Reload externally referenced files?


I am referencing some external JPGs and bringing them into my document so that they are visible in-line as pictures.

Sometimes I update the externally referenced JPG files to better fit my needs.

Is there a way to reload the pictures in the document without having to delete the picture in-line and drag the reference back into the document?

Is there a way to have this done automatically?

I would think that if I wanted a static copy of external file I would import it instead of creating an external reference.

Thanks a lot!

When you drag an image into a text document (inline) you are creating an internal copy of the image that is no longer tied to the original image. The only way to fully reference an image (right now) is to drag it into the References pane of the inspector. But then, you can’t see it while you work, you have to double-click on it to open it in Preview or whatever your default is for viewing JPEGs.

In the next version, you’ll be able to use image aliases inline. That means you can drag an image into the text document, and have it show inline, but it is actually just a reference to an external file. Updates to that file will show up in Scrivener automatically. You can do this now, but it is not recommended because there are glitches in how aliased images currently work. Namely, you won’t be able to export them with the manuscript. If you don’t anticipate producing a manuscript any time soon, you could go ahead and start working that way, with the understanding that you’ll have to wait for 2.0 before you can really do anything with the produced file outside of Scrivener. The release date for that has not yet been announced, so I really wouldn’t recommend doing that yet unless you know for certain you can wait until later this year to start the final phases of your project.

The way to insert image aliases is to hold down the Ctrl key while dragging the image into the text document. You should see the cursor modifier change from a green plus sign to a little curved arrow.

Actually, that’s not entirely true. If you have an external image as a reference in the inspector, you can just drag it from the References pane in the inspector onto the header view of one of the editors - this will load it for viewing in Scrivener. This works for externally-referenced PDF and media files too.

But as Ioa says, dragging images into the text itself or into the binder is creating a copy, not a reference to the original.

All the best,

Thank you!

I am not sure I understand exactly what tmanasa is doing, but I do want to warn about aliases in Scrivener files. If you export as rtf, the alias will not be incorporated (aliases are a Mac concept, and rtf is a cross-platform format). If you export as rtfd, then you (a) are using a Mac-only format, and (b) need to make sure that the aliases stay available if the document is sent to another computer.

My advice to tmanasa is to make sure that your entire workflow is clear to you before you decide to aliases in your Scivener documents. See [url]] for a longer discussion.

Thanks for the additional warnings, alanterra. I tried to communicate the potential pitfalls above. I’ll just repeat by saying that, at the moment, this trick is a hack. The only reason it works is because it never got prohibited. Scrivener really (at the moment) is not designed to work with it. It will be, but don’t base your book (if you have deadlines) on the eventual release date of software that is still in development. :slight_smile: If you don’t have deadlines, or you don’t need images in the final product—then blast away. Just realise you are using an unsupported feature.

The advice alanterra gives is good. Anyone that has ever worked with InDesign, Quark, or other applications that uses linked resources knows that you can’t just send base files around without a veritable flotilla of support files (and that properly gathering these can at times be a job for fancy third-party preflight plugins), but if you are unaccustomed to working that kind of environment, it can be easy to forget that your documents are—in a sense, not complete without everything they depend upon—and unlike these high-end programs, there is no pre-built workflow for gathering and internally re-targetting resources.

If you don’t need to collaborate at all, and you don’t need to compile them within a somewhat near-horizon deadline, then go right head. It does work.