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Windows 7: Moving/deleting files, Windows brings the files right back

19 Sep 2017   #1
CCMadden

Windows 7 Pro 64
 
 
Moving/deleting files, Windows brings the files right back

Hey all!

Help me track this down? It's driving me buggy. At first I thought it was a Dropbox bug, but now I suspect Windows.

Here's the deal: I delete and/or move files. At *some* point (seconds, minutes, or days later), the files pop right back in their original location. I now have duplicates - the files I moved to a new location (or deleted), and a new version in the original location. With 2TB of files, I have now found I have more than 0.5TB of duplicates, sometimes up to 9x of each file, and it's a slog tracking them down and eliminating them.

My suspects: Windows, Dropbox, and my Seagate external HDD sync (but which SHOULD only be working one way, PC -> HDD, not HDD -> PC).

How can I track this bug down?

ETA:

Usually, I see the files pop up days later. However, this morning I moved a whole bunch of files from a Sort folder into categorized folders. Then 30 seconds later, the files all repopulated in their original directory. This was the first time it did NOT happen in a Dropbox-sync'd directory.

I'll also note that I got a temporary black screen before this happened - which may or may not be related.

Lots of clues here.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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19 Sep 2017   #2
RoWin7

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Does it happen if you remove a folder's duplicates, then disconnect the external HD?

I'm not sure how DropBox works, but try the same process disconnected from DropBox.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Sep 2017   #3
CCMadden

Windows 7 Pro 64
 
 

That's a good idea, systematic isolation. I'll try that next.

Could this be an imminent HDD failure bug? Is there any reason to suspect that?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Sep 2017   #4
RoWin7

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

I'm not qualified to answer that, but other users will come along soon.

Good program for finding duplicates is Auslogics Duplicate Finder, unless they're so obvious that you don't need it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Sep 2017   #5
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CCMadden View Post
Could this be an imminent HDD failure bug? Is there any reason to suspect that?
The most likely cause of this is some sort of auto-save / auto-restore / auto-sync process. Could be something in Windows, but more likely it is a program of some sort which does that sort of thing, or else a cloud auto-sync process (that has already been mentioned).

Maybe some malware?

A failing hard drive wouldn't be able to do something like this; it would have to be a misbehaving program.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2017   #6
CCMadden

Windows 7 Pro 64
 
 

Ok, I've narrowed this down, but I still need some advice.

I have a Seagate Expansion Desk Drive USB 2TB drive which I think is responsible, using a sync program called Seagate Manager. It's set to automatically update the files on the external drive to match my PC's internal files. HOWEVER, it's listed as only one-way (PC to USB) - it should not be able to write the other way (USB to PC).

But I think that's exactly what it's doing. When I delete/move a folder on the PC, that folder automatically syncs the changes to the USB. However, days later, the original folder propagates back from the USB to the PC (in its original location). I can't figure out why... all I have is the change date on the file folder.

I have two questions:

1) is there a file-copy logging program that I can use to backtrack when/how these files are being copied?
2) is there a better one-way file sync program with an automatic feature?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2017   #7
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

Years ago I used a program called Memeo. With Memeo, you could specify which folders you wanted backed up; it would do an initial backup of those folders onto a second drive, and then it would monitor those folders. Anytime a change occurred in any one of those folders, it would save the pre-change version of the file to the Memeo archive. It was a "one-way" backup, not a "two-way" synchronization.

I haven't used Memeo in a long time, but back then it was a good product for keeping a backup of what was on your primary drive, in case you accidentally deleted or overwrote an important file. It was not a synchronization program, but a backup program. In other words, it didn't make the two drives match each other; it merely kept a continually-updated archival copy of the primary drive, in case you ever needed to recover something.

The fact that the Seagate program appears to be a "synchronization" program tells me that it may in fact be the culprit here. I suggest you replace the Seagate program with something else, such as Memeo.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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