I hate the automatic saving and versioning in Mac OS X Lion.
Is there a way to completely turn it off?
(This has been asked before here, but the answer and the linked article are completely wrong, so I thought I'd try again.)
I intentionally was searcing for hidden defaults1 and fortuitously stumbled across a
If you have a tolerance for potentially breaking things (joke), try the following Terminal command (for Preview in this example):
Alternatively, you can configure this globally with this command (but beware that this causes slow logins, so not recommended):
I can confirm that this works for TextEdit, Preview, Automator and Safari (for disabling Resume), but it should also work for other Apple applications like iWork, Xcode, iPhoto etc. It also works for some, but not all, third party applications. My machine hasn't gone up in flames (joking again) but as long as you have a good backup system, these settings seem stable to change and test.
For TextEdit, you must additionally run the following command, in order to avoid sandbox errors:
[This effectively disables the old-style, pre-Lion autosaving completely, so the sandbox won't complain anymore about TextEdit trying to automatically save stuff without your "consent".]
Another option, is a TextEdit fork called "TextEdit+", that thankfully isn't sandboxed (surprisingly, TextEdit is actually open source). It can be downloaded here.
To restore normal behaviour, run:
I agree, too many assumptions on Apple's side what users need and especially what can be controlled by the user → hint: new full-screen apps on dual-/multi-monitor setups (fail)
For Versions it's quite similar, no control for the user :(
The only thing I found so far is checking the size of the Versions folder
Note: This is a very bad idea ! It will delete all your previous versions of doucuments/files
You could then prevent the re-creation of that directory by
But that creates a big mess, leaving you unable to re-save documents in Apps featuring "Versions & Autosave"
Not a satisfying solution. I really hope someone finds a way to turn it off or that one of the next OS X updates gives the user more control.
Hackinations: 5 really good Lion tweaks mentions that the switch
And it seems the deamon
Anyone with better ideas ?
I found a way to disable Versions (not Autosave) in a (hopefully) non-destructive reversible way: (re)move the SQLite database that Versions uses
Careful, this comes with absolutely no warranty and may break your system!
If it worked you'll be notified e.g. in Textedit when you close a document:
That (probably) means that your document will still be automatically saved in certain intervals, but once you close it (or the program) you can only retrieve the latest version (and Time Machine backups, if available).
The changes can be undone with
Versions (especially of Autosave) may still end up in
There is a much much simpler way to do it that was only introduced in OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion.
According to this post, you just have to enable System Preferences > General > Ask to keep changes when closing documents.