Recover overwritten version of a file

Hi there, I’m having this problem.

‘There are instances where and older version can be synced on top of a newer version if an older version makes it way into the odrive folder after a previous sync, or an older version has its date updated to look newer.’

How do I retrieve the newer version then?

Hi @shanstheone,
It sounds like You are using Google Drive. If so, you can retrieve recent older versions of your files.

Use the “information” icon on the Google Drive web client.

For history on your entire drive, make sure you click on “My Drive” on the left side and then the “i” icon on the right side and select “Activity”

This page has more information on these Google Drive features:

It’s not an older version I’m looking for though; it’s today’s version I’m looking for.

Right now, it’s only showing me last night’s version (the one odrive parked on my desktop client as *.cloud) and try as I might, I can’t see the version that I worked on today at all - anywhere. Even on the google drive proper.

Hi @shanstheone,
odrive doesn’t store any of your files, so there isn’t a way to recover this file from odrive, itself, but Google should have it if it was previously uploaded.

To make sure we’re on the same page, is this correct?

  • You were working on a file today. It synced to Google Drive
  • An older version was copied in on another computer and synced, overwriting the file you were working on this morning.
  • Looking at Google Drive’s web client, the overwritten version does not show up.

Is it possible that the file was renamed or moved?
If you look at the history of the entire drive (see above), can you see in the history where these files were created on Google Drive?

Have you checked your OS trash, to make sure it wasn’t inadvertently deleted?

Here’s the chronology:

  1. I worked on a file on my desktop yesterday, and sent the first draft to my friend in gmail. Because it was a huge file (INVESTOR PMEDIA PROFILE.v3.pptx), Gmail sent it to the Google Drive and shared the link in the email to my friend.
  2. After completing the changes, I moved the file from my desktop to the odrive folder on my computer. I noticed a file named INVESTOR PMEDIA PROFILE.v3.ptx.clouds in another location and moved it to the same folder.

Expectation when syncing: odrive will read that the current one in its folder is a newer version and update accordingly.
What happened: odrive overwrote the current file with the *.clouds version, which is yesterday’s version.

It was quite a bit of work that I need to find with today’s version. I tried the method you suggested, but it is also only showing me yesterday’s version on Google Drive.

Hi @shanstheone,
I tried reproducing the scenario you listed, but I can’t get to a state where either version of the file is no longer available.

Did the file sync after you moved it into odrive (uploaded and checkmarked)?

How soon after moving the file into the odrive folder did you move the placeholder file next to it?

Some additional things to try:

  • In the Google Drive webclient, search for INVESTOR PMEDIA PROFILE.v3.pptx in the Google Drive search bar. Is there more than one file that shows up?
  • Do you see the item in the Google Drive trash?
  • Use the following search term in the Google Drive search bar:
    is:unorganized owner:me
    This will search for orphaned files in your Google Drive. Orphaned files are files that Google Drive has lost track of in terms of where it resided, so it has no parent folder.

Can you also send a diagnostic from the odrive menu so I can take a closer look?

I tried all of them but it didn’t work - it’s still showing yesterday’s

I’ve sent the diagnostic as well.

Hi @shanstheone,
I took a look at the diagnostics, but it will only show as small window of time for the currently running session. It looks like you restarted odrive recently, so its not showing what happened with the copies/moves that you performed previously.

I know you have already done most of these things, but I just want to make sure. At this point there are only a few places the file could be:

  • When you look at the history of this file in Google Drive, what activities does it show?
    For example:

  • What is seen when you right-click on the file and select “Manage Versions”?

  • Double-check the MacOS Trash

  • Perform a global search for the file on your MacOS

  • Search for the file in Google Drive

  • Look in the Google Drive Trash

  • Search for orphaned files

If none of these options provide any information or insight into that file then it may not be recoverable, unfortunately.

I have tried lots and lots of scenarios to try to reproduce this issue, but I haven’t been able to duplicate the results of your steps above. In all cases the the non-cloud file is synced up successfully. The only case I have seen this is when a “real” file is moved in over the original file, which replaces it and the original file version never makes it to the cloud because it was not finished uploading before it was replaced.

I sincerely apologize that I cannot help more.

@Tony thank you for trying.

  1. When looked at the history of this file in Google Drive, the activity only shows the version from the day before, the one sent via email. No other versions are shown.
  2. When I right-click on the file and select “Manage Versions”, it also only shows the version from the day before - the same one as above. There are no other versions.
  3. I have:
  • double-checked my Mac trash
  • performed a global search for the file on my Mac
  • searched for the file in Google Drive
  • looked in the Google Drive Trash
  • searched for orphaned files

and none of these options seem to be able to find the overwritten file.

Is it possible that the scenarios you’ve been trying are not in the same format?

Because my scenario is as follows:

  • Latest file uploaded and sync-ed.
  • A previous cloud version moved to the same location, and opened, which results in the cloud version sync-ing with the latest file, and therefore over-writing.

I feel the reason is because odrive did not note the time-stamp on the file and overwrote the new file during the sync, which is the reason for the file disappearing.

As I went through the forum to look for answers, I noticed that it is not a new problem. Someone had a similar issue 8 months ago, which I believe was not resolved either? I’m not sure.

The thing is, if there was a way to find the version BEFORE the previous cloud version was moved to the same location, my problem would be solved.

As long as this is not the case, I don’t think there is any way to solve this either.

Again, thank you for trying.

Hi @shanstheone,
Thanks for the additional information!

I think this is the key. odrive considers any newly added local file, regardless of the date on the file, to be a new update. I think what may have happened is your more recent file was in the process of uploading, but never finished. Before it finished, the older file was moved into the same location as the newer file and opened, which ended up overwriting the newer file before it had a chance to fully sync. If it had uploaded, then Google Drive would’ve has that version of it, in addition to the older version.

We added an advanced feature in the product not too long ago that allows the user to prevent an older file from the cloud overwriting a newer file on the local filesystem. It is possible we could add a similar feature to prevent an older local file uploading over a newer remote file. However, even if we had this feature it wouldn’t have prevented what happened is this case, based on your scenario. This is because the newer file was replaced, locally, before it had a chance to upload.

I am truly sorry that you ran into a situation like this. I will continue to discuss with the team to see if there is a way to combat this scenario. Its actually the first time we’ve seen this, so with some further investigation there may be something else to safeguard against it.

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That would be great, thank you!

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