returning to secondary monitor in fullscreen


I repeatedly have this issue:

  1. I use Scrivener on a secondary monitor in fullscreen
  2. I plug out the second screen to use my Macbook Air somewhere else
  3. I return to the second monitor
    Now Scrivener looks strange, with the binder being extended way to the right, its headings in the middle of the screen and not able to rezise properly. It stays like this, when I quit fullscreen (I mean Macs fullscreen, not composition mode).
  4. I can only get it back to normal when I quit scrivener while not in fullscreen and then open it again (if I quit in fullscreen the problem remains).
    I use OSX 10.9.1, Scrivener 2.5

This is what it looks like:

This is what the console says:

Ouch. It looks as though all of the scroll views have extended beyond the bounds of their split views, as though it hasn’t received resizing notifications correctly. Unfortunately, split views are notoriously fragile on OS X, and Scrivener uses an unusually deep configuration of them, which makes things tricky.

Just to clarify your setup:

  • Scrivener is running on your MacBook Air.
  • You plug your MacBook Air into an external monitor.
  • You launch Scrivener in full screen so that it appears on that external monitor. (Is this in clamshell mode, or is the MacBook Air screen open and visible too?).
  • When you disconnect and return to Scrivener, this is what it looks like on the Macbook Air.

Is that correct?

The strange thing is that I use much the same configuration frequently, plugging my MacBook Air into my external monitor and running Scrivener in full screen on that, and have never seen this issue. Do you have it set up to switch between layouts when you enter and exit full screen mode?

All the best,


yes, MacBook Screen is open and visible

No, disconnecting works fine, but plugging back in to the second screen produces the problem. But not every time, I just tried to reproduce it and it didn´t work.

Not as far as I know - in the preferance pane under “appearance” there are no boxes checked that concern fullscreen. Do I also have to look somewhere else?

Thanks for your fast respond. I can still work with it, so the problem isn´t major.


Sorry for the delay in my reply. Just to clarify further so that I can test this more (I haven’t reproduced it yet):

So, secondary screen, MacBook Air open, you disconnect, and everything looks fine on the MacBook Air screen, and then you reconnect, and that’s when you get the issues? When you reconnect, I assume that the project is still open in full screen mode - at that point, does it then switch to the bigger screen? (My guess would be that the problems occur at some point when the big window tries to squeeze onto a smaller screen.)

Take a look in Window > Layouts > Manage Layouts… Do you have any layouts listed there, and do any of them have a blue full screen icon next to them?

What I would suggest doing to reduce chances of the issue occurring is leave full screen mode before reconnecting, and then switch back to full screen mode once you have connected again. Although obviously I’d like to reproduce it and fix it.

Thanks and all the best,

Exactly. It does switch to the big screen but looks there like in the picture.


What I forgot to mention, maybe it helps: when that problem occured, the background wallpaper of the large screen was also missing, leaving just dark grey. And the menu bar was invisible but appeared when I mousecklicked on it.

I will tell you if it happens again and if I gain more specifics.

Hi Graham,

My sincere apologies for my late reply. This is still on my list for further investigation. In the same week you reported this, Jennifer, one of the other L&L bods, also reported an issue whereby Scrivener can crash in certain specific situations when leaving fullscreen and when used with an external monitor. I have so far not managed to reproduce either of these issues, although I do wonder if they are related, given that there was also some screwiness with the view setups in her projects, too.

Anyway, I just wanted you to know that I haven’t forgotten you but that this is a thorny one so it might be a little while before I have got to the bottom of it, given that I have to set some more time aside to sit in front front of my other machine attaching and detaching the external monitor. If you do find any more factors, please let me know.


All the best,