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Schedule local backups daily or on specific days and times

Follow these instructions to have QuickBooks back up your company file daily or on specific days and times. You can schedule a backup to a network drive, USB flash drive, or Zip disk.

If you prefer, you can have QuickBooks back up when you close your company file.

Important: For a scheduled backup to take place, the computer you use to run QuickBooks must be on, but the company file you want to back up cannot be in use. Be sure to schedule your backups accordingly.

Note: If you're using QuickBooks Online Backup, you'll need to schedule your backups using that service. If you're using Intuit Data Protect, backups occur automatically in the background; no schedule is needed.

To do this task

  1. If not already displayed, open the Schedule Backup window.

    1. Go to the File menu and click Create Backup to open the backup wizard.

    2. Click Local Backup.

    3. If you haven't already done so, click Options to set your backup defaults (such as where you want to save your local backup) and then click Next.

      Note: The backup defaults you set when you click Options are for manual and automatic backups only. You will set your options for scheduled backups in the steps that follow.

    4. Click Only schedule future backups (to create a schedule without running a backup) and then click Next.

    5. In the Back up on a schedule section of the window, click New.

  2. Enter a Description for your scheduled backup. This name appears in your list of scheduled backups so you can easily find it later.

  3. Click Browse to select the folder where you want to store your backup copies. This can be on a network drive or on portable storage media such as a USB flash drive or Zip disk.

    Note: You cannot schedule a backup to a CD-ROM. Why?

    Backing up to a CD-ROM requires additional steps to write the file to the CD. If you want to back up to a CD, you must do this manually. Follow the instructions to backup to a CD using Windows XP, or a CD using Windows Vista.
  4. Optionally, click the checkbox to limit the Number of backups to keep and enter a number in the field provided. What does this do?

    QuickBooks will limit the number of backup copies it stores in this folder. For example, if you choose to keep three backups, QuickBooks deletes the earliest backup when it goes to save the fourth backup. If you don't specify a number, QuickBooks saves all of your backups.

    This limit applies only to backups you create or schedule using the backup wizard. It does not apply to other types of backups that QuickBooks creates, such as when you condense a company file, import Accountant's changes into a company file, or update an older company file.

  5. Click Store Password to open the Store Windows Password window and enter the requested Windows login information. Be sure the login you enter has Windows permission for the location you've selected for the backup. Why does QuickBooks need my Windows password?

    QuickBooks needs your Windows login information so it can run the scheduled backup. If you don't enter login information for the backup location you selected, the backup fails due to a Windows permission failure. Search Microsoft Help for "Passwords" to learn more about Windows passwords.

  6. Select the time, weekly frequency, and day(s) for the backup to take place. For example, if you want to run your backups daily, select every day of the week and run the task every "1" week.

  7. Click OK to return to the previous window. The backup appears in the list in the Backup on a schedule section of the window.

  8. Click Finish to close the wizard.

Note: Scheduled backups will automatically include the date and time the backup was created in the file name. The date and time stamps are necessary for QuickBooks to manage the number of scheduled backups to retain on the system.

See also

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