Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects

Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects

What are the best practices for securely managing bibisco projects?

This is one of the questions that bibisco users ask me most, so in this post, updated to version 2.3 of bibisco, we will analyze how bibisco stores projects and the safest way to manage them.

Let’s start from the beginning: bibisco is a desktop application, just like Microsoft Word or LibreOffice, and it stores all the data on your computer.

Therefore, there are no copies of your work on the web: neither at bibisco.com nor at Gumroad, the e-commerce platform that distributes bibisco.

In this way, only you have a copy of your work and you can even work without an internet connection.

OK, but… where does bibisco save my projects?

bibisco projects’ directory

bibisco stores all the data in the projects’ directory that you choose at the first execution of bibisco:

Projects' directory selection
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
Projects’ directory selection

If the directory you have chosen already contains projects, they will be automatically imported.

This feature is particularly useful when you update bibisco: you have to download the new version, unzip it, and choose the directory you were working on as the projects’ directory: that’s it!

You can always change the location of your projects’ directory from the settings:

bibisco settings menu
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
bibisco settings menu
Projects' directory selection
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
Projects’ directory selection

The right location, the right name

It’s very important to choose the right location and the right name for the bibisco projects’ directory.

The projects’ directory should have a well recognizable name, for example bibisco-projects, and should be located in a location where we usually store the files we produce, for example in the Documents directory.

For this reason, you should absolutely avoid choosing the desktop or the download directory as the projects’ directory.

The main risk of choosing a wrong name and a wrong position is, after some time, no longer recognizing the directory as a bibisco project directory and therefore deleting it, risking losing all the work.

Projects’ directory structure

The projects directory has this structure:

Projects' directory structure
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
Projects’ directory structure

and it has 4 main elements.

1) Projects’ directory (purple arrow)

It’s the projects’ directory you choose.

2) _internal_bibisco2_projects_db_ (green arrow)

It’s the parent directory of all projects.

3) Specific project directory (blue arrow)

It’s the specific project directory that contains:

  • a JSON file (cyan arrow) that is the project file.
  • images directory (black arrow) that contains the images of the project.
Specific project's directory
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
Specific project’s directory

4) Backup (red arrow)

This directory was used in older versions of bibisco (up to 2.2) to make automatic backups of all projects every time bibisco was run. Since version 2.3 it is no longer used.

How bibisco helps you securely managing your projects: auto save and auto backup

bibisco has two features that help you secure your work: auto save and auto backup.

1) Auto save

The auto-save feature activates every time you open the text editor or relationship diagram and automatically saves your work every 60 seconds.

You can disable the auto save from text editor settings:

bibisco text editor's settings
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
bibisco text editor’s settings
Disable auto save
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
Disable auto save

2) Auto backup

The automatic backup function makes backups of the project you are working on at regular intervals and each time you exit the project.

You choose the directory in which bibisco stores the automatic backups at the first execution of bibisco:

Automatic backups' directory selection
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Automatic backups’ directory selection

By default, bibisco:

  • makes an automatic backup each time you exit the project, both when you close bibisco and exit the project without closing bibisco.
  • makes an automatic backup if there are any changes in the project and 2 hours have passed since the last backup.
  • keeps a maximum of 10 backup files for a single project in the backup directory. When the maximum number of backups is exceeded, the oldest backup file is deleted.

You can always change these defaults from the settings:

bibisco settings menu
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
bibisco settings menu
Change automatic backup defaults
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
Change automatic backup defaults

bibisco makes backups by exporting the project as an archive. Each archive file has a significant name:

bibisco archive files
Best practices for securely managing bibisco projects
bibisco blog | useful resources by your novel writing software
bibisco archive files
  • title of the project (orange line)
  • identifier of the project (pink line)
  • timestamp of backup in the form YEAR_MONTH_DAY_HOURS_MINUTES_SECONDS (yellow line).

What can YOU do to securely managing your projects: store backups outside your computer!

Even if we think that it can never happen to us, unfortunately, accidents happen.

Our computer can be stolen, it can fall from our hands and crash on the ground, we can pour coffee over it and make it unusable, the hard drive can corrupt and become unreadable.

So, what can we do to avoid the loss of our work?

We have to store the backups outside of our computer, regularly copying them from the backup folder of our computer to an external hard drive or USB key.

Save your projects and backups on a cloud drive

A very effective way to securely managing your projects is to save them on a cloud drive.

In this way you have an automatic backup in secure storage and also you have the possibility to work on your project from different computers.

To save your projects on a cloud drive, for example, Dropbox or Google Drive, you simply have to choose as projects’ directory and automatic backups’ directory, directories on your computer that are synchronized with your cloud drive.

Conclusion

Now that you’ve learned what are the best practices for securely managing bibisco projects, you can focus on creating your great novel.

Therefore, happy writing with bibisco!

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