Questions?

These are our answers. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, please use our contact form.

Is there a demo version?

Yes, there is. Please note that the demo is limited in functionality: No iCloud sync, no Daedalus Touch integration (would require iCloud). It is also time limited, based on usage. So after ten hours of real use it will switch into read-only mode.

Is Ulysses for Mac available in my native language?

If your native language is English, French, German, Italian, Simplified Chinese, Japanese or Spanish – yes. If your language is missing, use our contact form to drop us a line.

Is there a student discount available?

Since Ulysses is sold exclusively through the Mac App Store, we can’t offer discounts. However, you might want to check if your educational institution runs a Volume Purchase Program which offers discounts on Mac App Store apps.

Why is the cursor always at the top of any given sheet. It’s 2016, we have a Mars rover, can’t you make Ulysses remember my last edit position?

Funny you’re mentioning Mars, as Ulysses offers “best of both worlds” (punny): Simply selecting a sheet will show it in the editor, while double-clicking a sheet will also jump to the last edit location. There, 2016.

Can I still download the old Ulysses 2 (not Ulysses for Mac) from the Mac App Store?

Absolutely. Go to the “Purchases” tab on the App Store and hit the INSTALL button. Alternatively, you can download the latest version here directly. If you’re looking for a previous version, please write us a short message via the contact form.

How do I change the font size?

There is no “font size” in Ulysses. But you can adjust text size using the Zoom menu. Conveniently, ⌘﹢ and ⌘﹣ zoom in or out, and ⌘0 resets to default size.

Can I change the colors of my tags?

Yes, this can be done from the Markup tab inside Preferences. You can either switch to one of the built-in themes or create your own style by choosing “New Theme…”. The chosen color palettes define text and background color, as well as the shown accent colors.

How do I change the text and background color?

You can modify a theme’s color palette by double-clicking it at the bottom of the Markup preferences.

How can I add notes?

There are multiple ways to add notes to sheets:

  • Sheet notes: Click the paperclip icon, then select the note icon to add a note.
  • Comments: For example in “Markdown XL” you can use “%%” to mark a paragraph as a comment. It will then fade out and not be exported anymore. There are also inline comments.
  • Annotations: To add a hidden note to some specific location in a sheet, use the “Annotation” command from the “Markup” menu. Since this is just markup, you can also add annotations by typing curly braces “{}”.

How can I insert images and footnotes?

Type “(img)” for images. Type “(fn)” for footnotes. Or drag in an image. Or use the menu command. Or the markup popover. Endless possibilities…

How can I change the markup of a sheet?

Open the menu Edit › Convert Markup and then select the appropriate markup. For more information, see our blog post which explains creating and converting markup in detail.

How can I insert an extra line break?

Instead of pressing ↩︎ (which inserts a paragraph break), press ⇧↩︎ to insert a soft line break. These line breaks will be retained during export.

I want first line indents. Now.

Open the Preferences window and set the first line indent in the “General” tab.

How do I show the Favorites / Quick Export / Text Counter / Navigation?

This is an easy one. You can open them from the “Window” menu or use the shortcuts ⌘5 through ⌘8.

How do I navigate sheets in fullscreen mode?

Use the “View” menu to switch between Editor Only and Two- or Three-Pane layout. You can also use ⌥⌘↑ and ⌥⌘↓ to navigate via keyboard.

Is there a spell-checker?

Of course there is, as Ulysses uses the system’s spell-checking service. It’s available via the “Edit” menu, where it should say “Spelling and Grammar”. Alternatively, hit ⌘: to bring up the spell-check panel, or hit ⌘; to quickly check the current sheet.

Does the editor support fenced code blocks?

Not yet. However, you can simply use the paragraph code tag ('') to enter code. If you have smart tags enabled, pressing ↩︎ will automatically add a code tag in the new line. To paste code, press ⇧⌘V and select “Code” from the popover to enclose the pasted text in code tags. For more information, see this blog post.

I don’t want to use iCloud anymore. Any way to disable it?

Yes. Open the Preferences window, select “Sidebar” and disable iCloud.

I changed my mind and want to start using iCloud. How do I enable it?

Simple. Open the Preferences window, select “Sidebar” and enable iCloud.

I don’t like iCloud. Can I sync my sheets via Dropbox?

Definitely. Sort of. Open the menu “File” › “Add External Folder…” and select any folder in your Dropbox. This folder will show up in the “External Folders” section at the bottom. That’s it. Everything you write in the newly created group will be stored on Dropbox and thus be available on all devices linked to the same Dropbox.

