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Desktop Sync FAQs

Here's a list of common questions about Desktop Sync.
Initial sync and normal sync

So, what gets synced?

Desktop Sync shows you all your Alfresco sites and folders which you have access to, plus your My Files and Shared Files content. You can select any (or all) of these and click Sync to create a local copy of the content on your computer.

Individual files you've favorited aren't displayed and can be synced directly, you need to sync the folder they're in.

Whenever you update any of this local content (which includes adding, moving, and deleting files and folders within the synced area) these changes will automatically be replicated on Alfresco.

Whenever you or anyone else make changes in Alfresco to sites or folders that you've synced with, then these changes will be replicated in your local content.

Note: Some temporary files don't get synced. These include, but aren't limited to *.tmp, *.temp, desktop.ini, *.~, and Thumbs.db files. You can configure the file types you don't want to be synced in AlfrescoSync.config. For more information, see Configuring Desktop Sync.
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Can I use Desktop Sync during initial sync?

Yes. During initial sync, any content created on your desktop will be synced only after the initial sync is over.

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Will syncing happen while I am offline?

Sync needs a connection to the server. Syncing will resume when the connection is restored.

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Where can I find my synced files?

The content is synced to <userHome>/Alfresco. The Alfresco folder can also be found in Finder under Home.

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How many folder levels can I sync?

You can sync as many folder levels on a Mac. This is only a limitation of the Windows File System, where the maximum length for a path should not be more than 260 characters.

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Can I cancel initial sync?

Yes. As a Desktop Sync user, you can either:
  • Take your computer offline: You can simply ignore initial sync and shut down your computer or disconnect the network. Initial sync will resume when connection is restored.
  • Keep your computer running but discontinue initial sync: You can quit Desktop Sync and initial sync will resume when you restart Desktop Sync.
  • Amend your selected content choices by clicking Return to Content Selection.

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I made changes to a local file that aren't showing in Alfresco.

A number of scenarios can cause this:

  • The file is held/locked open by an application on your computer.
  • Network connection problems, Alfresco connection problems, or synchronization service connection problems; contact your IT team.
  • If you've made changes locally that are showing in Alfresco, then make sure that Desktop Sync is running by confirming that the Menu bar icon is showing in the system tray (Windows) or menu bar (Mac).
  • It's also possible that someone was updating the content in Alfresco at the same time as you were updating the local content. The file is in conflict state. See Conflict matrix on how to resolve the conflict.

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What's the orphaned folder in my local synced drive?

If you deselect synced content in Desktop Sync and click Sync, then you're effectively breaking the link between local content and Alfresco content.

The content won't be synced any more. Files that weren't synced to Alfresco due to conflict or deferred can be found in the orphaned folder. This folder is automatically created in your synced area and the previously synced content is moved to there.

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If a file is checked out by another user in Alfresco, can I update it?

No, you can't update files that are checked out by other users.

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When will a deferred file be synced?

First you need to find the reason why the file is in a deferred state. The file can be in a deferred state for the following reasons.
  • When you don't have free space on your desktop.
  • If you have an Office file open and you're saving it to your computer.
  • You're not connected to the server.

Resolve the issue and your file will be synced automatically.

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I see a red flag on my menu bar. What does that mean?

See Working with Desktop Sync to find out what each of the Desktop Sync icons means.
If a file is in conflict and the parent folder is also in conflict:
  • You can only resolve the parent folder.
  • You can't resolve the child as the Finder menu actions aren't visible.
  • Any children in conflict are shown in an indented list below the parent.
  • Once you select a resolution, the child is resolved using the same choice as the parent.
See note about conflicts.

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Do I need to restart Desktop Sync when I restart my computer?

No, Desktop Sync is automatically started when your computer starts.

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Can I use Desktop Sync while I am offline?

You can continue working on your files offline and they'll be synced to Alfresco whenever you have a connection to the server.

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What happens to a file/folder which is moved out of Alfresco folder on my desktop?

The moved file or folder is deleted in Alfresco.

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Why can't I see content icons on my files and folders?

