[Samba] Mac OS X / MS Office save issues and possible .TemporaryItems fix

Craig White craigwhite at azapple.com
Sat Oct 15 14:06:06 MDT 2011

On Sat, 2011-10-15 at 15:53 +0000, Nathan A Friedl wrote:
> We have an issue where Macs that try to save MS Office files on our 3.5.11 samba servers occasionally get error messages such as "There has been a network or file permission error.  The network connection may be lost.”  When this happens, the user often has to save the file to their local drive and then copy it over to the network share.
> After doing some research, we suspect the issue may be related to the .TemporaryItems folder that MS Office creates on any drive that it opens a file on (described here: http://prowiki.isc.upenn.edu/wiki/MS_Office_and_Network_Volumes ).  MS Office apparently continually modifies the permissions on this folder and can occasionally prevent a user from opening a file due to wonky permissions.  Yesterday we created a .TemporaryItems folder for every share and set the default acl to be rwx for all, as there's no way that Office should be able to change that.  We're hoping that will solve the problem, but we've been unable to replicate these problems ourselves so we're just waiting to see if the errors appear again.
> Are we on the right track here, or do you suspect something else may be going on?  Do you have any suggestions for other things to try?
> Additionally, we've been having a hard time determining a good logging level.  When we up the logging, the Macs can rotate the logs quite quickly as they "touch" every file in a folder whenever the folder is opened.  What would your suggestion be for a proper logging level to monitor these issues?
> Thanks for your time,
gosh that's a real old problem and the solution is painful. You should
be able to google the issue/resolution.

The issue is that one each local Macintosh, the first user created is
uid #500 and the next is #501, etc.

On probably about 70% of the Mac's, the primary user is the only user
and he is uid 500. Likewise, other users simultaneously open files on
the server with the same uid # and Microsoft Office just plays havoc (I
wonder if they fixed this problem with Office 2008?)

Anyway, the only way to permanently fix this problem is to have unique
UID's assigned to each user on each Macintosh (at one location, I used
LDAP for authenticating users on each Mac).

The user can also 'copy' existing files from the server to their
desktop, make their changes and then move it back to the server when
they are finished (ugh).

Otherwise, you can use Libre Office which doesn't suffer from the same
issues  ;-)


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