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I think most of you have heard about the SharePoint Cache. This is a directory full of cached objects, wrapped in XML. Sometimes this cache can become corrupted. Usually you can face problems when developing Timer Jobs for SharePoint. These definitions use this cache, so keep in mind every time you deploy new versions of the assemblies; we have to clear the cache.

Another example is sometimes you see some odd errors occurring when we change settings in SharePoint Server 2007, such as when we try to modify an alternate access mapping. We have a KB article also http://support.microsoft.com/kb/939308. Sometimes we might notice some issues when changing settings concerning search. A work around seems to be clearing the SharePoint configuration cache. The configuration cache is where we cache configuration information on each server in the farm.  Caching the data on each server prevents us from having to make SQL calls to pull this information from the configuration database.  Sometime this data can become corrupted and needs to be cleared out and recreated. If we have issues with a single server, clear the config cache on that server, we do not need to clear the cache on the entire farm. To do a single server, follow the steps below on just the problem server.

  1. First Stop the Timer service. To do this, follow these steps:
  2. Click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Services.
  3. Right-click Windows SharePoint Services Timer, and then click Stop.
  4. Delete or move the contents of the following folder:

Server 2003 location: Drive:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\SharePoint\Config\GUID and delete all the XML files from the directory. 

Server 2008 location: Drive:\ProgramData\Microsoft\SharePoint\Config\GUID and delete all the XML files from the directory.

Please note: ONLY THE XML FILES, NOT THE .INI FILE.

  1. Open the cache.ini with Notepad and reset the number to 1. Save and close the file. 
  1. Start the Timer service. To do this, follow these steps:
  2. Click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Services.
  3. Right-click Windows SharePoint Services Timer, and then click Start.
  4. After you see XML files appearing on the Index server, repeat steps 2, 3 & 4 on each query server, waiting for XML files to appear before moving to subsequent servers
  5. After all of the query servers have all been cleared and the new .xml files have been generated, then you can go to the Web front end and Application servers in the farm and repeat the steps.
As I mentioned earlier if you have problem with one server only. In that server we need to do the steps I mentioned above; no need to do it in each server. Before going to clear the cache I recommend to take a backup of the files from the cache.

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