Support

Known Issues

Users running iOS 11.3 or later may experience noticeable delays when working with forScore (tapping to show the navigation bar and media controls, for instance). If you have updated to iOS 11.3 and are experiencing these delays, please see this article for a workaround.

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Adding Files

Tips for scanning your hard copy sheet music

Most scanner software will allow you to create a PDF file directly from individual page scans, but keep in mind that forScore’s performance can vary widely based on the characteristics of the files you’re using. Keep your file sizes low by choosing a dpi of around 100-150 (up to 300 if you’ll need to zoom in often to see small details or if you have a device with a Retina display), and consider using a grayscale setting since color information typically isn’t very important for score. Each combination of scanner hardware and software is different, so try a few different test files to find the best balance between quality and performance to suit your own needs.
 
Note: most scanner software also has an option to “append” or create “multi-page” PDFs. We highly recommend using this feature to combine all pages from a score into a single file, rather than keeping each page as a separate file.

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Adding files using iTunes File Sharing

There are many different ways to add files to your forScore library, but if you’re starting out with forScore and you have an existing collection of PDF files on your computer, iTunes File Sharing is the easiest way to begin. Whether you have a Mac or a PC, as long as you have iTunes installed these instructions should help you get started. Keep in mind that iTunes is frequently updated and some of the instructions or screenshots you’ll find online may be slightly different than what you see at home. In most cases these subtle changes don’t affect the process as described below.

Note: iTunes’ File Sharing interface lets you copy or immediately and permanently delete any file within an app’s Documents directory. Before removing files, be sure you understand how that will affect the app you’re working with (in forScore, deleting a PDF file permanently removes that score from your forScore library).

  • Close forScore on your iOS device
  • Access the iTunes File Sharing panel
  • Click “Add…” in the documents panel to open a file browser
  • Choose one or more files from the file browser
  • OR, drag and drop items from a file browser window over the documents panel
  • The file transfer will start automatically, with a progress bar displaying at the top of the iTunes window
  • When finished, you may disconnect your device and launch forScore

Unlike syncing music or other data to your device, copying files to and from an app through the iTunes File Sharing panel happens immediately. As soon as the progress bar is completed your files have been transferred and there’s no need to sync your device before disconnecting it and using forScore to access your files.

About Folders

When the iPad and iTunes File Sharing were first introduced, they were designed to work with files only and not with folders. Although recent iTunes updates have eased these restrictions slightly, working with folders in iTunes is very limited and there’s no way to view a folder’s contents without copying it back to your computer first. Based on Apple’s original guidance, forScore was designed to work similarly and continues to work this way today—it recognizes files placed within its documents directory but ignores any subdirectories. If you have files organized into folders on your computer, you’ll need to copy each folder’s contents into forScore separately and handle any filename conflicts as they arise.

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Compatible file types

PDF Scores

You can view virtually any PDF file with forScore, and use a wide range of free applications for every major platform to convert other files to the PDF format. forScore also works with password-protected PDF files, and will prompt you for the password the first time you open it, then store that password in your iOS Keychain so you don’t need to enter it every time. Note that some PDF files are restricted and require special software, so we can’t guarantee compatibility.

Additional Formats

forScore supports many popular audio file formats so you can import tracks and associate them with specific scores for easy access. Audio track support is determined by Apple and is subject to change at any time, but generally includes MP3, AIFF, AAC, ALAC, WAV, and M4A files. As of version 10.2, forScore also supports importing comma-separated values (CSV) files for use with the Bookmarks menu’s Indexes feature. Finally, forScore’s custom 4SB format allows you to create and restore from backups of forScore’s metadata, setlists, settings, annotations, and more.

Transport Formats

Some files can be imported by forScore but are not stored and used as-is. For instance, forScore 7 added the ability to import TXT, RTF, DOC, and DOCX files which are then automatically converted to and stored as PDF files.

forScore also uses two custom formats to share information with other forScore users: 4SC and 4SS files. 4SC files contain a PDF file and additional forScore-specific metadata, editable annotations, and more. When you import a 4SC file into your forScore library, the PDF file is saved to the app’s Documents directory while the other information is stored in forScore’s database and private directories. 4SS files contain setlist information and may include scores as well. Like 4SC files, 4SS files are unpacked and their contents are stored in various locations within forScore.

