Trouble downloading Scrivener


I got a Mac today after being a PC user my whole life. One of the main reasons I wanted one was to buy Scrivener. So, it was one of the first things I’ve tried to add. I think I went about it wrong, however. The first link I clicked on the Literature and Latte site was “Download for Mac”.

I thought that would take me through the whole purchase process, but all it did was bring up a little black and white icon and told me to drag it into my applications folder. I did that. Then tried to open it. Nothing. When that didn’t work, I went back and clicked the link in red with the purchase price and bought it thinking that would solve the problem–but it didn’t.

I followed the directions to download the trial version. And got the same icon that I had before that needed to be dragged and dropped into applications. But it doesn’t seem to be working. All I’m getting in my applications is what looks like a blank piece of paper and underneath it says “Scrivener Alias” with a number following it. I’ve tried to trash everything and start from scratch, but each one just adds an alias with the next number. I’m so confused. Can anyone help?

Okay first thing to clarify, just so we are clear, the Applications folder is that blue folder to the right of the Scrivener icon, with an arrow pointing to it. Is that where you dragged it, with no keys on the keyboard held down while you were dragging it? Just making sure you aren’t dragging it over to the Dock, which just stores Aliases so you can quickly load programs you use frequently. When you drag the icon, do you see any little “badges” along the bottom? You should just be getting a bright green “+” badge, which indicates the item will be copied, not moved. If you see a little curved arrow that means an alias will be created, which is like a shortcut in Windows. If you can’t get that arrow to go away, even when absolutely positive no keys on the keyboard are being touched, let me know. You might have a damaged keyboard or something—we’ll try to solve that.

Something to try if you just can’t get anything but an alias and you see no arrow: with this installation window open, press Cmd-N. That will make a new file browser window. Now with that window active, select Go/Applications from the menu. Now try dragging it directly from the installation window into this second window, rather than using the alias we provided.

Second question: is this a used or new Mac? If it is used, could you click the little “Apple” icon in the far upper left corner and select “About this Mac”, then print your Mac OS X version and processor information. Just want to make sure you are running a recent operating system. We support all the way back to 10.4.x.

But regarding which to download: we distribute the software in an unlockable demo state, like many shareware programs. That means you can download it and use it for a while before buying it, and when you buy it there is no special version to download, it is unlocked with a code you get sent in the e-mail. In other words you’ve got the right version, that’s the only version, so no need to attempt further downloads, just keep working with the one you’ve got.

Thank you for your help. I’m typing this on my iPhone, gave up on downloading for the night. I will get back to it in the morning. It’s a brand new MacBook Air. I don’t know if that would make any difference in the icon’s location and appearance? I will look to see what exactly I was dragging things into, though.

Will be back for another attempt tomorrow. :slight_smile:

Okay, perfect. No that won’t make a difference and in fact means everything should work as intended. If the computer was old and used, it might have had ancient software and maybe even the prior owner’s strange of ideas of where applications should be stored and so on, to contend with, but an out of the box brand new computer should work just fine. Let me know how it goes, tomorrow.

Okay, well I certainly need some Mac lessons. :slight_smile: Thanks for your help. What I was doing was dragging the Scrivener Icon that appeared on my desktop down to the folder labeled “Applications” at the bottom of my screen. I didn’t realize I was supposed to drag the one in the actual directions over to the one it was pointing at. I just thought it was showing me what both icons looked like. Once I did that it worked perfectly. I’m still confused about the icons that showed up on the desktop since there’s a new one at the bottom of the screen along with all the other programs. Do I really need the others? And is the applications folder at the bottom the same as the “Dock”?

Oy. I need Mac for Dummies, I guess.

