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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    File Sharing Problem (Multiple versions, cross-platform)

    Here's the usual scenario:

    A Word file (.doc), created on a PC, resides on a shared folder. Judy opens the file from her PC. Mike opens the file from his PC, and a message pops up, telling him that the file is locked for editing because another user has it open and asking him if he wants to open it as read-only.

    <img src=/S/pcvmac.gif border=0 alt=pcvmac width=137 height=30> But one of the departments here has a shared folder accessed by PC and Mac users. Apparently if Judy opens a shared Word file on her PC and Mike opens it on his Mac, Mike doesn't get the warning pop-up. Both are allowed to make changes and save the file, but Mike's changes aren't actually saved.

    Alternatively, Mike can open a file on his Mac, make and save some edits, close the file, then reopen the file to check that his edits were actually saved. Yes! Then Judy opens the file on her PC , deletes one of Mike's paragraphs, and saves and closes the file. Mike opens the file again, and his paragraph is still there--Judy's deletion didn't actually save.

    The Computing department here is stumped. The temporary solution is for all users to "save-as" shared files to their desktops after they make changes, just in case.

    Has anyone experienced this? If so, what solutions have you come up with?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Re: File Sharing Problem (Multiple versions, cross-platform)

    Well that is a brain teaser. I can't shed any light on the subject but I would suggest you look into acquiring some Configuration Management software that works with both Macs and PCs. Perhaps a browser front end would be an easy way to make sure the CM software is cross platform.

    Having said that, I still haven't seen CM software I would ENJOY using but you are going to have to do something serious to rectify the problem you described.

    You might also check that Judy didn't have FAST SAVE turned on (in your second scenario).

    In your first scenario, have you considered a macro on the macs to check for a ~tilde file in the same directory when opening a file. This is how Windows knows that the file is opened already.
    Andrew Lockton, Chrysalis Design, Melbourne Australia

  3. #3
    Gold Lounger
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    Re: File Sharing Problem (Multiple versions, cross-platform)

    If this sort of "file sharing" (unsharing?) is part of the normal
    work-a-day world in which you live, I suggest the purchase of
    document management system. You'll get check-in/out, versioning
    and centralized storage along with a little peace of mind.
    Kevin <IMG SRC=http://www.wopr.com/w3tuserpics/Kevin_sig.gif alt="Keep the change, ya filthy animal...">
    <img src=/w3timages/blackline.gif width=33% height=2><img src=/w3timages/redline.gif width=33% height=2><img src=/w3timages/blackline.gif width=33% height=2>

  4. #4
    Star Lounger
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    Re: File Sharing Problem (Multiple versions, cross-platform)

    Thanks, Andrew. I've often seen those ~tilde files in directories, but I never knew what they meant. I assumed it was part of the automatic backup system or something. That's very interesting, and good to know.

    The macro you suggested might be a fairly simple solution to the problem; I'll pass the word along.

    I appreciate your help!

  5. #5
    Star Lounger
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    Re: File Sharing Problem (Multiple versions, cross-platform)

    Sigh. My job is all about document control. Unfortunately, my department's request for document management software was turned down for last year's budget, and chances are slim to none for this year. I get by (barely) with an Access database for tracking the documents, but we really need a full-blown document management system.

    Perhaps this new file-sharing problem will add weight to my wimpering that we do *need* the software. Thanks!

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