Lots of people are having problems with losing their Silhouette files when they update to the latest version of Silhouette Studio. For whatever reason, the transfer of files to the cloud is not going very smoothly. Some have lost all their files, some have lost some of their files and others have lost only the files they have created themselves.
In my Silhouette group, I have posted reminders telling people that they should back up their files (click the link for information on backup routines) before they update the software. This should be a regular practice anyway, but this is something you should ALWAYS do before you update any software.
Furthermore, the Export function that is included with Silhouette Studio exports your files as a library. This means that you do not have access to your individual files outside of Silhouette Studio. If you want to be absolutely sure that you do not lose your files, you need to extract them from the library and put the individual files in a folder on your hard drive. You can then copy or move that folder to an external drive for additional security. The video below walks you through this. Note that this is only available for Windows. If you are on a Mac, you would need to use Bootcamp, Parallels or VMWAre Fusion to run Windows on your Mac. On a Mac, the only other way to do this is to open each file and save it to your hard disk, one by one. In my personal opinion, doing this is worth it because I want to be sure I can continue to use the files I PAID FOR or CREATED.
In fact, I don’t use the library to store anything other than the files I purchased from the Silhouette store. I have a folder on an external hard drive in which I keep all my files. My cutting files are in a Digital Cutting Files folder and I have many sub-folders by theme so I can easily find my files.
Remember that hard drives fail. The only thing that will ensure that you don’t lose your files, which includes cutting files, photographs, documents, fonts, graphic files, etc., etc., etc., is to back up regularly. At the very least, you should use a service like Dropbox so that you can save your files securely online. That way, no matter where you are, you can access your files. Also, if your hard drive fails or your computer dies, you still have your files. If you want to sign up for Dropbox, CLICK HERE.
Remember also that the export function in Silhouette Studio is for exporting the files in your library in a form that brings the files back into your library. Extracting your files to your hard disk means they are out of the library as individual files that you can manage on your hard disk instead of relying on Silhouette Studio to keep your files safe. This is one more option for backing up your files. You should export your library regularly, but you should back up the files on your computer as a regular backup routine. Not doing so means you are taking chances with your precious data…the files you create, your photographs, music, fonts, cutting files, documents, … everything. Hard disks crash, computers fail. Software goes haywire. So many things can happen to cause you to lose your files. Using the method I describe in my video is a safeguard so that you still HAVE your files in case the worst possible thing happens.
Once you extract your files, you open them by clicking File, Open in Silhouette Studio. They are not brought back into Silhouette Studio automatically. It is simply a safeguard to make sure you still have access to all your files.
The library is the only way to see a preview of studio files. Extracting the files does not affect this. It’s similar to unzipping files. If you purchase something online and the file arrives as a zipped file, you unzip it to extract the files from the container (the zipped file). Once you do that, the zipped file is still in your folder and it is intact, unless you delete the zipped file.
If you have already updated and have lost your files, uninstall the new version of Silhouette Studio and reinstall an older version. The older versions are available here. Many people have said that this has brought the files back. Once you do this, be sure to run the extract operation described in the video.
Note that Silhouette has made changes and now only version 3 will allow you to enter the codes for upgrading your software to Designer, Designer Plus or Business editions and only version 3 will allow you to access their online store.
Also, the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” adage is very appropriate for computers. Only upgrade if there is something in the upgrade that fixes a problem you’re having or if there is something in the upgrade you need.