Thanks again! I’m sure I’ll be back with other questions, but hopefully not soon. :wink:

There are books to introduce yourself to Macs. I would not be surprised if there’s a “complete idiot’s guide,” but you bought a mac, so that series is obviously not appropriate. :wink:

And now for a brief lesson on the Mac Icons you can see:

  1. At the bottom of your screen (by default), there is The Dock. It stores shortcuts to a set of your applications. They are NOT your applications, but simply icons that directly link to your programs, wherever you have them installed (usually the /Applications directory). The dock also has your trash icon to the right of a dividing line, along with (I think) a short-cut to your Applications folder.
  2. Icons anywhere else BUT the doc have two appearances. Applications, files (or bundles of files like Scrivener projects) and folders/directories are all represented by regular looking Mac OS icons (or in some instances, they will show you samples of the contents of a file instead of a standard icon). If you create a short-cut to an application, folder, or file, the icon will have a small arrow in the lower left corner. That’s just a pointer to your real file/folder/program. Remember: the arrow does NOT appear in the Dock.

With that covered (hope it wasn’t confusing)…

The window that opened up when you were presented with the Scrivener icon and the Applications folder icon was a specialized Finder window, which was showing you the contents of a DMG (kind of like a WinZip archive, but DMG files are a built-in Mac standard as well as being easier to use).

The Applications icon in that window was a short-cut to the standard location for applications on the mac (Macintosh HD -> Applications). When you dragged Scrivener to that short-cut, it just sent it to your computer’s Applications folder. FYI: The Macintosh HD icon appears on the left pane of most other presentations of the Finder; you can click on it to explore the directory structure of your Mac.

The first time you tried to install Scrivener, if you dragged it to the Dock, and missed your Applications folder icon (easy to do, since the Dock makes space for you to add icons to it), then you created a short-cut to the copy of Scrivener in your DMG file. When that file isn’t open, you won’t be able to access scrivener with that icon.

You don’t have to keep anything in the doc (except for the Trash) if you don’t want it there. Just drag icons off of it and drop them. They’ll go “poof” in a cloud of dust if you’re doing this right. To add icons, go to your applications folder, and drag them to the doc. OR with the program running, click-and-hold on the icon of your running application in the doc, and select options->keep in dock when the pop-up menu appears. To rearrange icons, just drag them left or right. To add folder to the Dock, drag them from the finder to the right of the line in the Dock.

There you go! Your first Mac lesson. :slight_smile: Sorry if I was covering details you already understood, but I wasn’t assuming in-depth experience with non-Windows OS’s.

Thanks, Robert! You did not cover a single detail I already understood. In fact, I think I will have to read your post thrice before I will actually understand a single detail. I appreciate the help!

You’ll find the videos here:

Really useful for getting started.


Definitely check out the videos. Don’t forget to scroll down in the window. There are alot of videos to choose from. For your sake, I hope I didn’t confuse the Mac-specific terms with the equivalents on Windows/Unix.

Also, if you have an Apple store near you, they sometimes have introductory classes on OS X, as well as specific applications.

Thank you both for the help. I will definitely check out the videos and I bought myself “Macs for Dummies”. I wasn’t kidding that I needed that.

As for right now I’m back to being very frustrated. Within moments of opening Scrivener and attempting to start learning how to use it I somehow managed to almost lose the interactive tutorial. I finally found it in my “recovered files”. It happened because I accidentally put in the name of my manuscript rather than something to do with the tutorial and then when I tried to figure out how to go back and change the name I, instead, managed to accidentally delete the tutorial. :frowning: Can I please have a do-over? How do I get it back to a usable state? Ugh.

Seriously, after finishing a novel in Word and tearing my hair out during revisions I thought this would be my dream software for novel #2. Only now I’m losing MORE hair. :wink:

Best way to reset the tutorial is to just trash it (which it sounds like you might already have), and then use the Help menu to spawn a new copy.

