Deal with file synchronization corruption

How to re-initialize the offline files cache and database

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/230738

The Offline Files (CSC or Client Side Caching) cache and database has a built-in capability to restart if its contents are suspected of being corrupted. If corruption is suspected, the Synchronization Wizard may return the following error message:

Unable to merge offline changes on \\server_name\share_name. The parameter is incorrect.

Method 1 (the one I use)

The Offline Files cache is a folder structure located in the %SystemRoot%\CSC folder, which is hidden by default. The CSC folder, and any files and subfolders it contains, should not be modified directly; doing so can result in data loss and a complete breakdown of Offline Files functionality.

If you suspect corruption in the database, then the files should be deleted using the Offline Files viewer. After the files are deleted out of the Offline Files viewer, a synchronization of files may then be forced using Synchronization Manager. If the cache still does not appear to function correctly, an Offline Files reset can be performed using the following procedure:

  1. In Folder Options, on the Offline Files tab, press CTRL+SHIFT, and then click Delete Files. The following message appears:

    “The Offline Files cache on the local computer will be re-initialized. Any changes that have not been synchronized with computers on the network will be lost. Any files or folders made available offline will no longer be available offline. A computer restart is required.

    Do you wish to re-initialize the cache?”

  2. Click Yes two times to restart the computer
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2 responses to “Deal with file synchronization corruption

  1. I found that this error can also be caused from non-contiguous inodes on the file server. It is not always a client side problem that causes this. I am running a Samba file server and after deleting the offline files on the client and re-initializing the cache, the “Unable to merge offline changes, the parameter is incorrect” error persisted. I then unmounted /home and ran a disk check with e2fsck -v -c /dev/hda, which found non-contiguous inodes. After the file system repair, synchronization then completed successfully.

  2. Thanks for this information. I don’t cover Samba but perhaps someone surfing through will find your experiences helpful.

    As always my posts aren’t all encompassing but rather hone in exactly on what it is that I’ve learned at the point in time. Now a year later, I hope those leveraging Vista and perhaps Server 2008 technologies have realized better CSC behavior.

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