Missing Network Folder?

LightWire used Ask the Experts™

I'm trying to track down a Folder that was on a shared H: drive across all employees of a company.

Users are stating that only "Jim" can see and access this Folder. Nobody else can see it in the same UNC path location.

I go to "cindy" and ask her to show me where the Folder is supposed to be. Its not there.

I go to "Jim" and ask him to show me where the Folder is, that he can see. I see the folder, and the contents inside.

Jim is setup to offline sync all the folder in this H: drive.

Thinking that he had kept the real copy of the Folder on his machine, since it was only showing for him. We decided to go to the "sync" tab of that folder, and hit sync.

The folder has vanished?


The theory I'm looking at currently, is that for WHATEVER reason, the Folder was removed/deleted/moved from the H: Drive at some point. We went to Sync and it synced, but there was no Folder to sync to on the H: drive --- and therefore vanished?

Does that sounds plausible? I'm not very familiar with Offline Sync?

What REALLY is throwing me off, is that I go back to look at Previous Verisons of that Folder, and even going back a week, its not there.  NOR is it on their hourly backups on the Datto...going back to last week?
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Its possible, depending on sync and backup settings that on client PCs, network attached drives/data was not included.  Or that mirror was selected, which may delete the backup folder if it were deleted on the serving computer or became no longer visible to the client PC.   Its an inherent danger of a mirror backup.   Depending on how long the problem has existed, the deletion would eventually propagate itself thru to their other copies.    

You need to get to the serving computer and see what is going on there.  

If the folder and data exist there, then look into its connectivity to the network.  Is it even visible to everyone?  Once visible, if you can't see the folder remotely, then check the sharing options.  

If it no longer exists on the serving computer nor any of its backups,  look in the recycle bin.  Not there then you need to use a file recovery tool quickly before the sectors get reused.   You might have some luck pulling it off Jim's H: drive (recycle bin or recovery tools), but His copy may not have been the most current, since it appears he had not synced since before the problem arose.
Tom CieslikIT Engineer
Distinguished Expert 2017

Can you go to server where share folder should be and confirm that folder is there ?
Also if is there right click on it and make sure is still shared and who is on the list
Also right click on folder go to security permission and double check if all permissions for users that supposed to have access to it still there/.



I've gone to the Server and the folder is gone, the folder doesn't show up in the previous 9 "previous versions".

Don't see in recycle bin.

Yes that user has access to that folder.

I guess only option is to try and find a filed recovery program?

But regarding the Sync.....is this an accurate statement: if the folder was ALREADY gone from the Server, and the USER HAD IT ON HIS MACHINE, and then Synced....that it was disappear all together?
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Tom CieslikIT Engineer
Distinguished Expert 2017
Go to your Computer Manager on Server and check under SHARED FOLDER if folder is listed.

If is listed then it looks like someone deleted it.
and Yes. If folder was deleted and option for redirected folder was not set to Keep Local Copy after redirection gone then yes, folder was deleted from user workstation too bu Microsoft Synch Center
If its deleted off the server and from your propagation of backups, then you best  get a copy from the user who still has access to a copy before its lost there too.  

You may not be able to copy it back over the network to its original position due to permission issues.  Just copy it (rename it if need be) to any temp or write accessible location on the server that the user can access.  You can then move it to where it should go on the server.   If the user cannot access a writable location on the server, then create a temp folder on the server for that purpose and share it out with read/write permission.  

If you have slow network and the folder is huge, you may want to use a USB drive or install a second hard drive into the user's PC to get it copied.

No author replies since the last suggestion, assuming it worked for them.

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