Unable to rename some subfolders



MailNews Core
Networking: POP
15 years ago
10 years ago


(Reporter: Steve Fesler, Assigned: Colin Blake)



Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)




15 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; OpenVMS AlphaStation_DS10_617_MHz; en-US; rv:1.4) Gecko/20030710 SWB/V1.4 (HP)
Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; OpenVMS AlphaStation_DS10_617_MHz; en-US; rv:1.4) Gecko/20030710 SWB/V1.4 (HP)

After generating several levels of subfolders, tried to rename some of the
subfolders.  Most were successful but there were some that resulted in the Alert:
"The folder could not be renamed.  Perhaps the folder is being reparsed, or the
new name is not a valid folder name."

Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:
1.generate 5 or 6 layers of subfolders.
2.Randomly rename the subfolders.
Actual Results:  
One or more subfolders could not be renamed

Expected Results:  
Allow the subfolder to be renamed.

Comment 1

15 years ago
I've seen this too. another thing that generates that message is to rename a
folder to something with "/" in it.

Seen it on Windows XP, in 1.4.

Comment 2

15 years ago
> 2.Randomly rename the subfolders.

Are you using names which should be valid folder names? Can you give some
examples of the new folder name? 

Also, when a rename fails, what happens if you completely exit Mozilla, restart
it, and try the exact same rename operation? Does it still fail?
Ever confirmed: true

Comment 3

15 years ago
I think this is another case of the CRTL rename bug which is reported elsewhere
as a problem emptying the cache. Basically a rename of a directory fails. See
CRTL_INTERNAL 2024 for details.

What this means for Mozilla Mail is that a folder can be renamed just so long as
it doesn't contain any sub-folders. This is because a folder without sub-folders
is just a couple of files on disk, and the rename of the files succeeds. But
when a folder contain sub-folders, then a directory is used on disk for the
contents of the sub-folder, and when you attempt to rename the folder the files
on disk get renamed but not the directory. This leaves the folder in an
inconsistant state and Mozilla gets very confused, hence the problems you are

For example, I had a folder BILL which contained sub-folders. On disk I had:


After the attempted folder rename to FRED I had:


That is not good.

I will push some more on the CRTL folks to get a resolution to this problem.
Assignee: sspitzer → colin

Comment 4

15 years ago
Good news, bad news.

The good news is that I got a response from the CRTL people and its possible to
get rename to exhibit the behavour we expect.

Bad news is that with one problem solved it just moved us on to the next
problem. Now the rename is failing because of the problem described in bug 187964.

The details which are really only of use to me at this point are as follows. The
directory is actually named foo.sbd in the code and when its created the OpenVMS
mkdir jacket routine converts that name to foo_sbd (for ODS-2 compatibility).
But when the rename("foo.sbd","bar.sbd") call is made the rename jacket doesn't
know that these are both directory files (they are both valid ODS-2 filespecs)
and so the "." is not converted to a "_", and therefore the rename fails.

The real fix is to make the ".sbd" postfix be platform specific, and this is
what bug 187964 is all about. Its *possible* that we might be able to work
around this in the rename jacket, but I need to think about what might break if
we were to do this.
Depends on: 187964

Comment 5

15 years ago
In case you've attempted to rename a folder containing sub-folders, and lost the
sub-folders as a result, here's how to get them back. 

For this example, assume the old folder name was "old" and that the new folder
name is "new", and that the profile being used is named "profile" (note that if
you haven't created additional profiles then your (only) profile should be named

$! make sure Mozilla/CSWB is not running
$ DIR [._MOZILLA.profile...MAIL...]old_SBD.DIR
$ SET DEFAULT <directory where old_SBD.DIR resides>
$! restart Mozilla/CSWB

Comment 6

15 years ago
The other way you can get back "lost" sub-folders is to rename the parent folder
back to its original name.

Comment 7

15 years ago
Steve, you indicated in a mail yesterday that my explanation in comment 3
doesn't explain the behaviour you are seeing. In that case I'm going to need
more information about how to reproduce this problem. 

Starting with a clean set of mail directories (not one which has been corrupted
by the problem described in comment 3), and being careful not to cause the bug
described by comment 3 (ie. do not rename any parent directories), please tell
me exactly what you do in order to get into a situation where folders can not be

Comment 8

15 years ago
Two weeks and no reply. Steve, if this is still a problem, please re-open and
supply the requested information.
Last Resolved: 15 years ago
Resolution: --- → WORKSFORME
Product: MailNews → Core
Product: Core → MailNews Core
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