We frequently hear from people that they can’t backup their QuickBooks file:

* The verification stage of the backup process fails

* The backup command crashes

* Regular backups can be made, but portable files cannot be created

The problem might be media related, but it’s most often caused by data corruption. Here are the DIY fixes:

* Rebuild your company data (File / Utilities / Rebuild Data) and try again. The Rebuild command can often fix things in the file that prevents a verified backup from being created.

* Try backing up to a local hard drive, instead of to a network server, cloud drive, external drive, or USB drive. All those kinds of drives, besides a local hard drive, could possibly have connectivity or speed issues that would prevent a successful backup being made. Try backing up to your Windows Desktop and see what happens.

Still having problems? Then your data is probably corrupted to the point where the Rebuild command can’t fix it. If that is the case, you have three options:

1. Restore your last good backup and go forward from there. That might or might not require a good bit of data rekeying.

2. Get your current, damaged data repaired.

3. Ignore the problem. There are some obvious risks with doing this, but sometimes data can be damaged enough to prevent a verified backup being made, but that otherwise doesn’t cause errors in the operation of QuickBooks. If you choose this option, you can turn off the verification option in the backup command so that you can still make backups. Please note, however, that you are backing up damaged data.

Any other thoughts on this? Any other options or workarounds to consider?

13 ballWe have seen a number of Enterprise 13 company files come in for data repair over the last month that had corrupted customer credit card information in the file. This kind of data corruption causes the file to fail verify and rebuild and sometimes prevents credit card data from being saved in the file.

In versions prior to 13, we would sometimes see files with corrupted credit card information, particularly if user information in the file was corrupt. But we believe something is different in ES 13, at least through the R4 update. We’re seeing a much higher percentage of files with this kind of corruption.

Almost all of these files have been repairable — we’ve been able to repair the files so that they verify and rebuild without errors and the users can save credit card information afterwards. Sometimes, however, the credit card details themselves are unsalvageable and we have to delete them to save the rest of the file.

Hopefully, the newly released R5 update has addressed whatever the underlying issue is and there will be less of these data integrity issues popping up. We should have a better sense of that in the weeks to come.

We spoke with Colleen Cravener of Cervis, Inc. about a recent data corruption problem she had with her QuickBooks file and how it was resolved.

AccountingUsers: Colleen, can you tell us a little about your company, and your role there?

Colleen: Cervis Inc. manufactures industrial radio remote controls for the mining industry, overhead crane industry and mobile industry. I am the Information System Specialist at Cervis.

AccountingUsers: What edition of QuickBooks do you use? And what does your office use QuickBooks for?

Colleen: QuickBooks Enterprise 2012 – Manufacturing and Wholesale edition. QuickBooks is used for all accounting processes, and until a few weeks ago was used for years 2004 through 2012 for all inventory, build assemblies, and purchasing. We have since taken inventory and purchasing into Misys.

AccountingUsers: Please tell us what led up to you contacting us about your QuickBooks file. What was going on in QuickBooks?

Colleen: We could not get our QuickBooks file to verify or rebuild. Our file had damage/corruption. Cervis wanted to do a condense data and could not because of damage.

AccountingUsers: What was the process like in getting your file repaired…the steps you took to send your file, the scheduling and turnaround, etc.?

Colleen: All I did was call the 1-800 number and Shannon answered a few questions and immediately sent me a confidentiality agreement. Then I went to their website, filled out a form and paid by Paypal. At the end of Cervis’s business day on a Friday, I made a portable QuickBooks file, which took a long time to make because the file was damaged, and uploaded the file through their website. It was VERY easy! And it was about 9pm before AccountingUsers actually received the file. On Sunday I received an email stating the file was finished and I could pickup the file. Also, the file upload and download process is done via a SECURE connection!

AccountingUsers: How did your repaired QuickBooks file work for you when you got it back from us?

Colleen: First thing I noticed was increased performance. We have 20+ concurrent users, this was a HUGE plus. I had questions about our Profit and Loss numbers and Shannon immediately answered via email – his last email being after midnight! It is obvious that at AccountingUsers customer service is #1! And they know the product (QuickBooks).

AccountingUsers: Anything else you’d like to share about your experience?

Colleen: I am giving your company an A+ in the recovery of the QuickBooks file, the secure website file transfer and the GREAT customer service (EVEN AFTER THEIR JOB WAS REALLY FINISHED!!) Top notch!

AccountingUsers: Thanks for sharing your story, Colleen!