9 Replies Latest reply on Jan 13, 2014 11:12 AM by TSGal

    Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1



      Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1


      FileMaker Pro



      Operating system version

      MacOS X 10.9.1

      Description of the issue

      after a lost connection to the server, FM13 Advanced reported that fact, BUT left all windows open and reacted strange. Had to Force Quit after e.g. looking into Safety with some private data exposed there, could open script editor, run scripts that were not really executed, click in a window in a record in a field and get a strange message like "The File '?' is needed to (...) but cannot be found".

      Steps to reproduce the problem

      difficult to say; let an open connection alone for a while does not help
      The server by the way reported the lost connection to the client in the console as an issue.

      Expected result

      Send a note on lost connection and either stick to the traditional "close all windows" with cleaning of local cache, or give a chance to take notes (as in FMWebdirect) and then close alas windows and clean the cache.

      At least no fussing with script, security and so forth.

      Actual result

      see description

      Exact text of any error message(s) that appear

      "The File "?" could not be found and is required to complete this operation"

      Configuration information

      (I do have a second screenshot with the Security settings open, included in the first error msg. file)


        • 1. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

               Volker Krambrich:

               Thank you for your post.

               In your case, not only has FileMaker lost connection with the host, but it has lost any reference to the file name.  That is why it references the file name "?".  The current file names believe they are still connected.

               You mention in your post that you have to force quit.  In your screen shot, what exactly occurs after you click "OK" in the dialog box?  After clicking OK, and since the Manage Accounts window is open, are you able to click "Cancel"?  What occurs if you try to close one of the windows?  Do you get a spinning wheel?  I see two tables open as well as a second table occurrence of DEV...Letter file.

               Any other information you can provide may be helpful.

               FileMaker, Inc.

          • 2. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                 Hi TSGal.

                 the picture is two pictures combined. Split them in middle and you'll have two of the sreen shots (only one file allowed to upload ;))

                 So the left half has what you analyzed first (forgetting the name etc.).

                 THEN I clicked the OK button and all windows were left open. On a screen shot not send I demonstrate switching of windows, they are still redrawn!

                 The left half of the picture is a screen shot from a after going to Menu:Manage database:Security...

                 I dared not to try to do anything more here, just closed the dialog with Cancel. Same for Script (shift cmd-S) opened the overview and I could press the "run" button. Windows showing data in Browse Mode had active buttons - but off course no effect.

                 I was able to close the windows all but one - by then I could not invoke the script debugger to hinder a trigger from running when the last window closes.

                 FileMaker would not react to "Quit" either - therefore the force quit from the operating system.

                 Hope this explains a little more the situation.


            • 3. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                   Volker Krambrich:

                   Thank you for the additional information.

                   Since FileMaker has lost reference to the file name, the cache still holds information about the windows on your machine.  Instead of going back to the server to get information, it is loaded from the cache.  That is why the windows are redrawn.

                   Since one file is no longer accessible, only those local files should be accessible for updating.  If all of the files are being accessed remotely, then you should close all windows.

                   If the last Window has a script trigger, it attempt to run the script.  If you cannot invoke the Script Debugger, then you may be hung until there is a timeout, and this appears to what has occurred.

                   The main issues are what caused the connection to fail and why did FileMaker Pro lose reference to the file being accessed. I don't have a clear sense why this occurred.  I'm assuming this has happened more than once, so the next time this occurs, please let me know what you were doing just prior to the network outage, and also let me know how many files and windows were open.

                   FileMaker, Inc.

              • 4. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                     Sorry for the delay.

                     Well to start with, 2 Files were open, both from the same host on WAN (one hidden with no current data accessed).

                     FileMaker detected the loss of connection, the window popped up telling me that connection to the files (and the file names(!)) were lost, and all windows had to be closed. This is usual intend behavior of the line drops due to client computer sleep etc.


                     But here the windows were NOT closed when I dismissed the notification. Instead all the windows were left open and some manoevering was possible,  that is the error.


                     I had left the (saved) layout open and went to the "History Notes" to drop some lines about what I did, when I was disturbed and left the computer for some while. That computer went into screen lock first and assumingly went to sleep after some time. I returned in fact to close down the connection and re-open for commenting. The app. seemed to be responsive though, let me enter the window and the field (which means sending a message to the server) and instead returned with the "Connection dropped" message; from here on you know how it continued.


                • 5. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                       Volker Krambrich:

                       Thank you for the additional information.

                       From your description, it appears FileMaker Pro lost connection to the hidden file; not the open file.

                       Since time has passed, the next time this occurs, write down the time the files have been opened, the last time each file was accessed, etc.  This may help better understand why one or both files are timing out.

                       FileMaker, Inc.

                  • 6. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                         The Server noted the timeout at 6:05:30 PM on Jan, 6, 2014 and noted:

                         And that means the connection to both files were dropped. The hidden file was not touched locally.


                         But I do agree this was strange behavior.

                         Still I insist on FileMaker should react to a detected connection error by closing the windows and handles to all that servers' files. 

                         Hope it will not happen so soon again ;)) 

                    • 7. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                           oops, just saw that my inserted picture did not get thru.

                           Connection to both files was opened at 3:27:42 PM and 3:28:13 PM respectively. 

                           No changes to the second file at all (all hourly Backups have skipped the file because no changes since last backup);

                           The main file was in the Backup set at 6:07 PM i.e. the minute after server detected the connection drop out, and thus had been in use at least in the hour before the connection went down. There is no automatic timeout for user connections enabled.

                           This just to complete your questionnaire.

                           Rgds. Volker

                      • 8. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                             Volker Krambrich:

                             For clarification, if FileMaker loses connection to the server, then all files/windows accessed hosted on the server should close.  Only local files will remain open.

                             If FileMaker Server detects a time-out on a file that hasn't been accessed in 'X' time, then the client will be disconnected from the file but the client will still have access to the other connected files (and local files).


                             For some inexplicable reason, the name of the hosted file has been lost (as it shows a "?").  FileMaker Pro keeps the windows open because the name of the file being referenced does not equal "?", even though it is no longer connected.  I don't know the cause, and since I've never seen this behavior, I don't have a reason why this is occurring.  I know that doesn't help you.

                             Assuming this happens again, write down as much information as you can.  Check the system memory (Activity Monitor in Mac OS X Utilities) on both the client and server.  Include all actions taken just prior to this occurring, and also how many other users are accessing files on the server.

                             FileMaker, Inc.

                        • 9. Re: Strange behavior after lost connection to server 13.0.1

                               Volker Krambrich:

                               Replied before I received your second post.

                               Do you usually have your Backup at the time others are connected?  Are these files being accessed 24 hours/day?  If not, try to schedule the backups at a time when there is little or no activity.

                               FileMaker, Inc.