Sunday, February 1, 2009

.SPF file in Siebel

Sometimes in Software Professional's life, it happens that whatever he is doing/implementing is upto the mark and still not getting the right result. Well, after all the technology we are working-on has been built by people like us only and may be they might have done something mysterious which we are not aware of. So that is the time, we need to explore and find out the reason behind such behaviour....

The same thing happen with one of my colleague working on very simple requirement to increase the HTML length of one of the list column, displayed on Opportunity List Applet.

Sounds very simple... right?? So, to increase a Column Length of a List Column, what we need to do is :

1. Query for the specific List Column in Siebel Tools.
2. Increase the "HTML Width" property value to some significant number.
3. Compile the SRF and observe the change on the UI. If it doesn't look good, then you can play with the "HTML Width" property to increase/decrease the html length of the column.

Thats it ?? The answer is NO.

He (my colleague) followed the exact above mentioned steps and still observed that the HTML length of that particular List Column was as it was earlier. Thought that SRF might not have compiled properly, so compiled the SRF 2-3 times but not able to change the HTML length by a single centimeter.

Well, this is something strange that we observerd and after lots of investigation, we came to know about the reason behind this.

The culprit was .SPF file (Siebel Preference file), being created by the system for the user.

This is the file that Siebel creates for every user who logs into the application with the naming convention "'UserId'&'SiebelApplicationName'.spf" and stored in "//Siebel_server/Web Client/Bin" directory. This file actually stores the lot many information about the UI Changes that user can do on the UI. For Eg :

1. Increased/decreased HTML length of List Columns from the UI, that user might have changed according to his needs.
2. Order of the List Columns on the applet, in case user has changed any.
3. Order of the Screens displayed on the UI. (Application Menu -> Tools -> User Preferences -> Tab Layout)
4. "Recents Records" details being displayed on the "Home" views of various screen like Opportunities Home, Accounts Home etc.

So, the solution was just to delete this .SPF file from Server's Bin directory and restart the Siebel session.

Note: Deletion of this file will result in lost of all the preferences set the by user. Even I remember, due to this .SPF file only, we came across one another issue related to Views/Responsibilities. User was not able to see a newly added view under the Opportunity Screen, while the newly created responsibility was already been added to the user profile. Later we deleted the .spf file of the user and all worked well.


  1. On Siebel Server, SPF files are stored in :

    <_FileSystem Path>/userpref.


  2. /siebfile/userpref

  3. Hi,

    Even aftr the deletion of spf file and again adding them we are still getting defects related to view-order, column displayed. Current version of siebel in use The defect is not occuring very often but one case a week we are getting. Is there some product defect also in creation of spf file can also efect this this?


  4. Hi,I have an issue with this user preference file. I understand that they are stored in the siebel server file system directory. However I want to know where the original template is stored ?
    My plan
    Step 1) I want to untick "ignore HTML tags" and tick "ignore words with digits" in that original template
    Step 2) Delete all user preference file for the end users
    Step 3) Get the end users to login again so the new user preference file will automatically generate .spf file with those options
    For business reasons we cannot give end user access to the user preference view. So i have to look into an option of mass updating which can corrupt the .spf.

    So the only idea left is to change the original template and solve the spell check issue. Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks and Warm Regards,
    Sriram Veeraswamy

  5. What about a right click in the list applet, and then choosing 'Columns Displayed' then 'Restore Defaults'.

    Will this reset the .spf values for that applet only, thus not causing much grief that your carefully select column widths and orderings have not been destroyed?

  6. Do anyone know, how to open/read this spf file??

  7. Bhakta Sir : You can open SPF file in a notepad and see the preferences. You can see the views which are accessible to the user. :)