More detailed technical information regarding forScore’s file type support can be found here.

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Moving PDFs from iBooks to forScore

If you previously kept your PDF files in iBooks, or accidentally added them into iBooks through iTunes, you can transfer them from your computer into forScore. Here are some instructions for that process using a Mac computer, with the iBooks app installed:

  1. Connect your device to your computer
  2. On your computer, open the iBooks app, click Collections in the top section, then choose PDFs from the left sidebar
  3. Select the files you’re like to transfer, then click and drag them to your computer’s desktop
  4. In iTunes, access the iTunes File Sharing panel
  5. Drag the file(s) from your desktop into the panel that appears to the right of the forScore symbol
  6. The file(s) will be copied to your device automatically

If you use a PC, iBooks are stored in the iBooks section of your iTunes library. Browse the library to locate the PDF files you’ve added, then click and drag them to your desktop to copy the files there. Once you’ve finished, follow steps 4-7 above to add them to forScore.

If you have purchased music through the iBooks Store, there is no way to transfer those files to forScore due to proprietary file formats and copy restrictions.

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Using cloud services

Use online storage services to store and access any scores you don’t have room for on your device, to share music with friends and colleagues, or to manually back up your most important files. While we provide access to some third-party services through our app, we have no control over their service or terms and conditions, both of which are subject to change at any time. Please be sure to visit their respective websites if you have any questions prior to signing up for or using these services.

The Services Panel

Getting Started

forScore’s Services panel allows you to access and work with files stored in your Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive (personal), or Box accounts. (The “iCloud Drive” or “Files” service is discussed in the next section.) Tap the + button in the top left-hand corner to pick which services you use. When you’re done, select any of your preferred services from the account list to log in and begin using it. Services ask you to log in as you start using them, or if your credentials expire.

Once you’ve successfully logged in, you’ll be able to navigate through your folders and see your files. You can upload, download, move, and delete many of the file types forScore supports, including PDF files, forScore-specific (4SC, 4SS, and 4SB) files, comma-separated (CSV) files, and many audio file formats. You can also download some kinds of text files (TXT, RTF, DOC, and DOCX) and they’ll be automatically converted to PDFs once they’ve been downloaded. Unsupported or unrecognized file types are greyed out.

Downloading Files

Tap on a file to download it and a copy will be saved into your forScore library. If a file with the same name already exists in your library, you’ll be asked to duplicate or overwrite the file, or to cancel the transfer. Tap the stop button in the middle of the progress wheel to cancel a file transfer.

To download all files within a folder:

  • View the folder you’d like to download from
  • Tap the Edit button in the upper right corner of the panel
  • Tap the “select all” button along the bottom of the panel (a circled check mark)
  • Tap the “download” button (cloud with an arrow pointing down out of it) to start downloading the selected files

If you have setlists in your current forScore library, you can also download one or more scores and add them to a specific setlist automatically once they’re finished. Swipe from right to left over a single score and choose “Download…” to see a list of options: download the item normally, download it to the last setlist you were viewing in the Setlists menu, or choose any setlist from a complete list. To download multiple files into a setlist, tap the Edit button, select your files, and tap the download icon at the bottom of the panel—the rest of the process is the same.

Moving Files

While in edit mode, tap to select one or more files, then choose “Move” from the control bar. The selected files will turn blue, and you’ll be able to select directories or use the back button to navigate to the desired destination. When you’re ready, tap the “Move” button once again to send the selected files to the current directory.

Uploading Files

To upload files, tap the + button at the bottom of the panel. This presents a searchable list of all the files in your library that can be uploaded, with separate tabs for scores, setlists, audio files, backups, and other file types such as CSV indexes. Depending on which tab you’ve selected, you may also see additional upload options in the bottom right-hand corner of the upload picker. When viewing scores, for instance, you can choose to upload the original PDF file as-is, a forscore-specific (4SC) file that includes editable annotations and additional information, or as a flattened PDF file with non-editable annotations. Tap one or more files to select them, then tap the “Upload” button in the upper right corner of the menu to begin the upload process. If you would like to select all files, tap the All button at the bottom of the panel.

