AutoCAD Based Products Autosave files appear to be missing

July 27, 2020 Ryan Wunderlich


Your Autosave is turned on (and you see it triggering), but when you browse to the location (generally your Windows Profile Temp Folder, unless you have changed it). You may see some .BAK files but may not see the sv$ or ac$ files you are expecting to find.


This is normal behavior. When the Autosave triggers, it creates that sv$ file (or ac$ if you changed the default extension), and the next Autosave event will create a new sv$ and rename the old one as BAK. However, when you hit QSAVE (or SaveAs) between the Autosaves, the last sv$ is then removed, and all the editing data from the undo and redo.AC$ files are put together with that sv$ file and that is turned into the DWG saved file. Also, an important thing to be aware of as well, if you close a drawing that has an sv$ and do not save it, that sv$ file is also erased. That's why you have BAK files (so there are multiple Autosaves as BAK files, but the last Autosave (sv$ file) is erased when the drawing is closed)


Just be aware that what you expect to see may not be there, and to plan appropriately. I generally like to have my Autosaves not in my temp folder (that way if I have to clear my temp folder, I still have my Autosaves), so I generally set a folder like ACAD Autosave or similar on the root of my C:\ or D:\ drive and point all my autosave files to that location.

One other item:

One other thing to be aware of as well, if AutoCAD encounters an error and prompts you to save the DWG file before closing, be aware that the last sv$ will disappear. I usually tell users to go to the Autosave directory, make a copy of the sv$ file, then allow AutoCAD to save the file (that way if the DWG created is corrupt and unusable you’ve only lost a few minutes of work).

About the Author

Ryan Wunderlich

Sr. Technical Support Specialist<br><br>An AutoCAD Certified Professional, Ryan is responsible for taking client cases and assisting with issues with the software - everything from regular glitches to software deployments and whatever else goes wrong. He's proficient in AutoCAD (including customization), VBA, LISP, and Civil 3D.

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