Files and documents are deleted or removed when Symantec Workspace Virtualization layer is reset

Article:TECH12920  |  Created: 2006-03-14  |  Updated: 2015-01-13  |  Article URL
Article Type
Technical Solution


After resetting an Symantec Workspace Virtualization application layer, all of the files that had been created and saved have been permanently removed or deleted.


Symantec Workspace Virtualization


When a file is created or edited by a program running within an SWV layer, the file will be contained in the layer's writable sublayer. When the layer is deactivated, the sublayer is deactivated and so files contained within it are also deactivated, but will return when the layer is reactivated.

But, when the layer is reset, the writable sublayer is deleted and replaced by a new writable sublayer. Everything that was contained in the deleted sublayer is now purged and cannot be retrieved.


To protect personal files from accidentally being lost when a layer is reset, there are a couple of options that can performed.

Option 1:  Add one or more "Exclude Entries" within the layer itself, which will cause the files to be written to the base (hosting operating system file structure).

The following are some basic steps for adding Exclude Entries:

  1. Deactivate the current layer, then double-click on it.
  2. Highlight the Exclude Entries tab, then right-click in the blank space beneath it, and click New Exclude Entry.

  3. Add exclusions individually by specifying the file extension you wish to target, or a directory structure.

  4. Once all desired exclusions have been added then close the layer properties interface, and activate the layer again.

Option 2: Create a Data Layer which captures specified files or directories to itself rather than the application layer.

The following are some basic steps for adding a Data Layer:

  1. Within the SWV Administration Tool select File > New Layer.

  2. Select the option create a new Data Layer.

  3. Give the Layer a name, and then fill in the list of extensions (separated by semi-colons) and/or a directory structure.

    Activate the new layer.  When activated, the Data Layer will take precedence over the Application Layer, and will therefore force files with the specified extensions and/or in the specified paths to be saved directly to itself rather than the Application Layer.

Note: All files previously created within the application layer prior to the addition of Exclude Entries or Data Layers will not be affected and are, therefore, in danger of being removed if the layer is reset. These files should be manually backed up or copied to another computer or media prior to resetting the existing layer. All files created after the the Exclude Entries or Data Layer have been added and activated, will be protected from being removed during a reset of the Application Layer since they no longer reside in the writable sublayer of that layer.


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