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User Limits vs. Hanging Client Connections

Posted on 2006-06-01
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Last Modified: 2010-04-18
Here's the deal... it seems as though placing user limits on a particular shared resource doesn't work the way it should.  I'm running Server 2003 as a file server only.  The problem we've had is that when 8 supervisors are trying to update a task list in Excel by updating the same .xls file, all on the same morning before our weekly meeting, someone opens it and makes changes, but before they save their copy, someone else opens that same file, therefore overwriting the first person's changes when they click 'Save'.

My solution: Compartment the spreadsheet in its own folder and set that folder's USER LIMIT to "1".  Sounds great, right?  If someone gets the error 'Resource cannot accept additional users', they'll know that someone else is already in that folder and will have to wait their turn, but at least no one will overwrite someone else's changes...

Problem is, when user #1 closes the spreadsheet and closes out the folder (the entire window), Server 2003 still shows that shared folder as having 1 Client Connection, even though that user is not listed in the 'Sessions' list in Computer Management.  The connection isn't terminated until user #1 logs off the client machine.  When 7 more supervisors need to update their portion of that spreadsheet in the same morning, having a User Limit doesn't seem to do what its supposed to...

How can we force Server 2003 to terminate inactive client connections once (preferably, as soon as) the client has closed that window and is no longer viewing the folder or its data?
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Question by:Rikki_78
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Expert Comment

by:Netman66
ID: 16811376
Do you have Exchange?

If so why not experiment with Public Folders?  You can post the sheets there if they insist on using that method and Exchange will take care of the issue you are seeing.

If you want you can use Public Folders and a shared resource so they can update things for all to see (all 7 that is).

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mvvinod earned 1500 total points
ID: 16812190
Why not use windows share point services???? It free and for small data, you can use MSDE which is also free. It a webpage where people can collaborate documents....

When 1st user opens the file, it automatically puts the file in checkout mode, the other user knows that someone opened the file and haven't checked it in yet. It works great especially in this kind of situation....

Exchange public folder is 2 hard for this. Even in exchange if user opens 1 and posts back with changes, other user could open the same post back which will lead to several inconsistent excel files.

Vinod.
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Author Comment

by:Rikki_78
ID: 16816949
Most units here on Fort Bragg do use SharePoint, and it is available to us, but our unit has not yet set up our pages.  I've gotten with my counterpart at our next higher unit and requested ownership of our unit's page.  I've used SharePoint before, and it is probably the best solution.

In terms of the original issue, if User Limits on a shared folder don't really work, what's the point of that feature os the server OS doesn't realize that a client is no longer accessing the data?  It just seems like a pointless feature if it doesn't really work properly...

If someone can explain what the feature was intended for or how it can be made to work correctly, please let me know.  Otherwise, I have a feeling that setting up our own SharePoint page is going to become the working solution.

Thanks everyone!
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Expert Comment

by:mvvinod
ID: 16817132
I think the user limit doesnt work because the client still has the named pipe active. You can create a .bat file on each users desktop that does net user \\<shared resource named pipe> /delete and it will release the pipe...

To find out the named pipe, type net use

Try that and see if it works.... THis way each user click on the .bat file once they are done and hopefully now server forgets the client and allows another client....

Vinod.
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