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Missing Folder (sometimes)

By braaiman ยท 16 replies
Aug 13, 2013
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  1. Hi
    This is the most perplexing issue that I have come across with Windows. In order to give the situation is going to be a bit longwinded but necessary in order to understand what is happening.

    1 I have a Win 8 machine 64bit to which is attached a network drive in a D-link ShareCenter (NAS320) caddy. This is used for media files and has on it the following folders 3D - Feature Films - TV and the Recycle Bin. Each of the first 3 folders is subdivided ie in the TV folder are two folders Drama - Comedy.

    2 I have a Smart TV which finds the network drive (NAS320). It also finds the folders mentioned above.

    3 I created a folder containing 8 files (a TV Series) on my PC and copied this into the network drive TV - Drama - new folder.

    4 When searching for this folder on the Smart TV it is missing, everything else is there but not that folder.

    5 Back on the PC I go into the network drive TV - Drama and take the files from the (missing) folder, and copy them back onto the drive outside of the folder so the path is TV - Drama and the loose files.

    6 The TV can now see the files.

    7 Delete the new folder, copy the loose files onto a memory stick and insert into my Win 7 machine, which is not on the network.

    8 Create new folder - copy the files into it from the memory stick - insert this into the Win 8 machine - copy this folder into the TV - Drama folder.

    9 Go to TV it finds the new folder this time BUT only 7 of the 8 files that were copied over to it.

    10 Checking on the PC all the files are there and were copied over correctly.

    Has anybody any idea what the heck is going on here or had a similar happening. If so please let me know before I lose what little hair I have left.

    Thank You
  2. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    In other contexts that sort of thing can be caused by a different user having written those files, whereas the user you are logged on as cannot see them, not having the shared rights to see them. How come a different user wrote those files ? Well it could be the smart TV. When installed and in use, it might (to Windows) be a different user.

    I've seen this sort of thing WRT drive imaging software. It gets worse if you uninstall the system that acts as a special user. You then may get an 'unknown account(S-1-5-21-lotsofnumbers)' appearing in the properties of files/folders and/or drives with 'special rights' - but it does not say what they are.

    It's also possible the same thing happens with install/uninstall anti-virus software. Recall that an anti-virus software needs to be able to access everything - especially things you, as a normal user, cannot. Naturally, malware can also play the same trick.

    Sorry this is no use to you for solving your immediate problem, but I suggest you right-click the folder when you can see it, pick properties and the security tab, to see what has the rights to do what and lacks the rights to do other things.
    You can also change - for your entire system - folder properties so you can see hidden and system folders. Then you will be able to use the properties view trick I just mentioned even when you cannot see the folders/files normally. Don't forget to put the hidden and system folder view back to normal after playing with it.

    Fundamentally, this sharing-type problem is down to the MS way of trying - and spectacularly failing - to enable fool-proof security in a shared environment. They are a bunch of amateurs when it comes to systems design, though not quite so bad on servers.
  3. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Thanks for taking the time to post a reply

    I have followed your suggestions, but must admit that I do not really understand the whole idea of permissions.

    What I did first off was to enable view hidden folders and drives under the Folders option within the Control Panel.

    I then viewed the Folder in question looking at the options under the Security Tab.

    Under Group or user names there are 3 entries

    allaccount (Unix Group\allaccount
    Linux User...(NAS-320\nobody)

    NONE of these appear to have any permissions at all. No ticks against any entry except a greyed out tick next to Special permissions, for all of the above users/groups.

    I then checked another entry on the drive ie one that hasn't given any problems and that too has exactly the same entries, no differences that I could see.

    I then had a look at the files within the troubling folder and found that all users/groups entries had full control over everything but that the Special permissions tick was absent. The same thing for other files in other folders.

    There appears to be no differences anywhere between those that are ok and those that are not.

    I am really in over my head on this, so have accepted that Windows has won, and will have to work around it, although it is annoying, to be beaten by an inanimate object.

