Project Format Changes

Most of the changes to the file formats over the history of novelWriter have no impact on the user-side of things. The project files are generally updated automatically. However, some of the changes require minor actions from the user.

The key changes in the formats are listed below, as well as the user actions required where applicable.

Format 1.3 Changes

This project format vas introduces in novelWriter version 1.5.

With this format, the number of document layouts was reduced from 8 to 2. The conversion of document layouts is performed automatically when the project is opened.

Due to the reduction of layouts, some features that were previously controlled by these layouts will be lost. These features are instead now controlled by syntax codes, so to recover these features, some minor modification must be made to select documents by the user.

The manual changes the user must make should be very few as they apply to document layouts that should be used only a few places in any given project. These are as follows:

Title Pages

  • The formatting of the level one title on the title page must be changed from # Title Text to #! Title Text in order to retain the previous functionality. See Headings.
  • Any text that was previously centred on the page must be manually centred using the new text alignment feature. See Paragraph Alignment and Indentation.

Unnumbered Chapters

  • Since the specific layout for unnumbered chapters has been dropped, such chapters must all use the ##! Chapter Name formatting code instead of ## Chapter Name. This also includes chapters marked by an asterisk: ## *Chapter Name, as this feature has also been dropped. See Headings.

Plain Pages

  • The layout named “Plain Page” has also been removed. The only feature of this layout was that it ensured that the content always started on a fresh page. In the new format, fresh pages can be set anywhere in the text with the [NEW PAGE] code. See Vertical Space and Page Breaks.

Format 1.2 Changes

This project format was introduces in novelWriter version 0.10.

With this format, the way auto-replace entries were stored in the main project XML file changed. Opening an old project automatically converts the storage format up to and including version 1.1.1.

Format 1.2 projects can be opened without loss of information up until version 1.1.1, and if the auto-replace is not being used, can still be opened in novelWriter as of version 1.5.1.

Format 1.1 Changes

This project format was introduces in novelWriter version 0.7.

With this format, the content folder was introduced in the project storage. Previously, all novelWriter documents were saved in a series of folders numbered from data_0 to data_f.

It also reduces the number of meta data and cache files. These files are automatically deleted if an old project is opened. This was also when the Table of Contents file was introduced.

Format 1.1 projects can be opened without loss of information up until version 1.1.1, and if the auto-replace is not being used, can still be opened in novelWriter as of version 1.5.1.

Format 1.0 Changes

This is the original file format and project structure. It was in use up to version 0.6.3.

Format 1.0 projects can be opened without loss of information up until version 1.1.1, and if the auto-replace is not being used, can still be opened in novelWriter as of version 1.5.1.