Saving to LAN server and iCloud?

I’ve been using Scrivener on a Mac for a few years, but I just got an iPad and I have two questions.

  1. Regarding saving a Scrivener file: If I simply do a File > Save will it save the file to the iPad SSD? If I’m connected to a server on a LAN (SMB connection) can I save a Scrivener file to a subdirectory on the server? And can I also save the file to my iCloud account?

  2. The last time I checked, there was no way to secure (password protect) a Scrivener file. Has that issue been resolved?

Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.

iOS devices don’t have a normal shared file system like Mac or PC devices. Each app (with a few exceptions) has its own storage space that is sandboxed away from other apps. Hence Scrivener for iOS integrates with Dropbox client libraries so the Scrivener app can sync with your Dropbox library.

Alternately, you can use the Files app to copy Scrivener projects into and out of the Scrivener-specific storage area. If you have a LAN client for your iOS that can use the SMB protocol and integrates with the File app, then you could in theory two-step your projects – work on them in Scrivener and save them to the local (non-Dropbox) portion of the Scrivener storage, and then use the Files app to copy them back and forth. But it won’t be automatic, so you will need to keep careful track of which copies are the most up-to-date.

It’s not an issue so much as it is a different set of priorities. The format a Scrivener project uses is not actually a single file under the hood, but rather a collection of files. Short of using some sort of archiver, which would potentially add a lot of time and CPU usage to the loading/saving process, there’s no really good way to password protect them.

Thank you for the response. I understand the problem with the IPad and its lack of traditional directory access. I’m glad to see that one can still move a file to a server or to a cloud account. Unfortunately, not being able to secure a Scrivener file (or “project”) is bordering on being a deal-breaker for me.

I had hoped that this might have been changed in the app. For now, I’ll continue using in on my desktop and wait on the iPadOS version.

Again, thank you for the useful response. Regards.

As Devinganger notes, this is an unavoidable side effect of the project format Scrivener uses, and is unlikely to change. Moreover, we do not have any particular security expertise, and so we would just turn to the same third party packages that you can obtain elsewhere. Our view is that having no security allows users to evaluate their needs for themselves, while inadequate security might encourage people to make poor decisions. (This is the same argument for not putting guard rails on mountain roads.)

The security that Apple builds into iOS is actually pretty good. Good enough that the US government went to court to try to force Apple to break it. If that’s not adequate for your needs, perhaps the data shouldn’t be on a mobile device at all?


Katherine, thank you for the follow-up. Not every piece of software satisfies everyone’s requirements. As I said, I use Scrivener on my Mac and it serves my needs. The iPad version has a lot of features that I can use but the inability to be able to password protect a project has me concerned for m y use at this time.

We’ll see. Perhaps in the future.

Again, thank you for your assistance.

If you need password protection and syncing across iOS and macOS for your writing, Bear might suit. Also very easy to copy and paste from Bear to Scrivener on a Mac, if Scrivener is your preferred Mac-based writing environment.