This Leopard bug beats anything Vista has to offer

This Leopard bug beats anything Vista has to offer

Summary: In this blog I've highlighted a number of Vista related bugs, some of which are trivial, others pretty serious, but today I've come across a bug in Leopard that beats anything Microsoft has to offer in Vista hands down - this bug is serious because it causes widespread data loss, and it's easy to replicate.


In this blog I've highlighted a number of Vista related bugs, some of which are trivial, others pretty serious, but today I've come across a bug in Leopard that beats anything Microsoft has to offer in Vista hands down - this bug is serious because it causes widespread data loss, and it's easy to replicate.

The issue has been covered in detail over on Tom Karpik's blog.  Here's the lowdown on this bug:

Leopard’s Finder has a glaring bug in its directory-moving code, leading to horrendous data loss if a destination volume disappears while a move operation is in action. I first came across it when Samba crashed while I was moving a directory from my desktop over to a Samba mount on my FreeBSD server.

So, you use Finder to pick a folder to move to a different volume and start the moving process.  If however, something happens to cause that volume to go offline during the move process then your original copy of the data in the folder that you were moving is deleted as though the move process was completed successfully.  Bye-bye data.  Any files not moved to the destination volume are lost.  I'm guessing that the OS assumes that the move operation has completed correctly and cleans up after itself, unwittingly deleting files that haven't been moved. 

This is the sort of bug that'll make you appreciate that you took the time to become acquainted with Time Machine.

I've replicated this bug on my install of Leopard following Karpik's instructions and the problem seems to occur every time without fail.  This bug would make me vary wary of moving data across a wireless network to a remote system - an interruption to the WiFi connection could nuke your data. 

I'm hoping to take a closer look at the file system tomorrow to see if the files are still hidden there somewhere - maybe in a temp file or something.  I also want to examine other circumstances when this error could kick in - for example, does this happens when moving between the file system and USB flash drives?

I'm seriously beginning to wonder if anyone beta tested this OS. 


Topics: Operating Systems, Microsoft, Software, Windows

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  • in theory...

    this should only happen when you are moving files within the same volume. when you move files to a separate volume OSX by default copies the files--leaving the originals where they are (no matter the copy fails or not).

    assuming it's true, it's still a serious fault and needs fixing ASAP. does anyone know if it is specific to leopard, or was it present in earlier versions of OSX?
    • oh, i see.

      this affects only [i]move[/i], not [i]copy[/i].

      i guess the workaround for now is only copy, don't move. to be honest, i never specifically [b]move[/b] anything between volumes, because it's easier to copy by dragging and then delete manually. i guess that's why i was confused above.
      • Vista: loosing files when copying more than 16'384 files since last boot

        With Leopard, as you say, you can have problems MOVING files ... when target gets disconnected while moving ... problem known since a couple of days !!!

        With Vista, as i say, you can have problems COPYING files ... when more than 16'384 files already have been copied since last boot ... problem known by Microsoft since MORE THAN 8 MONTHS !!! SP1 doesn't fix that issue !!!

        I will carefully watch how long it takes for APPLE to fix there problem !
        • Nice try

          But a data loss bug easily trumps anything Vista has.
          • what's important ? Nice "goodies" or a well working file system ?

            What is more important for you ? Transparent Window borders or a well working file system ?
          • wahuh?

            "a well working file system"?

            We're here talking about a massive data loss bug, and you show up claiming you'd rather lose data than have transparent window borders?

            Desperate buddy, very desperate.
          • Nice try

            I'm talking about massive data losses on VISTA - known by MICROSOFT since MORE THAN 8 MONTHS - and NOT fixed till today. Vista SP1 fixes lots of "transparent window border style problems", but NOT the data losses !!!

            Shure MY fovorite is STABLE FILE SYSEM over transparent window borders ... YOU talk about my nice try !
          • Source?

            You're talking about an out of memory issue that DOES NOT cause data loss.

            Good effort on the deflection, but you still lost the point.
          • Vista DOES cause data loss !

            I am talking about an ( out of memory ) issue that DOES cause data loss.

            I am NOT interested to win points, i am just interested to have well working basic functionalities with OS'es like Vista and Leopard.

            What are YOUR interests, rtk ?
          • No, it doesn't.

            Show me a source that claims the out of memory issue causes data loss.

            My interest is in not letting the apple zealots try and deflect this bug by making false claims about windows.
          • Yes, Vista DOES cause data loss ... here 2 Sources

            English, thread opened Feb. 23., 2007 !!!:


            German, thread opened Feb. 14., 2007 !!!:

            Other sources on request.

            Of course, Microsoft has tried to hide the problems. But actualy they confirm.
          • re: sloer@

            There is no mention in either of your threads of data loss. Get a clue.
          • data loss - i say it NOW if you wish

            ONE of the symptoms is "Out of memory" - just ONE of different behaviours ( "Out of memory" with EFFECTIVELY more than 2 Giga Bytes of free memory !!! Another feature of Vista ? )

            ANOTHER symptom is a Vista-response to copy-operation telling "ANYTHING OK" resp. with no negative feedback, no error message. I have PERSONALLY experienced that behaviour on DIFFERENT PC's, newly set up with Vista Home and Vista Business, just after boot and making nothing else but copying files and directories ( as i usually do such things after setting up a new OS - with Vista those steps can be very hard to do ! )

            But finally i just like to know if i have to expect similar problems on the mac-side ! Or if Apple-People are handling such problems more serious then Microsoft !!! I will see.
          • The links and complaint are odd.

            None of the links mention data loss. They do mention out of memory issues, but as best I can tell, the conclusion by virtually everyone (with the possible exception of simmon) is that it was caused by Kaspersky.

            In fact, one person he was talking to in the first link specifiallysaid removing Kaspersky ended the issue.

            On Hardocp, there are many examples of people copying more than 16k files.

            I'm not saying there's no bug, but nobody seems to say it's a bug that loses data and most seem to think the bug isn't in the OS.

            Bottom line is if there's a source that proves this bug is MS's, you need to give a link to a precise message or article where it's reproduced (preferably by multiple people on clean installs (no other apps that might be the real cause).
          • So I copy my files...

            (if I were using vista, as if) and then delete the originals since the operation went "OK" and then find the copies aren't there. would that be considered data loss?
            Hrothgar - PCLinuxOS User
          • delete AFTER checking if anything is there

            If the operation went "OK" ( Vista tells you "OK" ) and then you find the copies aren't there, then i would consider that as data loss, yes.

            Because, when putting such file/folder operations into some sort of script, then you have to trust the return-codes. So, when return-code tells "OK" after copying, then the copy-process MUST have finished successfully ... otherwise the return-code was wrong, and that's an error.
          • Out of Memory does not cause data loss ...

            ... it just aborts the copy. The original files are left intact. Your claims are bogus.
          • Vista causes data loss

            ShadeTree: Your reading is limited to whatever you like to read.
          • No, it doesn't.

            You haven't read your own links, you're hardly in any position to question the reading ability of someone else.

            Once more, your links are about a bug, but not a data loss bug.
          • Duhhh...

            I like the third option: a system that wont destroy the backup data, the original data - in fact *any data* on my system during the backup process, *wink at me* and send an annoying pop-up over the screen saying, "...Backup completed sucessfully. You're scheduled backup took 18 hours 43 minutes and 28 seconds. You have sucessfully transferred O bytes of data to your backup destination. Have a nice day."

            Any more questions wiseguy???