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Why am I getting the message "Attached file could not be found. It may have been moved or deleted." when I try to open a file on a synced computer?

If file syncing isn't set up or working properly, files may be missing on some of your synced computers. Follow these steps to diagnose and fix the problem:

  1. Make sure the attachment file is accessible from Zotero on at least one of your computers. We'll refer to the computer with the file as Computer A and the computer that doesn't as Computer B.
  2. Make sure Computer A has file syncing enabled and is syncing properly. If there's a sync error, indicated by an error icon to the left of the green sync icon in the Zotero toolbar, files may not be transferred. Resolve the sync error by clicking the sync error icon. Read the message and follow the instructions to see if syncing completes correction. If you need help, please report the error on the Zotero forums.
  3. If you're not getting a sync error on Computer A, verify that the file has been uploaded to the server. The steps vary depending on whether you're using Zotero storage or WebDAV:
    • Zotero Storage: Check to see if the attachment file is accessible from your library on zotero.org. Attachment files should be directly accessible if they have been uploaded. If you're using a group, the group must have File Editing enabled in its settings on zotero.org, which isn't possible for Public, Open Membership groups.
    • WebDAV: In Zotero on Computer A, click Show File to reveal the file in the OS file manager (Finder on OS X, Explorer on Windows, etc.). Look at the name of the file's parent directory, which should be a string of characters such as 'F81VWFP2'. Load your WebDAV URL in your browser or another WebDAV client and look for corresponding .prop and .zip files (e.g., F81VWFP2.prop and F81VWFP2.zip) on the server. (You can optionally download and open the ZIP file to confirm that it's valid, though be aware that prior to Zotero 4.0 the filenames within were encoded to work around a Firefox limitation. If the ZIP file isn't valid, delete the .zip and .prop files from the server and proceed to the following step.)
  4. If the file hasn't been uploaded correctly but syncing completes on Computer A without a sync error, go to the Sync→Reset pane of the Zotero preferences on Computer A and select Reset File Sync History. This shouldn't be necessary under normal usage, but it will cause Zotero to check every attachment to make sure that it has been uploaded to the server.
  5. If the file has been uploaded but is still inaccessible from Computer B, there may be a problem on that computer. Check the file sync settings in the Sync pane of the Zotero preferences to confirm that they match the settings on Computer A. For example, if one computer is set to use Zotero Storage and another is set to use WebDAV, or if they're configured with different Zotero accounts (for personal library files) or different WebDAV URLs, files won't transfer between the two.
  6. Sync Computer B and check if there's a sync error. If so, you'll need to resolve that before file syncing will work.

If you've performed all these steps, see the file on the server, and still can't access the file on Computer B, then go to the Sync → Reset pane of the Zotero preferences on Computer B, choose Reset File Sync History, generate a Debug ID for the next sync attempt and an attempt to open the file, and post the Debug ID to the Zotero forums. Do not use the other options in the Reset pane.

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kb/files_not_syncing.txt · Last modified: 2017/11/23 07:01 by bwiernik