Shutting down while Scriv open=>corrupted project

Shutting down a mac (10.6) with Scrivener in Full Screen mode in Space 2 quits Scrivener as it should. But when restarting the mac next time, the error message

“Project already open”

appears, the opened projects (even those which have not been in full-screen mode at the time ) are “rebuilt” the transparency and height-Setting (not the background or the font) of fullscreen is reset. Seems to have lead even to a ruined file in two instances and three or more cases.


  1. Scriv with 3 open projects open, all of which are stored in an encrypted mac disk image
  2. One of those opened projects is in Fullscreen mode in Space 2
  3. Shutting down the mac regularly through the Apple menu from Space 1
  4. Mac shuts down without error messages (FileVault is active), ejects disk images regularly etc.
  5. After switching on mac next time,
  6. Starting Scriv shows the error message and tries to rebuild the projects.

Though I now try to shut down only after exiting fullscreen or even quitting Scriv before, I sometimes simply forget this.

Quick question: do you mean your Mac is on version 10.7? There is no such thing as Full Screen in Snow Leopard, so I’m wondering if you mean something else.

Sorry, I meant the Compose (de facto Full Screen) mode!

A similar error also occurs when Scrivener is open normally (no compose) and mac is shut down, but not always:

  1. Scrivener is running in Tab 2. One project is open.

  2. Shutting down the Mac regularly by the “Apple” menu (“Shut down”).

  3. Scriv saves the opened project just as if it is quit regularly.

  4. Restart mac.

  5. restart Scriv.

  6. Error message: “Project already Open”.

  7. Message: “Files were recovered (etc.) Files not in Binder were tried to be recovered etc.”

  8. Project is missing last added text in binder. All else seems to be OK.

This seems to be quite a serious problem, at least with me. Anyone else encountering this?

OS X 10.6.8

That’s not a typical problem. I shut down with everything open all of the time. In fact I hardly ever close programs first, there is no need to on a Mac. So I’d suspect some other factor at play here.

What is “Tab 2” by the way?

Tab2=Spaces, Pace 2 (sorry)

Addendum: All other programs were shut down.
just found a possible explanation: Also, I have the texts stored within an encrypted disk image (mac dmg) that ejects during shut down. Maybe that is responsible for the failures?
And if so, can that be avoided/recognized for future versions of Scriv?

But why would it affect files that have not been modified since the start of Scirvener, or saved before shut down, and thus should already be written completely at shut down?

I need the dmg for better portability of my files (eg. desktop->USB by just copying the complete dmg).

It happened again. But this time, the computer didn’t crash or something before the project had been corrupted.


  • two projects were open, in composite group view (not fullscreen). I am not sure whether I quit Scriv manually or via “Shut down” of the computer.
  • After shutting down and restarting the computer regularly, and restarting Scrivener, one of both files was corrupted. It was quite a large file with Srivenings, PDF research doks and pictures in a info folder and other stuff.
  • Creating a new project and importing the corrupted Scriv project did restore the files themselves,
    it did not recreate the file names, thus showing a list of “Unnamed”, and unsorted, files in the binder.

Of course I have a backup, but it is quite, no, very uncomfortable not to know when this might happen again. Especially if time is precious.

What do you mean by “corrupted”? Which version of Scrivener are you running? Could you give more details?

Oh sorry.

“corrupted”: That’s what the error message says :wink: It says further “use a backup or import the project into a new project” (I don’t remember the exact saying).

I can’t reproduce the error because I don’t know the reason for this one, sorry … it just popped up.

Version: Latest for mac, 2.4.1

Sorry for the late reply.

Does it say something like “the binder file appears to have been corrupted”? If so, that means that the main binder .scrivx file is missing or unreadable from inside the .scriv project, and also that no backups of that file can be found (because the file is crucial), Scrivener keeps two redundant copies around, from previous saves, to ensure that the project cannot be completely corrupted by a hard disk issue during a save).

If is the case, therefore, it means that either you are using syncing software that has renamed the files inside the .scriv file oddly owing to a synchronisation conflict, or that something very odd has gone on on your machine (Scrivener itself never deletes these files, only overwrites them as necessary).

Could you please Ctrl-click on the .scriv project in the Finder, select “Show Package Contents”, and post a screenshot of the contents of the .scriv package?


I will gladly do so, as soon as I have found a corrupted project that I have not yet overwritten (sorry). Will look it up tomorrow.

Sorry no dice yet. I am trying hard to reproduce the error and will come back with more details when I finally managed to do so (it seems, luckily, not to be that easy).

it happened again, two times in a row.
Up-to-date version of Scrivener for Mac, 2.5 . OS X 10.6.8 (last).

  • Scriv project open in Space 2.
  • Working with another application in Space 1.
  • Quitting program in Space 1, shutting down computer while Scrivener project was still open in Space 2.
  • On resart, Error message “File already open. Make copy / Continue”
  • “Continue”
  • “Recovering lost files”, crash while “Rebuilding Search Indices”.

Quitting Scrivener through OptionAltEsc.
Restarting Scrivener.
Most files are in place, one PDF now in the Recovered File folder, one jpg image in the “Research” folder lost.

Screenshort of the package content attached.

Are you running Scrivener with internal error alerts enabled, at the bottom of the General preferences pane? I’d leave that on for a while. It will alert you if something strange happens, either with Scrivener’s code, or code that is interlinked with the running software (such as things providing services to Mac programs in a some way). This will give you a chance to document the error code, and also to restart the program to clear out any gremlins.

A few questions:

  • Were the JPEG and PDF files added fairly recently?
  • How long would you estimate your computer session was, from start-up to shut-down (not counting sleep)?
  • What percentage of that time was this project open?

Unfortunately this seems to be very infrequent, so unless you can find a direct sequence of actions that trigger it, we may never see it on our end. I have a way to test 10.6, but I don’t use it on a daily basis any more (wish I could, but too many of my preferred programs have moved on).

Very good, thanks! Let’s go hunting.

Yes, it’s a real shame about 10.6 which was an excellent stage in OS X I think. Well, for now it works for me, but I see the end coming …

On your questions:

  1. Yes, both JPG and PDF were added at that session.
  2. How long: Hard to say. I would say half a day.
  3. That individual session from starting Scriv to shutting down the computer might have been some hours.

Thanks for caring!