Scrivener native format?

Evening, all -

Only heard great things about Scrivener, and finally got to see it in action in the demo videos. Definitely looks like something I could use.

Quick question: is there a native Scrivener format? I switch writing between my desktop and netbook, so was wondering if I get the beta version for my netbook as well, is there a format I can save the file in on one computer to transfer it smoothly to the other while retaining all its most recent changes?


Scrivener works with multiple files at a time, kept together in a “.scriv” project folder. To transfer your work from one computer to another, all you need to do is copy that folder. Super simple. :slight_smile:

Thanks very much.


Does that include going cross platform?

ie. if I start working on my Mac, can I take my .scriv project folder over to my Windows machine and carry on working with it?


Yes. On the Mac, the .scriv folder will appear as a single file because Macs use folder extensions as “packages”. So on the Mac, you just double-click the .scriv “file” and it opens in Scrivener. On Windows, that package will appear as a folder with the .scriv extension and you’ll have to open the folder and then double-click the .scrivx file inside. It works fine, you just need to remember to copy the entire .scriv folder when transferring.

There are a few Mac-to-Windows issues right now still being hammered out in the beta, so if you’re working cross-platform I definitely recommend making good backups.* Inspector footnotes and comments aren’t supported in the Windows version, for instance, and while ultimately they should be recognized and just converted to inline notes when you open in Windows, right now they just don’t appear at all. I believe there are also still some lurking issues with coding showing up in the Windows version for Mac inline notes, although I haven’t checked on this in the latest 022 release. That should all get fixed by the official Windows release, but as I say, just watch out for any little things when going back and forth. And of course if you find something not reported in the forums (or have more details to provide on an issue that’s been raised), do make mention of it.

  • Of course I recommend making good backups all the time…

Sounds awesome.

Many thanks for such a prompt response. Much appreciated.


My hard disk AND my backup disk crashed at the same time! Lost my crucial scrivener project!
Can recover some files using recovery tools, but need some help to reconstruct my screener project:

  • I do have a whole list of RTF files recovered by my recovery program, great
  • I lost the names for these files, not nice…
  • but mostly I lost the folder/file structure of my book… where i sthis stored? which file contains the structure and the metadata (although I could leave with the folder structure / tree only) What is it’s extension & format ? XML ? other…? All my recovered dies are simply without names anymore and classified by type (jpg, mp3, rtf, txt, …)

Many thanks for your help!!

For best results, you should attempt to restore the entire “.scriv” folder, that the RTF files you found are within. It’ll be two levels up. The structure looks like this:

Your Project Name.scriv

There are a bunch of other files as well that are important, the above is just an illustration of where the RTF files are located in relation to the top-level project folder. Everything and including the “.scriv” folder should be restored if possible. Most important are the contents of the Docs folder and the .scrivx file. We can theoretically help you bootstrap a project using just that, but there are other valuable settings and bits of information stored in other files as well. So if you can’t get a full restore of this folder and just have the Docs folder and .scrivx file (that’s what has the name to number matching as well as most of your meta-data and organisation), then contact us at our support e-mail address. We can take these pieces and attempt to put it together for you.

Did your system drive crash or your dedicated data drive, or is it one and the same thing on your machine?

In both cases, you may be lucky if you have not cleared your temp folder recently. Your recovery tool may find additional fragments there, in fact, quite a lot of them, which could be helpful to patch together as much as possible, in case you cannot retrieve enough from the default project location.

Depending on the way your system was set up, your data folder “MyDocuments” may be on a different drive from the system drive? If that is the case, check your %temp% location on drive C. All your rtf should still be there.