Drag and Drop

If you’re using iOS 11, you can also use Drag and Drop gestures to upload items or move files between folders:

To move files, tap and hold your finger over any supported file until it animates up and then drag your finger away to begin. While continuing to drag the first file, tap additional items to collect them, if desired, then drop them onto a folder to move them there or use your other fingers to navigate into and out of folders as needed until you’re viewing the target location, then drop the files to finish moving them.

To upload, drag one or more scores, setlists, or other supported files from forScore’s various menus into the Services panel and drop them into the list to upload them there or use your other fingers to navigate to the correct location first. If necessary, you’ll be asked to choose which format you want to use once you drop your files into the Services panel.

Files, iCloud Drive, and Other Providers

With iOS 11, Apple introduced the Files app which gives you access to your files, whether they’re stored on your device or in iCloud Drive. Third party apps and services can also choose to make their content available through the Files app (called “File Providers”). You continue to use the same interface you’re used to within the Files app, but behind the scenes that third-party app is doing the work of updating and maintaining your documents wherever they’re stored. Major cloud services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, Microsoft OneDrive, SugarSync, and Amazon Drive have all updated their apps to work this way, and other apps such as FileExplorer and FileBrowser let you configure and connect to many different locations including servers that use FTP, SFTP, or WebDAV.

For iPad users, Split View and Slide Over multitasking modes and Drag and Drop gestures give you incredible flexibility to work with your files however you like. You can also use iOS’ standard sharing functions to copy files between apps, and you can learn more about working with the Files app here.

forScore also allows you to access the Files (or older iCloud Drive) app interface—and any third-party File Providers—through the Services panel so you can perform quick tasks without leaving the app. This special service, called “Files” or “iCloud Drive” depending on which version of forScore and iOS you’re using, works differently from other services since Apple limits developer’s access to your content. Unlike with other services, which provide a list of files and allow you to upload or download files from there, Apple’s service is purpose-driven: to begin you must choose whether you want to download or upload files, but you cannot do both at the same time.

Since this interface is generated by Apple, it may change at any time. For additional or updated information, please visit this Apple Support article.

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Converting images or scanning to PDF

Use forScore’s Darkroom to digitize scores on the go: it allows you to take photos with your device’s camera or import images from your Photos library, then turns those images into a PDF file and adds it to your music collection. To begin, choose “Darkroom” from the tools menu.

In the middle of the navigation bar you’ll see a segmented control with a camera icon on the left and a photos icon on the right. The first time you use either of these methods to add photos to Darkroom, iOS will prompt you to grant forScore access to your device’s camera and/or photo library. Darkroom cannot function without permission to access at least one of these. If you decline, you will not be prompted a second time; you must use iOS’ Settings app to change these permissions. (In the “Privacy” section, see “Photos” and “Camera.”)

After you’ve added a few images, tap and hold, then drag to reorder them as needed. Or, to remove an image, tap the “x” button over its top left-hand corner. Use the automatic enhancement or manual adjustment tools to improve the contrast, brightness, tone, and saturation of your images, or tap on any image to see a full-screen preview and make similar changes to just that particular image. In this full-screen view, you can also rotate your images or use the Crop tool to eliminate white space and correct any perspective or rotation issues. When you’re done, tap “Save” to give your new file a name.

Note: if you’re using forScore 9 or earlier, please note that Darkroom does not feature most of these image processing capabilities and is intended to provide a quick method for digitizing scores, not as a replacement for a true scanner. For the best results, we highly recommend upgrading to forScore 10 or using a fully-featured “scanner” app like Scanner Mini or Scanner Pro, which then allows you to export as PDF to forScore.

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Adding files to a specific Library

To import new scores to an existing library, use the following steps:

  • From the Libraries menu, tap to select a library you’d like to use. The Libraries menu should close and return to the main score menu showing only the selected library.
  • Add the files via iTunes, email, or Dropbox and they will be imported into the currently selected library by default.

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Using forScore’s in-app store

We know how hard it can be to find high-quality scores online that don’t force you into using proprietary systems or obscure formats, which is why forScore includes an in-app purchase storefront. It’s the best place to discover, preview, and download free and paid PDF scores that are perfectly optimized for the iPad. Note that the in-app storefront is not available in forScore mini.

