After upgrading to Filr 3.4.2 on Windows, the Filr Folders are empty or unpredictable

  • 7023516
  • 13-Nov-2018
  • 14-Feb-2019


Filr 3.4.2 Client for Windows


After upgrading to the 3.4.2 Filr Desktop client, most files are not seen.  Files named $DATA or Zone.Identifier are shown in the merged view instead.  Or the merged view Filr folder is empty.


There are three causes and three resolutions to this symptom:

Cause #1: Defect in Filr Desktop Client version 3.4.2
With the introduction of long path support, a bug was introduced where files are no longer found in the merged view after downloading a file using a web browser to the Filr merged view area. 

Resolution to Cause #1: Filr 3.4.3 Desktop client, available as a download. It will also be part of the Filr 3.4.3 appliance upgrade. After installing the 3.4.3 client, rename the folder (or folders) which has the sync problem, wait for the data to sync after the rename, then rename the folder back to the original name. The problem should not come back with the Filr 3.4.3.

Cause #2: .NET version not updated
Installed the Filr Desktop Client in quiet mode, which causes an error of "Filr Service is not working".  This can happen when installing the Filr Desktop Client using a Desktop Management system, such as ZENworks.  In order for the installer to successfully upgrade the .NET version, administrative rights are required.  When running the installer in a default manner, there will be a prompt to request these privileges.

Resolution to Cause #2:
Re-install the 3.4.2 or 3.4.3 Filr Desktop client, which will upgrade the .NET version to 4.6.2 or newer.

Cause #3: On ZENworks Desktop, Filr Client upgrade with  Secure System User fails
Installed the Filr Desktop Client in quiet mode using ZENworks as a Secure System User, which causes an error of "Filr Service is not working".
Resolution to Cause #3
After successful upgrade, restart the File explorer so that the user is upgraded completely to the latest Filr desktop client.
Note: For both Causes 1, 2 and 3, all other Filr 3.4.+ clients (Mobile, web, macOS) work as expected.

Cause #4: Secure Boot is enabled, causing filrapphookx64.dll not to load.

Resolution to Cause #4: Disable "Secure boot" for the system.
As per:
states: "The AppInit_DLLs mechanism is disabled by default when secure boot is enabled."

Additional Information

How to check the current .Net framework version?
Launch a command prompt (cmd.exe)
cd %windir%\Microsoft.NET\Framework
cd into the v4.0* directory
execute .\MSBuild.exe -version
Example on Windows 7, running .NET 4.6.2:
C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319>MSBuild.exe -version
Microsoft (R) Build Engine version 4.6.1590.0
[Microsoft .NET Framework, version 4.0.30319.42000]
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Example on Windows 10 (1803) running .NET 4.7:
C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319>MSBuild.exe -version
Microsoft (R) Build Engine version 4.7.3056.0
[Microsoft .NET Framework, version 4.0.30319.42000]
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved

Regarding $DATA issue, this appears to be only observed with files that are either downloaded from internet or received from a different computer.
So when copying this received or downloaded file from the hard drive to MyFiles a $DATA file with 0KB will be created. $DATA is basically a stream file containing additional information of the actual file.

Stream files like $DATA are harmless and vanishes once you rename the folder containing this file.

The Filr 3.4.2 desktop client for Windows is shipped with a new filesystem driver to accommodate the long path feature.
Therefor it's recommended to check whether the FilrDriver is loaded, ant that it's the correct version.
This is accomplished using a command prompt (cmd.exe) launched as Administrator.

To check whether the FilrDriver is loaded, execute:

Depending on how many drivers are loaded on the system, there should be a list as a result, one of them should be the filr driver, and only one instance

Filter Name                     Num Instances    Altitude    Frame
------------------------------  -------------  ------------  -----
FilrDriver                              1       383340         1

Then verify if it's the correct version for Filr 3.4.2, execute:
driverquery /v |findstr FilrDriver

This should show that the FilrDriver is dated October 18th 2018 and loaded from the Windows' system Drivers location.
FilrDriver   FilrDriver             FilrDriver             File System   System     Running    OK         TRUE        FALSE        0                 40,960      0          18-Oct-18 12:19:31     C:\WINDOWS\system32\DRIVERS\FilrDriver.sys       4,096

In case the FilrDriver is not loaded or updated, it can be installed from the same administrator command prompt:
cd "\Program Files\Novell\Filr\"
dir FilrDriver.sys (should read October 18th 2018 as date)
RUNDLL32.EXE SETUPAPI.DLL,InstallHinfSection DefaultInstall .\FilrClientMergedView.inf
Then reboot the workstation or unload and reload the FilrDriver:
fltmc unload filrdriver
fltmc load filrdriver