I don’t like Dropbox. Can I sync my sheets via WebDAV?

As with Dropbox, it’s a “sort of”. Ulysses can use WebDAV folders via External Folders, and offline-based sync services (e.g. ownCloud) should work just fine. We do not recommend using WebDAV volumes mounted by Finder however, since they rely on an internet connection and may perform very poorly.

I am missing Notes / Annotations / Comments / etc. Where are they?

Several advanced features are not available in External Folders or Daedalus. This is mostly a limitation of plain text files and Markdown which does not support these kinds of content. We have some ideas on improving this in a future version, but even more we’re also interested in your thoughts about this! Feel free to drop us a line using the contact form.

Can I embed images in sheets when working in External Folders?

You can do so using TextBundle, a format that stores the Markdown contents of a sheet together with images inside a single package file. To create new sheets as TextBundle files, right-click the root folder of an External Folder, select “Edit…” and then pick “.textbundle” as file extension.

Which features exactly are missing from Daedalus that are available in Ulysses?

Currently, the following features are not available in Daedalus:

  • Subfolders: Daedalus currently only allows for one level of organization, therefore you cannot add subfolders.
  • Filters: Absent in Daedalus.
  • Attachments: Keywords, notes and image attachments are not (yet) implemented.
  • Inline images: Daedalus is currently text-only and thus has no support for inline images.
  • Advanced Markup: Pretty much everything we offer in Markdown XL is currently unavailable in Daedalus – annotations, dividers, comments, footnotes etc.

I don’t want to see all stats / want to see even more stats in the counter. How do I hide / show them? Also, where can I adjust the used page size?

Tear off the Statistics panel and click the gear button on the top right. You can enable/disable the different metrics there, as well as edit the page settings at the bottom. We also have a blog post explaining the ins and outs of text statistics.

Do you count footnotes?

Yes. They belong to your text and so they are included.

How do you calculate reading time?

Average reading time is based on a reading speed of 4 words per second. Fast uses 5 words per second, slow uses 3. Read aloud time is 2 words per second. If you’re seeing average reading time only, the first question in this section will help you find the others.

How do I export my writing?

The easiest way is to open Quick Export from the window title bar. Tear it off and select the format you like. You can then use the icons at the top to preview, copy to clipboard, save to disk, open in your favorite application or share them. You can also switch formats using the up/down arrow keys. To switch the default action, press .

How do I export the contents of a group or folder?

You can right click on pretty much anything in the sidebars to bring up a contextual menu which lets you invoke Quick Export.

I’m missing an exporter to format X!

We are planning on adding more formats and custom exporters in future versions. If you think we should add your preferred format, drop us a line.

Is there a Markdown preview?

Sure. You can either invoke Preview from the Quick Export panel, or by right-clicking on a sidebar item and choosing “Preview…” from the contextual menu. If you’re previewing often, you might want to memorize ⇧⌘P as a… well, shortcut.

I was told you’re also supporting Marked.app?

This is not a question, but yes, we do, don’t we? When working with External Folders, you can open sheets in your favorite Markdown processor via the “Open With” command. When working with iCloud etc., you will first need to Quick Export and send it to Marked using the app icon. For more help and info, you should probably visit Marked’s support page, though.

I saw there are different markups available in preferences, how can I use them?

To set or change the markup of a sheet, use the menu “Edit” › “Convert Markup” and then select the appropriate markup. Please note that sheets in Daedalus and External Sources do not support all markups.

Will you add support for Fountain, Critic Markup and others?

Universal markup support is definitely coming. We probably have most of them on our list already. Please tell us what you need and how you are using it.

I want to learn more about Ulysses Style Sheets and how I can make best use of them.

Sure you do. First stop should be Ulysses Style Exchange, where you can download styles created by the community. We have also set up a small introductory page as well as a fully-blown reference. Go check them out and produce great looking PDFs!

Ulysses crashed. Help!

Please use the built-in crash reporter to send us a message. Adding your e-mail address and a description of what happened really helps. If the crashes persist or the app hangs, please use the contact form to send us an e-mail.

“Daedalus” is grayed out in Sidebar preference and/or Ulysses won’t sync with Daedalus.

