Offline Files


Mike Benton

I feel like you guys (Microsoft Offline Files Team) have really dropped the ball with this feature.

From the start I have had nothing but issues with offline files. I purchased a new laptop with Vista Ultimate. Out of the box, offline files did not work. Using this forum I received instructions from the offline files team to perform a registry edit which initialized the service.

Since running the service my computer runs at 100% while at home, which is where my network share is located which requires syncing. I have installed Process Monitor and can now see the activity taking place. I have 30 GB on my shared drive. The data mostly consist of mp3's and jpg's. When first starting my laptop I basically have to walk away for the first hour after logging on.

The next issue with offline files: During the syncing process my shared drive is read and files are copied to my CSC directory for offline use. However, certain files are not copied over. Instead a .tmp file is placed ON MY SHARED DRIVE. Every time I sync I get another copy....sometimes. There are directories with 5 images and 120 .tmp files. So, where I would normally save 10 MB, I have 240 MB saved on the shared drive. Today I cleaned up the .tmp files and gained back almost 5 GB. It seems this only happens with certain image files. The only other file type this has happened to is a couple of music playlist files. Here is an example of what appeared in the Performance Monitor:

175527 7:49:38.4863618 AM svchost.exe 280 ReadFile \\xp\My Book (E)\My Pictures\Visits\Nov 06\IMG_0871.JPG SUCCESS Offset: 1,376,256, Length: 65,536

175530 7:49:38.4865324 AM svchost.exe 280 WriteFile \\xp$NOCSC$\My Book (E)\My Pictures\Visits\Nov 06\{5F43B224-12AF-4027-8E04-C6191EF40898}.tmp SUCCESS Offset: 1,376,256, Length: 65,536, Priority: Normal

I have other laptops (XP O/S) that use offline files with no problem. I'd really like to use this feature on Vista. To be honest, it was one reason I purchased the Ultimate version of Vista. As a temp solution I thought I would de-select the 'My Pictures' folder. Which leads me to the next issue:

The final issue with offline files: I can't de-select a folder. How frustrating is this!!!! I have tried different methods for de-selected a folder to be available offline. First, I right-clicked the folder and de-selected the 'Make available offline'. This did not work. Next, I right-clicked on the folder and went to properties. Then clicked the offline folders tab and de-selected the 'Make available offline' option and hit 'ok'. And while the checkmark did go away, the option did not. When I go back into the properties, they are still selected for offline use. Lastly, I went to individual files & folders inside the main folder. The option to 'Make available offline' was grayed out.

These actions were attempted while the offline files service was running. I tried to de-select this folder before, during, and after a sync. I'm at a loss. A feature that was working perfectly is the complete opposite. Troubleshooting this single feature of Vista has cost me at least 40 hours of my time. And still no solution. I have to disable offline files.

Mike Benton

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