Project file is synced to my dedicated folder in Dropbox, also separate back-up onto my desktop. (Time Machine thereafter.)
The Dropbox folder contains the project file and two sub-folders: Draft and Trashed Files.
I cannot see the point of keeping Trashed Files. Is it okay for me to delete all the files in this folder? And is it okay to delete the Trashed Files folder itself or just the files inside it?
Yup! Those are okay to delete. They are files that Scrivener couldn’t account for during sync, and rather than deleting them outright, since their origin is uncertain, it puts them here for you to best decide what to do with them. They will not be processed while in that folder, so it is both safe to leave them and delete them. The whole folder itself can be removed—it is only created as needed.
Thank you. By “origin is uncertain” do you mean that the file might or would never be synced, or would the next sync include it in the Draft folder.
It means that Scrivener found a file in your sync folder that appears to have at one point been synced, based on its filename matching the convention used for sync files, but no longer has a corresponding file in the project binder, and is thus presumed to have been fully deleted (moved to trash and trash emptied) from the project. It’s the sort of thing where we can’t be certain that is what happened, going strictly by the contents of the external folder sync vs the project binder, so to play it safe we move it to this “Trashed Files” folder and leave it up to you.
In the case where you move an item to the Trash in your binder, and it is still in the Trash when you sync, then it is safe to assume you no longer want this file syncing and it is simply removed from the sync folder without a trace.
There is a case where an orphaned file would be imported into the Draft (or Research) folder when syncing. For example if you create a file called “Import me.rtf” into the Draft folder, then sync, it will be imported into the project and sync normally thereafter.