Never More Than a Minute
One of the silent features of InDesign is one of its best: When you work in InDesign and the inevitable happens?the power goes out, or some little glitch causes a crash?you usually reopen InDesign to find your files almost intact!
It's one the features I like to show to a new InDesign class. I'm demoing on my laptop, working on a file that I've not saved. Then I'll purposely use the Mac OS X system Force Quit command to cause InDesign to crash. When I reopen, even my unsaved file is recovered, almost back to where I was working.
But I never knew quite how the feature worked. I credit Adam Pratt, one of the Adobe application engineers, with pointing to what's really happening in his Adobe blog, Scratch Disk. Adam found an obscure Adobe Support Document which describes the process. Every minute InDesign does a mini-save of all open documents which have changed. It saves this information into temporary files in the InDesign Recovery folder. When you choose File > Save, it deletes the temporary files. When you reopen InDesign, it attempts to use these files to recover your documents.
The first time you start InDesign after it shut down unexpectedly, it begins the document recovery process automatically. It checks the InDesign Recovery folder for information on documents that were open when it shut down, then attempts to open each of these documents and incorporate any mini-saved data into them.
If InDesign successfully opens a document and incorporates mini-saved data into a document, it includes "[Recovered]" in the document's name (for example, "My File [Recovered]"). The first time you choose File > Save or File > Save As in a recovered document, InDesign asks whether you want to overwrite the original document. If you click Yes, InDesign overwrites the original to incorporate the recovered information, and it removes [Recovered] from the document's name.