AnsweredAssumed Answered

CIFS 'phantom files' problem

Question asked by fschnell on Jun 24, 2007
Latest reply on Sep 25, 2007 by rdanner
During daily usage my colleague Dave made the following observation regarding CIFS. It is a repeatable, but random problem. We end up in a situation where files are visible in CIFS but not they actually do not exist anymore. Access via CIFS is not possible (file does not exist) an in the webinterface they do not show (as expected).

Can anyone confirm this to be a problem? How can we circumvent that?


The Background

I have set up three Spaces in my area on Alfresco.


I have set up a Rule in the Distillery Space where any file arriving
there is transformed into pdf, and the pdf file placed in the PDF Space. I
have set the Rule to run in the background. I can then, using the CIFS interface, drag multiple files into the Distillery Space for batch conversion. This is much faster than using Adobe and needs far less user intervention.

Deletion from Spaces is generally very slow. So, following conversion
and copying the pdf files to where they are needed, I drag all the files
from both the Distillery and PDF spaces into the Done Space. I delete
these later, when I have more time. [Of course, it would be very nice if I could set up a Rule to do this deletion, as a background process]

I then drag and drop a further batch of files into the Distillery Space -
and so on.

Typically, the batches for conversion will be two to twelve files.
Most of these files are MS Word files but occasionally they are Excel, or
other MS Office files.

The Problem

Occasionally, having dragged and dropped files from the PDF space
into Done, I will return to the PDF Space and find that they still appear to be there. However, any attempt to open them, delete them or move them will result in an error message of the 'File Cannot be Found' variety. Using the HTML interface, the Space can be seen to be empty, but CIFS is still
showing the files and no amount of refreshing, or re-connecting to the drive will make them disappear. Similarly, these files are not visible in the Done Space using CIFS but using the HTML interface, I can see that they are, in fact, there.

I can still drag and drop new files into the Distillery Space and they will
still be converted to pdf and appear in the PDF space alongside the 'phantom' files. However, it seems to me that the process now takes longer than before. These new pdf files can be opened, deleted or moved as normal.

If I then use the HTML interface to delete the pdf files from where
they really are in the Done Space, I can watch them disappear, one by one from the CIFS view of the PDF Space.

Possibly a Second Problem

This may not be related, but sometimes, in similar circumstances, I
will find that I am prevented by CIFS from re-entering the PDF Space,
being told that I have no rights in that Space. However, I can still enter the PDF Space via the HTML interface. I am also allowed to rename or delete the Space via the HTML interface, so that's what I do at this point but, of course, I then also have to delete and recreate the Rule because, even though the new space has the same name as the old one, Alfresco sees it as a different Space.

The only thing I can offer as to the circumstances of occurrences of these
problems is that it always follows a period of intense use of the Alfresco
server i.e. moving and converting a large number of files in a short period. Also, I have never had this problem with any Space other than one that is target for a Rule.