Tabs, tabs everywhere

Either this is a bug or I’m just missing something obvious, but for the life of me, I can’t seem to find a solution to this problem. Whenever I create a new document within a Scrivener project (new or old project), the new document has about a dozen left tab markers all across the first four inches of the ruler, and while I can remove them, I cannot get them to stay gone.

I’ve gone into Format > Paragraph > Tabs and Indents and I’ve removed them each manually. I’ve clicked Format > Paragraph > Remove All Tab Stops. I’ve dragged them off the ruler to get them to go away. The tabs will be gone until I click into another document and then come back to that previous document, and suddenly, all the tab stops are back again like I never deleted them. I’ve checked Project > Project Settings > Formatting and there aren’t any extra tab stops there. I’ve checked Preferences, but I don’t see anything that would be causing this, and I’ve closed and reopened projects to see if that’s the culprit, but nothing makes the tab markers stay gone.

Like I said, I may well be missing something obvious. Thank you for any help you can give me!

In the WIndows version, I have set my defaults in [File][Options][Editing][Formatting} and no longer have issues with the No Style settings. I do note that it is possible to set this default format up in the Project as well (which would override the global settings), which I don’t do for now.
Sorry I don’t know the macOS specifics. Hopefully it is similar.

There is definitely a default paragraph format setting in Scriv Preferences. Presumably it is this that is controlling the behaviour you are seeing. You should change that.

Once you’ve formatted one paragraph to work the way you want, you can use the Project → Project Settings → Formatting pane to make it the default for this project, or Scrivener → Scrivener Preferences → Editing → Formatting to make it the default Scrivener-wide.

Then, the Documents → Convert → Text to Default Formatting command will reformat existing text to the new default.

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All of the above advice is exactly what you need to know, beneath the surface question you asked. If you don’t want tabs in new documents, the problem isn’t whether removing them sticks, it true underlying question is: how can you make it so you don’t have to laboriously change the formatting, using a half a dozen different palettes and menu commands, every single time you make a new document.

So defaults aside: if I read your post very literally, it doesn’t sound to me as though you ever created any content in your tests. You made a new entry in the binder, messed with the ruler, and then maybe went off to do something and came back. You would need to type at least something, even just a placeholder text, in order for the formatting to be stored.

It’s a bit of a technical detail, but Scrivener doesn’t write files to the disk until you fill out a field in the software. When you make a new binder item, it doesn’t create an empty synopsis file, a document notes file, a main text file, a comments & footnotes file and a stylesheet file. It only creates these things if you use those features. Until you do, a binder item in fact creates no items on the disk. It exists purely as a a few lines of descriptive text in the binder file.

So that’s why, when you change the ruler in an empty field, nothing gets saved. Those changes aren’t going anywhere, and Scrivener’s not going to create an empty RTF file on the disk just to store abnormal ruler settings.

Ah, you all are awesome. @kewms suggestion seems to have fixed it. Thank you!

@AmberV, thank you for such a detailed answer! Unfortunately, I definitely had text/content in these files (thousands of words) and the issue persisted and even returned, regardless of that content. But thank you for the suggestion. If that’d been the problem, your detailed answer would have surely addressed it! Thank you. :slight_smile:

Thank you all again!

Hey, I am having a related problem.

I am pretty sure I have now tried all of the suggestions and it seems like I have gotten rid of these random left tabs in Scrivener but they persist when I compile. Almost at my wits end with this :confounded:

Compile won’t change Editor formatting unless you have “override text and notes formatting” checked in the section layout (for a given section type). If you do, it will place tabs and other formatting according to what’s formatted in the sample text pane for that layout: