1 2 Previous Next 28 Replies Latest reply on Jan 27, 2016 9:59 AM by ibrahim_bittar

    Ghost Users

    tracievans@mobileda.org

      We are having a lot of ghost users and we're trying to find a resolution.

      We are an all MAC shop, MAC server and computers.

      We were on Filemaker Server 13 and ever since we changed to 13.09, the ghost users started to appear. The only way to correct the issue was to completely shut down and restart the server. The clients WOULD NOT disconnect on the server console even though they forced quit on their individual computers. We restarted the admin console as well but they still did not disconnect.

      We just received a brand new server with a different OS and updated it to Filemaker 14.0.4 but we are still having the same issue. It is causing us to shut down and restore from a backup at least once a week.

      My own connection shows up multiple times even though I have forced Filemaker to quit on my laptop.

      Has anyone else seen this and have any recommendations to resolve this??

      Thank you in advance!

        • 1. Re: Ghost Users
          siplus

          Can you provide a screenshot of the server showing some ghost users ?

           

          (I guess we can exclude some PSOS'es in endless loop, can we ?)

          • 2. Re: Ghost Users
            schamblee

            My own connection shows up multiple times even though I have forced Filemaker to quit on my laptop.

            
            

             

             

            What do you mean by forced Filemaker to quit? Filemaker does have to be forced, you would just close the database and close filemaker.

            The force quit may be the issue.

            • 3. Re: Ghost Users
              tracievans@mobileda.org

              On MAC laptops, you cannot just press the X and it closes your application. You have to actually have to tell the computer to quit Filemaker. This is done on the individual laptops that everyone is working on, not on the server. So even though they do not have any open sessions of Filemaker, it still shows that they do.

               

              I cannot provide a screenshot right now because we just restarted our server in the last hour so there are no duplicate logins at the moment. All of our users are displaying correctly right now. This issue happens about once a week.

              • 4. Re: Ghost Users
                Mike_Mitchell

                Force-quitting FileMaker is dangerous. It's possible to corrupt your database if it's in the middle of a transaction.

                 

                Usually, hung sessions are a result of poor network connectivity. Are you getting any host disconnection messages? "Communication was lost with the host" sort of stuff?

                • 5. Re: Ghost Users

                  X closes the file/file window but leaves the FileMaker Application open.

                  Quit closes the FileMaker application and all files/windows.

                   

                  Force Quit usually means that you have to use the OS function to force a frozen application to close.

                   

                  FileMaker Server will issue a close request via the admin. The users will see a notice that FileMaker Server is closing so please close your files. If you do not, then they will be forced closed by server and you will lose data.

                   

                  Are your users closing the files and/or closing FileMaker? If you close FileMaker then every connection should close on the server. IF you force close FileMaker or break your connection, then the Server might not drop the connection. FileMaker will permit numerous logins using the same computer, account, etc.

                   

                  Run a test. Login, check the admin and see your connection. Then close FileMaker on that computer using Command+Q. The connection should close on the server. Perhaps you have already done this?

                  • 6. Re: Ghost Users
                    schamblee

                    I have use Windows and MAC and basically works the same on both.  You can close the database then close filemaker or you can use the script step "exit application" and  all files will be closed and exit FM. Exit Application

                     

                    You should not force-quit as been said by others.

                    • 7. Re: Ghost Users
                      johnnyb

                      In fact, force-quitting will leave a connection open until it times out on the server. It sounds like you probably aren't actually "force-quitting" FMP as by selecting "Force Quit" from the apple menu, but if you are, that's a bad idea. Just command-Q or select FileMaker Pro > Quit.

                       

                      It is entirely unclear why you are restoring from backup at all. Simply using the admin console to close the file should be sufficient to disconnect all lingering sessions. It may take a minute or two for everything to time out, so be patient.

                       

                      But above all, I would suggest making sure your database file is not corrupt. If you're having to restore from backup every week, and if you're trying various means of forcing things to disconnect and exit, it seems likely that corruption could be an issue as either a cause or a symptom, or both. You may want to copy the file from the server to your laptop and use file recovery to check the file for errors before moving it back to the server.

                      • 8. Re: Ghost Users
                        siplus

                        I hope you are not using wireless connections, either...

                        • 9. Re: Ghost Users
                          TSPigeon

                          tracievans@mobileda.org:

                           

                          Thank you for your post.

                          We just received a brand new server with a different OS and updated it to Filemaker 14.0.4 but we are still having the same issue.

                          When you say "updated", do you mean you updated an install of FileMaker Server 14 (v1 or v2) to 14.0.4?

                          Also, what Operating System is the "brand new server"? (OS X 10.10, 10.11, etc.)

                          It is causing us to shut down and restore from a backup at least once a week.

                          Why is there a need to "restore from a backup"? (crashing, corruption, etc.)

                          Does a restart of the server remove the ghost connections from before the restart?

                          I have forced Filemaker to quit on my laptop.

                          As you have been recommended, never "Force Quit" FileMaker Pro while databases are open. It doesn't seem like you are doing this, after reading your additional post.

                           

                          I look forward to your response.

                           

                          TSPigeon

                          FileMaker, Inc.

                          • 10. Re: Ghost Users
                            tracievans@mobileda.org

                            No we are not using wireless connections for the server itself.

                             

                            We do not force quit anything on the server.

                            We just "quit" on the laptops unless the server quit responding from the ghost users and we have to force quit on the laptops to get out. We have waited for a considerable amount of time and although the users are logged off their individual computers, it will not disconnect any of those users on the admin console. Even if we tell it to disconnect all users and close all databases, all the users stay logged on unless we restart the server completely.

                             

                            I don't understand why force quit on a user's computer should be able to "corrupt" a database as mentioned earlier. I understand the changes may not be saved, but it doesn't make sense for a user to be able to cause such corruption. I feel like Filemaker should have something in place to protect the server from stuff like this because users are very unreliable and shouldn't be held accountable. I would understand if I was doing something on the server itself but not the user's computer.

                             

                            If you are unable to quit like normal, what are the users supposed to do other than force quit or ctrl-alt-delete if on a Windows machine.

                             

                            We have to restore from the backup because once we restart the server and the database is turned on again, it never verifies the database.

                            • 11. Re: Ghost Users
                              tracievans@mobileda.org

                              A restart of the server does get rid of the ghost users because that is the only way the users are being removed completely. However, because they would not disconnect before the restart, it causes our database to become corrupted in a way and sits at "verifying" instead of normal like it should be.

                               

                              I did test quiting filemaker normally on my machine and my username disappeared immediately off of the admin console.

                              I also "forced quit" just to make sure and my name was removed off of the console immediately this time as well.

                               

                              The new server is all new hardware, OS, and Filemaker version.

                              Our previous server was running Filemaker 13 and Yosemite OS.

                              Our new server is a Mac Pro 2.7GHZ 12 core, Filemaker 14, and El Cap. OS.

                              However, the ghost users happened on both.

                               

                              Thanks for everyone's help.

                              • 12. Re: Ghost Users
                                TSPigeon

                                tracievans@mobileda.org

                                 

                                Thank you for your responses.

                                 

                                With the data you've provided I would go through Steps to Recover your databases. Other than network or some third-party software you may be installing, the databases are the only things that would be consistent between the old machine and the new machine. Possibly do a full uninstall of FileMaker Server (removing the Server Folder as well) and reboot the machine. Reinstall FileMaker Server 14.0.4 and upload your recovered databases. See if the issues persist. You can find information on recovering damaged files in Knowledge Base Article #5421.

                                 

                                TSPigeon

                                FileMaker, Inc.

                                • 13. Re: Ghost Users
                                  siplus

                                  tracievans@mobileda.org wrote:

                                   

                                  No we are not using wireless connections for the server itself.

                                   

                                  I don't understand why force quit on a user's computer should be able to "corrupt" a database as mentioned earlier. I understand the changes may not be saved, but it doesn't make sense for a user to be able to cause such corruption. I feel like Filemaker should have something in place to protect the server from stuff like this because users are very unreliable and shouldn't be held accountable.

                                   

                                   

                                  The data in the local cache won't make it to the server, if you force quit. Depending on what that data is, you are at risk. It's like hammering on a nail you hold with your other hand and somebody turning the lights off. The nail won't be fully hammered and you might injure yourself as well.

                                  • 14. Re: Ghost Users
                                    schamblee

                                    If you force quit then the file is not closed correctly which can lead to corruption.  It does not matter that it a client computer, because it is accessing data on the server.  You need to figure out why you can't quit normally.   

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