There may be several causes for iCloud not syncing properly. Please try the following steps, as they may already solve the problems (and not just for Ulysses, but for other iCloud enabled apps as well):

  • Check if iCloud is turned ON in your Mac’s System Preferences.
  • Make sure “iCloud Drive” is turned ON and that Ulysses is also enabled in iCloud Drive's options.
  • Make sure you are using the same Apple ID across all devices.
  • Check if iCloud is turned ON on iPhone/iPad, and that Daedalus has at least synced once.
  • Make sure you have created at least one custom stack (intro stacks are not synced).
  • Restart your Mac.
  • Use the contact form.

What data is synced between the Mac and the iOS version?

All your sheets, groups, filters, attachments in the iCloud section are synced between your devices. Anything you add or remove on any device will be synced via iCloud to your other devices.

How do I import my sheets and stacks from Daedalus Touch?

Open Daedalus, tap the action button, select the stacks/sheets you want to import to Ulysses, tap “Export” and select “Send to Ulysses”. Or, if you have Ulysses for Mac, drag the sheets/stacks from the Daedalus section into your iCloud section.

Is Ulysses for iOS localized in my language?

If your native language is English, French, German, Italian, Simplified Chinese, Japanese or Spanish – yes. If your language is missing, use our contact form to drop us a line.

Can I change the font size?

Sure. Open editor settings by tapping the Aa button at the top right. Tap on “Layout”, then adjust “Text Zoom”.

How do I add fonts to the app?

Simply open a font file (.otf, .ttf, or .dfont) with Ulysses. The fonts are automatically imported into the app. You can also open a .zip file that contains multiple font files. For instance, try the font Courier Prime!

Can I change the colors of the editor?

Ulysses comes with some built-in themes which change the look of your editor. Open editor settings, tap “Theme” and see which one fits best. Also, check out the themes section on Ulysses Style Exchange for even more themes.

iPad: I can’t find the button row above the keyboard!

To show the row above the keyboard, go to iOS system settings › General › Keyboard and enable “Shortcuts”.

How can I add notes?

There are multiple ways to add notes to sheets:

  • Sheet notes: Tap the paperclip icon on the top right to open the attachments bar. Then, tap the respective icon at the top. This is useful for notes that concern the whole sheet.
  • Comments: For example in “Markdown XL” you can use “%%” to mark a paragraph as a comment. It will then fade out and not be exported anymore. There are also inline comments.
  • Annotations: To add a hidden note to some specific location in a sheet, you can use annotations. Tap the A| button above the keyboard and select “Annotation”. Since this is just markup, you can also add annotations by typing curly braces “{}”.

How can I insert images and footnotes?

Type “(img)” for images. Type “(fn)” for footnotes. Or tap the A| button above the keyboard and select image or footnote.

How can I insert an extra line break?

Instead of pressing return (which inserts a paragraph break), tap the A| button in the keyboard and select “Line Break”. These line breaks will be retained during export.

If you happen to use an external keyboard, you can also press ⇧↩︎ to insert a line break.

I want first line indents. Now.

Sure thing. Open editor settings, tap “Layout” and adjust first line indent.

How can I undo/redo?

Tap the button above the keyboard to find Undo and Redo actions right there. If you’re using the on-screen keyboard on iPad, you can also find an Undo button on the secondary level of the keyboard, just hit the ?123 to get there. Redo is on the tertiary level (tap #+= and you’ll find it).

If you’re using an external keyboard, you can also use the shortcuts ⌘Z for Undo and ⇧⌘Z for Redo, respectively.

I found the search menu. Now, how do I replace text?

Tap the loupe icon to open search mode. Then, tap the gear icon and select “Replace” (iPhone: tap’n’hold the loupe icon).

How do I add keywords, notes or images attachments to sheets?

Tap the paperclip icon in the top right to open the attachments bar. Then, tap the respective icon at the top.

Please note that adding notes doesn’t work for sheets in the External Files section.

Are there ways to quickly navigate and select text?

On iPad, you can use iOS 9’s swipe selection feature. Simply move two fingers anywhere on the screen. To select text, double-tap with two fingers and move them around.

If you have an iPhone 6s or 6s Plus, you can use 3D Touch to navigate text. Simply force-touch the on-screen keyboard to use it to a trackpad.

What about Typewriter Mode?

No problem. Open editor settings, enable “Typewriter Mode” and make sure “Fixed Scrolling” is enabled as well.

Is there a way to edit sheets on my iPad / iPhone without them syncing to iCloud?

