Passive and Active Voice question.

Here the context:
Every Monday, from the UK, our client will be uploading new files to a web site, where we perfom testing. The developer or some other person (i don’t know exactly how do these things all the time) upload the files. We call this “Service Pack.”.
Assume, on one Monday they (we don’t know who do this upload) didn’t upload the files. Means, Service Pack is not uploaded.
To tell this issue to my co-workers over here (at my work place) which one is the perfect?

  1. Service Pack has not been uploaded? (Passive because we don’t know who did / did not do this)
    Meaning for the above sentence is: — THEY did not upload the Service Pack. Is this correct?

  2. Service Pack is not uploaded. (I am telling the state/fact regarding the Service Pack itself. Here Service Pack is the Subject) - Is this correct.

I want to tell that “They have not uploaded the Service Pack.”. For this what is the correct sentence.


Hi Suresh

If you inform your colleagues on Tuesday, for example, I would probably use the simple past tense:

  • Client X/They did not upload the Service Pack yesterday.
  • The Service Pack (from Client X) was not uploaded yesterday.

If you inform your colleagues on Monday, then the present perfect would be more likely, especially if you think that there is still a chance that your client will upload the files later today (Monday):

  • Client X/They have not uploaded the Service Pack yet.
  • The Service Pack (from Client X) has not been uploaded yet.

In other words, in this case I would probably focus on the fact that something didn’t happen or hasn’t happened yet rather than focusing on the current state.

However, you could also focus on the current state rather than on activity:

  • The Service Pack (from Client X) is not uploaded (yet).


I really greatful to your elaborate answers. As i am not a native speaker of English, the Passive Voice issue had been confusing me until you gave the reply. Any way, i am clear to an extent.

But, i still have this question:

“The Service Pack (from Client X) has not been uploaded yet” -->

Is the above sentence is the Passive Voice of this ---------> “They have not uploaded the Service Pack yet”

As i don’t know who is person/persons responsible for this action
As i don’t want to give the name of the person who does this… We have to use passive voice. Is my assumption correct?


Hi Suresh

The two sentences do equate to each other.

And passive would be more appropriate for your function.

Again have confused which led me to ask one more question…
“The case has been closed”
What does this tell us:

  1. Is this a passive form which tells us that “The case is closed by the police/goverenment”.
  2. Is this explains about the STATE of the case. I mean, whether the case is still going on or the government/policy/some authority closed it.

Has been= Can we use this for telling the STATE of any thing and ALSO the ACTION which has happened.
I feel a lot of ambiguity in this regard.
Please help me to come out of this thing. Perhaps, i don’t get this because in our language there is different type of usage.

I’d say it means that the case is closed either way. Both “the case was/is closed” and “the case has been closed” can be used to say “the case is now closed”. The agent here is of no importance and is quite obvious. Therefore, I think the writer is using the passive form to indicate the outcome of recent act.

Hi Suresh

The present perfect is frequently used to refer to a past event or activity, and the result of that past activity has some effect or impact on the present. The present perfect generally does not focus on the idea of exactly “when something happened” but rather “the fact that something happened”. This is true no matter whether the verb is in the active voice or the passive voice.

The form of the verb in that sentence is present perfect, in the passive voice. If that is the whole sentence, it will generally be understood to mean that there was an activity at an unspecified time in the past (“someone closed the case”) and that the result of that past action has some sort of impact on the present. In your sentence, the present perfect implies that the current status of the case is the state that resulted from the act of closing it: “The case is no longer active / The case is closed”.

Your confusion may be coming from the fact that “closed” can be used different ways. It can be used as part of a verb tense. It can also be used as an adjective that describes a state. Maybe it will help to look at a sentence with a different verb:

  • The contract has been signed.

You might say that the result of the act of signing the contract is that the contract becomes legally binding.
Thus, the recent [color=blue]past activity in the sentence above is “[color=blue]signed the contract”, and the result of that action is the current status ([color=green]state) of the contract: “[color=green]legally binding”.


You did make me understand Passive and Active Voice in a clear way.

Molly, thanks for your time and response.

Thanks again,