Finding Scores

The storefront can be accessed by selecting the “Store” entry in the tools menu, and lets you browse by artist, genre, instrument, and publisher. Tap on a score to see details about the piece, including a preview of the first page, a description of what it contains, and more. You can also switch between “browse” and “purchases” at the bottom of the screen to monitor your downloads or to access and re-download any previously purchased scores.

Purchasing and Downloading

Your Apple ID is your gateway to purchasing digital content, so you don’t need to worry about entering your credit card information into the app. The download button next to each score tells you the item’s price—tap the button to purchase the score, then once more to confirm. The app will prompt you for your Apple ID authorization, then begin downloading your file. When the download is complete, the button will change to a blue Purchased button, and the score will be immediately available in your forScore library. You can check the status of downloads and review your purchase history in the Purchased section of the Store.

If you accidentally delete a purchased score from your library, don’t worry! You can re-download the original content at any time at no additional charge. Just return to the Purchased section of the Store and tap on the “Purchased” button to download it to your library again. You can also use the Restore function to unlock any previous purchases that you may have made from another iPad or with a different Apple ID, then re-download them as needed.

Copy Protection

Publishers may elect to use copy protection with some or all of their scores, changing how you can work with these files in several important ways. These files can be backed up to a computer for safe keeping, but they can only be viewed on the iPad that was originally used to download them. They cannot be shared, printed, or rearranged.

To view protected files on another iPad authorized with your Apple ID, you must re-download those files through the storefront. As long as you use the same Apple ID each time, you won’t be charged more than once.

Note: Protected files are listed with the letters “DRM” below the title in the storefront’s detail view. You’ll also see an additional notice below the copyright on the lower left-hand side of the screen.

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Adding files from an email attachment

When you are viewing an email in the Mail app with a PDF attachment, here’s how you can import it into forScore:

  • Some larger files may not be completely downloaded yet. If that’s the case, the PDF icon will say “tap to download”. Tap the icon and the file will download completely
  • Once the file is downloaded, tap and hold on the PDF attachment icon, and a list of options will appear
  • Choose forScore from the “Open In…” list, and the file will open in the app and be saved to your forScore library
  • If you accidentally tap quickly on the PDF icon, the file will open in “quick look.” In this case, tap once on the screen to show the file options, then tap the “share” button in the upper right corner (the box with an arrow pointing upward), and you’ll see the same sharing options and be able to choose forScore

Note: if you use a different email app, this process may be different, but most mail clients have a “share” or “action” function that will allow you to send a file to another app on your device.

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Adding files from other apps

Whether you’re finding something new to play, replacing an updated score sent from a colleague, or importing music you’ve created using a composition app, sharing files with forScore is an essential part of getting the most out of your iPad or iPhone. Each app is a little different, but as you become comfortable with iOS’ various interface elements and conventions you’ll be able to share files between apps like a pro.

Share Sheets

Sharing files is a very common task, so iOS provides a standardized interface (called “share sheets”) for doing so. Any app like forScore can provide a file to the system and iOS handles things from there. You’ll generally see something like this:

The options iOS shows within this interface are based on the file type being shared and which other apps are installed on your device. If you share a PDF file (like you can from within forScore), any app on your device that can read PDF files should appear in this panel, along with some other common options like AirDrop, printing, and more.

If you have many apps that support the same file type, iOS may not display all of them by default. In that case, scroll over to the end of the list until you see the “More” item and tap it to reorder, enable, or disable apps to prioritize the ones you need most frequently.

Other Apps

While iOS provides a standardized interface for sharing files, how you access the sharing functionality within each app works a little differently. There’s no one “right” way to offer file sharing within an app, but there are some general conventions that most apps use that can help you figure out where to tap to share something. In most cases, just look for the iOS “action” or “share” icon:

When presented in a file context, the presence of this symbol usually indicates that tapping it will show you sharing options. If the file is a PDF or other forScore-compatible file type, you should see forScore’s icon in the share sheet with the words “copy to forScore” underneath. Tap this icon to copy the file to your forScore library.

System Apps

Most system apps use this same convention. When viewing a PDF file in Safari on iOS 11, for instance, the share icon appears just to the right of the address bar. In the Files or Mail apps, tap a file to open it, then tap the share icon in the top right-hand corner of the screen. In Mail you can also tap and hold the attachment’s icon to share it without opening it first.