For this, you need to disable Ulysses in your system settings › iCloud › iCloud Drive › Ulysses. You will then find a section “On My iPad” or “On My iPhone” in Ulysses.

How can I edit files from Dropbox?

Ulysses allows syncing folders from your Dropbox. For this, go to the “Library” view, tap “Manage” › “Add Dropbox Folder…”. First, you will need to link an existing Dropbox account. After you’ve done this, you can pick a folder from this account and tap the Add button at the bottom. All your text files (plain text, Markdown) will automatically be synced with Dropbox in the background.

Can I use multiple Dropbox accounts?

Sure, just add another account in the “Accounts” view.

Are my group information synced via Dropbox?

Yes, group metadata such as icon, sorting options or group goals are synced. Filters are synced as well.

I am missing Notes / Keywords / Annotations / Comments / etc. Where are they?

Several advanced features are not available in Dropbox folders. This is mostly a limitation of plain text files and Markdown which does not support these kinds of content.

Can I embed images in sheets when working in Dropbox folders?

You can do so using TextBundle, a format that stores the Markdown contents of a sheet together with images inside a single package file. To create new sheets as TextBundle files, edit the Dropbox folder settings, tap “Default File Extension” and set it to “.textbundle”.

Can I edit files from other cloud storage providers within Ulysses?

Some cloud storage providers (such Box.com) include support for editing files directly within other apps. Tap on “Manage” in the Library section and enable External Files from there. Tap “Done” and go to the “External Files” section. Tap the button at the top of the Sheet List and select your storage provider. If it’s not in the list, check if it needs to be enabled from the “More” menu item first.

How can I change the counter in the bottom left of the editor?

Tap the counter, and then simply tap on another metric. Easy ;)

How can I change the displayed counters metrics?

First tap the counter in the bottom left corner, then the gear button on the right. You can then select all the text counters you need.

Do you count footnotes?

Yes. They belong to your text and so they are included.

How do you calculate reading time?

Average reading time is based on a reading speed of 4 words per second. Fast uses 5 words per second, slow uses 3. Read aloud time is 2 words per second. If you’re seeing average reading time only, the second question in this section will help you find the others.

How do I export my writing?

Simply tap the Share button at the top right of your editor. You can then select different export formats at the top. To open the exported file in another application, send as mail or any other export action, tap the button at the top right and select the appropriate action.

How do I export multiple sheets?

Open the sheet table, tap “Edit”, select the sheets you want to export and tap “Export”.

How do I export the contents of a group?

Open the group table, swipe left on the group or filter you want to export, tap “More” and select “Export…”.

How can I copy contents of my sheet as HTML or Markdown?

Open Export Preview, then select your export format using the switcher at the top. For exporting to Markdown, select “Text” and ensure “Markdown” is then selected below. For HTML, ensure that “Snippet” is selected. To copy to clipboard, tap the button and select “Copy to Clipboard”.

I’m missing an exporter to format X!

We are planning on adding more formats and custom exporters in future versions. If you think we should add your preferred format, drop us a line.

What are export styles?

Export styles allow you to customize the formatting of the exported files. For HTML and ePub, these are just CSS files. For PDF and DOCX, we’ve created a custom format that allows styling these files. Currently, you cannot edit these styles directly on iOS (you can do so in Ulysses for Mac), but you can import new styles from the Ulysses Style Exchange.

Ulysses crashed. Help!

Please use the built-in crash reporter to send us a message. Adding your e-mail address and a description of what happened really helps. If the crashes persist or the app hangs, please use the contact form to send us an e-mail.

Having iCloud syncing problems?

There may be several causes for iCloud not syncing properly. Please try the following steps, as they may already solve the problems:

