Auto save should save to a separate file

• Aug 26, 2009 - 00:23
S4 - Minor
  1. Make sure you have Auto Save turned on (via Edit > Preferences > General)
  2. Open any score and make some changes
  3. Wait a couple minutes for auto save

Expected behavior: Auto Save should save a backup copy of the file (maybe called something like "") in the same folder as the existing score.

Actual behavior: Auto Save overwrites the existing file. If the person decides he or she does not want to save the changes then it is too late.

Discussion: Overwriting the existing file can cause unwitting loss of data in certain circumstances. The following scenario was reported on the forum (although I can no longer find the post):

User scenario: create a slightly modified copy of a score

  1. Open existing score that you want to modify and copy
  2. Make modifications to score
  3. File > Save As...

User expects to now have the original copy and a slightly modified copy. However if step 2 took more than two minutes then the user has lost the original copy.


Status (old) active fixed

This should work now as expected (rev. 2324). Autosave saves into a temporary file located in the application data directory ( $HOME/.local/share/data/MusE/MuseScore in linux). This does also work for the buildin demo file.

I have changed the category of this from "feature request" to "bug report" because of its potential seriousness.

Auto Save was never anything other than a bad idea and a disaster waiting to happen.

Cut some content, or accidentally delete it, at that moment Auto Save replaces file content with version minus the deleted or cut content, power supply fails or computer crashes, or user closes window - cut or deleted content is gone.

That lesson was learned by Microsoft and others years ago. Hence no Auto Save option in recent versions of Office programs.

They now have background save, which is not an inappropriate attempt to rescue forgetful users from their own forgetfulness as Auto Save was, but provision for recovery of at least most of the changes in any editing session if disaster happens.

User initiated saves at appropriate moments are the only way to ensure that positive changes are saved to file.

The standard simple practical rule still applies: save every time you are sure you have made a significant positive change.

Auto Save should never have been an option in any program.

It is effectively a bug, not a feature.

Remove it.

Suggestion: make a small popup reminder appear a few minutes after any editing has been done with changes not saved.

Something to the effect of:

"You have made some changes which you have not yet saved.
Would you like to save the document as it is now shown on screen?".

Provide a "do not show this again" tickbox in the popup.

Most useful for beginner users who are most likely to forget to save.

More experienced users will usually remember to save frequently at appropriate moments anyway, so would be unlikely to see the reminder except on their rare occasions of forgetfulness, in which case they may be pleased to see it.

@Laurie Williams
You probably miss the point of autosave in MuseScore as implemented right now in MuseScore 2. it will *NOT* save the score on top of your already saved file. It's more what you describe as background save. So maybe we should rename it in the UI and the help but no, MuseScore will not loose your content if you previously saved a file, open it then cut, "auto/background" save is running, and crash. Your original file will of course be intact (well as intact a file can be if your power supply fails)

I think you may be confused. Auto save *does* save to a separate file, stored in a totally separate folder (under AppData for Windows, for instance). It never touches your actual score in any way whatsoever. It is basically the same thing you describe as "background save". So if you cut some content, then the computer loses power, your score is always exactly as it was the last time *you* saved it.