Resetting a Project's Display Settings

If you run into a display bug, something that causes aspects of the window to draw oddly or incorrectly particularly if that problem does not show up in any other projects you use, a good first troubleshooting step will be to reset your project's user interface settings. If you cannot open one single project then this may also help.

Every project has a file that determines the shape of the window, any splits you use and the ratio between those splits within the window, as well as even settings such as whether labels colours tint index cards, if you can see invisible characters or your outliner columns. Everything that pertains to how a project is seen and used is considered part of its display, or interface settings.

Understandably, you might not want to lose all of your settings, so the following checklist will retain your preferences in a separate file so they can be restored later on. These steps are optional, if all you want to do is reset the project and you haven't spent much time customising it to bother with saving its settings, skip to the second set of instructions.

Saving your Settings

  1. With the project open, use the Window/Layouts/Manage Layouts... menu command.
  2. Click the + button to create a new layout, and check the two optional boxes in the right pane, below the screenshot thumbnail.
  3. You may now proceed with resetting your settings. Once you've done that, you can use the Window/Layouts/ menu to select this layout you've created and get all of your settings back as they were.

Clearing the Project Interface Settings

  1. With the project open, simply click on the File menu, hold down the Option key, and then select the "Close Project and Clear Interface Settings" menu command which will appear.

    That's it, you're done!

If you can't open the project to begin with, then you'll need to reset the file manually. This isn't hard to do, but you might want to create a backup first, since you'll have to edit the project's internal files by hand:

  1. First locate the project in Finder and right-click on it, selecting "Compress 'project name'".

    This zip file will contain every aspect of your project. If the following steps make things worse, simply delete the edited copy of your project and double-click this .zip file to extract a new fresh copy.

  2. Right-click on the project again and select "Show Package Contents".

  3. Drill down into the Settings folder.

  4. Drag the "ui.plist" file to the Trash in your Dock.

    With Scrivener 3 you will also need to trash "ui-common.xml".

Reloading the Project

When the project is reloaded for the first time, it will be in a purely default state. All items in the binder will be collapsed, and nothing will be selected in the main editor. This is the safest state in which a project can be opened, from here on out everything you do to change the window, expanding folders and selecting items, will be done fresh (assuming you haven't applied a layout).

If you find the problem comes back with the Layout, then use the Manage Layouts window to export the layout to a file and send it to our support address as an attachment. If you didn't use a layout, but the problem returns once you start changing your settings back to how they were, then use the prior instructions for manually resetting the ui.plist file, only this time instead of trashing the file, save it to your desktop and attach it to an email, letting us know which settings you changed most recently.