'This folder is empty' when it's NOT


B

Brianm

Ever since I got Win7Pro 64-bit I've seen a continuing problem where in
Windows Explorer, occasionally when I click on a folder it says "This
folder is empty". Then if I click on a different folder, then click
BACK on that folder, the FILES SHOW!! The research I did on "folder
empty" all referred to removing the "hidden" attribute or such, but
these ARE NOT HIDDEN files. They're regular files, which appear one
minute, then the next they don't, then the next they do again. Anybody
see this behavior?
 
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G

Gene E. Bloch

Ever since I got Win7Pro 64-bit I've seen a continuing problem where in
Windows Explorer, occasionally when I click on a folder it says "This
folder is empty". Then if I click on a different folder, then click
BACK on that folder, the FILES SHOW!! The research I did on "folder
empty" all referred to removing the "hidden" attribute or such, but
these ARE NOT HIDDEN files. They're regular files, which appear one
minute, then the next they don't, then the next they do again. Anybody
see this behavior?
Are you using Libraries? They have anomalies, but I don't know whether
what you are seeing is one of them.

Disclaimer:
I don't like libraries, so

1. I am quick to accuse them of causing problems

2. I don't use them, so I don't know all that they do (good or bad), or
whether my accusations are justified
 
P

Paul

Brianm said:
Ever since I got Win7Pro 64-bit I've seen a continuing problem where in
Windows Explorer, occasionally when I click on a folder it says "This
folder is empty". Then if I click on a different folder, then click
BACK on that folder, the FILES SHOW!! The research I did on "folder
empty" all referred to removing the "hidden" attribute or such, but
these ARE NOT HIDDEN files. They're regular files, which appear one
minute, then the next they don't, then the next they do again. Anybody
see this behavior?
I can't say I've seen the behavior.

There are a couple ways this could happen:

1) Windows has a race condition, that is only triggered when some
device changes the timing of the software you're using. Some people
see strange things, but only when using an SSD instead of a hard drive.
These would be architecture bugs.

2) A more likely explanation, is you've added software to your system,
which makes your system behave differently than it does for everyone
else.

I've had a couple of anomalies, that the root cause was filter drivers
used by Virtual PC and VirtualBox. The drivers are present, even when you're
not using the software, meaning those drivers are free to muck about. And
it's one reason I have a golden rule, not to have more than one VM
software per OS.

Other things added to the system, are Context Menu handlers and Property
Sheet software. And I suppose Libraries are an example of a "wart on the
side" of the regular software, that might fall into this category.

http://shellfix.nirsoft.net/shell_problems_list.html

http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/shexview.html

Startup items, some of those might function at the driver level.
So that's another area you can review and look for anything out
of the ordinary. Autoruns can give you a list.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb963902

So if you can't Google and get an exact match on the symptoms
(and I didn't see anything in a quick search), you have to start
looking for differences between your system, and what everyone
else sees and uses.

The AV software you use, can do stuff like this, because it
"gets into everything". But then, if there was an issue like
that, it should show up in Google. As a lot of people would have
seen it. Like, any time AV software runs amok, and quarantines
the wrong files, we get to hear about it here.

Paul
 
B

Brianm

Gene E. Bloch said:
Are you using Libraries? They have anomalies, but I don't know whether
what you are seeing is one of them.

NO, I do not use Libraries. I never took any specific action to disable
them (if such a thing exists), but do not use them. I am clicking on the
folder itself in Windows Explorer.

BTW, it's difficult to affix any particular pattern to this problem, but
it seems like when it does happen, it's typically on a folder that
contains many large files, like videos. Not sure if that gives a
clue....
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

NO, I do not use Libraries. I never took any specific action to disable
them (if such a thing exists), but do not use them. I am clicking on the
folder itself in Windows Explorer.
Well, it was all I could think of :-(

Or even a :) if you'd like to laugh at me ...
BTW, it's difficult to affix any particular pattern to this problem, but
it seems like when it does happen, it's typically on a folder that
contains many large files, like videos. Not sure if that gives a
clue....
My new guess is that Explorer takes a moment to read the directory, and
meanwhile reports an empty directory instead of an hourglass...