  • Make sure that the groups you’re trying to sync are in the “iCloud” section in Ulysses for Mac. Sheets in “On My Mac” are only stored locally, sheets in “Daedalus” are only synced to Daedalus, but not to Ulysses for iOS.
  • Make sure you’re running the latest version of OS X (10.12), iOS (10.1) and Ulysses (2.7). iCloud sync only works in Ulysses’ retail version, not in the demo.
  • Ensure that you’re properly connected to the Internet. If you’re on a cellular network (3G, LTE, …), iCloud might not sync unless it was explicitly enabled in system settings.
  • Make sure that no firewalls such as LittleSnitch are blocking iCloud services.
  • iCloud must be enabled on all devices. You must be logged in with the same Apple ID across your devices.
  • iCloud Drive must be enabled in System Preferences. Also, click “Options…” (on Mac) or tap “iCloud Drive” (on iOS) to ensure Ulysses is ENABLED. Syncing will not work using the old “Documents & Data” sync. If you’re on a cellular network, make sure “Use Cellular Data” is turned ON.
  • Does syncing work with other document-based apps such as Pages? If not, then this might be a more general problem.
  • Check if iCloud is running on Apple’s side using their system status page.
  • Have patience. Sometimes, iCloud just takes some time to fully sync sheets between devices. It might be necessary to keep Ulysses on iOS active, because iCloud will stop syncing after a while when switching to another application. For the initial sync (i.e. first time, after installation), you could also set “Auto-Lock” in iOS Settings to “Never”, in order to prevent your iOS device from going to sleep.
  • If you checked everything, but your sheets still don’t finish (or even begin) syncing, restart your devices. On iOS devices, do a cold-boot: Press both the Power and the Home button until the screen goes black and the Apple logo appears.
  • If iCloud syncing is slow and you’re on a mobile device, try connecting to a Wi-Fi and charging your device. iCloud syncing is optimized for saving power and might run slower on low power.
  • Use the contact form.

Please be aware that all iCloud syncing is handled using Apple’s background services. Therefore, our capabilities and insights regarding iCloud problems are limited. Ulysses does neither have access to sync logs, nor can it force a sync. Also, please note that Ulysses uses iCloud/iCloud Drive only to synchronize data across devices. iCloud is not a backup service – this is done using Time Machine.

Why is there no Ulysses folder in iCloud Drive?

iCloud Drive is Apple’s solution to providing a file storage in the cloud — similar to Dropbox or Google Drive. iCloud, on the other hand, is Apple’s sync service, used by Apple’s own products (look at Calendars, Notes) as well as third-party products. While Ulysses uses iCloud for syncing your sheets, it does not provide a public folder on iCloud Drive to display those sheets. This does not mean that your sheets are not in the cloud, they’re just not visible in the iCloud Drive folder.

How can I manually transfer Ulysses’ sheets or groups between devices?

On Mac, you can simply drag a sheet or a group from Ulysses to Finder or your Desktop. If you drag out a group, you can then compress the folder by right-clicking it and selecting “Compress <Folder>”. You can then send the sheet file or the zipped folder via Mail to your iOS device. Open the file in Ulysses on iOS to import it.

To transfer from iPad/iPhone to Mac, swipe left on the sheet or group you want to transfer. Tap “More” › “Share…”. Then, use a share action such as AirDrop, Message or Mail to send it to your Mac. Finally, drag in the sheet file or the unzipped folder into Ulysses for Mac.

Ulysses can automatically create backups at regular intervals. This is true on both Mac and iOS and serves as a safe guard for the unlikely event that some or all data should get lost due to system/iCloud/other failures.

What is stored in a backup?

Backups are complete, stand-alone copies of your entire library (sans External Sources).

How often is my library backed up?

Backups follow a complex schedule, which strikes a balance between security and manageability/usefullness. On Mac, Ulysses creates hourly backups for the last 12 hours of work. It also creates daily backups for the last 7 days of work, and then weekly backups for the last 6 months of work. On iPad, the number of backups is reduced a bit, to accomodate for the limited space available.

Are backups synced via iCloud?

Backups are not synced via iCloud.

How do I access backups on Mac?

You can either use the File menu and select “Browse Backups…”, or you can browse backups from the Backup pane in Ulysses’ preferences. Either option will open a new window, which shows your library as it was during the backup. You can then simply drag and drop groups and sheets into your current library.

How do I access backups on iPad?

You’ll find a “Backup…” button on the bottom of the Library pane. Once tapped, Ulysses will switch into “Browse Backup” mode, and you can navigate through all available backups as you would navigate your current library.

Where are backups stored?

On Mac, backups are stored on your main volume inside your User's directory. You can locate them with Finder using the menu item “Go” › “Go to Folder…” and entering the following path:

~/Library/Containers/com.soulmen.ulysses3/Data/Library/Application Support/Ulysses/Backups/

On your iOS device, backups are stored on device, just like all other documents and data.

Can I store backups in a different location, for example on Dropbox or an external drive?

Right now, backup location is fixed to offer a simple and always-on solution. If you want to see Ulysses offer user selectable backup locations, please use our contact form and let us know.

What are locked backups?

You can lock backups to keep them “forever”, i.e. they won’t be automatically erased by the standard backup schedule.