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Computers see different versions of same shared file

Posted on 2011-09-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hi everyone,

I've got a really WEIRD problem on my client's computers, that I really need to solve.  I'm totally baffled and need some help.

Here's the setup:
There is an Excel file located on a file share on a Netgear ReadyNAS.    
The client computers are both running Windows 7 with Excel 2010.
The share is mapped on both computers as the V: drive.

On computer A, he sees the file with a timestamp of 9/14/11.
On computer B, she sees the exact same file, on the exact same file share, with a timestamp of 8/30/11.    When she opens up the file, it is showing data from 2 weeks ago.  It's not the current version of the file at all!   It doesn't even look like the file that Computer A sees.

If he renames the file, she can see the new filename and the new data.    If he names the file back to the old name, she again sees the file as 8/30 with the old data.

I'm totally at a loss to explain this.   Can anyone please help?   They need to be looking at the same version of the file.
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Question by:Justin Goo
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:djpazza
ID: 36540990
Very strange !

1) check to see if offline files / folder is available offline - Check sync center.

2) There might be options on the share for caching if so try turning this off.
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 36541143
i would say they are NOT looking at the same file - so check that through
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Author Comment

by:Justin Goo
ID: 36541370
I doublechecked.   They manually typed the path \\pm-nas\shared and looked at exactly the same file on both computers.   They came up with 2 different timestamps and 2 different files.

And there is no offline file thing turned on, on either machine.    That's what I thought it was too.   But the folders look normal (no little offline sync thing in the corner).
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:djpazza
ID: 36541611
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 36542093
try copyin,g the file to another location, and delete it on the original location, to check if you still get 2 different files
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Author Comment

by:Justin Goo
ID: 36563400
I don't think it's a share cache.  I read through those instructions and I don't think they apply to a NAS.
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Author Comment

by:Justin Goo
ID: 36563407
We tried copying the file off and deleting the old one.
Then when we copied it back, Computer B STILL saw the old timestamp.

It's so weird!
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Accepted Solution

by:
Justin Goo earned 0 total points
ID: 36563576
Okay gang... I THINK I have this figured out.

It isn't that Computer B was caching a copy from 8/30.
It was that Computer A had offline files turned on, and he was actually updating an offline copy.   So the copy that was on the actual NAS share itself was only 8/30.   And the copy that he had locally was updated to 9/14, and it wasn't syncing for some reason.

I've disabled Offline Files on ALL computers now, and I think it's working right.   I think...
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Author Comment

by:Justin Goo
ID: 36563743
My big worry now is... If he was only updating locally cached copies of files, what if there were other files he was updating that didn't sync with the share??  I don't want him to come back and only find old versions of files, and all his recent work gone.  Now that I disabled offline files, are they all lost?  Is there any way to get to the cached files if offline files is disabled?
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 36565087
best backup before disabling them - in case you need them from %Windir%\CSC folder
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Author Comment

by:Justin Goo
ID: 36570832
I've already disabled Offline Files.   Are those files going to disappear?  Or are they still accessible?
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 36571927
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Author Closing Comment

by:Justin Goo
ID: 36597846
Problem was figuring out that Computer A was the one that was caching, and updating only a cached file.
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