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File disappeared while attempting to move another file over it.
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While attempting to move another file over existent file (requesting deletion of the target file) the target file disappeared and I got a message that move it impossible as the target file is in an inconsistent state. The file seemed to be OK just a while earlier.

How can the file be made in a consistent state again? It is rather important as its EXIF data with connection to the file content are used during copyright resolution process of another file.

Below I describe what exactly did happen step by step.

  1. While processing this history merge request:

    I noticed that the "File:Denayer.jpg" has a single version with EXIF that seems identical to the top (2nd) version of "File:Jason Denayer.jpg" except the latter had no EXIF info and was a bit older.
  2. I decided to merge the top version of "File:Jason Denayer.jpg" as bottom version of "File:Denayer.jpg".
  3. I reverted the "File:Jason Denayer.jpg" to the 1st version (so now I needed to merge still the 2nd, but not the top one).
  4. I temporarily deleted the "File:Jason Denayer.jpg"
  5. I restored only the 2nd version of "File:Jason Denayer.jpg"
  6. I attempted to rename just restored "File:Jason Denayer.jpg" to new name "File:Denayer.jpg" without creating a redirect
  7. System reported that "File:Denayer.jpg" already exist and an option to delete this file appeared. I checked this option and requested the rename again
  8. I got an error messaage that rename failed as the target file is in an inconsistent state. I checked: the "File:Denayer.jpg" was not displayed properly.
  9. As the file was in use I needed to finish the process quicly, before bots start to unlink the file, so I decided to merge them under another name and fill this bug report.
  10. I renamed "File:Jason Denayer.jpg" to "File:Denayer2.jpg"
  11. I restored the remaining versions of "File:Jason Denayer.jpg"
  12. I renamed "File:Denayer.jpg" to "File:Denayer2.jpg" with redirect and with deletion of the just created target file. The problem described above did not appear here
  13. I restored the just deleted version of "File:Denayer2.jpg" as the bottom (older) version.

I had performed this process multiple times and I have never encountered the described problem earlier.
I would like to know if there is a mistake in my procedure or is this a software bug. And, if it is the latter case, how the file can be restored to a consistent state?

Links to all files (for convenience):

Event Timeline

Restricted Application added a subscriber: Aklapper. · View Herald Transcript
Poyekhali renamed this task from File disappeared while attemting to move another file over it. to File disappeared while attempting to move another file over it..Mar 27 2016, 1:02 PM
matmarex subscribed.
This comment was removed by matmarex.

And, if it is the latter case, how the file can be restored to a consistent state?

Somebody is going to need to do some Swift surgery, I guess.

Poyekhali lowered the priority of this task from High to Medium.Apr 24 2016, 11:17 PM

Well, since nobody is interested in fixing this now, I lowered the priority.

Riley_Huntley raised the priority of this task from Medium to Needs Triage.Apr 25 2016, 4:14 AM
Riley_Huntley subscribed.

@Pokefan95 As you prioritized this task, do you plan to work on this task? If yes, please also claim the task by setting yourself as assignee. You are not a developer, and we have a bugwrangler to manage prioritizing tasks.

The same problem appeared with while attempting to move

File:Footbridge_over_Aeron.jpg -> File:Footbridge_over_Aeron.JPG

The message that appeared during "move with delete target" attempt:

move.png (1×1 px, 168 KB)

The file existed just a while before, but only the 800x600 screenshot remained in my browser now:

footbridge.png (1×1 px, 3 MB)

This does not look as a temporary outage but as a broken software (repeatable effect). Any admin is able to destroy any image irreversibly? Very bad...

If the "move with delete target" feature is so dangerous, maybe it should be disabled until this problem is fixed? At least for images.

Aklapper added a subscriber: Liuxinyu970226.

@Liuxinyu970226: This was mentioned as an example why the Community Wishlist item "Commons backup" was proposed. This task is not an item on the Community Wishlist.

@Anomie Do you know if this bug was fixed by rMWea1781053eb3 / T213168, or is this a separate data loss issue?