Autosaved documents appearing in strange formats

Sometimes, unsaved documents may be autosaved in a separate file that can be seen in the Finder. Depending on the application and system settings, this may appear as a bizarre file type in the Finder, which may have people concerned about what's going

Written by Topher Kessler

Sometimes, unsaved documents may be autosaved in a separate file that can be seen in the Finder. Depending on the application and system settings, this may appear as a bizarre file type in the Finder, which may have people concerned about what's going on.

Apple discussion poster "exsci" writes:

"When I open a .txt file in TextEdit, and change the font, in the Finder I see a new Unix Executable File appear, with (Autosaved) after the file name. This is in addition to the original .txt file - so there are now 2 files of the same name showing."

For autosaved documents, unless the file stays around after you have manually saved the document, or does other bizarre behavior such as propagating multiple documents in the Finder, then do not worry about them. Often, applications will use unconventional file suffixes for temporary files, which can appear in the Finder as images or executable files, but should not affect anything.

To avoid problems, do not try to edit or open the autosaved files, and treat them as temporary working files that are to be used only by the application that created them. If a file remains after you have saved your files and quit the application, then you should be able to delete the file with no problems. However, if the application has crashed, the file may contain unsaved changes so be sure to open and check your files, and then re-save them before deleting the temporary file.

Be sure to check us out on Twitter and the CNET Mac forums.


Topher has been an avid Mac user for the past 10-15 years, and has been a contributing author to MacFixIt for just over a year now. One of his diehard passions has been troubleshooting Mac problems and making the best use of Macs and Apple hardware both for family and friends, as well as in the workplace. He and the newly formed MacFixIt team are hoping to bring enhanced and more personable content to our readers, and keep the MacFixIt community going here at CNET. If you have questions or comments for Topher or the other MacFixIt editors, feel free to contact us at http://www.macfixit.com/contact

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