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Mangled "folder trays"

Thanks guys! I am back up and running (fingers crossed!) after 7 hours of restoring tray structure by hand. Yes, HIERARCH.PM seems to contain bunch of suspiciously looking lines. Fortunately I found a description of its format here: 

http://wiki.pmail.com/index.php?title=KB:Pegasus_Mail/Structure_of_HIERARCH.PM_File

There is also important tidbit here:

http://community.pmail.com/forums/thread/23579.aspx 

 Will have to work on it. Also I have a bunch of old folders still in UNIX format, so that might have contributed to the restoration trouble. Just documenting my experience in hopes that it will make someone's life easier.

 Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Alex

 

<p>Thanks guys! I am back up and running (fingers crossed!) after 7 hours of restoring tray structure by hand. Yes, HIERARCH.PM seems to contain bunch of suspiciously looking lines. Fortunately I found a description of its format here: </p><p>http://wiki.pmail.com/index.php?title=KB:Pegasus_Mail/Structure_of_HIERARCH.PM_File</p><p>There is also important tidbit here:</p><p>http://community.pmail.com/forums/thread/23579.aspx </p><p> <span style="font-size: 10pt;">Will have to work on it. Also I have a bunch of old folders still in UNIX format, so that might have contributed to the restoration trouble. Just documenting my experience in hopes that it will make someone's life easier.</span></p><p> Happy Thanksgiving everyone!</p><p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Alex</span></p><p><span style="font-size: 10pt;"> </span></p>

Hi all,
Most of my pmail installation (v4.41) is working fine. But I have two "folder trays" (yellow icon) with no visible messages. One is a subfolder of the other.
These are remnants from another HDD after it suffered some corruption.

When I try to delete these, I get "You have asked to delete a tray file which still contains folders. Please delete or move all folders from the tray before attempting to delete it."
I assume I have to get rid of something from hierarch.pm (mine has 669 lines, many of which are probably invalid/obsolete).

Any hints appreciated.

Cheers,
Ross
 

<p>Hi all, Most of my pmail installation (v4.41) is working fine. But I have two "folder trays" (yellow icon) with no visible messages. One is a subfolder of the other. These are remnants from another HDD after it suffered some corruption. When I try to delete these, I get "<u>You have asked to delete a tray file which still contains folders. Please delete or move all folders from the tray before attempting to delete it.</u>" I assume I have to get rid of something from hierarch.pm (mine has 669 lines, many of which are probably invalid/obsolete).</p><p>Any hints appreciated.</p><p>Cheers, Ross  </p>

[quote user="rossnixon"]

Hi all,
Most of my pmail installation (v4.41) is working fine. But I have two "folder trays" (yellow icon) with no visible messages. One is a subfolder of the other.
These are remnants from another HDD after it suffered some corruption.

When I try to delete these, I get "You have asked to delete a tray file which still contains folders. Please delete or move all folders from the tray before attempting to delete it."
I assume I have to get rid of something from hierarch.pm (mine has 669 lines, many of which are probably invalid/obsolete).

Any hints appreciated.

Cheers,
Ross
 

[/quote] You can try the following ...

right click on the folder,

- > check consistancy

- > reindex folder

- > recover deleted space.

You can also check the details of the folder on Folder information, by rightclicking on the folder and you can delete the filename mentioned in that folder information. You can alternatively delete the links for the file mentioned in your hierarch.pm

[quote user="rossnixon"] <P>Hi all, Most of my pmail installation (v4.41) is working fine. But I have two "folder trays" (yellow icon) with no visible messages. One is a subfolder of the other. These are remnants from another HDD after it suffered some corruption. When I try to delete these, I get "<U>You have asked to delete a tray file which still contains folders. Please delete or move all folders from the tray before attempting to delete it.</U>" I assume I have to get rid of something from hierarch.pm (mine has 669 lines, many of which are probably invalid/obsolete).</P> <P>Any hints appreciated.</P> <P>Cheers, Ross  </P> <P>[/quote] You can try the following ... </P> <P>right click on the folder, </P> <P>- > check consistancy </P> <P>- > reindex folder </P> <P>- > recover deleted space. </P> <P>You can also check the details of the folder on Folder information, by rightclicking on the folder and you can delete the filename mentioned in that folder information. You can alternatively delete the links for the file mentioned in your hierarch.pm</P>

Thanks gfts.
They are "trays", so check/reindex /recover are not options.

