Saving Projects on the Hard Drive with Backups in the Cloud

How can I set Scrivener 3 for Windows to save my original project on my hard drive and create backups on OneDrive?

I read the “Alternative Method of Keeping Projects Synced” article in the database, but I’m not sure how to differentiate in the settings between where the project is stored and where the backups are stored. when I go to File>Options…>Backup, the only file path option I see is the backup location. I can’t find any setting that determines where original project files are stored.

Your active projects are stored where you assign them when you create them. Scrivener doesn’t control that; you do.



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I see. I think I understand now. Thanks.

To perhaps give you some specific advice, I use Mac version of Scrivener but the approach on folder locations are the same for Windows.

I keep all my Scrivener Projects in my Dropbox folder named “Scrivener” as I sync with another computer and an iPad. If you don’t use Dropbox and running Windows a good place to put all your projects could be c:[userid]\Documents\Scrivener. As @xiamenese says, where you put your projects is where you put them. Under your control. Best to keep them in one place.

I keep (and set in the Scrivener Settings/Preferences–whatever it is called) all my Scrivener Backups in a folder named ~\Backups\Scrivener. In a Windows machine that could be c:[userid]\Backups\Scrivener, or perhaps on OneDrive folder if you want. I prefer them to be local and rely on the system backup for backups. No need to access this folder except to perhaps test a backup restore once in a while. The backups are created automatically by Scrivener.

I have a 3-2-1 System Backup Strategy (read on the 'net about that) to backup my computer. Those system backups backup the Scrivener backups and the projects. If you are not backing up your entire system, please do so. Computers fail.

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I put my project on c:[user id]/Documents/Scrivener like you suggested and backups in a OneDrive folder. I don’t want all of my backups on a single device because if something happens to the device, I lose everything.

Hi @Ezra,

In addition to reading about the 3-2-1 System Backup Strategy mentioned upthread by @rms, this post contains an overview of my overall backup strategy, and the BACKUPS section of this post contains some Scrivener-specific recommendations.


OK. I get that. But remember than OneDrive (normally, I think) “syncs” between computer and their servers… so if something gets deleted/corrupted on either computer or their server … poof, the flaw is synced and backup gone.

I don’t use OneDrive so don’t know details. So please carefully consider what OneDrive is doing for you and how you have it configured. Might be a way for it to act as a backup and not sync service.

My internet offsite backup is BackBlaze which is designed for backups. I also have local backups to local backup devices.

Being careful about this is why I pointed you, as did @JimRac, to how to backup.

Good points regarding the risks of syncing.

To mitigate those risks in OneDrive, one could navigate via the browser to and can create standalone/non-syncing folders in which to store backups and whatnot. (In OneDrive, syncing is OFF by default when you create a new folder via the browser.)

The downside of this approach is that uploading to these non-syncing folders would need to be done manually–but that’s kind of the point!

I imagine that most syncing services will allow some way to create non-syncing folders. For example, you’d do this in DropBox by creating folders and then, via the Dropbox app, use Sync > Select folders to designate them as non-syncing. (In DropBox, syncing is ON by default when you create a new folder via the browser, so you need to use the app to turn it off.)


Humm. too complicated for me.:wink:

Dropbox now has a backup service. I have not fully tested but does not appear at first glance to have the sync risk. And I use Backblaze as offsite backup anyway.

Bottom line is just because files are synced to the “cloud” somewhere does not mean they are a good backup or even a backup. Caveat emptor.

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I had no idea they offered this, thanks for pointing it out!

At first glance, it seems 1) straightforward, 2) separate from sync, and 3) available to users of the free plan.


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Your process is a solid one. Local saves, offsite backups is a good first step to protection.

My process is:
Scrivener projects in Dropbox folder, synced.
Scrivener Backups One-Drive
Essential folders (inc Scrivener projects) synced to NAS
System Backups - Time Machine (you’d use a Win equiv) separate drive to NAS.
Periodic full bootable backups with Carbon Copy on a Thunderbolt external drive.

I’m helped with the juggle of drives, the NAS is in the network, and everything else is plugged through a Thunderbolt 4 hub that the MacBook Pro is plugged into whenever in my home office.

For now, I’m going to stick with the backups synced on OneDrive and the project on my device. The 1-2-3 method and extended backup services would be more security than my needs warrant. I just write fiction on Scrivener.

I use OneDrive for all my files and haven’t had problems losing files, so the situation that I would both lose my machine and all 5 backup folders on OneDrive would fail seems unlikely.

I save my Scrivener projects in my Dropbox folder. It has been working fine all year. No hiccups.

I suppose OneDrive can dupe the backup zip files. I don’t pay much attention to the zip files hidden deep in Windows.

It is a good idea (and perhaps the default now) to have ON the zip option for your Scriv backups. Having your backups be zipped makes them safer in a cloud-synced environment and also avoids any possible confusion between a backup project and a live project.


Shawn, your name is familiar. Do I know you from another forum?

The match may be roleplaying games.

Ah, that must be it. Good to see you again. :wave: