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Cannot save changes on a page that has been created by a deleted user

I use Confluence 6.15.4 which is connected to an LDAP server for the user management. Last week I removed two users from the LDAP directory. Then they were mentioned in "Unsynced from Directory" tab of the "Users" view in "USER & SECURITY". I removed them there too by performing the "Delete" action. Now I have the problem that I cannot edit a page that has been created by them if the option "Notify watchers" is enabled. In that case I get the message "Unable to communicate with server. Saving is not possible at the moment.". If I disable this option, then I can save the changes. In the top of the page I see the comment "Created by user-f2b34, last modified by XXX YYY 22 minutes ago." How can I solve this problem?

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Hello there, @Rico Petrick ! The issue that you are currently facing can be caused by a number of factors. Some of them are database drivers, problems within your own database or a third-party application that is affecting the correct behavior of Confluence.

We could start by ruling out the possibility of this issue affecting your whole instance.

For this, we can do this:

  1. Create a new page
  2. Get a few users to watch this watch page
  3. Select the Notify Watchers option
  4. Check if you can edit the page


Now, to try and circumvent this issue, there are a few things we can try:


Some notes regarding the procedures described above:

  • You should not remove or alter your database driver before creating a backup of the current one and we should also make sure that Confluence is not running when doing so.
  • Rebuilding the ancestor table does take time and it is a good practice to create a database backup before doing it. Instance downtime is required.
  • Enabling safe mode will disable all user-installed apps and users will not be able to use their features while this is enabled. Instance downtime is strongly advised.


Let us hear from you, Udo! Keep us up to date with your findings.

Hi @Diego, maybe my original post was not clear enough, therefore a more detailed explanation:

  • All pages that have been created by users which still exist can be edited without any problem, regardless whether option "Notify watchers" is enabled or not.
  • All pages that have been created by users which have been removed can only be edited if option "Notify watchers" is disabled. If the option is enabled, then we receive the error message mentioned above.

So the problem cannot occur for newly created pages, it can only happen for pages that already exist and where we see as the user who created the page something like user-f2b34 instead of a real user name.

I started the "Rebuild the ancestor table" job, but this did not help.

I assume the problem occurs because the deleted user is still marked as watcher for that page which has been created by him and now the system tries to send a notification about the changed page to someone who has disappeared. Therefore I see two solutions:

  1. assign the pages of those users who have been removed to someone who still exists (e.g. my account)
  2. remove the "watching state" for those pages which have been created by users that have been removed.

Any ideas how to achieve this?

I have found this

but it is for version "5.2 and above". Is this still valid for 6.15.4?

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