  4. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    Interesting..... so the drive does not properly belong to Windows at all. If anything it is a Linux drive which is network shared with your Windows PC, so it is hardly surprising that it does not have the usual Windows user permissions, which typically would be

    Authenticated Users
    Administrators (yourPCname-Administrators)
    Users (Your-PCname\Users)

    Anyway, the greyed-out tick against 'special permissions' is why you cannot view some files on that drive. As I said, only about 0.001% of the world population has any clue about file permissions, and that includes me. I suspect your smart TV is the linux device that has created that drive. I suggest you should read the manual for the TV to see what it says about sharing recorded files with a Windows PC. Maybe you need to 'take ownership' as it is called in Windows, or add the drive to a special share group......or anything really.
  5. Rando Farmer II

    Rando Farmer II TS Rookie

    The closest thing I've seen to this involved cell phones reading files from SD cards. The files were in the wrong place or too deep in subfolders, and the phone didn't know where to look for them.

    Could the issue be the number of folders the Smart TV can traverse? It might not be able to go three folders deep. To verify if this is the case, are any other files three folders in? (e.g., TV>Drama>LawAndOrder>s01ep01.mpg) Or are all of the other files that the SmartTV can find only two folders in? (e.g., Feature Films>Fantasy>TheHobbit.mpg)

    I see that some of the files were being recognized anyway. So, another reason may be the total file name length. Since I don't know what the files are named, I'll make up an example. A file that can be read is TV/Drama/RealHousewivesOfOC/s01ep01-Pilot.mpg and one that cannot be read is TV/Drama/RealHousewivesOfOC/s01ep08-SomeoneJustHitSomeoneElse.mpg. This would likely be because the total length of the filename is too long (45 characters vs. 65 characters), and the SmartTV can't handle it. A lot of OS's that are compact for use in a non-PC use to have that problem, but I haven't seen it outside of car stereos or cell phones.
  6. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Again thank for your reply. I think that you may be on the right track with your suggestion regarding the Linux thing.

    Unfortunately the manual that comes with the TV on a good day could be termed abysmal, on a bad day, utter rubbish, so there was no help there.

    Interestingly when I purchased the TV and set it up, on connecting to the web, it automatically found the NAS320 as an input to the set, I did not have to tell it to find it. Now back to you supposition maybe it found this device and found that it contained a hard drive and took ownership of it in order to use it and then gave itself whatever rights were needed to play it.

    What is also worth mentioning is that in windows under my computer it is found as a Network Device which is what it is (not a hard drive) and as such has no drive letter. It has been suggested to me, to map the device as a drive and give it a letter, and see where this takes me. I haven't attempted that yet.

    Rando Farmer II

    Thank you also for your reply.

    I don't think that the address lengths are a problem here, although they are very long ie Network\NAS320\Volume1\TV\Drama\Title\Series1\Title S01E01.mkv. This format I have used for all other items, so in this series only the end title and episode number change and there is no problem finding those..

    As I said above, my next step is to map the device as a hard drive under windows and see what the TV finds. One final solution that has been suggested is to take the drive, put it into the PC and use the PC as a server, thereby bypassing the NAS entirely, but first the mapping.

    Thanks again for your time

  7. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +183

    I haven't read through all the detail so forgive me if any of this was already mentioned but here's two thoughts

    1. Have you checked for any firmware upgrades on your Smart TV?
    2. The Smart TV may only display files of specific file types (I.e. file extensions). Might some of the files not found be of a particular file type?
  8. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter



    1 The TV actually does this automatically when it is switched on.

    2 Not in this case. All 8 files in the folder are the same, it just doesn't see the last one. Remove that file from the folder it then finds it. It really is strange. There must be some difference but I can't see it.

    Thanks for the suggestions.
  9. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    Now you know the problem lies in sharing and permissions, you can probably do some more research with a better-informed concentration on those factors. You must also ensure all the interfaces - PC, NAS, TV, network are updated to the latest firmware and/or software (including anti-virus software) as appropriate. Check with the various user forums on the kit you have.