Drag and Drop

On iPad with iOS 11, Drag and Drop is another way to copy files between apps. Learn more about using Drag and Drop gestures here and read about how to use these gestures to import files here.

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Sharing files via Bluetooth

This article relates to a legacy feature that has been retired and is hidden by default as of forScore 10.4 and forScore mini 3.4. For most users, AirDrop provides a better solution for sharing files between devices.

If your devices do not support AirDrop (the preferred method for transferring files between iOS devices), you can share files with nearby forScore users via Bluetooth using the following steps.

Connecting:

  • On both devices, tap the “Bluetooth” item from the tools menu
  • On one device, tap the “Connect” button in the top left corner and select the device you’d like to exchange files with when it appears in the list of nearby devices
  • When prompted on the other device, choose to accept the incoming connection

Sharing: Tap on any item from the list to share it (use the search bar to quickly find something by name). Setlists, backups, and audio files appear at the end of the list.

At the bottom of the share panel, you can choose to send scores as 4SC files (which include editable annotations, links, notes, and more), or you can send the original PDF file as is.

Note: Due to iOS changes, forScore 7 uses a different API that is not compatible with older versions. As such, file transfers are limited to nearby devices running forScore 7.0 or later.

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Adding files from the web

Use Safari to save PDF files to your library from just about anywhere.

In iOS 11

  • Use the Safari app to navigate to a PDF file offered by a website. Direct access to the PDF file is required (some websites use frames to obfuscate the file source).
  • Once the PDF has downloaded and loaded into the “preview” view, tap the “share” button (a box with an up arrow) in the main toolbar.
  • Select “Copy to forScore” to save a copy to your forScore library.

In iOS 10 or Earlier

  • Use the Safari app to navigate to a PDF file offered by a website. Direct access to the PDF file is required (some websites use frames to obfuscate the file source).
  • Once the PDF has downloaded and loaded into the “preview” view, you will see a toolbar appear briefly at the top of the file with either “More…” (iOS 10) or “Open in…” (iOS 9 or earlier) on the left side. On the right side, it typically says “Open in iBooks…” or another common app used to view that file type. If the toolbar disappears too quickly, tap the PDF file to show the toolbar again, then tap the More or Open In button.
  • Select “Copy to forScore” to save a copy to your forScore library.

Many other apps—including Mail—offer similar functionality, and scores imported in this manner are copied to forScore’s documents folder so you won’t need to be connected to the internet to use them later. The more often you choose forScore for opening PDF files, the more likely that “Open in forScore…” will appear on the right side of this toolbar as a shortcut.

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Score metadata is changing automatically

If newly imported scores are “disappearing” from the menus, the app might be reassigning metadata it finds within the PDF file . In this case, the “Automatic fetching for new files” option in the app’s settings panel is enabled, which scans imported music for existing metadata and assigns it to common fields like Title and Composer, among others. Some PDF exporters will generate this metadata automatically, so that’s probably what you’re seeing. If you turn the option off, it will stop scanning the files and retain the file names as the title of the score.

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Scanning for new files

To make things as speedy as possible, forScore only scans for new files periodically and may not always show your newest files immediately. If you’ve just added something and it’s not showing up, drag the score menu’s list downward until you see the refresh symbol, then let go to update the listing.

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Working with the Files app in iOS 11

iOS 11 introduced the Files app (formerly called the iCloud Drive app) which gives you access to many of your documents across your device, apps, and cloud storage services. It’s a centralized way to work with files and manage or share them no matter where they come from, and when used with iOS 11’s Drag and Drop gestures it becomes an even more powerful tool that can be used in a variety of helpful ways.

This knowledge base article provides an overview of the Files app and how it can be used with forScore specifically. For more information on using the Files app more generally, please visit this Apple Support article.

Working with Files

The Files app’s sidebar lets you browse by location or tags and gives you easy access your favorite folders. Tap any of the items in these lists to see the files within (or associated with) it. You can sort these files by name, date, size, and tags, switch between a list or grid view, and tap an item to preview it if supported. Tap and hold any item to see more options, allowing you to do things like rename, share, move, or delete a file. The “Select” button in the top right-hand corner lets you select one or more files and work with them simultaneously.

