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Offline Vault access within Citrix

Created: 16 Jan 2013 • Updated: 05 Feb 2013 | 6 comments
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I currently have a situation at a client and would like someone to help me out with. Actually it is a two part query.

For the forst part, to cut a very long story short, some of the storage at the client failed and as it happened, most of the archive partitions were on this storage, so naturally as a nett result the storage service will not start.

In the environment there are a few policies that are setup, two of which are for users who require an offline vault and those who don't.

We have had some feedback from a couple of users that puzzles me a little bit. The user who has an offline vault reports that she is unable to access any items, however the user who does not have an offline vault reports that he is able to access archived items.

Further more, the non offline vault user is also able to access his archives from his Citrix profile.

How would this be possible? Also, does EV create an offline cache in Citrix and if so where would be the default location for this data?

The second part involves cached content. If a user with an offline vault cache makes changes old emails, I presume that the updated information will be syncronised once EV is back online. However, to further compound the issue, a backup of the closed partitions was made several months back and it it possible that users have reponded to old emails etc.

If the archive had been updated prior to the storage failure, how does EV handle this? Will it sync and remove the copy from the offline vault or will it not re sync it as the item was synced previously after the restore has taken place?

Thanks in advance.

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JesusWept3's picture

So th first question is you shouldn't just go by their word, you will have to see what they're doing and why things aren't working

Her vault cache could be corrupt or never fully enabled in the first place and he maybe thinking that because the email opens then its pulling the archived item, even though there maybe a banner at the too saying that the item could not be retrieved

Both are actually quite common

As for how will the VC handle those changes, nothing will happen until the database entries are removed, so at the moment you have DB records for each of the items lost and index entries too

So when sync goes along it will see there's no change there
But after you run EVSVR and clean up the database and the indexes it will then cause the vault cache to purge the items, because it would be the same from other deletion processes such as storage expiry or user deletion through the webapp

AlanJ's picture

Admittedly I fell into that trap. Information can be lost in translation even from reliable sources.

The user was indeed trying to restore from vault or add to vault and that is where the issue arose.

I will need further information from the user community to ascertain how some users are able to access archives when other cannot. I suspect that the users with VC are the ones who are able to access vaulted mails.

So regarding VC and Citrix, is that possible at all?

Would a user be able to access his or her archives via Citrix?

Would I be correct in saying that once the indexes and database are cleaned up that the items would then be sync’d?

I take it with the non VC users, any new items will be lost as there will be no method of trying to re-sync new items.

JesusWept3's picture

IF the Vault Cache is set up in such a way to download items and the Vault Cache exists on the Citrix server, then yes, the user can absolutely open items from shortcuts. The EV Server could be completely offline and Vault Cache would still work from a read only point of view.

After all Vault Cache's main goal is to provide a way for end users to read email when they're offline, like sales people or executives that may be on a long flight without access to the internet but still need to retrieve their email.

As for the users ability to continue using vault cache and Synchronize... lets take the following Scenario

1. User have Windows 7 and Outlook 2007 with Vault Cache and Virtual Vault fully synced with all items
2. EV has one Vault store and four partitions rolled over at the end of each year
3. EV loses its 2009 partition from E:\Enterprise Vault Stores\Partition01\
4. Only Partition02, Partition03 and Partition04 now exist
5. No EVSVR has been performed to remove database entries where items no longer exist
6. Because no EVSVR has been performed, no Index entries have been removed either

If the user does NOT have Vault Cache set up and attempts to open items from 2010 onward
The item will open correctly UNLESS that item hsa a Shared SIS Part that existed in 2009
(i.e. they had an attachment such as a PDF that was archived in 2009, when a similar item was archived in 2010, EV simply just linked it to the existing PDF File)

If the user does have a fully working vault cache set up and attempts to open items from 2009, the items will open without issue, as well as that item from 2010 that had the shared PDF file linked, because that is also stored in the vault cache the user has downloaded.

If a user was to reset their vault cache , then it would most likely fail the synchronization, because it would read that there were items in the archive, but when it attempts to retrieve them they would all fail.

If a new user with a new archive was to be enabled for vault cache, that vault cache sync would go through since none of their items exist in the partition that was lost.

Now lets say you perform an EVSVR and remove the database entries and delete the index entries, when you synchronize the Vault Cache, it is simply going to remove those items that were lost from the vault cache, because as far as its concerned, the items don't exist in the archive and therefor shouldn't exist in the vault cache.

So another example would be you have Storage Expiry enabled to delete items, and an employee that goes off to partenety leave, expiry gets rid of some old items, and the employee returns to work after three months..... EV no longer holds any records for those items deleted 3 months ago, but her vault cache still holds them, when do you do a synch it will notice the difference and rmeove the items that no longer exist.

One thing you *could* do is advise users to go to their Vault Cache location which is usually in the Application Data directories and copy out the DB files.

The DB files are the Vault Cache or Offline Vault files and are actually just PST files.
The files are split in Date Ranges , so they could take all their 2009 DB files, rename them to PST files and then copy them out. The only issue with this though is they do NOT hold the folder structure, as its based on date attributes and not \inbox\my folder

IF they have Vault Cache AND Virtual Vault, they can copy the items from Outlook back in to their inbox in order to make sure their items are safe

AlanJ's picture

That has helped answer a few questions, thanks.

Regarding syncronization, as it stands all the services are up and running with the exception of the Storage service of course.

I have a user who performs a sync and shows as successfully completed although there are no items downloaded or archived according to the result. Would that be because the syncronization is actually taking place between the mailbox and the Vault Cache?

Also, if a user performs a search vault function, does that first query the VC before trying to access the EV server? The user is performing a search and it is trying to access the server and is therefore unable to view the item.

JesusWept3's picture

There is an option to enable archive explorer and search locally but it has to be enabled via the desktop policy and the user has to be completely 100% offline, because if the user is online and it can get to the /EntepriseVault/ webapp, it will use that

You could always enable Outlook instant search or windows desktop search and have it index the DB files and search for items that way

Otherwise, yes the user is most likely going to the main EV browser search, can search their items no problem because the indexes are fully intact, but trying to open old items would error out

As for the sync, not sure why it's successfully syncing with the storage service off. But one thing it could be is that it's doing Pre-emotive archiving and it looks at the users index and see there isn't anything to add or remove

Pre-emotive archiving is a mechanism that vault cache uses to scan your mailbox and if there are items that are eligible to archive within the next couple of days, if will copy it locally in to the cache so it doesn't have to download it from EV later

Rob.Wilcox's picture

It's worth remembering that Enterprise Vault Vault Cache isn't supported on Citrix...


Symantec provides client support for Citrix-based thin client provisioning. This
support is limited to the installation and use of the Enterprise Vault client for
Outlook, excluding Vault Cache or Virtual Vault. Support for these features is a
future requirement for the Enterprise Vault client.
Symantec does not currently support any aspect of its Enterprise Vault server
infrastructure provisioned via Citrix.


That's from the Compatibility Charts