Andre_Kiessling

Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

Hello together,

I have an issue with Nintex Workflow that is sporadically happening. In the most of my test cases the workflow is finished well but for some reason (unfortunately most in productive operation / productive workflows) some of the workflows hang after the approval step (Request review).

In my test cases, the only difference is that I always deposit only 2-3 reviewers. In the productive workflow, it can happen that 10-15 reviewers are specified there, but I don't think that is the cause.

I read some mentions regarding timer service and all but I'm wondering if it could be an issue with

how my workflow is structured? Here's a screen shot of the workflow history:

Nintex_ParallelActions_not-continue01.jpg

 

Here you can see, the workflow gets stuck after the request review (approval task) is completed. In this case, the approval task was approved from all defined reviewers and workflow does not show any errors in the logs. Nor does it cancel or end the workflow.

All these steps (request review, task reminder & complete workflow) show me the same exit time when I mouse over the fields. The same timestamp when the last reviewer has finished his approval (tasks).

Here is a screenshot of the request review task settings:

Request-Review_Settings.jpg

 

 

I have no choice but to end the workflow "hard" (End this workflow).

Unfortunately, this is a very unpleasant action for our users because the workflow then has to be restarted and all reviewers have to submit their review again with the hope that this time the workflow will complete successfully.

I have already read various internet or forum posts on the functions Parallel actions, which is often said that all branches must be fulfilled, that this function is successfully completed, which is true in my case.

In my parallel action configuration, as you could see, the other two branches are only there to send task reminders (emails) to the reviewers or to complete the workflow step if the defined review period has expired (Complete after Days: var_Prüffrist01).

 

The workflow must be structured in such way for the steps (request review), because we need a solution where all reviewers, whose has been assigned, must also submit a result before the workflow is continued, regardless of which result (Approve / Reject) they submit, which can neither be configured via a Flexi Task nor via the Request Approval functions, because there the behavior cannot be configured according to our wishes (All must review).

We also use a current version of Nintex Workflow and forms > Current release 4.6.0.0. (10/2020) Only the last small fix update 4.6.0.1 (11/2020) we have not installed yet.

 

Anyway, any help with this is appreciated.

If you need more information from me about my workflow, just let me know.

Thank you in advance.

 

Best regards from Germany

André Kießling

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6 Replies
MerlinB
Rookie

Re: Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

Hey,

I am facing the same issue with a similar workflow.

In my case the issue is also sporadic. The number of reviewers does not matter.

Have you managed to resolve it by any chance?

 

Best regards also from Germany

Merlin

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Andre_Kiessling

Re: Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

Hello MerlinB,

thr corresponding workflow is rarely used anymore, because we are in the process of converting all workflows to SharePoint Online with Flow or Power Automate. 

But I will give you some tips / hints, also from the Nintex Support with whom I have analyzed this problem case, with which I have set up the workflow with modified adjustments permanently executable.

1) Workflow Size

The first possible cause of error at that time was the workflow size being too large.

Nintex Support Answer:
If workflow size is over the recommended size of 500KB it should be addressed by splitting up the workflow. If this is not done it might take long time to process the workflow and cause stability issues on this workflow and sometimes even the farm.
https://community.nintex.com/community/build-your-own/blog/2014/12/02/defensive-workflow-design-part...
For your info; the final working workflow is 980KB. So that's was not really the root cause.

 

2) Parallel Action
If there are more than 3 parallel branches this can cause issues depending on complexity of branches, this needs to be addressed, by splitting the workflow. 

 

3) Final workaround solution for us with parallel action

The only final (workaround) solution to run the workflow without stuck within thte parallel action was to reduce the parallel actions to two actions. Like you can see in my attached picture Nintex-Workflow_Parallel-Actions.jpg

Left side: Requeset review

Right side: Escalation task

That was not really the best solution, because with this part we lost the task reminder action for our users, but even though it doesn't quite meet our requirements, because we would have needed the Task Reminder already, but it was more important to us to get the workflow working permanently.


For this purpose, the workflow users (reviewers) can put the workflow mail on resubmission.

We had planned to create a separate workflow that sends a task reminder for open workflow tasks (reviews) to the users every 7 days, but we haven't implemented this yet.

 

The last answer (29.03.2021) in our Nintex support case for this issue was:

"Our Dev team looked into the issue and informed that this issue is caused by missing `OnTaskChanged` event from SharePoint which caused the action not able to wake up and continue the execution.
Dev team already have this issue raised with Microsoft support. This is the MS case (MS Case #:23005623).
The following is the latest response from Microsoft:
Our engineering team has started to investigate this issue.
Per the preliminary research, this issue looks like related to the Windows Workflow which makes it a bit complex.Our Dev have forwarded the BI statement to Microsoft."

 

Since this last answer we never changed anything on this workflow.

Today I have re-run the workflow in our test environment with 3 parallel actions (Request review, Task Reminder & Task completion) to test the function again with the current SharePoint Updates (01/2022) and Nintex Workflow version Forms version: 4.6.1.0 / Workflow version: 4.6.1.0.

At this moment the workflow runs every time without stucking.

 

If you need more information or help please reply to this posts and I will try to help you with your issue.

 

Best regards from Germany (Bavaria)

 

André Kießling

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Jake
Nintex for Sharepoint Expert
Nintex for Sharepoint Expert

Re: Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

Hello both @Andre_Kiessling @MerlinB,

 

I am interested in looking into the issues you are having with the workflows and I wanted to understand better more about what you want to do and if there is anything I can do to help.

 

If you would like that then please reach out, I will try to contact you via email.

 

Kind regards

Jake

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Andre_Kiessling

Re: Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

Hello @Jake,

if you want you can read the complete history to Nintex Support Case # 00366184.

That's the Case which I had opended at this time for this issue.

 

If you need more information feel free to contact me.

 

Thank you and have a nice day.

 

Best regards from Germany

André Kießling

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MerlinB
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Re: Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

@Andre_Kiessling thank you for your detailed reply. Unfortunately your workaround won't work for us because we still need the reminder. I'll try to test it with the latest SharePoint- and Nintex-update, but I am already pretty close to the latest versions so I am not hopeful that this will resolve the issue.

 

@Jakes there is another post https://community.nintex.com/t5/Nintex-for-SharePoint-Forum/Why-Is-my-Workflow-Stuck-after-parallel-... from 2017 which describes a similar issue. So in my eyes that seems to be an old problem, that already existed at least in Nintex for SharePoint 2016.

Is there any other way to have a task for multiple assignees at once, that every assignee must answer regardless of whether a majority is achieved or not, that has a reminder and an escalation?

You can contact me by email, but I would prefer to resolve the issue in this post, so others can benefit from the information as well.

 

For now I will try to find another workaround and report the results here later.

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MerlinB
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Re: Nintex Workflow: Workflow stuck after request review action within parallel action

I found a relatively simple workaround that I tested with about 150 workflow instances without any problems: 

As @Andre_Kiessling said there seems to be an issue with parallel actions having more than two branches. So I just put the reminder and the task completion actions in the same branch instead of removing the reminder. Since a reminder will in my case (and I cannot think of any reasonable other case) never be sent after a task is completed, this will not change the overall behavior of the workflow.

image.png

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