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What may be causing portions of ArcGIS 10.4.1 metadata in SDE to disappear, but FGDC remains?

Question asked by hbfretta on Sep 1, 2017
Latest reply on Sep 4, 2017 by curtvprice

I'm new to a group that is currently using 10.4.1 in an enterprise environment. We populate metadata using both the ArcGIS editor and using the FGDC add-in to populate the read-only FGDC metadata. When we revise metadata (usually by adding a process step to the lineage/contacts and modifying dates), we save and then export the XML from SDE so the new stand-alone XML can be used by GEOCORTEX from a designated folder. When we click on the XML in it's new location, we must upgrade metadata. We then replace the creation and revision dates that disappear when the XML is upgraded. Our process then calls for us to import the XML back to the dataset in SDE, create a thumbnail, and do a final import back to the stand-alone XML file (the web service doesn't even need a thumbnail, so I'm thinking we can get rid of this step?..and this may be the source of our issues that I'll explain next). I went to edit a feature class's metadata in SDE today and I noticed that all the process step information and some other contact sections were completely blank where there were 20 process steps and contacts before! The steps and contacts are still intact in the read-only FGDC metadata, but what would cause metadata to disappear from the ArcGIS metadata portion? The stand-alone XML was also missing the metadata, which makes me think this happened during the importing back and forth. When consulting with coworkers, they said this happens randomly, but often, and nobody seems to know why metadata is getting wiped (mainly lineage and contacts). Any ideas out there as to why this may be happening?