You can always just trash the current tutorial project and then go to Help>Interactive Tutorial and it will create a fresh tutorial project for you. So no worries! I’m not sure what you did to accidentally delete it, or I would offer help with that…Generally speaking, to rename a project after you’ve created it, you’ll need to do a “Save As” and choose a new name (which is, to be clear, the same as Save As on Windows–it’s not overwriting the existing project, it’s making a copy with a new name in whatever location you choose, so while your continued work during the session will be in this new file, the original one will still exist) or else, with the project closed in Scrivener, open Finder and rename it there.

Also worthy of note, if you do rename a project, it won’t show up in Scrivener’s “Recent Projects” list since the filepath is different now, but that doesn’t mean that it’s gone. This sometimes throws people for a loop, when things get moved around on their hard drive and then that list is empty. Just go to Open… and browse through the same way you would in Windows to find your project. (You can also use Mac’s Spotlight–that magnifying glass in the top right corner of the screen–to do a search of your hard drive to find your project if you don’t remember where you put it; try searching for “scriv”, which is the file extension for Scrivener projects.)

All right, I think I rambled a lot and I’m not sure how helpful that was. Take a deep breath and go have a glass of wine! :wink: Repeat to yourself, “Macs are intuitive and they Just Work!” You’ll get it straightened out.

EDIT: Look, I babbled so long Ioa already posted. Ah well.

Thank you both. That was my first thought. Just open a new tutorial. But when I clicked “Help” and then “Interactive Tutorial” again, nothing happened. I tried closing Scrivener and reopening to see if I could get a new one to start but it was still a no go. I could open the video tutorials, but not the interactive one. Now when I click “Interactive Tutorial”, it opens the recovered file which is not available in any way that I can figure out how to use. Mac may be intuitive, but apparently I’m not. :frowning:

I’m not entirely sure what you mean by it opening the file in a way you can’t use, but if it is opening in Scrivener and you want to start fresh, try this:

  1. Open the tutorial project (even if it’s the old, wrong one)
  2. At the top of the Scrivener window, you should see the project title–it will be whatever you renamed it, but in my screenshot here it’s just “Tutorial”–and the name of whatever page you’re viewing (“START HERE” in the example):
    project title.png
  3. Hold the ctrl key and click on the icon next to the project name–it will pop up a little menu showing you the file path on your computer where the project is stored:
  4. Select the folder just below the project name (“testing” in my screenshot; yours may be “Documents” or something else)
  5. Finder will open that folder, and you should see your tutorial project (whatever it’s called) in that location.
  6. Close the tutorial project in Scrivener.
  7. Delete the tutorial project from the open Finder window. (Select it and hit cmd-delete or ctrl-click it and choose “move to trash”.)
  8. In Scrivener, try again to do Help>Interactive Tutorial to create a new tutorial project.

Does that work?

That WORKED! My hair is saved. I never in a million years would have figured that out on my own. Thank you!

Horray! We don’t want you to go bald too quickly. :wink:

Just to be clear, this is not the only way to do this or, in most cases, the easiest, but it was the easiest way for me to walk you through (or at least in my head it was). As you get to know your Mac, you’ll find faster ways of getting around in the Finder and finding your projects, etc. Spotlight will be your friend. :slight_smile:

Generally, there are three folders to look in when you’re searching for a file you created or something you got from the internet: Documents, Downloads, and Desktop. Most Mac programs will locate saved data in one of those spots. Before you delete a file (say a word or scrivener file), click once on the file and hit the space bar. Shortly, there should be a little window that gives you a preview of the contents of the file. This will save you from accidentally deleting your own project, which you mistakenly renamed to “Scrivener Tutorial”, or similarly confusing file manipulations.

Good luck getting comfortable with your new Mac, and don’t worry about the intuitiveness thing. To paraphrase a wise programmer: “The only intuitive interface is the nipple. Everything else is learned.”

I kind of wanted to sing it MST3K style…“Just repeat to yourself ‘it’s just a Mac! I should really just relax!’”

Thanks again, you guys. :mrgreen:

I LOVE the wise programmer saying. Too true. I look forward to learning everything else. :wink: