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

Nathan A Friedl nate at northwestern.edu
Fri Oct 28 09:31:22 MDT 2011

I just wanted to follow up and let the list know that pre-creating the .TemporaryItems folder on our shares and forcing rwx acls for all users appears to have fixed these issues for us and we're considering this issue closed.

Nathan Friedl

> > 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  ;-)
> >
> > Craig
> Thanks for the advice Craig.  I should have mentioned that we're in the
> process of binding our Macs to our Active Directory domain.  We've got
> Services for UNIX installed on the domain servers and have verified that they
> have the correct domain uids when logged into their Macs.  Oddly enough,
> some domain users have still had these Office problems on their home
> shares (which only they have access to).  In addition, some of the complaints
> have come from Office 2011 users, so it doesn't appear that Microsoft has
> changed anything.
> We are hopeful that forcing the rwx acls for all users on the .TemporaryItems
> folder has resolved this (we've had no reports of these problems since
> before we made the change on Friday), but I wanted to check and see if
> anyone has any other ideas for things we could be looking at here...and
> suggestions for the proper logging level to help monitor this issue.
> Best,
> Nate

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