I'll try the folder information thing.
If that doesn't work, I'll make a copy of hierarch.pm, then rename the two bad trays, and see what parts of the file get changed. I think there's a program called windiff which makes it easy to compare two text files.

Ross

 

<p>Thanks gfts. They are "trays", so check/reindex /recover are not options.</p><p>I'll try the folder information thing. If that doesn't work, I'll make a copy of hierarch.pm, then rename the two bad trays, and see what parts of the file get changed. I think there's a program called windiff which makes it easy to compare two text files.</p><p>Ross  </p>

Ok, there was no tray information available, so I gave them easy to spot names and used Windiff to see the two lines that needed deleting.
I was a bit worried about the "flags" and hex strings being linked to other parts of the file, but apparently they aren't.
My dud trays are gone, with no apparent problem remaining. 

P.S. While googling I found www.icon.man.ac.uk/support/filestore/exe/readme.txt
which mentions TREECHECK.EXE for analysing hierarch.pm problems. Unfortunately access to the folder is blocked and I couldn't guess the correct filename to download the exe or zip.

Ross
 

<p>Ok, there was no tray information available, so I gave them easy to spot names and used Windiff to see the two lines that needed deleting. I was a bit worried about the "flags" and hex strings being linked to other parts of the file, but apparently they aren't. My dud trays are gone, with no apparent problem remaining. </p><p>P.S. While googling I found www.icon.man.ac.uk/support/filestore/exe/readme.txt which mentions TREECHECK.EXE for analysing hierarch.pm problems. Unfortunately access to the folder is blocked and I couldn't guess the correct filename to download the exe or zip.</p><p>Ross  </p>

http://www.icon.man.ac.uk/support/downloads.htm

Here you can find the tool.

 

<p>http://www.icon.man.ac.uk/support/downloads.htm</p><p>Here you can find the tool.</p><p> </p>

I think all those tools were specifically written for the University's Novell setup and are unlikely to work for anyone else.

 

 

<p>I think all those tools were specifically written for the University's Novell setup and are unlikely to work for anyone else.</p><p> </p><p> </p>

Yes I noticed that after posting the link and downloading the tools.

Sorry about that.

 

<p>Yes I noticed that after posting the link and downloading the tools.</p><p>Sorry about that.</p><p> </p>

It's a shame because they look like a very useful general set of utilities.

 

BTW, Han, thanks for the photo!

 

<p>It's a shame because they look like a very useful general set of utilities.</p><p> </p><p>BTW, Han, thanks for the photo!</p><p> </p>

I have had similar corruption problems with heirarch.pm.  I usually keep a backup so I can replace when necessary, but I would like to suggest to the developer(s) that Pmail create it's own backup anytime a change is about to be written out, it could save alot of trouble.

I have had similar corruption problems with heirarch.pm.  I usually keep a backup so I can replace when necessary, but I would like to suggest to the developer(s) that Pmail create it's own backup anytime a change is about to be written out, it could save alot of trouble.

[quote user="Barius"]I have had similar corruption problems with heirarch.pm.  I usually keep a backup so I can replace when necessary, but I would like to suggest to the developer(s) that Pmail create it's own backup anytime a change is about to be written out, it could save alot of trouble.
[/quote]

Making HIERARCH.PM even *more* robust is a priority for v5, as is providing a "hierarchy cleanup" facility in the program (for weeding out entries that are no longer used).

In truth, I don't understand why people seem to have trouble with this file - in the thirteen years since mine was created, it has never needed to be rebuilt once, and I've never had a problem. I've repeatedly invested time in adding bulletproofing code to it, to the extent that the code that manages hierarch.pm is now some of the most heavily checked code in the program.

