upgraded to 1.5 and lost most of my work from nano[NOTED]

I installed as suggested on windows 7. I opened 1.5 and most of my files are missing, the first three chapters are there, the profiles I wrote for my characters, the photos I use for settings but so many scenes are missing. I don’t know where to look for them and hope they are still there. I have a contract for this book and thought I was over halfway finished. Please help if you can.

Did you backup your files prior to upgrading to 1.5? If so, try importing your back up files. Is it possible that your project is looking at an older folder or directory? Hard to help as there doesn’t seem to be a lot to go on here.


I only backed them up in scrivener 1.4 not anywhere else. I’m coming the conclusion that I’ll be rewriting a lot of material. My fault totally, not scriveners. I should have backed them up in word.

I could be wrong since I haven’t done this, but a backup in a previous version should be ok. It is the whole reason for the backup. I’d backup what you currently have with new file name, then import the 1.4 backup. At this point you’ve nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain.

You know I thought about it some more. Why don’t you create a brand new project, blank, then import your 1.4 backup into that one. Then you’re not impacting your current project and you’ll better be able to see what was backup exactly in 1.4.

Your data will be safe unless you physically delete it yourself in Windows. Even the Scrivener install and uninstall will not delete ANY project folders or data that you have created yourself. Scrivener is on a strict diet and only eats what it’s told it can - user data is not on the menu. This has always been the case since Beta 1.0.

I personally always create Scrivener projects in either My Documents folder in Windows or in a folder in a web based dropbox if I’m sharing files. If a user creates projects within the Scrivener install directory then even after an uninstall all user created data will be left untouched. Now if a user deletes the Scrivener install folder or project folders outside of Scrivener, that is a different matter and not a Scrivener issue. However, if you have not done this, then you project data is there where you left it. if you can’t find it, try searching for *.scriv or *.scrivx in a Windows search.

My two cents worth. I’m not just saying this defensively, but I have never lost a single letter whilst using any of the betas, sure I’ve had formatting annoyingly screwed, and lines vanishing and re-appearing, but I’ve never lost anything. In fact, my life line to this project is the Scrivener beta bug tracker database, which is not actually a database but a Scrivener project, where we track and report status’ of all know bugs. This project has had everything pretty much thrown into it, and been opened and edited by the Mac, Linux, XP, Vista and Win7 versions, and I has never missed a beat in terms of the retaining data. So, unless someone can show me exactly how I can reliable reproduce data loss, I remain calmly skeptical. As I said previously, this is not a defensive dig at anyone - just my experience.


I didn’t take it personally at all. I am sure this is my fault. Here’s what I did maybe that can help with finding them.
I went to my control panel, add remove programs. I removed all of the scriveners from there because I couldn’t find the uninstall on the program. Then I installed 1.5. Three of my chapters are there, the photos are there, as is the synopsis. Carbonite was checked so the files are probably there somewhere. I’ve restored some files that all the files with scrivx but they aren’t the ones I need. I searched all the files in my documents as well and nothing. I had the files back up in my documents in the scrivener folder and that may be what was the killer of my files?
If you have any other suggestions I would welcome them. I even tried restoring my computer to November 21.

Here’s a thought…did you accidentally open a backup? I know when I upgraded from 1.4 to 1.5, it wiped my list of recent projects, so I had to reopen everything once. If your backups are in a directory where your projects are, it’s an easy mistake to make.

I did try opening a backup.
So I should open everything in the file? It’s odd there aren’t any names other than synopsis, not title page, lots of numbers like 4, 32, 17

No, I was wondering if you’d opened a backup of your project in scrivener, not the real project. If you did, it would be as you backed it up, so possibly missing parts that a later version wouldn’t have. (Or the real save, if that makes sense.)

Post doctorate, I’m still obsessive about backing things up, so I have at least 3-4 on my computer at one time, not counting those I’ve backed up off of the computer.

A couple things you might try if you haven’t yet…

Use Windows’ search feature to look for folders with the .scriv extension anywhere on your hard drive (even places you normally don’t save work–you might have moved the folder accidentally, and it’s just as well to look everywhere).

Use the search function to search for specific words or exact phrases that you remember from your novel that would be generally unique to the project (e.g. a character name). This might find a specific file such as 19.rtf, but you should then be able to look at the filepath to see where it is on your drive–it should be in [SomeProjectName].scriv/Files/Docs/ and you’ll want to see where that .scriv is and if it’s a more recent version of your project than the one you’ve been looking at thus far.

Also, if you happened to have an external plugged in when you were working before, make sure to check on that–thumb drive, external hard drive, etc.–just in case you were working off that without realizing it.

As far as numbers vs. title names, that’s expected. Scrivener uses a numerical system to ID the documents in the project, so even when you change the title or contents or move it around, the ID number doesn’t change and Scrivener can always find the document. Generally speaking, you don’t need to worry about those because you shouldn’t be digging around within the layers of the .scriv folder (I realize the .scrivx is inside the folder and you do use that to open the project, but any other folders within the .scriv you don’t normally need to access and tampering with them could mess up Scrivener’s ability to open the project).

okay this is brilliant! I found them Mimeticmoton, but how do I get them back into scrivener?

Oh my gosh I cannot thank you enough!!! I was able to open all of them in word! now I can import them back into scrivener! Thank you thank you thank you!

Excellent. Getting them “back into Scrivener” depends a bit on what “them” is. Assuming all the .rtfs that you found are together in the .scriv project folder, you just need to open that folder and double-click the .scrivx file there (either via Explorer or in Scrivener via the normal “Open” route).

It’s worthwhile to note where the .scriv folder is living on your hard drive, since you may want to move it into My Documents or somewhere easily findable if it’s not there. Move the entire .scriv folder, not just the individual files it contains.

If that all doesn’t make sense with what you’re looking at on your computer, let me know and I’ll revise the method. :wink:

Okay, so it sounds like you found the .rtf files. Windows Explorer ought to give you a way to show the file path and find out where those .rtf files actually are on the computer–they should be contained in a .scriv folder, and that folder is your Scrivener Project. You shouldn’t need to re-import them to a new project.

They were in a scriv file in my download file…very odd. Again I have no doubt it was something I did. I am just glad they are there.

Yes, me too! So you probably want to move the folder to somewhere else that you’ll be able to keep track of it better (My Documents or if you have a My Scrivener Projects folder or whatever). Have you opened the project and ascertained that all is well there and it’s your most recent version with all the missing changes?

Yes, it’s all there–huge sigh. I am moving that folder!