If, for some reason, your content icons are hidden in Finder, you can make them visible by checking your System Preferences. See note about content icons for more details.

Additionally, check if you have accidentally quit Desktop Sync. Upon restart, the icons should be restored.

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What happens if two Alfresco sites have the same name?

If the site name is duplicated, one of the site names will be displayed as SiteName_01, for example, Test Site_01.

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What happens if the site name is invalid or contains unsupported characters?

A file name can't contain the following characters: \ / : * ? " < >. Desktop Sync replaces these characters with underscores, for example, Test>test is replaced by Test_test on your desktop.

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How do I uninstall Desktop Sync?

See Uninstalling Desktop Sync.

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Can Desktop Sync be installed in an unattended mode?

Yes.

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Upon unselecting not all files are getting removed. What's wrong?

When a file or folder is locked by Finder, applications, like Desktop Sync, can't remove that file and folder. In that case, when unsubscribing content or removing the application, some files and folders maybe left behind. They should be removed manually.

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What is the Icon? file in the Alfresco Content Services sync folder?

Icon? is a hidden file that's used by Mac OS X to put the Alfresco Content Services logo on the Alfresco Content Services sync folder in Finder. 

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Where do I find the Desktop Sync log file?

If you're having any issues with Desktop Sync, then your IT team might ask you to provide the log file.

You can find the log file in the following location, but be aware that it's a hidden file. If you don't know how to view hidden files, then your IT team can help you.
  • ~/Library/Application Support/Alfresco/AlfrescoSync.log

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Where do I find the Desktop Sync crash log file?

If Desktop Sync quits unexpectedly, a log file is generated that can help to identify potential issues on your Mac. To help troubleshoot the issue, your IT team may ask you to provide the crash log.

To find your crash logs follow these steps.
  1. In Finder, click on the Go menu and select Go to Folder.... A text field should appear in Finder.
  2. Paste the path ~/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports/ into the text field and click Go.
  3. In this folder, find all log files with filename Alfresco*.crash.
  4. Send these files to your IT team.

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I no longer need a site. How do I remove the site and its contents from my desktop?

Go to Settings > Manage Sync Folder and deselect the sites you no longer need. Click Sync to remove the selected files and folders from your desktop.

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Can I use Desktop Sync while I am offline?

You can continue working on your files offline but they will get synced to Alfresco whenever you have a connection to the server.

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Will syncing happen while I am offline?

Sync needs a connection to the server. Syncing will resume when your connection is restored.

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Will my files be versioned in Alfresco?

Yes. All file updates synced in Alfresco using Desktop Sync are versioned.

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Can I recover a deleted file using Desktop Sync?

Yes. Any file deleted in Alfresco using Desktop Sync is moved to the Alfresco trashcan.

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Which file extensions are supported by Desktop Sync?

