Clear the SharePoint Configuration Cache

If you experience issues with WSS and MOSS timer jobs failing to complete are receiving errors trying to run psconfig, clearing the configuration cache on the farm is a possible method for resolving the issue. The config cache is where we cache configuration information (stored in the config database) 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 rebuilt.  If you only see a single server having issues, only clear the config cache on that server, you 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.

To clear the config cache on the farm, follow these steps:

  1. Stop the OWSTIMER service on ALL of the MOSS servers in the farm.
  2. On the Index server, navigate to:                          
  3. 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.

  4. Delete all the XML file in the directory. NOTE: ONLY THE XML FILES, NOT THE .INI FILE.
  5. Open the cache.ini with Notepad and reset the number to 1. Save and close the file.
  6. Start the OWSTIMER service on the Index server and wait for XML files to begin to reappear in the directory.
  7. 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.
  8. After all of the query servers have all been cleared and new .xml files have been generated, proceed to the WFE and Application servers in the farm, following steps 2, 3, 4 and 5 for each remaining server.

    Comments (20)

    1. Site Usage Reports for MOSS stopped working

    2. Recently we have seen more cases were customers are having problems with the synchronization of User

    3. adnan shamim says:

      i do not see the folder ProgramData on my windows server 2008 based moss 2007 web front end server. can you help me out please.

    4. Keith says:

      Great information, solved my problem with a timer sitting at  Initialized 0%.  For those who are a bit slow like me OWSTIMER is in services and is called "Windows SharePoint Services Timer" (at least on 2003 server)

    5. Saurabh says:

      @adnan, enable the link to show hidden files from folder options

    6. Hikmer says:

      Seems to fix a stalled workflow timer issue I encountered in SP 2010.  There needs to be some documentation on this or a quick tool to recycle this cache…better yet a timer job!  lol  BTW  Program Data folder is hidden, so you have to change the folder options to see it.

    7. Hi,

      What if you have multiple GUIDs in the Config location?



    8. Joe Rodgers says:

      Brein, the GUID you want will be the same as the GUID returned in this query against your configuration database:

      SELECT [Id]

      FROM [Objects] (nolock)

      WHERE classId = 'E6591A38-008A-4F23-A88F-36A181C7D4EB'

    9. Sid says:

      It might be a dumb question but I wanted to know if clearing the cache has any adverse issues on any functionality of SharePoint

    10. Tim Deibel says:

      Sid, we're in the process of doing this a second time on our SP2010 farm, haven't seen any adverse affects from the first time it was completed….

    11. Chris says:

      Thanks for the information. I take it that if only one of my SharePoint 2007 WFE is experiencing this problem, I only need to cary out steps 1 to 5 on that server?

      I have two WFE both were Indexing and Query servers. I have the same error getting to the Indexing and Query property pages and SSP Property pages, but only one of the servers is logging an Event ID 6482 error!

    12. Brian Wing says:

      Has anyone tried this on MOSS 2007?

    13. Brian Wing says:

      I just noticed the GUID that is showing up in my event log with error 5553 doesn't match anything in my all usersapplication data… path.  I know we had some SSP config errors early on and had to recreate the SSP.  Is there an easy way to rid my config of the non-existent GUID and OWSTIMER job?

      I've tried listing my timer jobs with stsadm o but none of the guids match what I'm seeing in the event viewer.

      Any help is greatly appreciated.



    14. Adam says:

      Best article I've found in ages. I spent hours trying to get solution management and form template pages in central admin to update correctly. They were all upgrading/installing/etc and this worked. Good job!

    15. Anon says:

      It works ! thx

    16. John says:

      Replace the number inside the .ini to "1" (without the quotes)

    17. Rick says:

      Used this to fix a production issue. Excellent informaiton.

    Skip to main content