This is driving me crazy. Every time I finish an approval action it copies everything over to the next... I change the other one again and it clones to the other... I cannot find any "instance" option or anything like that. Am I missing something?
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This behaviour is not normal. Usually each action keeps its own configuration and doesn't change anything in other actions.
Do you face this error in just this workflow or is it a general issue in your workflows? If it's only this workflow the XML of this workflow might have been broken.
Which browser are you using? It looks like Nintex Workflow 2013 so it's best to only work in IE11. There are some strange behaviours in other browsers that I have seen.
If it's just this one workflow, would recreating it be an option to see if the error persists?
What is the version number of workflow installed? This seems very "glitchy" to me and some older versions were known to have bugs associated with tasks that produced strange behavior similar to what you are seeing. Also in older versions, there were issues when you "copy and pasted" an action within a state machine, which it appears your actions are inside of. You'd have to create the action outside of the state machine and drag it into the state machine to get around the bug in these older versions.
I've seen this before when you "copy" a flexi task action and reconfigure the second copy. It may be same with request approval. Is this what you did? If so, I would suggest deleting one of them and dragging a fresh request approval action onto the designer and configuring from scratch.
I am not sure how to check the version. The SharePoint admin usually keeps everything updated.
I was originally copy/pasting approval tasks within the workflow and I noticed it seemed to be instancing these actions so I started creating each one independently. This also did not work while in the State Machine, it was still creating instancing somehow, but when I did as you suggested and created the approval outside of the state machine I did not experience the same issue.
I only use IE11. Sometimes clicking the workflow export does nothing and I saw suggestions on using chrome, but that doesn't retain the workflow I have on my screen and I cannot seen to do anything on a workflow in browsers outside of IE. This is a very large workflow and I do get random save, export, and publishing errors; working on breaking this up into multiple workflows. I did not notice the "Start Workflow" action until last night and it dawned on me I did not need to create all 3 state machines in one workflow lol.
Since I started creating the approvals outside of the state machine the instancing issue doesn't occur anymore.
Great to hear that you found a solution on your own. In general breaking up large workflows is always a good idea, both from the design perspective but also for performance reasons.
Glad to have helped. It sounds like you are on an older version where state machines are indeed affected by this. Upgrading should solve this. Please mark my response as correct when you get a chance or someone can do it for you so it will assist others.