Splitting the screen

Is it possible to split the screen and make changes in one of the splits that aren’t entered on the other split?

View->Editor Layout …

Thanks for your reply. Maybe I didn’t make my original comment clear. I want to be able to enter text in one screen without it being automatically entered in the other screen. See the attached in which I typed ‘Leonard:’ and it then showed in the other screen.

No, you can’t do that if the two editor panels are showing you the very same live document!

But you can achieve the effect with the Snapshot function. Make a snapshot of the doc and then open that in the inspector. Now in the editor you have the current doc to edit and in the inspector you have the unchanging (prev) version. If that doesn’t quite do it for you, you can put the snapshot temporarily into one side of an editor spilt:

15.8.3 Viewing Snapshots in the Editor

It is possible to load snapshots as read-only text into the main editor splits. There are a few ways of doing so:

— Drag the snapshot you wish to view into the header bar for the editor split or copyholder you wish to load it in.

— Right-click on the header bar icon menu for the item whose snapshot you wish to view, and use one of the “View Snapshot in Other Editor” or “View Snapshot on Copyholder” commands. The submenus for these will display a list of available snapshots to load.

When you’re done, use the history feature to return the editor or copyholder to what you were looking at before. Snapshots themselves do not occupy a slot in history, so you will be unable to return to them (save for to load it once again) once you leave. Consider Locking the Editor (subsection 12.2.1) if you are inad-vertently losing your snapshot view.


p.s. You could, of course, also just duplicate the document and load one each in the editor panes, but this might be undesirable and confusing, since you would create a lot of vestigial doc copies.

Never mind snapshots. Duplicate the document and open the copies side by side. Be sure to keep track of which one is the original and which will be the new version.

Duplicate makes only one copy. There’s no reason to duplicate over and over again.

Thanks for all the replies and suggestions. I’ll probably make a duplicate and refer to that whilst I’m editing.

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I believe gr is referring to the lifetime of the project as one works on multiple documents or has multiple sessions with the same document. If you’re duplicating your documents, you have to maintain them manually as opposed to having the Scrivener snapshot mechanism to help track them.

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A valid point, although I’d never let multiple versions exist for an extended period of time, either way.

Depends on one’s workflow and definition of “extended period of time” though. I can see keeping snapshots of the initial draft and significant revision points for the entire length of the project, for example, especially if there were significant chunks of text that got deleted/moved around but may be able to be recycled/reused.

As it seems to me: If you adopt a practice which has you duplicating your working documents, you have to keep your organizational wits about you. That can be a real challenge for some.

The virtue of snapshots is they have a fixed order in relation to their associated document. So no one has to wonder of two copies which is their working copy, and no one wakes up one morning to discover that they have done editing in both copies — or just fears they have and so must waste time comparing docs. These are real things that happen to real people.

Staying organized and keeping tabs on things in a large project is always a challenge, and is more challenging for some than others. Some are better housekeepers than others. Some folks may only work on their large project sporadically, which adds to that challenge. Good things to remember when we are offering help!

Especially for those for whom organization is a demon, a practice of duplicating working documents can be a pitfall.

So, as I said, snapshotting is a good and the safest way to go; with duplicating docs as a duly flagged alternative.

To which Drmajorbob adds (in what I must consider one of his less helpful moments :face_with_raised_eyebrow:):

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I can duplicate the document (often a chapter folder with all its subdocuments, which a snapshot does not), add “original”, “before editing”, or a date to the beginning of its Binder title, and turn off Compile flags therein.

I can split the screen to view the original along with the one I’m editing. I’m unlikely to spend time editing more than one chapter, and I keep numerous zip backups in case I want to see what any of it looked like six months ago. I have backups set to 25, and I periodically delete all but the last backup in each month, so it’s close to a 2 year record … and I have versions of the project before each round of beta reads.

This strategy accomplishes many things snapshots do not. For instance, if I add or modify metadata (of any kind) along the way, the duplicate retains original metadata. A snapshot does not.

  1. I have no doubt you are up to the organizational challenge.

  2. And with respect, what you are offering me now is after the fact justification for what you said. Your actual contribution (for which I mildly chide you) was just to say “don’t do that, do the other”. Full stop. I think we could agree, on reflection, that relative to your many helpful contributions on this forum, that one isn’t really going to rank. :wink:


Your advice and workflow here makes many assumptions that are dependent on the way you work with your projects. Those caveats were not clear in your advice, which seemed to be presented universally as a better solution to snapshots without any of these qualifiers.

Nuance is important, given the large variety of users of different abilities and interests we have here.

I don’t have time or inclination to explain everything I say every time a subject comes up.

It is a universally better solution in my opinion, and the longer answer explains why. A qualifier would be something like “It’s better unless you’re in this situation,” and I can’t think of a case that fits.

No one has to justify their opinion to me; I’m simply explaining my own workflow for the needs snapshots are aimed at. If people don’t consider both options, they could end up with a method not well designed for their own mindset.

I’m out.

. . . . . . . . . .

Also note, @gr and @devinganger, the topic was “splitting the screen”, before snapshots came up. My strategy brought us back to it.

I don’t understand how so may replies are being sent to me about my initial question regarding splitting the screen. There’s a whole conversation about snapshots and duplicates occurring that are totally irrelevant to my original question.
How did this happen? :face_with_head_bandage:

It’s a forum, we discuss things … I suppose we made guesses as to why you asked.