Copying from Files to other Apps

To send a copy of one of your files to an app like forScore, tap and hold the file (if you’re viewing the grid or list view) and choose “Share” or tap the item to open a full-screen preview and use the share icon in the top right-hand corner. More information on sharing files between apps can be found here. forScore works with PDF files, many audio formats, CSV files, and its own custom formats (4SC scores, 4SS setlists, and 4SB backups). forScore can also import certain types of text file and automatically converts them to PDFs upon import.

Copying from forScore to Files

forScore provides sharing features in a variety of different locations and contexts. Within most of forScore’s menus you can share a score, bookmark, or setlist by swiping over it from right to left and tapping “Share” or you can use edit mode to select and share multiple items. You can also swipe to share certain items when shown in the Search panel, backups panel, audio picker, and many of forScore’s other views. Tap the “Save to Files” option within the sharing interface to pick a location and save a copy of your content.

forScore’s DocumentsforScore 10.4 & 3.4

In the Locations section of the Files app’s sidebar, under “On My iPad” or “On My iPhone,” you can access the Documents directory of certain apps that store their content on-device, such as forScore. Working with forScore’s documents through the Files app has similar implications as using iTunes’ File Sharing panel does: adding and removing files in this directory adds or removes them from your forScore library, and renaming PDF files is discouraged as it can lead to a loss of metadata, annotations, and other forScore information about that file. The use of subdirectories is not supported at this time.

When opening files from this directory in other apps, or when sharing them from within forScore 10.4 or forScore mini 3.4, those apps may offer in-place editing capabilities that permanently modify your content. Changes made to forScore’s files in this manner are reflected within forScore. Learn more about in-place editing by visiting this page.

Drag and DropiOS 11

When you’re using an iPad, Drag and Drop gestures allow you to work with content between apps, not just within them. That means you can drag scores, setlists, backups, and other kinds of content out of forScore and right into the Files app to copy them there. Or, drag compatible files from the Files app into various views within forScore to copy them the other way. Our importing and sharing articles provide more details about this.

File Providers

The Files app isn’t just limited to what’s on your device or stored in iCloud, any app can make its files available to the system interactively. You continue to use the Files app with its familiar interface and work just like you always do, but behind the scenes that third-party app is doing the work of updating and maintaining your documents wherever they’re stored. Common examples of third-party apps that take advantage of this system include Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, Microsoft OneDrive, Amazon Drive, SugarSync, and more.

If you’ve downloaded an app that has been updated to work this way, it will be available as an option in the Files app’s “locations” list but will be disabled by default. Tap “Edit” in the sidebar to see all available providers and flip the switch next to the ones you want to use to enable them.

Some apps provide access to multiple services or network locations by leveraging a variety of protocols, including FTP, SFTP, WebDAV, and more. Apps like FileExplorer and FileBrowser let you configure and connect to many different accounts, either through the Files app or using their own interface.

In forScore’s Services panel

To help users access and work with their files within third-party apps, Apple provides a standardized system interface for uploading and downloading files. This interface is very similar to the Files app in iOS 11 or the iCloud Drive app on iOS 10 or earlier, so you can do most of the same things you’d normally do within these apps without ever leaving forScore.

This interface is available as an account option within forScore’s Services panel, called “iCloud Drive” or “Files” depending on your version of forScore and iOS. Unlike with other services, developers get very limited access to this content so we cannot provide the same familiar interface or offer the same set of features as we normally do within the Services panel. Instead, Apple’s interface is purpose-driven: you must choose up-front if you want to upload content from forScore or if you want to download and copy files into forScore instead.

For quick, simple tasks this is a great way to interact with the Files app (and any third-party file providers you’ve set up). For more intensive work, using Split View or Slide Over and Drag and Drop gestures usually gives you more flexibility.

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Downloading scores from Musicnotes.com

With forScore 10.4 or later and forScore mini 3.4 you can access your Musicnotes.com purchases and download them as standard PDF files into your forScore library. To begin, choose “Services” from forScore’s Tools menu and select “Musicnotes.com” from the list. Log in when prompted, if necessary, and your list of purchases will appear.

Purchases can be sorted by title, composer, date purchased, or by key. Tap any single item to download it or swipe from right to left and choose “Download…” to download the item and add it to a specific setlist. You can use Edit mode to select multiple files and download them at once.

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