Panicked, lost all my work, I had been saving continuously. It's gone!

• Feb 1, 2023 - 02:04

I can't believe this just happened. I've used Musescore for years with no issues. I have been working on an arrangement literally all day - 10 hours of work - and was just finishing up when the program crashed.

I had been saving it repeatedly... about 30 times... over and over. But when I tried to recover the file it gave me an error message: "Error opening file." That's it.

Then when I went to the location where the file was saved, the file is not there. It only recovered the new title of the arrangement, not the 10 hours of work that I saved repeatedly.

I am beyond exasperated. Is there any way to recover this? Temporary files that are saved somewhere on my computer that i can't access??



I've just begun recreating. Losing a day's work is crushing, but I've lost to much more time already trying to recover the file.

I really don't understand why saving the file didn't seem to do anything. For any other program that crashes - like Microsoft Word - you're always able to restore the version that you had last saved.

Am I the only one that's had this problem? I'm paranoid to even use Musescore 4 now.

In reply to by bigeasyboys

Backups are in your scores folder. But it is in a hidden folder. You need to make it visible. Google how to view hidden folders. But basically do this:
In File Explorer,select This PC/View (in the top menu bar)/Options (on the right)/View (in the popup)/check Show hidden files, folders and drives. Hit OK

In reply to by bobjp

Thank you for trying. All the folders in my Musescore 4 folder are empty (same with my Musescore 3 folder). And I have hidden files viewable.

I don't save all my scores there, I save them to a different location. But I assumed that's where the backup scores would be. I don't understand why there's nothing in all those folders.

I've just been recreating all my lost work - still many hours to go - but this would still be REALLY helpful to know (for others too).

In reply to by bigeasyboys

I am using a Mac as well. The backup seems to be stored in an extra backup folder on the same level as your score (.mscz file). I enclose a file from my Musescore 4.0 score folder, but the backup is not on the level of the score folder as a whole. I have a folder for every song inside the score folder, and each has a backup folder which includes a backup file.

Backup folder:
Bildschirm­foto 2023-02-01 um 15.32.21.png

Inside backup folder:
Bildschirm­foto 2023-02-01 um 15.35.35.png

So you might have a look around in your system.

In reply to by maria_shinoto

Thank you. I am seeing only one .mscbackup folder and it only contains one backup file, out of about 100 that i've saved and worked on over the years. I am totally mystified but I'm just going to chalk it up with an issue using a Google Drive folder as your primary Musescore output folder for new compositions. I'm going to save everything moving forward in My Documents and pray that works.

In reply to by bigeasyboys

Yes, as I have explained, the mscbackup folder is not relevant to autosave. Ignore it, it has no bearing on what you want to do. You can completely forget it exists while investigating this. The best you would be able to hope for there is a file showing you how the file existing when you started working on it.

As I said also, there is a known bug with Google Drive on macOS where files can be made invisible. So be sure you are enabling display of invisible files when looking for your score.

If you saved it, then it is absolutely positively still there on your drive, in exactly the folder you saved it. The trick will be remembering what folder you saved it to. I believe you mentioned using Google Drive. There is a known bug with that app on macOS that can lead to files being marked hidden that shouldn't be. So be sure you are enabling display of hidden files in that folder. And if you don't find the score there, do a full system search, including system and hidden folders, for all MSC files. Again, if yoju saved it, it is absolutely positively there. MuseScore never ever deletes your files.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Thanks and sorry for my frustration - I didn't realize I was replying to that other thread that wasn't on the support forum.

The problem is that I DID save it repeatedly while working on it, but it's not there, in the folder that I saved it in. I've done searches everywhere. I will just chalk this up to a Google Drive issue (I've absolutely positively enabled hidden files - and still see nothing). I'm going to move all my musescore files to my "My Documents" folder and see if that solves the issue.

Once i've done that - when I save a new file in the My Documents folder on my Mac - I understand from yoyu that there should be a hidden folder with backup files right there in the same folder. I hope and pray that's the case.

In reply to by bigeasyboys

Not a hidden folder - the actual autosave file itself will be there, and hidden.

It's possible something about how Google Drive works makes displaying hidden files work differently than other folders on your Mac. Saving to Google Drive absolutely works - every single file I've saved for the last several years has been there, in MuseScore 3 and 4, Linux and Windows, so in general it should be good.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Ok - I am now seeing an "autosave" version of the new file that I recreated that's in my Google Drive. But there's nothing for the file that I was working on yesterday. Maybe it's because I started my recreation from "old" version (the one that just had the title and contained none of the work I had saved 30 times). So now that's the only version that's in the folder and the autosave is for my recreated work.

