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I have lots of outdated Quicken app versions & old data files everywhere. How to know what to keep?

Can a customer service rep screen share with me to help me decipher all the stuff I've accumulated over the last 16 years or so?

Best Answer

  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Accepted Answer
    @Paulette1947  This forum isn't Quicken Customer Service, so no one here can screen share with you. For that, you would need to call Quicken Customer Service, 8 am - 8 pm (Eastern) Monday through Friday. Go to:
        https://www.quicken.com/support#osx
    and scroll to the bottom of the page to click on the Talk To Support button.

    In general, if you have kept all your data in the file you use currently, and you know it has all your data going back to the start of the time you've used Quicken, it's likely that everything else can be tossed -- both old applications and data files. If you split your data file at any point, then of course you'd want to keep some of those older data files. So that's something only you can answer for yourself, because you know how you have your data saved.

    If you have trouble getting with Quicken Support for this, we can post more suggestions about what to look for to make sure you know which data file is current, which are your useful backups, and which can be dumped in the trash.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993

Answers

  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Accepted Answer
    @Paulette1947  This forum isn't Quicken Customer Service, so no one here can screen share with you. For that, you would need to call Quicken Customer Service, 8 am - 8 pm (Eastern) Monday through Friday. Go to:
        https://www.quicken.com/support#osx
    and scroll to the bottom of the page to click on the Talk To Support button.

    In general, if you have kept all your data in the file you use currently, and you know it has all your data going back to the start of the time you've used Quicken, it's likely that everything else can be tossed -- both old applications and data files. If you split your data file at any point, then of course you'd want to keep some of those older data files. So that's something only you can answer for yourself, because you know how you have your data saved.

    If you have trouble getting with Quicken Support for this, we can post more suggestions about what to look for to make sure you know which data file is current, which are your useful backups, and which can be dumped in the trash.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • That's most helpful. I've been trying 2 days to get through to phone support but no luck yet so decided to try here. I'll keep trying. I don't know what you mean by split my data file at some point but I'm sure the customer service rep can explain that to me. Thanks so much for your prompt response and wise advice.
  • I just spent 20 minutes waiting for customer service phone support and when I finally got someone I could not understand them and the connection kept going in and out. It was horrible. I finally just hung up. Then tried the online chat. Couldn't connect because they kept saying I had popup blockers but when I went into browser preferences could not find any activated blockers to unblock. So I'm back here still trying to solve the problem. I'm afraid to delete any old applications or data files for fear of losing important data that I'm still using. I'm backing up with Time Machine every 12 hours and I make an external clone at end of every day but when one has been using Quicken for nearly 30 years, the thought of losing one's entire financial history is stomach churning. I can make a list here but I sure would feel better if a Quicken expert could actually see the files I'm talking about before any deleting occurs. This is nerve wracking.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    edited January 29
    Don't worry about your Time Machine backups. Time Machine maintains its own history of files. It uses all available space on your drive,e and then starts weeding the oldest stuff first. There's never any need to muck around inside Time Machine.

    Similarly, if you're truly cloning your entire Mac hard drive daily, then the clone is simply a copy of what's on your hard drive at the moment. No need to edit it, ever. If you weed out old things on your live hard disk, then your next clone will reflect that.

    My first suggestion beyond that is to try Quicken Support again. I know you got someone you couldn't understand the first time, but as with all call centers at all companies, each representative is different, so if you try once again or even twice again, you might get someone you can clearly understand. (I believe if you are having problems with a non-US representative due to accent, you may be able to request to be connected to, or receive a call-back from, a US-based support representative.)

    Normally, I would plunge in and talk about what you can and can't delete, but I understand your trepidation, and that's why I'm suggesting you take another stab at Quicken phone support. (Only phone support, so the agent can screen-share with you.) If you hit a dead end, post back here any we can take a crack at guiding you on what you can delete and what you may want to keep.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Appreciate your advice, jacobs. I tried customer support again and this time got someone I could at least understand. We did a screen share and she verified that I could delete the old data files which I did. She said some people are hesitant to delete old application versions. I didn't completely understand why she didn't recommend deleting (or uninstalling?) old versions but I have plenty of disc room so I didn't risk it. Perhaps you can explain why I should keep Quicken 2017, Quicken 2015, Quicken 2007, and Quicken Essentials. Do current versions depend on previous versions? I got the impression that they might.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    @Paulette Pohlmann  the current version of the Quicken application uses only your current data file. It does not in any way use older versions of the application which may be on your Mac. They're completely separate; in fact, you could launch them and run them at the same time as the current version.

    I think Quicken Support may be cautious about encouraging people do delete old versions, in case people later discover they have an old data file they want to open but deleted the application it worked with.

    But here's the thing about Quicken Mac: the current version can convert data files from Quicken 2007, Quicken Essentials, Quicken 2015, Quicken 2016, and Quicken 2017. So even if you found an old data file you wanted to open, and you deleted those applications, you could still convert them into a new file in the current Quicken Mac.

    For you, I think this is the bottom line: if your current Quicken data file has all your data, which you imported from one version to another over the years, and you don't believe you have any old data you never carried forward, then I'd say you don't need any of the old applications and you don't need any of the old data files which were used with them. You really only need the current Quicken.app program and your current data file (plus backups).

    On the other hand, if you think there ever might be a time where you might encounter something in your data history which seems questionable, such that you'd want to go back and open an old data file in an old version of the program, there's no harm in keeping either the old programs or the old data around. The programs in your Application folder are clearly labeled. I'd suggest that you only have the current Quicken in your Dock; if you have multiple "Q" icons in your Dock, I'd suggest eliminating the old versions so you don't accidentally click on one some day and panic that your recent data is missing. And if you have older data files you want to keep around, you might want to create a folder for OLD QUICKEN DATA FILES and put them all in that one place should you ever want to access one of them.

    I will tell you than I still have these old Quicken applications on my computer -- but only because of my hobby of helping fellow Quicken users on this forum. Sometimes someone has a question and they are still using Quicken 2016, so it's handy for me to still have a copy I can launch to remind myself of how the menus and options were different in that version. But if not for that, I would absolutely toss my old Quicken programs and data files, because I know all my data from when I used those programs is in my current data file. I keep lots of backups of my Quicken data file -- the automatic ones Quicken creates, the ones I periodically create manually, and then the copies of all those on the Time Machine and external drive backups I do of my entire Mac -- but I have no use for the data files from the older versions of the program any more.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • This was an awesome response jacobs! I absolutely get everything you said (the whats, hows and whys). I will proceed now with updating multiple backups as you suggest and likely delete the old Quicken versions. What a relief to clean all that mess up. I am so very grateful for your generous help.
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