Hello Drs C,
Could you please explain the function of the “…Imported Content…” folders in the Files area? I realize they come along when ether a whole course or part of a course (e.g. a Content Area) is copied into another shell using “Course Copy.” We have some courses with multiple of these folders, some have 0 bites while others have loads of content, presumably the content of the original course, at least.
Some “…Imported Content…” folders have other “…Imported Content…” folders inside them.
Why are some at 0 bites, are they merely pointing to other directories?
I’ve just copied a Content Area from one Bb course to another. The original CA has several PDFs, and no other files in it. So when I look in the Files area of the destination course I find the related “…ImportedContent…” folder. In this folder are all of the PDF files from that CA, but also other files that don’t have anything to do with it. There is also a second “…ImportedContent…” folder inside which contains only one file –an image that doesn’t have anything to do with the copied CA.
We do not have the Content Management system, but do they work differently if an institution has the CM system?
You may have guessed that because some of these “…Imported Content…” folders are so large, we’d like to cull them, or at least manage them; but we hesitate because some carry files that are live linked from Content Area pages.
They do seem to accumulate, like clothes hangers in the closet.
The function of the "Imported content..." folders in the Course Files area is to avoid possibly overwriting files with the same name when copying files into a course. But as you've seen, it's less than ideal and things get messy very quickly, especially since you can wind up with recursive levels of "Imported content" folders if you're copying from a previous course that has them. Also, if you delete content items, or don't copy them, I think that doesn't remove the "Imported content..." folders, which is why you have some that are empty.
The only way to really clean them up (that I know of) is to look at the 360 view that Blackboard support mentioned and see if the files in the folder are linked to a content item/area in the current course. Fortunately, you can look at at 360 view for a folder and get a screen with links to see 360 views for everything in that folder, so you don't actually have to open the menu for every single file.
Blackboard is also quite aware of this issue, and is investigating ways to manage the course files area for course copies differently in the future. I'm not sure exactly when the changes will be implemented, though.
Also, if you're trying to recover disk space, you might take a look at the "orphaned content" tool (Admin Panel > Content Management > Content Orphaned by Location), since this will let you delete content folders from courses that have been deleted from the system.
Thanks for your response. It helps to see the bigger picture of what Bb is trying to do with this. I'll look forward to seeing their improvement on this in the future.
Those of us who don't have the Content Management system don't get as much from the 360 view, we don't see the files and whether they are linked.
So we've got this proliferating of "...Imported Content...folders," and we know that many/most/all of the links in some of them aren't active, but the risk in deleting any of them might not be worth taking.
Thanks again for your response.
We don't have content system, either. The 360 view should still show you individual files (if you drill down with the "Files and subfolders" section at the bottom), and tell you whether or not they are linked within the course.
Thanks, Michael. Yes I see that; I hadn't noticed that before.
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