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Recommended backup routine

backup schedule

Back up your company file at the end of each session or each day to a network drive; external hard drive; removable storage device such as a CD, USB flash drive, or Zip disk; or to a remote site over the Internet using Intuit Data Protect. Why can't I use a floppy disk?

Better data protection in QuickBooks means larger file sizes, which aren't suited to the smaller storage capacity of floppy disks. Additionally, most newer computers don't have floppy disk drives. Other media that can store more data, such as CDs, USB flash drives, and Zip disks, are more viable backup solutions. You can still, however, restore an older backup from diskettes if you need to, provided your computer has a floppy disk drive.

Important: Do not store routine backups on your computer's hard drive where you store your working data—if your computer's hard disk fails, you may lose your backup files as well as your working data.

What's the best way to back up my files?

You can:

  • Have QuickBooks back up your company file when it closes. This is the simplest option. QuickBooks runs the backup after the company file closes a certain number of times. You set the number of times the file will close before being backed up.

  • Schedule automated daily backups. This makes backups more convenient. QuickBooks runs the backup daily or on set days and times. You decide the days and times that QuickBooks should run the backup. Just leave the computer on and close the company file, and then let the backup run by itself. You can schedule a backup to a network drive, USB flash drive, or Zip disk.

    Be sure to tell QuickBooks what your Windows password is so it can run the scheduled backup.

  • Back up your company file manually. This gives you the greatest control. You open the backup wizard and manually make your selections, or you can set default options. You can back up to:

    If you prefer, you can also create a reminder for yourself to back up the file.

  • Use a combination of the above. For example, schedule daily backups but manually run the backups you store off premises.

Whichever method you choose, you will need to set your options for backups including the default location of the backup, whether to add the date and time to the filename, and the number of backups you want to store at the location you set. QuickBooks will use these settings each time it runs a backup until you change them.

If you're backing up locally

  1. Each day, back up onto removable media to keep in the office.

  2. At least once a month, make a backup copy to keep off premises.

  3. At the end of your fiscal year, make a copy of your data to keep off premises.

See also

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