    You are near the 'bleeding edge' of technology here, and as such will inevitably suffer. Two years down the line, and everything will fit together with a satisfyingly soft 'click' : maybe even on the kit you have now, maybe not. If you do find an answer, please share it with us all. Good luck.
  10. misor

    misor TS Evangelist Posts: 1,221   +224

    Are the files on your 'problematic folder' named in a different way?
    my 32" Samsung led tv cannot read if a video file is named with blank spaces like 'sample 12345.avi' but has no problem reading 'sample12345.avi"
  11. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Thanks for the leads you have provided. I think your use of the term bleeding edge is most appropriate. The problem with pursuing this further along the lines you have suggested is my ability or non as the case may be, in getting to grips with the deeper depths of Windows at the same time as dabbling in Linux something up until now, I have not had any reason to do. Still it is in my nature to keep nagging away at a problem so I may find the time to push this further.


    No none of the files are named differently from any other. The problem is not with the files, as the TV can see them and play them as long as they are individual files.

    It was only when I placed them in their own folder, that A, it couldn't see the folder at all and B, as stated above when the files were put into another folder created on a different machine, the TV could only see 7 of the 8 files. It all seems totally illogical as Spock would say.

    Thanks for the suggestion though

  12. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,300   +788

    Another approach - - -

    1) take ownership of the drive, or at least a top level folder on it
    2) then add the EVERYONE name to the permissions
    3) and give FULL CONTROL to everyone
  13. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I think we have finally cracked it.

    First I mapped this device as a drive giving it a drive letter. This did not show up on the TV, only as before ie a network storage device and, as before with the (Linux) permissions, which I found I could not change.

    Secondly I took jobeard's advice (thank you jobeard) see post above, and in Windows on the now mapped device as a hard drive, gave Everyone Full Control.

    Back to the TV, the missing 8th file was found along with it's partners in the folder correctly, in the NAS320 device.

    So it seems that by creating a drive in Windows changing the permissions there, it changed the permissions in the device that the TV finds as a Linux NAS.

    All very confusing a solution arrived at ONLY with the help and suggestions that the folks on this forum have given.

    Thank you all very much everyone!!
    misor likes this.
  14. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,300   +788

    The reason the everone:full control works is the difference between Linux permissions and Windows permissions. Linux has simple owner, group, other concepts each with R,W,X. Windows uses a better and more thorough system called an Access Control List(ACL) with lots of detail permissions. As such the ACL is another whole structure associated with each directory and file.

    The solution applies the dictum:
    • when in Rome, do as the Romans do
    and to be specific, the windows user(and the system) needs to see windows style structures if the data is to be accessible
  15. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Thanks for the explanation, although I do not understand it.

    The drive contained within the NAS caddy was formatted under Windows and all of the folders/files have been made under Windows. Windows had no problem using the file structure.

    The TV appears from above to be running Linux or a form of it. It too sees all of the folders and files EXCEPT one folder and as stated above eventually sees that as well, minus 1 file which as I have indicated, now with your help among others, it now sees.

    What I do not understand, is why 1 folder and 1 file should not been seen when everything else is. Incidentally there is over 1.2G of files on that drive, and only a minute percentage was giving problems.

  16. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,300   +788

    IMO, it would be the sequence of events and it sounds to me that the sequence was:
    1. folder and first file created by Linux TV
    2. take ownership, add everyone & set full control created subsequently
    Anything created after (2) will naturally be visible by Linux & Windows.
    Event (1) did not change any permission on the existing file(s) before (1) and thus expect them to still be inaccessible.

    Easy fix would be to create a new fold & move all problem files into it.
    Delete problem files.

    ALL should now qualify as in (2) - - everyone having fill control, including visibility from all systems.
  17. braaiman

    braaiman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Good Morning Jobeard

    The sequence of events was as follows

    Original folder created 20/05/2013 under Win8 and files added regularly to it, when the series completed, folder was moved to the NAS320 storage.

    At this point everything was accessible via an Ellion Labo-110 MINI DTS MKV HD Media Player, which I think had a Linux OS (may be wrong on this), which I was using prior to the purchase of the TV.

    Linux TV purchased 01/08/2013. Folder not found, but files were when removed from the folder.

    New folder created on Win7 machine and files transferred into it. Folder moved to NAS320 on 13/08/2013, and only 7 of 8 files found.

    Incidentally upon further reading of your last post, it was the final file of the series that wasn't seen, not the first.


    Thanks for taking the time and trouble to think on this.


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