I am throwing in the towel. Thank you for your help. I hope you can understand my frustration over losing an entire day of work when I'm way behind already on this project and I can't explain why my work was lost.

I will just pray that it's a Google Drive malfunction. Otherwise I have no idea why saving the file 30 times over the course of a day would have no practical effect when Musescore crashes. It gave me the "error reopening file" message, then I went to the location where it was originally saved, and it was dated from the time I had first begun my work. The 30 subsequent saves resulted in nothing. Obviously, that's not supposed to be the case. But all I can say is that I DID SAVE the file repeatedly as I worked on it. Then it was all lost when the porgram crashed. That happened.

It seems like I'm at a total dead end here so I'm throwing in the towel and will stop replying. Thanks for your time on this.

In reply to by bigeasyboys

One more comment - the thought just occurred to me, since it's the only thing i've ever done differently - that this might somehow be related to using the "PUBLISH" tab at the top, within musescore itself.

For the many dozens of scores i've arranged and then uploaded to (private), I've always uploaded the file through the website. I had never before tried to do it via the application.

It was a bit weird for me - it seemed to create some other version of the file within the Musescore app before publishing.

When I then created the next file - the one that crashed and I lost - I "saved as" the new file name but may've started from that new version on the "publish" tab to create the new one. Does that make sense? And is there some sort of new file that's created when you use that option, that might be saved somewhere else on my computer?

In the future I'm never going to use the "publish" option within the Musescore app again. I'm just uploading it through the website as usual.

In reply to by bigeasyboys

Publish is absolutely the right way to upload your score. It's the only way to get the correct sounds. And it's also much simpler. Definitely don't limit yourself to uploading from the website; you're making extra work and also missing out on the correct audio (no Muse Sounds, no VST, no third party soundfonts).

However, if you instead of publish you used save to cloud, then this indeed would mean you weren't saving to Google Drive at all - but directly to If that's what happened, you'd find your score on there on

Unfortunately I am not really understanding what exactly you are saying you did. But again, absolutely no way is it even remotely possible that "publish to" could ever delete a score on your computer. It's just not possible.

In reply to by bigeasyboys

The autosave file is deleted if you successfully close the program. How many times you saved it yourself is not relevant - there is always one and only one autosave, normally used for crash recovery and crash recovery only. Sounds like in your case there might not have been a crash, but instead you simply misplaced your file, but as far as MuseScore was concerned, it closed successfully and thus deleted your autosave. or, your file was simply saved somewhere else. That still seems the more likely explanation to me. Did you try going to Google Drive online like I said, and searching all your folders there? Including the trash? If it's not anywhere there, then the only possible explanation is, you never in fact saved it to Google Drive. There is no way that MsueScore, amcOS, and Google Drive could all have bugs keeping you from finding the file - if it's not there on Google Drive online, and you saved it, then obviously, you saved it somewhere else.

I understand you are frustrated and I'd still really love to help - there is practically no way your file is not there waiting to be found, either on Google Drive online as I said, or somewhere else if you accidentally saved it elsewhere. MuseScore simply lacks any code that would ever delete your file - it's flat out impossible. But I guess that doesn't help if you can't go back in time to understand better what you did.

By the way, that's a minus of 4 MuseScore. Version 3 had an asterisk next to the file name if you made any changes and didn't save the file. In version 4, however, there is no asterisk and you do not know if you saved the file or not

I'm suddenly having very similar problems. Wasting a huge amount of precious time trying to sort out why all my files say they are suddenly from a newer version, despite having 4.2.1 and redownloading it again and again. Is there something going on with musescore at the moment?

In reply to by tania@southern…

I don't think I would use the com. site to save my scores. Or the cloud. I also don't use the save function. I use save as with a different version number. And only to my computer. Then I delete the extras when I'm done. Though sometimes it's nice to be able to back-up a few versions.

In reply to by tania@southern…

It's not clear what you mean, but if you attach one of the scores you are having trouble with, we can take a look.

Even though you have 4.2.1, it's also possible you also have an older version. So make sure you're really running 4.2.1 and not something else. Check Help / About MuseScore after starting the program to be sure.

Sorry to hear about your issue. Score corruption has been a periodic problem with MuseScore and although this won't help now, it might help in the future: as bobjp said earlier, I would recommend saving versions to your local storage as the primary instance of your score and only used cloud/.com saves as a secondary instances.

When I am working on a score I use Save-As for each session, (in a Work-In-Progress folder), until I release the score at v1.0, (to a Scores folder). This gives me some protection against corruption, (either by MuseScore or computer hardware), as well as versions to fall back to if I change my mind on recent changes. Once the score is finished I archive some of the versions to a separate folder and delete the rest.



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