It's probably worth as much as my first guess :)
 
P

Paul

Brianm said:
NO, I do not use Libraries. I never took any specific action to disable
them (if such a thing exists), but do not use them. I am clicking on the
folder itself in Windows Explorer.

BTW, it's difficult to affix any particular pattern to this problem, but
it seems like when it does happen, it's typically on a folder that
contains many large files, like videos. Not sure if that gives a
clue....
So it's like, trying to do thumbnails ?

If you open Task Manager, is the CPU very busy ?

If you use a performance monitor, is the disk going crazy at the time ?

I've had that sort of thing happen on WinXP, when a video folder is
examined, and the OS wants to make thumbnails.

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/11738-thumbnail-previews-enable-disable.html

Paul
 
C

choro

Ever since I got Win7Pro 64-bit I've seen a continuing problem where in
Windows Explorer, occasionally when I click on a folder it says "This
folder is empty". Then if I click on a different folder, then click
BACK on that folder, the FILES SHOW!! The research I did on "folder
empty" all referred to removing the "hidden" attribute or such, but
these ARE NOT HIDDEN files. They're regular files, which appear one
minute, then the next they don't, then the next they do again. Anybody
see this behavior?

This surely is a case of "Now you see it; Now you don't"!--
choro
*****
 
B

Brianm

Paul said:
So it's like, trying to do thumbnails ?
No-- it simply shows an empty folder with "This folder is empty"
displaying in the right pane at the top, like it does for a truly empty
folder (which this isn't).

If you open Task Manager, is the CPU very busy ?
No.


If you use a performance monitor, is the disk going crazy at the time ?
No.


I've had that sort of thing happen on WinXP, when a video folder is
examined, and the OS wants to make thumbnails.

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/11738-thumbnail-previews-enable-disable.html

Paul

I have NEVER had this happen in XP in 10 years of having XP.
 
W

Wolf K

Ever since I got Win7Pro 64-bit I've seen a continuing problem where in
Windows Explorer, occasionally when I click on a folder it says "This
folder is empty". Then if I click on a different folder, then click
BACK on that folder, the FILES SHOW!! The research I did on "folder
empty" all referred to removing the "hidden" attribute or such, but
these ARE NOT HIDDEN files. They're regular files, which appear one
minute, then the next they don't, then the next they do again. Anybody
see this behavior?
I think it's a side effect of indexing.
 
J

Jeff Layman

Ever since I got Win7Pro 64-bit I've seen a continuing problem where in
Windows Explorer, occasionally when I click on a folder it says "This
folder is empty". Then if I click on a different folder, then click
BACK on that folder, the FILES SHOW!! The research I did on "folder
empty" all referred to removing the "hidden" attribute or such, but
these ARE NOT HIDDEN files. They're regular files, which appear one
minute, then the next they don't, then the next they do again. Anybody
see this behavior?
When it next happens, do not change folders, but open a console and see
what you get with a Dir C:\...\...\...\<open folder> command.

If it works ok with the console and you can see the files, but still not
with Windows Explorer, that might at least show if the problem is with
WE or Win7 as a whole.

Mind you, even if you get an answer, I'm not sure where you go from there...
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

When it next happens, do not change folders, but open a console and see
what you get with a Dir C:\...\...\...\<open folder> command.
It can be done *much* more easily.

Shift-right-click on the folder in question and choose "Open command
window here" from the context menu.
 
J

Jeff Layman

It can be done *much* more easily.

Shift-right-click on the folder in question and choose "Open command
window here" from the context menu.
True - I always forget that it's there. I wonder why MS bothered with
the Shift - RC, and didn' t just put it on the RC menu? On my HPx64, the
additional offerings are:
Open command window here
Open in new process
Copy as path

However, by using that method you might still be going through WE, and
being affected by something it is doing. Going the long-winded way
through the Start button might get around that. Now if you got
different results, /that/ would be interesting.
 
