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I can't do anything to get documents to appear.

I want to follow the advice to put the data dir outside the www root but I do not understand the syntax in the config file to make this work. I really need this to be super specific: don't tell me "put the folder outside the root" or "make sure you have permissions".

There is no adequate documentation for this and high-level answers don't work.

I get entries in the www root /odm/data directory as

(I uploaded a small file twice--yes, it is 735 bytes and that is the size of these dat files.)
I have authorized the files multiple times. The little lock icon still shows up locked. The user I log in with has full admin rights on everything.

I changed my dir structure to get the datadir out of the www root as follows:

My datadir line in config.php is:
'dataDir' => 'data/',

The base url entry is:
'base_url' => '',

Now, when I add a document it still goes into the <www root>/odm/data directory. I authorize it and it still tells me I have a document to authorize--it is never authorized.

It is also clear that editing config.php is a big fat NOOP. It does nothting--there must be someother config directory that overrides config.php,

This has been hours and hours on a simple little problem with no guidance anywhere on how to solve it.

Please help. This has to be something I just don't understand about the most basic use of directories on a web server.
Progress has been made.

Uninstalled; reinstalled.

Thought a bit: it became clear how datadir should be changed in config_local.php.

Now I can add a document, view it, and download it.

New problem: I cannot change the authorization status of a document. It is always pending authorization. I am going to see what is going on by looking at the tables.

This sure isn't Wordpress, is it?
I have had to make some changes directly in the database. Unfortunately, I can't reverse engineer the status flag for a document. What are the allowable values and what are their interpretation?

I have only one document owned by the admin. When I login as admin, I can edit the properties of the document. I set one department to have admin rights on the document and I select all the individual users (all 3 of them) to have "modify" rights.

Unfortunately, I get the same senseless error message--senseless because it contradicts exactly what I am trying to to do:

You must assign view/modify rights to at least one user

This thing has SO MANY BUGS!
Solving the document problem:

Turn off authorization via globals.

Delete the old document via the file system and in the database.

Add a new document.

Now all is clean.

The auth problem is that there must be user in the same department as the user who "adds" a document who can review it. If the doc owner's department doesn't have a reviewer, a user can perform the authorization but it won't "stick." That seems like a bug to me.
When a new file is added, and authorization is turned on, the file will remain in the authorization queue until a user with Reviewer permissions for that department logs in and clicks on the message on their screen. I believe they receive an email when a new file is added and awaiting their approval. If there are no reviewers, then the file will wait for one to be created.

At least thats how it should be. Is there a part of the process that is broken?