Scrivener backup question

Under the backup settings, there is an option to “Only keep ‘3’ most recent backups”. With this setting, I have only ever had 3 separate backup files of my project in my cloud storage, basically like versions I think or something.
I found in the trash bin of my cloud storage some 40 copies of my Scrivener projects, which I presume Scriv has been deleting the older copies as per the backup settings, and they’ve been gathering in the cloud storage trash bin *where they remain until manually deleted, its a safeguard measure by the provider I guess.

If I were to turn the “Only keep” setting off, am I correct in saying that Scrivener then backs up only one file, which it then constantly updates/overwrites to each time a backup is made?


They’ll all remain.


There is no on/off checkbox.

And even if you could set it to “1”, it still wouldn’t prevent older versions from piling up in your cloud’s trash bin.

Which I don’t see as a problem btw.
It may one day happen that you have a document that you didn’t edit for quite a while that has been dragging something wrong from versions to versions, in which case you’d be happy to have an older version from which to salvage it.
If your cloud has the room, might as well leave them be.

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There is on mine…but I’m on Mac, your interface looks like Windows??
Screenshot 2024-03-02 at 00.08.25

I thought it was the same (Windows, yes).
Disregard my reply.

Although unchecking it is probably the same as “Keep all …” under Windows.

Yup, without the limiting “Only keep” option they just pile up until the free disk space runs out.


Ah ok - I thought it would just use the one file and keep overwriting/updating it as you go along.

Take a look at the backup location and notice how the files are named. With date-time stamps so over-write cannot happen. While there, do a test restore of a project from a backup just to know you know how to do it correctly when the time comes—and that day will come.


No, that would be almost as bad as having no backups at all. That’s why you can’t limit them to 1.

I think 25 is the best compromise if you don’t want to delete old backups manually.

And of course — not related to Scrivener — you also want a proper backup solution for those files (e.g. macOS’ Time Machine) in case your device gets damaged / lost or your cloud provider vanishes over night.

Shouldn’t happen anyways, they just get numbered if I remember correctly, but date stamps are without a doubt the saner approach.

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Maybe a forgotten setting somewhere, but for me on macOS, the file names contain a time-stamp.

Edit: a checkbox on Backup Settings “Use Date in Backup file names” which for me is checked “on”.

It’s the penultimate ckeckbox in this screenshot (not sure if that’s the default setting, though, but if not, it should be): Scrivener backup question - #3 by Sisko