Trying to use the same file windows and mac

Hello everyone. I have a qu estion about using the same file on both a Mac and Windows.

I should explain I am using my work computer (PC) for the majority of my writing. It has a large screen and is just easier. I am able to back it up to a zip file and open it on my Mac if I’m working outside the office.

However, when I tried to open it back on my work computer after making edits it turns into a scrivx file and files are named but the content is empty.

I thought this might be because my company computer policy has it rigged that content on the computer cannot be taken off without thumb drive.

But when I tried to open the file on my new Windows portable computer I had the same problem so maybe it is not related.

I would really like to use the same file with both computers so any advice is welcome.

Have made sure that you have the latest versions of Scrivner on all devices?

Thanks. My Mac is version 2.1.2 and my PC is Version: - 06 but both say they are “up to date” when I check for updates

Something is wrong since Mac 2.1.2 is way out of date and the file format has changed. Go to the Lit & Lat website and download the current version from there, it is 2.8. Only that will be compatible with 1.9.7 on Windows.



Your Mac version is way too old. 2.8.1 is the current version.

You need to update. Check at the main page how you do it. You bought it directly from L&L I guess?

As others have stated, your Mac version of Scrivener is very old. How old is the Mac it is running on? Is it still a PowerPC-based Mac, or is it an Intel-based Mac?

If it’s PowerPC (G4 or G5) then you will not be able to run the right version of Scrivener that can pass files back and forth with Scrivener; ithe PowerPC last ran Mac OS 10.5 and Scrivener version 2.5 (per

That same link will get you the current download, which runs on Intel-based Macs running 10.6 through 10.12.

Thanks everyone. Okay, so now I have the

mac OS Sierra 10.12.1 on a MacBook air 2014

HOWEVER it is still impossible to share files. I have the latest scrivener version on my PC. Just now, on my updated Mac, I made a zip file and tried to get scrivener to open it after I inzipped it. It did not work.

I also tried to have my office PC update the scrivener file from my home PC. That did not work.

I am curious if my process is not correct. It would be so great to be able to work on the file from all computers. Thanks in advance for suggestions.

When you say the file “didn’t work,” could you be more precise? What happened? Error message? Content missing?

Also, how are you creating the ZIP file? The most reliable method would be to use Scrivener’s own Backup To command (on either Windows or Mac). The problem you described upthread is what you might see if you only have part of the project (such as the .scrivx master index file). You need the entire .scriv folder, including subfolders, and Scrivener’s Backup To command will ensure that’s what you get.

Finally, are any synchronization services like Dropbox or One Drive involved?


Thanks Katherine!

I use the direct backup option on the scrivener program (on both my portable Mac and PC computers (three, 1 a work PC and the other a home and portable Ps)

just back up the project as a zip file on my desktop, and mail the zip file to myself. At work this afternoon I unzipped the zip file I made on my home PC, and it had four folder: files, icons, settings, snapshots, and a .scrivex file in a different shape

when I double clicked on the .scrivex file a few small blue circles appeared, but nothing happened. When I tried to open this .scrivex file from scrivener directly, this time (just now) it did open (before it just made a sick sound).

The titles are on the scenes, but the content is missing.

Hmm. That should work. Could you email the ZIP file to our support address, please? Reference this thread in your note, and put my name in the subject line.


The easiest way to work on the same project from different computers is to use Dropbox and simply open the project in the normal way from each computer. There is really no need to zip and unzip anything.

lunk thanks. I will try that … I can not access dropbox from my work computer but I can from the others.

Katherine a few days ago I sent you the zip file as you requested to '’. Has there been an update?

Thanks for letting me know. Our support queue is still pretty full from the holiday backlog, but I found your note and will send you email once I’ve had a chance to look at the project.


Hi, was this ever resolved? I’m having a similar issue where only outline/headings appears but no content from my backup file. Thanks.

This case turned out to be a transient error: the file opened successfully both on my support system and on the user’s system after a reboot.

Generally speaking, the most common cause of this problem is failure to successfully backup the project, so that the second computer doesn’t have all the information it needs. Using a ZIP backup helps prevent this by keeping all of the project’s component files together.