A lot of the problem is that nobody has ever been able to tie down a repeatable situation that leads to the file becoming damaged: in the absence of being able to reproduce a problem, it's staggeringly difficult to fix it.

About the best I can do is tell you that I will look further into it (again), and see if I can deduce any more precautions I might be able to take.

Cheers!

-- David --

<p>[quote user="Barius"]I have had similar corruption problems with heirarch.pm.  I usually keep a backup so I can replace when necessary, but I would like to suggest to the developer(s) that Pmail create it's own backup anytime a change is about to be written out, it could save alot of trouble. [/quote] Making HIERARCH.PM even *more* robust is a priority for v5, as is providing a "hierarchy cleanup" facility in the program (for weeding out entries that are no longer used). In truth, I don't understand why people seem to have trouble with this file - in the thirteen years since mine was created, it has never needed to be rebuilt once, and I've never had a problem. I've repeatedly invested time in adding bulletproofing code to it, to the extent that the code that manages hierarch.pm is now some of the most heavily checked code in the program. A lot of the problem is that nobody has ever been able to tie down a repeatable situation that leads to the file becoming damaged: in the absence of being able to reproduce a problem, it's staggeringly difficult to fix it. About the best I can do is tell you that I will look further into it (again), and see if I can deduce any more precautions I might be able to take. Cheers! -- David -- </p>

Using v4.41, I have just opened up Pegasus to discover that I have lost my complete hierarchy of trays & folders and have several sets of duplicate folders.  Am not aware of anything going wrong with system when last closing down.

 

Anything to avoid this would be appreciated.

Dave 

<p>Using v4.41, I have just opened up Pegasus to discover that I have lost my complete hierarchy of trays & folders and have several sets of duplicate folders.  Am not aware of anything going wrong with system when last closing down.</p><p> </p><p>Anything to avoid this would be appreciated.</p><p>Dave </p>

David, 

Is there an email address to which we could send you samples of corrupt heirarchy files?

<p>David, </p><p>Is there an email address to which we could send you samples of corrupt heirarchy files? </p>

[quote user="Barius"]

Is there an email address to which we could send you samples of corrupt heirarchy files?

[/quote]

It's very unlikely it would help me. What I really need to see is a method for generating the corruption - that is, I need to know the circumstances in which it occurs. To date, nobody has been able to give me a reproducible scenario that would allow me to work out what's going wrong.

Cheers!

-- David --

[quote user="Barius"]<p>Is there an email address to which we could send you samples of corrupt heirarchy files? </p>[/quote] It's very unlikely it would help me. What I really need to see is a <b><i>method</i></b> for generating the corruption - that is, I need to know the circumstances in which it occurs. To date, nobody has been able to give me a reproducible scenario that would allow me to work out what's going wrong. Cheers! -- David --

I did document one case where users were over their disk space limit on a Netware server using Mercury/Netware. Mercury would continue to put messages in their inbox because it was not subject to their disk space limits. When the user opened their mailbox they got a warning about being over limit, so they would start to delete messages etc, which caused a race condition -- deleted messages being put in the "Deleted Messages" folder, which tries to grow, but can't because there is no more disk space. They would either then lockup Pegasus or try to quit, leaving Hierarch.pm in an indeterminate / corrupted state -- I think because they tried to delete whole folders.

My suggestion to people when they ran into that was to delete messages with Ctrl-Del, bypassing the "Deleted Messages" folder, or to request more disk space. I tried to keep ahead of it by monitoring disk space usage, but it wasn't always practical.

The few times that I have corrupted heriarch.pm at home was when Pegasus crashed for some reason. Keeping regular backups has saved me from that purgatory.