C

Char Jackson

Are you using Libraries? They have anomalies, but I don't know whether
what you are seeing is one of them.
I've been using two Libraries on a daily basis since sometime last year and
so far I have not seen any anomalies. *knock on wood*
Disclaimer:
I don't like libraries, so

1. I am quick to accuse them of causing problems

2. I don't use them, so I don't know all that they do (good or bad), or
whether my accusations are justified
I like your disclaimer. :)
 
C

Char Jackson

I can't say I've seen the behavior.
I've seen this issue with Win 7, but never with XP or Win 8, AFAICR. It
doesn't happen often, and to clear it up I simply click in the 'empty'
window to make sure the focus is there, then I hit F5 to refresh that
window. Poof, there are the files that I knew were there. I'm sure you could
also navigate away and then navigate back, but refreshing the window always
works for me.
 
P

Paul

Char said:
I've seen this issue with Win 7, but never with XP or Win 8, AFAICR. It
doesn't happen often, and to clear it up I simply click in the 'empty'
window to make sure the focus is there, then I hit F5 to refresh that
window. Poof, there are the files that I knew were there. I'm sure you could
also navigate away and then navigate back, but refreshing the window always
works for me.
There is a thread here. But the thread is a bit weird looking, almost
like a bunch of individual threads where poured into the one thread,
to get rid of them.

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-files/windows-7-does-not-refresh-folder-views/9d1ede23-2666-4951-b3b9-b6c1ce3d1ebf?page=8

While there are some solid ideas presented here, it's hard to say
whether there is just one root cause. Since new entries to the thread
are dated from 2009, into 2013, then SP1 probably didn't fix it either.

If the folder eventually refreshes, it could be a network timeout
sets the time of the eventual refresh.

Paul
 
C

Char Jackson

There is a thread here. But the thread is a bit weird looking, almost
like a bunch of individual threads where poured into the one thread,
to get rid of them.

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-files/windows-7-does-not-refresh-folder-views/9d1ede23-2666-4951-b3b9-b6c1ce3d1ebf?page=8

While there are some solid ideas presented here, it's hard to say
whether there is just one root cause. Since new entries to the thread
are dated from 2009, into 2013, then SP1 probably didn't fix it either.

If the folder eventually refreshes, it could be a network timeout
sets the time of the eventual refresh.
I wouldn't have thought a network timeout would come into play with a local
disk. Anyway, it's a minor annoyance. Related, but much more annoying, is
the fact that 7 and 8 take it upon themselves to refresh the folder windows
far more often than they need to. For example, if I'm moving a series of
files in or out of a displayed folder, I really don't want the display
refreshed after each individual file is operated on. That makes it very hard
to start a second task on the same folder.
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

much more annoying, is
the fact that 7 and 8 take it upon themselves to refresh the folder windows
far more often than they need to. For example, if I'm moving a series of
files in or out of a displayed folder, I really don't want the display
refreshed after each individual file is operated on. That makes it very hard
to start a second task on the same folder.
If you opened the folder in question in a second window before operating
on the first window, would the second window also update as you
described?

That's a guess - I've never experienced your problem, but I have no idea
why I haven't...
 
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C

Char Jackson

If you opened the folder in question in a second window before operating
on the first window, would the second window also update as you
described?
I didn't run another test before posting this, but I'm sure I remember that
opening multiple instances of Win Explorer doesn't avoid the issue. Great
guess, though.
That's a guess - I've never experienced your problem, but I have no idea
why I haven't...
In a folder containing multiple large-ish files, select half of them and
start moving them to another folder. Immediately select the other half and
then watch what happens. For me, every time a file move is complete, the
view refreshes, which means that my selection of "the other half" becomes a
selection of one.
 

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