Automatically Save and Recover Files

Automatically Save and Recover Files

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Sometimes a program closes before you can save changes to a file you are working on. Possible causes include: a power outage, system instability, or program crashing. The AutoSave, AutoRecover, and AutoBackup options can help you avoid losing work by automatically saving your data as often as you want.

Microsoft Word

  1. Click the Microsoft Office Button Office-Button, and then click Word Options.
  2. Click Save.
  3. Select the Save AutoRecover information every x minutes check box.
  4. In the minutes list, specify how often you want the program to save your data and the program state. By default, it is 10; change it to 1 so that your document is auto-saved every one minute.
  5. Optionally, you can change the AutoRecover file location where the program automatically saves a version of files you work on.


In most MS Office applications, the method is very similar. In some MS applications or versions, the AutoRecover option is rather at Tools menu > Options.


SDL Trados Studio

Trados Studio 2014 automatically saves all the pending changes and automatically backs up your SDLXLIFF file every 10 minutes. However, you can configure Studio to save more or less often than that.

  1. Click File > Options > Editor.
  2. Make sure the Enable AutoSave box is checked.
  3. In the AutoSave every x minutes box, specify how often you want Trados Studio to automatically save your pending changes.


To be extra safe, choose to autosave more frequently, for example every 5 minutes. This way, you will never lose more than five minutes of work. On the other hand, if you want to make Studio faster, choose to autosave less often, for example every 20 minutes.

When you restart Trados Studio after an unexpected crash and you open a project file which contained pending changes, Trados Studio prompts you to recover the last auto-saved file.


Wordfast Pro

Wordfast Pro saves the active file to a temp folder whenever a change is made. If the application crashes or is closed without saving the file, the file can be located among the auto-saved files, and then saved to the path of the original file. To select Auto Save preferences:

  1. Open Wordfast Pro > Edit menu > Preferences > AutoSave.
  2. By default, AutoSave is set to 10 minutes. The minimum is one minute.
  3. You can Browse to select another location for the auto-saved files.



Translation Memory

While using Translation Environment Tools (TEnTs, a.k.a CAT Tools), your translation memory can be your final restore. Make sure you always confirm your current segment to store it into the active translation memory. Even if you are requested to use a Remote TM, it is highly recommended you create/use your own Local TM as well, if possible. Your Translation Memory backs up all your translation units. Almost all TEnTs have a pre-translation feature that can be used to run your translation memory on your file and get a translated version just in minutes.


Adobe Photoshop

As of Photoshop CS6, the new AutoSave feature can help recover your file if your computer crashes before you save recent changes. The AutoSave option is active by default and can be found at Edit menu > Preferences > File Handling > Automatically Save Recovery Information Every; you can and choose 5, 10, 15, 30, or 60 minutes.

The path to the auto-saved files is something like: C:\Users\[username]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS6\AutoRecover


Adobe InDesign

Adobe InDesign includes an automatic document recovery feature that can retrieve unsaved changes. Automatic recovery is permanently enabled to guard against unexpected system failures. The first time you start InDesign after it closes unexpectedly, it begins the document recovery process automatically.


Adobe Captivate

Captivate does not have an AutoSave feature; however, there is only a Backup feature that can be activated at EditPreferences > General Settings > Generate Project Backup. When the option is selected, Captivate creates a backup file with the extension .bak the next time the project is saved. Whenever your file becomes corrupted, you can recover the saved changes to the project by changing the .bak file extension to .cptx (or .cp for Captivate 4).



QuarkXPress has an AutoSave feature that can save a temporary copy of the active document as you work. The AutoSave feature can be activated at Edit menu > Preferences > Application > Save > Auto Save. Enter a time interval in the Every x minutes field to define how often QuarkXPress will automatically save your file. If QuarkXPress crashes, the next time you open your document a dialog will appear asking if you want to open the auto-saved version or the version you last manually saved. QuarkXPress also has an AutoBackup feature; each time you manually Save the active document, it creates a new file and also saves the previous version with an incremental number added to its file name.


Similarly, many applications have an AutoSave and/or AutoRecovery feature; just check your application’s Help files for more details about the relevant options.


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