due soon) and a few other bugs.

I hadn’t thought about it, but you’re right. There is no preview in the main Scrivener window. However I can open the file in Scapple by clicking on the middle icon down along the bottom of Scrivener’s main window, right side. Not a fatal error for me, and I hope everyone can at least open their Scapple files.

Mac OS v12.5.1 - Scrivener v3.2.3 - Scapple v1.4.1

Catalina, Scapple 1.4.1
thank you very much

There was an open thread for this already, @dorindon.

But it would be good to let everyone on the notification list for this thread know that, although it hasn’t been alerted in the software yet, there is an update that fixes this problem. Grab a fresh copy from the main website, or use the Mac App Store program to update.

Note that given how Quick Look plugins can be a bit “sticky” you might need to reboot if it doesn’t work immediately.

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thank you very much and my apologies for not having researched the forum correctly.

I see.

The next update will be 1.4.2?

Yes, as noted in the 1.4.2 change log:

Finder QuickLook plugin fixed, which will also fixes cases of Scapple files not showing their preview when imported into a Scrivener project binder, or in the Bookmark preview pane when linked to files.

If this is the version you are using and it still does not work, you might need to run some Web searches for fixing Quick Look, either globally or specifically for one program that isn’t working right. It is not uncommon for it to break and require reset.

Otherwise if it resists ordinary Mac-level troubleshooting, I would advise testing against the latest public beta.

I use this and it does not work.

There are too many unknowns for me to say why that might be. Multiple copies of Scapple might interfere, for instance, an old cached copy of the plugin might be stuck in the system. There are troubleshooting guides for sorting these kinds of conflicts out, as I suggested, that might be of help.

This shell command, for instance, will show you which “Scapple.app”, if you have multiples, is being used:

qlmanage -m plugins | grep scap

Run a search for “quick look cache reset” to get loads of instructions on how to do that. I’d recommend doing that after uninstalling everything Scapple related save for the one you want to test, then rebooting after resetting the cache and ensuring it is using the right plugin.

I am using Snapple 1.4.2 and all is working as it used to work.


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