UPDATE: SharePoint Workspace can now adapt to many of the situations that caused this error. If you are having this problem, search for "SharePoint Workspace" "Office 2010 cumulative update" at http://support.microsoft.com/search/, and then apply the SharePoint Workspace hotfix from the most recent cumulative update displayed.
Nesting folders is a traditional approach to organizing data in the Windows file system, but in SharePoint, organization is more commonly done via views or pages. In a few cases, folder structures in a document library may cause problems with SharePoint Workspace sync, and the symptoms can be misleading. Here are the issues we have seen:
If you create a document library and give it a nested folder structure in SharePoint Server 2007, then upgrade the server to SharePoint 2010, SharePoint Workspace may not be able to interpret the folder structure when you sync the library to SharePoint Workspace. The folders will move to a flat structure. For example, this:
will become this in the workspace:
A hotfix for this issue is available here:
Description of the SharePoint Workspace 2010 hotfix package (x86 Groove-x-none.msp, x64 Groove-x-none.msp): February 28, 2012http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2597939
If you drag and drop nested folders containing a file into SharePoint Workspace, or created a nested folder structure containing a file while offline in SharePoint Workspace, the Office Upload Center may return the following error:
Upload failed: Path not found
This happens because folder creation and file transfer are processed by two different Office modules. In some cases, the upload center attempts to transfer the file before the folders for it are available. To prevent this, pause uploads in the Upload Center before transferring the nested folder structure, or before coming online. This pause does not affect folder creation. Once the folder structure is created on the SharePoint server, resume uploads to transfer the files.
Consider the same folder structure as above, with all the files in the subfolders.
The site was created in SharePoint 2010 (or you applied the hotfix) and the library syncs accurately. However, at some point, while you are editing a file, someone deletes and recreates the folder and subfolder that the file was synced from, and then recreates them, along with the previous version of the file you are editing. Now this happens:
Instead of your edits overwriting the copy on the server, you end up one of these states:
If the changes to folder structure occurred while you were online in SharePoint Workspace:
If the changes to folder structure occurred while you were offline in SharePoint Workspace, and you have applied the hotfix:
If the changes to folder structure occurred while you were offline in SharePoint Workspace, and you have not applied the hotfix:
Note: Without the hotfix, you may also see this issue with only one folder layer.
In all of these cases, the only way to resume synching the document library is to disconnect the library from the workspace and then reconnect it, so the workspace has the new folders and folder IDs.
If you need to make this sort of change on the server, advise people who are synchronizing the library to a workspace to disconnect it before you delete and replace content. Also, if you use an Explorer view to work with folders on SharePoint, be careful that you are not deleting and recreating folders as part of that process, by dragging them out and then back in.
In some cases, you may want to consider different ways of organizing your data. A SharePoint document library should be a fairly narrow category, that will not usually require extensive subdivision. You may have files in one library that should be distributed among multiple libraries, or mingled projects that would be clearer if each had its own subsite. Some data is easier to organize in a list. If you are new to SharePoint (or stumbled into it unprepared), the article SharePoint 2010 Usage Best Practices is a good place to start.
When working with Views, keep in mind one limitation of SharePoint Workspace – it does not recognize views that sort, group, or filter by columns that do not apply to all content types. For example, you cannot sync a view that sorts by File Type, as folders do not have a value for File Type.