Autosave does not seem to work

How does this work. It seems SU ‘Auto-saves’ when it feels like it. I just lost 5 hours of work!

If you work for 5 hours and SketchUp crashes, Autosave files can be retrieved from the assigned autosave location. If you work for 5 hours and then decide to quit SketchUp without saving, it assumes that you know what you are doing, and autosave files are deleted.

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Thanks for responding. Working on a Mac makes one ‘lazy’. Most other software (Numbers, Pages, ArchiCad, even mickemouse Word asks if you would like to save!

Getting back to autosave. What is the point of Autosave (which is an irritation with the colour wheel interrupting work)? It sounds as if this function is only good for when the computer crashes, which happens about once in a blue moon, especially working on a MacBook Pro.

One should be able to autosave regardless, with an option to disable the function!

I don’t know about the behaviour on the Mac, but in Windows SketchUp asks that, too.

I usually turn Autosave off, and try to remember to save whenever I reach a meaningful stage in my modelling, using the ctrl-s tick. It hasn’t always worked.

I do a lot of what the name of the application says, sketching. I would hate an application that saves all my fruitless tryouts or dumb decisions without asking me. Quitting without saving (or doing a Revert to saved) is what I often do when reaching a dead end.


In the end not such a trainsmash… redrew the work in an hour! Shows me how much time is spent on designing and figuring out what to do :slight_smile:

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When you are offering professional SketchUp training services to your customers, remember to learn how this works and urge them to use conventional save methods while working.

SketchUp doesn’t do the macOS like autosaving, and yes, the auto save it does is mainly for if there is a crash.

One thing to think about is how complex your model must be for an auto save every 20 minutes to be noticeable. When I’m testing issues I often have auto save set to 1 minute, and don’t really notice the auto saves. But then my MacBook Pro SSD is 8 times larger than yours, which may be helping.

When you save a file the previous saved file is renamed to have a tilde at the end (so, My Model.skp will have a file next to it named My Model~.skp). If something goes terribly wrong in your model while you are working after a save, you could decide to ditch the recent changes, delete My Model.skp, and rename My Model~.skp to My Model.skp, to then pick up from where you were when you did the previous save.

If you are manually saving the file at least every 10 minutes, a 20 minute setting for auto save is not going to give you much benefit over falling back on the backup file.

thank you Colin. I opened this file i had been working on few weeks ago, and then never saved during the editing assuming SU is saving every 20 minutes, ie. thinking that the backup is overwritten. Would you say that one should save once after restarting an ‘old’ model, to let SU know that it should save at the set times? It seems that SU does not know that it has to save if one does not do this step.

On a similar vain, when SU does crash, and it has lately quite often (restarts for no reason), it then asks if I want to work on the ‘recovered’ file or the last saved file. In most cases I pick the wrong one (probably not saved) and then the recovered file is an earlier version, never mind the latest bit of work. SU might want to allow user to open both!

As the auto save is not like the macOS one, I would manually save each time you’re happy with the changes you’ve made. That gives you the last saved file in a state you could pick up from again, a backup file that was the model on the previous time you manually saved, and the auto save file, that will be 20 minutes old, or newer.

If you do crash, and open SketchUp, the ones with the red Recovered banner over them are the ones where there is an auto save file that is more recent than the last saved file. How you choose what to open is not especially easy to understand!

When you click on a Recovered file, you will be shown something like this:

You can look at the time stamp, and the thumbnail, and decide if the auto save version had anything important in it that was not in the saved file. If you choose the Recovered file, it will immediately open, but you haven’t lost the ability to open the saved file yet. If you decide you don’t like the recovered version, close the window without saving, then go back to the Welcome to SketchUp window. Open the recovered version again, only this time choose the saved file instead. When you do that, you see this:

As it suggests, when you commit to opening the saved file, the auto save version will be deleted.

Another combination that can happen is where you open the saved file from the welcome screen, and it turns out there is a more recent auto save version of the file. You’re then given the choice of which one to open, much like you got when opening the recovered version.

Thank you for the explanation, but as you said not easy to understand. For me, too many “if that, then do this…”, or “if you do the following, then…” etc. I am putting off autosave, it is creating too much confusion. Will set a reminder on my phone and some other device to remind me to save! It seems Autosave actually does save the work, but then deletes the file (like Anssi describes) if one has not physically saved, is beyond belief! Why it can’t work like Pages or Numbers, you save a file ONCE with a name, and when you open it the next day, even if the computer crashed, or power went off, the latest work is still there. This can’t be size related, as some of my reports run into the 100’s of MB and are generally larger than SU files.

Thank you again for taking the time!

Autosave works perfectly, but if you close your document and choose not to save, then it throws the file out because it thinks you did that on purpose. SketchUp will not let you close a document with unsaved changes without a prompt to save. Just like any software does. That’s why you should save regularly, save before closing, etc. If you have a crash, the autosave works and will help you get back to where you were.