 -- Alan 

<p>I did document one case where users were over their disk space limit on a Netware server using Mercury/Netware. Mercury would continue to put messages in their inbox because it was not subject to their disk space limits. When the user opened their mailbox they got a warning about being over limit, so they would start to delete messages etc, which caused a race condition -- deleted messages being put in the "Deleted Messages" folder, which tries to grow, but can't because there is no more disk space. They would either then lockup Pegasus or try to quit, leaving Hierarch.pm in an indeterminate / corrupted state -- I think because they tried to delete whole folders. </p><p>My suggestion to people when they ran into that was to delete messages with Ctrl-Del, bypassing the "Deleted Messages" folder, or to request more disk space. I tried to keep ahead of it by monitoring disk space usage, but it wasn't always practical. </p><p>The few times that I have corrupted heriarch.pm at home was when Pegasus crashed for some reason. Keeping regular backups has saved me from that purgatory. </p><p> -- Alan </p>

This situation can arise when the tray previously had a child folder that has
been lost but there is still an entry for that folder in HIERARCH.PM typically:-

   0,0,"A4K3U1IK:2BBE:FOL08021","4D364890:Microsnot",Name_Unavailable

   1 2  ----------------- 3 --------------------    --------------- 4 ----------  --------- 5 -------------

The entry has five fields segregated by commas. The first is 0 and the second
can be 0 or 1. The third segment of the third field (FOL08021) is the file name
of the lost folder so if you use a file manager to search for FOL08021.PMM and
it is missing then you can delete the line in HEIRARCH.

Incidentally, although the second segment of field 4 (Microsnot) is probably
the name of the parent tray, as it appears in the Folders Manager window, it
isn't bound to be as it is the name asigned to the tray when it was created: it
is not altered if the tray has been renamed.

Bob 

 

<p>This situation can arise when the tray previously had a child folder that has been lost but there is still an entry for that folder in HIERARCH.PM typically:-    0,0,"A4K3U1IK:2BBE:FOL08021","4D364890:Microsnot",Name_Unavailable</p><p>   1 2  ----------------- 3 --------------------    --------------- 4 ----------  --------- 5 ------------- The entry has five fields segregated by commas. The first is 0 and the second can be 0 or 1. The third segment of the third field (FOL08021) is the file name of the lost folder so if you use a file manager to search for FOL08021.PMM and it is missing then you can delete the line in HEIRARCH. Incidentally, although the second segment of field 4 (Microsnot) is probably the name of the parent tray, as it appears in the Folders Manager window, it isn't bound to be as it is the name asigned to the tray when it was created: it is not altered if the tray has been renamed.</p><p>Bob </p><p> </p>

I have just lost my folder hierarchy - again.  This time it followed a WinXp crash - this is due to a faulty video card that should be replaced tomorrow(!).  Fortunately I had mad a copy of hierarch.pm and have loaded that.

 

Is there anyway that Pegasus may be configured to always make a copy of this file?  My memory is not good enought to always remember to make a copy when I add a new tray / folder.

 

TIA
Dave

<p>I have just lost my folder hierarchy - again.  This time it followed a WinXp crash - this is due to a faulty video card that should be replaced tomorrow(!).  Fortunately I had mad a copy of hierarch.pm and have loaded that.</p><p> </p><p>Is there anyway that Pegasus may be configured to always make a copy of this file?  My memory is not good enought to always remember to make a copy when I add a new tray / folder.</p><p> </p><p>TIA Dave </p>

To make a backup of hierarch.pm, you could start Pegasus in a batch (.BAT) file.
This is a text file that you can make in Notepad. Save it in the ADMIN folder. Right-click it and change Properties to "Close on Exit".
Make a shortcut to this file, and use it to launch Pegasus.

:: At a minimum it would make one backup as follows.
copy hierarch.pm hierarch.bak1
C:\PMAIL\winpm-32.exe -A

(Change C:\PMAIL if your installed location differs. I use the -A switch, yours may be different - check the properties of your launch shortcut).

