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SPSS: The SAVE command has succeeded. However…

A while back, I had a user call in and tell me that he was editing a document in SPSS, and went to save his progress to the original file, when he got the following error:

The SAVE command has succeeded. However, due to contention for the specified file, the data have been saved to a file with a different name. Saved to: location\filename.sav


He further reported that the file specified was the one he was working on, and the file size had been reduced to 0kB. Looking into it, I found that this is a challenge for SPSS users for years, and is most likely caused by SPSS locking the original file, and in turn being unable to save to the same file. Knowing this, a workaround presents itself: save your work as a new file, then close and rename. Cumbersome? Sure. It will, however, prevent you from losing data.

One Comment

  1. I’ve found that this is particularly the case when working on files in a Dropbox folder. Highly annoying.

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