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Opening project created with newer Nvivo on Nvivo 12 Mac


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My student has created a Nvivo project on the newer Nvivo for Mac. I cannot open this project on my Nvivo 12, which my university purchased in 2019. Is there a way to open this file? I am not keen to spend over $500 to upgrade my Nvivo 12. How can it be that projects created on Mac and PC, and older and newer versions of Nvivo are not compatible? The files should be universal like .docx, .pdf, etc. Any suggestion is welcome. Thanks 

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Hello @Nicolas,

Projects from newer major versions of NVivo cannot be opened in older major versions.

For further information please refer here.

Regards,

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Thanks for your quick reply. Could I check why is that? My university purchased a perpetual licence of Nvivo a couple of years and it cannot open projects from my students who use a newer licence. Is there a technical problem? Or are we just expected to keep upgrading your software every 1 or 2 years for S500 to open old and new documents? I would appreciate if you could shed light on Nvivo's policy regarding that matter. Thanks  

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Hello @Nicolas,

Sorry to hear that you are experiencing difficulties while trying to collaborate with your colleagues that are using the newest Nvivo version.

Due to improved project handling and features in new Nvivo versions, Nvivo projects are not backwards compatible (i.e. A person running Nvivo 12 will not be able to open a project created in Nvivo R1). 

Please note that this has always been the case, and even more importantly, this is a common industry standard that you can come across with every major CAQDAS in the market.

Additionally, a perpetual license allows a person to use the purchased license indefinitely (with certain device/client limitations) and allows free upgrades to further DOT releases of the same version (i.e. If a person purchased a Nvivo 12 Plus license and installed the 12.1 version to their PC, she/he can freely upgrade to 12.6 version).

When a newer version is released an upgrade license is required. This is also a common industry standard that you can come across with every major CAQDAS in the market.

Hope this helps,

With kindest regards,

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Hi Nicolas, 

As Canarik has stated, you aren’t able to open projects created in the latest version of NVivo with NVivo 12. 

One workaround might be to export the project from the latest version of NVivo to the REFI-QDA project exchange format and then open the exported project in NVivo 12. This format is designed for sharing projects between different QDA software and doesn’t support all the features available in NVivo, so the exported project will look different and might be missing some data. You can find information on the limitations of this format at the following link:
https://help-nv.qsrinternational.com/20/mac/Content/projects-teamwork/refi-qda%20standard.htm

Kind regards, 
Heather
 

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Dear colleagues, I am amazed to hear that 'this is a common industry standard that you can come across with every major CAQDAS in the market'. Are you serious? If that is the case, this practice is scandalous and horribly exploitative. Not only is Nvivo an expensive piece of software, but it compels users to regularly upgrade the licence to work with students and research assistants that are given licences for new versions. My research institute asked me to assess Nvivo for our staff. I will strongly advise against purchasing your software. Best wishes    

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I did some research because I could not believe your statement - 'this is a common industry standard that you can come across with every major CAQDAS in the market'. In fact, MAXQDA offers compatibility between Mac and PC and older and newer versions: 'Yes, you can open and work with the same MAXQDA project file on either Windows or Mac computers. Sharing your work with others and accessing your students’ or teammates’ project files is a vital part of your daily work. That’s why MAXQDA works with a universal project files – .mx18 (MAXQDA 2018) or .mx12 (MAXQDA 12) – which can be opened and edited with both Windows or Mac.

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