(You would have to be super careful that you did not try starting Pegasus a second time before fixing, as your good backup would be overwritten....
:: So this could be extended to make three backup versions as follows.
if exist hierarch.bak3 del hierarch.bak3
if exist hierarch.bak2 ren hierarch.bak2 hierarch.bak3
if exist hierarch.bak1 ren hierarch.bak1 hierarch.bak2
copy hierarch.pm hierarch.bak1
C:\PMAIL\winpm-32.exe -A

In fact, after knowing about this sort of thing for *many* years, I will now start Pegasus this way.[H]

<p><i><b>To make a backup of hierarch.pm</b></i>, you could start Pegasus in a batch (<b>.BAT</b>) file. This is a text file that you can make in Notepad. Save it in the ADMIN folder. Right-click it and change Properties to "Close on Exit". Make a shortcut to this file, and use it to launch Pegasus. </p><p><b>:: At a minimum it would make <u>one</u> backup as follows.</b> copy hierarch.pm hierarch.bak1 C:\PMAIL\winpm-32.exe -A </p><p>(Change C:\PMAIL if your installed location differs. I use the -A switch, yours may be different - check the properties of your launch shortcut). (You would have to be super careful that you did not try starting Pegasus a second time before fixing, as your good backup would be overwritten.... <b>:: So this could be extended to make <u>three</u> backup versions as follows. </b>if exist hierarch.bak3 del hierarch.bak3 if exist hierarch.bak2 ren hierarch.bak2 hierarch.bak3 if exist hierarch.bak1 ren hierarch.bak1 hierarch.bak2 copy hierarch.pm hierarch.bak1 C:\PMAIL\winpm-32.exe -A </p><p><i>In fact, after knowing about this sort of thing for *many* years, I will now start Pegasus this way.[H]</i> </p>

[quote user="rossnixon"]

Hi all,
Most of my pmail installation (v4.41) is working fine. But I have two "folder trays" (yellow icon) with no visible messages. One is a subfolder of the other.
These are remnants from another HDD after it suffered some corruption.

When I try to delete these, I get "You have asked to delete a tray file which still contains folders. Please delete or move all folders from the tray before attempting to delete it."
I assume I have to get rid of something from hierarch.pm (mine has 669 lines, many of which are probably invalid/obsolete).

Any hints appreciated.

Cheers,
Ross
 

[/quote]

I take it you're talking about "filing trays." Did you make sure the tray you want to delete is Open (right click on it) and that there is nothing in it? 

--pbm

 

[quote user="rossnixon"] <P>Hi all, Most of my pmail installation (v4.41) is working fine. But I have two "folder trays" (yellow icon) with no visible messages. One is a subfolder of the other. These are remnants from another HDD after it suffered some corruption. When I try to delete these, I get "<U>You have asked to delete a tray file which still contains folders. Please delete or move all folders from the tray before attempting to delete it.</U>" I assume I have to get rid of something from hierarch.pm (mine has 669 lines, many of which are probably invalid/obsolete).</P> <P>Any hints appreciated.</P> <P>Cheers, Ross  </P> <P>[/quote]</P> <P>I take it you're talking about "filing trays." Did you make sure the tray you want to delete is Open (right click on it) and that there is nothing in it?  </P> <P>--pbm</P> <P mce_keep="true"> </P>

Ross,

 

Many thanks for this - I will certainly use a batch file along the lines you suggest  if there is no way of configuring Pegasus to make its own backups.  I certainly have not been able to find anyway of doing this.

One query I would have is why do you say ADMIN folder?  I would tend to store it in the mail folder to which it refers as I back that folder up to a NAS every night (when at home).  This way my hierarch copies would be in the folder they are needed.

 

Have just tried your suggestion of "close on exit" on another batch file but do not seem to be able to find the box to tick / untick.  What have I missed?

 

Thanks again for suggestion.

Dave 

<p>Ross,</p><p> </p><p>Many thanks for this - I will certainly use a batch file along the lines you suggest  if there is no way of configuring Pegasus to make its own backups.  I certainly have not been able to find anyway of doing this.</p><p>One query I would have is why do you say ADMIN folder?  I would tend to store it in the mail folder to which it refers as I back that folder up to a NAS every night (when at home).  This way my hierarch copies would be in the folder they are needed.</p><p> </p><p>Have just tried your suggestion of "close on exit" on another batch file but do not seem to be able to find the box to tick / untick.  What have I missed?</p><p> </p><p>Thanks again for suggestion.</p><p>Dave </p>
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