Broken attachments

It happens now and then.

Some attachments become "broken" as listed by Storage Scanner script. Zotero shows them with an empty circle icon. They can still be found on the hard drive, in the auto-named Zotero folders. But not in the folders linked to the references. What is wrong? How can this happen? And how should one deal with this?
  • That’s likely a misunderstanding. They were likely just added on another computer and not yet synced, as explained in the error message and the linked Files Not Syncing page. Files can also be missing if you’re using download-as-needed file syncing mode, haven’t yet opened the file on that computer, and drag them to another library. But then they wouldn’t have existed in the target library to begin with. There’s no way for local files to disappear from disk due to anything Zotero does unless you actually delete the attachment items.

    Files in different storage directories would be other items, possibly in other libraries.
  • It is hard to know the circumstances but the files are old, many synchronizations have happened since they have been first added. No download-as-need mode is used. They are in group, so multiple overlapping user actions are possible.

    Is there a way to know which reference an auto-named Zotero storage folder links to?
  • The most likely explanation is just that they were never uploaded on the computer where they were created. Again, there's no way within Zotero itself for them to be deleted from disk without the attachment item also being deleted.
    Is there a way to know which reference an auto-named Zotero storage folder links to?
    Paste the 8-character folder name into the Zotero search bar in All Fields & Tags mode. You may need to check multiple libraries.
Sign In or Register to comment.