Desktop Sync syncs all file extensions except for the temporary file extensions mentioned in the table below:
part thumbdata3--1967290299 thumbdata3--1763508120 crdownload ~cr exo tmp cvr download thumbdata3--number mxdl tt2 etl egt
csi thumbdata5--1763508120_0 csd fseventsd-uuid localstorage-journal thumbdata5--1967290299_0 dwl laccdb torchdownload thumbdata5 cache lck ewc2 !ut
regtrans-ms blf mmsyscache sfk filepart imgcache dtapart sav aaa thumbdata h64 lock rra bc
npk download adadownload hex tec chkn steamstart partial thumbdata5--1967290299_1 pnf idlk lrd thumbdata5-1763508120_1 fb!
temp waf tmt dlm bu swo rcv reapeaks dap pkf fsf thumbdata3-1763508120 dmp db-wal
pft little _501 glh db-shm box cfa installstate tv5 tbn sqlite-journal dat thumbdata3-1967290299 onecache
msj exd isl objectcache nov dca thumbdata4--1967290299 swn rld temporaryitems aso thumbdata5--1967290299_3 rsc_tmp bdm
ptn2 indexarrays id3tag thumbdata3 cos2 dia download cah wfm as$ meb clp thumbdata5-1763508120_2 thumbdata4--1763508120
save heu nb2 tof thumbdata5-1763508120_3 bc! snapdoc hrd rsx )2( cache-2 prmdc bridgecachet tmd
fuse_hidden db3-journal phc rdn ims cache-3 bsd thumbdata4 ytf 4sh tic hax buf init
cdc bmc sqlite3-journal indexpositions bts db wov dinfo indexcompactdirectory bmb crc citriodownload pkc pm$
shadowindexgroups dtf peb bom oemigaccount utpart lai m_p md0 bdi 00a appdownload inprogress mbc
mex qbi help tombstone csstore adm qbt xp hmap @@2 indexdirectory yumtx @@1 thumbdata5--1967290299_4
bridgecache thumbdata5--1967290299_5 zoner-rawdata-cache wcc tst 000 ci onetmp indexpositiontable stf identcache qdat out inf
shadowindextermids adblock filetablelock wpk thumbdata5-1967290299_8 xcuserstate tv2 aria2 mx1 002 ilp bv4 par alt
nc2 a$v ddat cpd escopy ipe_tempfile mpgindex bv1 tv4 $db db$ pat bphys wa~
clean thumbdata5--1967290299_7 ^fsf xps~ sss~ chk iniis moz --- bt0 fts tv7 wlx nmu
swd dov bde ~$~ ~nt vsscc jnk abc tv3 thumbdata5-1763508120_6 wsb dmsk fes shadowindexcompactdirectory
ird thumbdata5-1763508120_5 qtindex bv2 svn-work pzx $ed tv1 rad thumbdata5-1763508120_4 thumbdata5-1763508120_0 $vm thumbdata5-1763508120_7 compo
preview7 asab $$$ pls pet 001 wtmp lockfile ger tb0 pfc (d) zoner-index-cache qp1
blk zsr mtx wid ipl22 tv6 vdjcache xp~ lex xps cachedmsg bv3 f2l lst
4sw wtmp mov iff #$# vmdk-converttmp bv7 t44 dw3 zl nav2 bv5 bsi ccc
asx ipl sdx u96 dir00 qp2 qtmp s2mi fdpart t$m hmap.dir journal spc als
simpl_int r1m scuf dem patchcache ers csac sfm thumbdata5-1763508120_8 cnv vmc file s m
met mpx tv8 zn~ thumbdata5-1763508120_20 cdt db$ thumbdata5-1763508120_12 ebktml bv6 tv9 bv8 vaf thumbnail
ref ### pspcache c1s muf onlineresources memb w44 §§§ dir lvl bcm $a bv9
fchc rgt ncch grbdropfile wrk cached_icon thumbdata5-1763508120_17 aecache mdccache thumbdata5-1763508120_19 lref 1 0  

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If a file has a file extension which is in the exempted list above, can I include that file in the sync set?

Yes. In the ~/Library/Application Support/Alfresco/AlfrescoSync.conf file, find the Sync constraints section, and update the syncmanager.constraint.1=FileExt|.tmp,.temp property.

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How are files with an unknown or no extension handled?

When a file is renamed in Alfresco Content Services to either an unknown extension (such as .aaa) or to remove the extension, it may not open on your computer. Since the file extension is used to associate programs with files, rename the file to a known extension to fix the file association so you can open the file.

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What files should be backed up/restored on the client?

You'll find the synced data in the <userHome>/Alfresco folder. The sync client settings/database/logs are in the ~/Library/Application Support/Alfresco folder.

When the sync client starts up, it uses the modification time stamp from the AlfrescoSync.time file in the /Application Support/Alfresco folder to check if any files/folders were changed while Desktop Sync wasn't running. If you delete and recreate the AlfrescoSync.time file after restoring the Desktop Sync data and settings, it'll do a full scan of the local and remote folders.

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I have a new computer, is it possible to migrate my Alfresco sync folder to the new computer?

To avoid problems with conflicts on device registration, and content going out of sync during the migration process, you should first remove your account from the deprecated computer and then setup Alfresco Desktop Sync on the new machine.

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