File Sharing in Monterey

When attempting to copy a file from my MBA (Monterey) to my new iMac (Monterey) I find that I cannot see any files in my Documents and Desktop folders

When accessing my 2015 MBA (Monterey) from my brand new iMac (Monterey) I can see all my Finder folders but cannot see the contents of the Documents and Desktop folders. I can see what is in all the other folders, Pictures, Movies, Applications, etc, but the Documents and Desktop folders refuse to reveal their contents.

When accessing the same MBA from my old MBP (El Capitan) I get the same result. Also when trying from my old 2007 iMac (Snow Leopard) I get the same result. So I suspect something has happened to my MBA since I upgraded it to Monterey. I have checked all the sharing permissions and they seem OK, so I am stumped. I would like to transfer some files from the MBA to the new iMac but cannot do so.
The MBA can see all the other computers on the network except the new iMac.
Any ideas?

I reckon you may have switched on iCloud sync for your desktop and documents folders. When this is on the actual files aren’t stored in the usual folders. Instead the files are somewhere inside the library folder.

Thank you for replying. I had hoped you were onto something there, but the file path of my Documents and Desktop folders show they are not in iCloud. Anyway, they would exceed the capacity of iCloud anyway. I have rechecked all the file-sharing settings, but everything is OK. I’ll keep searching.

I poked about in the Sharing preferences, selecting and deselecting the various options, not really sure what some of it meant. But the upshot of this effort is that it fixed the problem. I can now see the MBA’s files across the network. If only I knew what click did the trick. Great.

I have just discovered that I have the exact same problem! I wish I knew what you did to rectify it. I have tried poking around in preferences too but to no avail.

I cannot access my documents on my MacBook Pro from my Mac mini but the documents on my Mac mini are available to my MacBook Pro. Both running Monterey. I can’t see any difference in settings between the two computers…

Any help would be much appreciated.

So I just turned file sharing off & then turned it back on again! :roll_eyes:

Glad you fixed it. I still have a number of occurrences where the result is opposite to the preference settings. More poking about is needed.
Upgrading a 2015 MBA to Monterey is a big step, one just too many it seems. The MBA is rather clunky in operation now. I upgraded to make it the same as our new M1 iMac, but I am thinking of going back to High Sierra. I have kept a bootable copy, fortunately.

I’d say Mojave is the ultimate OS for that hardware.

I have a 2015 13” MacBook Pro which I updated to Monterey when I got my M1 Mac mini. I have to say that Monterey has been pretty good. Better than the previous two OS’s…

I would imagine a MacBook Pro would be a little higher specced than a MacBook Air and would handle the upgrade better.
My MBA seems to have a mind of its own; it has a set of login apps that defy stopping. They are not in the login set, but no matter what they keep popping up every time I log in.
Bookmarks in browsers won’t stick, and Finder windows revert to Date sorting, even after I have repeatedly selected Name sorting. There are a number of other little annoyances like these.
I am considering reverting back to High Sierra, and perhaps then upgrading to Mohave, as Jaysee suggested. I will give it a bit more time and seek advice widely.

It sounds like you’ve got things going on that are nothing to do with Monterey. If even a small subset of users were experiencing these issues there would be a lot of complaining and I’m not seeing that. The MacRumors forums are a whinge fest and they seem to be mainly complaining about memory leaks.

I’m running Monterey on a few machines and I’ve got no significant issues apart from it corrupting old encrypted dmg files. Just something like the login items issue tells me you need a clean install. That and all the other problems suggests that you’ve got cruft at best, maybe some malware.

Some simple-to-check things are disk free space - anything less than 10% is a problem you need to resolve and best to have 20% or more - and checking your startup disk with Disk First Aid.

I sometimes use things like EtreCheck, MalwareBytes (free version) and SilentKnight to give me a sense of how healthy a system is. EtreCheck in particular will tell you what kernel extensions and Launch Agents you have installed and running, which could be helpful with your login apps.

Also, FWIW, having been doing Mac support as part of my job for 20 odd years and I basically never do complex troubleshooting anymore. If I can’t fix it within a few minutes, I erase and clean install. This has simplified and de-stressed my computer life considerably and it’s much quicker.

Not suggesting you shouldn’t revert to Mojave of course. It’s a great OS and I kept running it on everything that supported it until quite recently. Monterey is also pretty good though.

Thank you Soulman. There are numerous little bothers that are making the machine unpleasant to use. Apart from being slow. I have just under 20% free disc space. The MBA was running perfectly well on High Sierra, exhibiting none of the gremlins it now has. Disc First Aid revealed nothing untoward. I’ll have a look at Malware Bytes.
I suppose a clean install would be the best remedy. I don’t relish doing these things, but I suppose one must do what one must do.
I’ll look into what is involved and give it a go.
Thanks for the advice.

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That’s great info Soulman. May I ask what is your method for backing up & then reinstalling user info, apps etc.? It sounds like you have got it down to a fine art!

Hehe, yes and no. The reality is that I hardly ever have to do it these days, even though I look after a few machines, so I’m often scratching my head trying to remember what I did last time. The “how” depends a bit on whose machine it is and what I suspect the problems might be. From memory…

By far the simplest way is to make a Time Machine backup before starting and use the Recovery partition that all modern machines have, or network install if that isn’t available, to erase the boot disk and reinstall the OS. Then you can just restore from the TM backup, using Migration Assistant, when you’re setting up the fresh install. This tends to fix things that haven’t been cause by a user doing or downloading something dodgy.

If the problem is in the user’s account though, which you can sometimes determine by creating another account and testing for the problem there, you may need to do something a bit more granular and time consuming - reinstalling apps by hand after the OS reinstall and adding back user data either from a backup or by just logging in to the appropriate cloud accounts. This is what I think would be a good idea for @Arky’s Monterey issues.

Last time I got a new Mac I wasn’t near my home machine and hadn’t fully decided how I wanted to integrate the new one, so I just logged in with my AppleID, installed Dropbox and logged into my account. Within a couple of hours I had most of what I need to work and play. After downloading a few apps I was almost all the way there. I do this kind of nuke and pave with any of the work machines I’m responsible for. Works well for them and is pretty fast in terms of the time I have to spend on it. Especially with an external drive to boot from.

I also use Carbon Copy Cloner to make a full backup of any machine I’m working on before I start messing with it. I’m not associated with them, though I am a very happy paying customer. The software works really well and the company is excellent to deal with. Other people swear by SuperDuper!, which is also good and does a similar job.

Something I’ve always used in the past, but isn’t as important these days, is a dedicated external drive that can boot the machine I’m working on, and that has a copy of the OS I’m reinstalling. I used to always use them in the days of slow/limited internet, but any Mac with a security chip - T1/T2 etc - needs to have a setting changed before you can boot from an external drive, so you have to test before going down this route. I wrote about the steps to change security settings here.

I currently have a fast USB thumb drive with 3 partitions on it for use with the different OS versions I have to deal with. I hardly ever use it.

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I’m a happy Chappy. I realised that my MBA’s ornery behaviour was isolated to my own user account. So I created a new one and copied all my files across and now all is well with Monterey. Well, it takes longer to boot up, and some other actions are a little slower, but that is inconsequential. I do have a bootable Super Duper copy that I was going to use to erase and reinstall, but that is not necessary now. Great!
Thanks for all the comments and suggestions.