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A serious flaw that HAS to be addressed properly by Quicken (Mac)

jdoniach
jdoniach Member ✭✭
I've been using Quicken for 20 years on Apple computers. I switched to the new version of Quicken in 2017 and am now on version 6.0.3. For more than three years now I've suffered through, and have had to spend an inordinate amount of time with, the following flaw:

When downloading transactions from a financial institution that is unable to send transactions at that particular moment, somehow the data file becomes corrupted in such a manner that, in order to be able to download transactions again one must delete and reenter the account's username and password. This alone is ridiculous that Quicken cannot fix its programming such that this step is unnecessary.

But what's even MORE ridiculous is that on three occasions now, after this has happened, the following error message appears: "AGGREGATOR_IN_ERROR (QCS_SERVER_ERROR)". The wording of the message indicates that it's a Quicken server error, but in fact it's not. What it means is that the data file has become SO corrupted that Quicken's only fix (at least given to me by Quicken Customer Support) is to export a copy of the data file, then open a new account and import the exported data file. It's very time consuming and tedious.

I know I'm not the only Quicken customer who has suffered through all of this. Until Quicken fixes this issue, I will NEVER recommend it to anyone.

Answers

  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    I would be real interested in if the long time Quicken Mac users have seen a lot of this problem, and if the frequency of seeing it has gone up lately.

    I ask this as a Quicken Windows user.

    As I understand it Quicken Mac went to QCS for Quicken Connect (called Express Web Connect on Windows) accounts many years ago, and my impression that other than a few hiccups at the beginning it was working fine.

    Well pretty recently on the Windows side they started a push to get the Windows user on QCS too.

    And lets just say that there have been much more than a "few hiccups".  Plus just from a general observation Mobile/Web syncing seems to have had a rash of more problems too.  Mobile/Web syncing has never been "100%", but is does seem worse off now, and what's more several of the problems in QCS for Quicken Connect/Express Web Connect seem to be the the same.  Which really isn't a surprise since in fact they are both the same system (see the link):
    https://community.quicken.com/discussion/7882641/qcs-express-web-connect-is-cloud-sync
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  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    jdoniach said:
    "AGGREGATOR_IN_ERROR (QCS_SERVER_ERROR)". The wording of the message indicates that it's a Quicken server error, but in fact it's not. What it means is that the data file has become SO corrupted that Quicken's only fix (at least given to me by Quicken Customer Support) is to export a copy of the data file, then open a new account and import the exported data file. It's very time consuming and tedious.
    BTW in my opinion what this means is that somehow the copy of information in the "cloud account" and the one in your data file have become so out of sync, that the syncing process is basically trashing both the data file and what is on the server (cloud account).
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  • jdoniach
    jdoniach Member ✭✭
    @Chris_QPW Yes it's been getting worse lately. Yes, I'm sure you're correct about the cloud account and the data file being out of sync, but this is something users shouldn't have to worry about. Quicken should fix their flawed, crappy software so that users don't have to deal with this. Three years of suffering from this is far too long.
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 25
    jdoniach said:
    Yes, I'm sure you're correct about the cloud account and the data file being out of sync, but this is something users shouldn't have to worry about. 
    Totally agree.  But when I see reported problems like this where the "fix" recommend is one or more of these:
    1. Reset Cloud data.
    2. Delete Cloud data.
    3. Restore from backup.
    Clearly they don't have a good handle on the "core problem".
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  • Quicken Dan
    Quicken Dan Member, Employee ✭✭✭✭
    > @Chris_QPW said:
    > BTW in my opinion what this means is that somehow the copy of information in the "cloud account" and the one in your data file have become so out of sync, that the syncing process is basically trashing both the data file and what is on the server (cloud account).

    I'm not sure that's what that error means. I don't work on the server side, but my understanding is that this is a fairly generic error that means "something bad happened when we were trying to download transactions from that bank" - something non-obvious that we weren't prepared for. (obvious problems being things like changed credentials, MFA, etc). It's true that we have to maintain a fair bit of state in order to figure out "what changed since last time we looked," and true that this process can fail. We watch for spikes of these errors, because they often indicate that something fundamental has changed at a particular financial institution (or a bug on our side), and then the team digs into it. Individual instances are tougher to reason about. Sometimes they're transient, like a server that's down or unreachable.

    The "QCS server error" is really a generic catchall that encompasses other, more specific errors, and doesn't convey any information on its own.

    None of this helps you, of course, or the care agent. Unfortunately, in the moment when you're just trying to update your data, the best solution a care agent can offer to get someone up and running quickly is to "reset the state" by reconnecting the account or worse, resetting the dataset. Believe me, it's not a sledgehammer we like any more than you do, but it's often the shortest path to getting the user going again. It is undeniably frustrating, both for users and those of us building the software (all those reset states deprive us of the ability to examine the failure "in place," which makes it much harder to debug).

    We're always looking for root causes of these kinds of problems, and often that means spotting patterns in the reports, so please do keep reporting the issues, with as much information as you can manage, because you never know which detail is going to be the key. (I've seen problems that came down to seasonal time zone differences, financial institutions re-using account numbers, or bad characters in the data that make it difficult or impossible to parse - you name it).

    So I'm sorry I don't have a satisfying answer for you, and I'm definitely not excusing it, but I *can* say that I see those triage steps you mention as "workarounds," not "fixes." We are _always_ trying to find the real problems and fix them, wherever they are, even if we're not always talking about it here in the forum.
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    @Quicken Dan Thank you very much for that explanation.  Knowing that is a generic message does help.  And I certainly understand it a hard to find the problems when the states keep getting reset, and I also know how impatient the customers can be when they can't do something.  Not the ideal situation, for sure.
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