What sort of files are suited to live in the research folder?

What sort of files are typically suited to live in the research folder? The manual says “images, pdf files and so on”, but perhaps that’s not comprehensive.

Perhaps it would be better to ask, “What sort of files are not suited to go on the research folder?”.

I realise that Scrivener isn’t intended as a database-type application.

The only type of file you might run into issues with are package style files, those that when you right-click on it in Finder, have a command for showing the package contents (like Scrivener’s own storage format). There were steps made to support these types of documents in the past, but it hasn’t been extensively tested.

You’ll know immediately if it doesn’t work correctly, as the result will be to import a number of files into a folder rather than one binder entry. That’s the only side effect, nothing happens to the original (of course), and all you have to do is trash the folder if it happens.

Otherwise it’s nothing to worry about. The user manual is vague because there are no prohibitions.

Thank you—so I can use that “no package type” as a rule of thumb.

This means I could in theory put quite a lot into the research folder.

I hope you don’t mind if I follow this up by asking—is there a practical limit on the number of files that can live there, or the resulting file-size of the project?

You’ll know when you get to it. Other than that, the limits are guesswork.

How will I know? What do you mean? I meant is there a limit in terms of stability in the application, or other factors that I may not be aware of and should be in advance.

You’ll find some practical advice on that matter in the user manual, Project Size Limitations, pg. 71, under §5.3.1, Tips for Working with Projects.

I wouldn’t phrase it that strongly even. Like I say you’ll know immediately if it doesn’t work well, and then can know that type of package format isn’t worth trying.

To give a somewhat amusing example of what can work, you can put a Scrivener project into a DevonThink database, and then import the database into Scrivener. So I have a database in my project, with another Scrivener project inside that database—and it all worked fine through multiple edits and updates to both the database, the master project, and the embedded project.

Would I do that normally? Probably not, it’s a bit of an impractical thing to do, but it demonstrates that package formats, even complex large-scale ones, can work.

Thanks - I missed that part in the manual. I’ll go carefully.

The big thing that will happen with lots of research materials is that backing up the project will take a long time.

Large projects generally can take a long time to build Scrivenings sessions or to Compile, but you don’t really do those things with research materials anyway.

Unless you get well into the gigabyte range, you should be fine.