Meaning of Dates in Backup File Names

I usually create a manual backup after doing a significant amount of updating in Quicken, and I select "Add date to backup file name." My backup files end up with names like the following:

Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (a note that I add here)-2021-08-03.QDF-backup

What is the significance of the first two dates in the file name - in this case 2020-09-12 and 2020-09-30? Should I do something to cause more recent dates to appear there?

Best Answers

  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Please expand on "did not remove the date from the file's name." Am I supposed to make changes to the file name between the time I back it up and the time I restore it? Or do I change the name before making the backup? Most likely in this case, the backup was made on another computer before it was restored on mine.
    It's really a question of what you're attempting to accomplish.

    The embedding of a date (and time) in the backup file name tells you when the backup was created.

    When you restore a backup, you may choose a name for the restored file.  If you're just going to be viewing the file, you might want to maintain the date (and time) in it's name.  For example, you might use the backup to export a transaction report of an account to help resolve a reconciliation discrepancy.  If you're going to be using the restored file as an active Quicken file going forward, you may not want to maintain the date (and time) of the backup used to restore the file in the files name.

    One way to think of it is, if you're going to be backing up the file, it probably shouldn't already have a date (and time) in it's name.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    I still find the relationship between data file names and backup file names a bit confusing. I would like to clean up my file names going forward and would like some guidance in doing that.

    Quicken currently stores my data files in the Documents/Quicken folder. The file most recently stored in that folder (last night at 7:00 pm) is named:

    Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (before adjusting investment account balances).QDF

    I store manual backups in a folder that I created. My most recent backup was done at 4:12 pm yesterday and is named:

    Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (after CSCU reconciled)-2021-08-03.QDF-backup

    I assume the first step is to simplify the name of the current data file by removing the obsolete dates and the comment in parens. Can I just change the name in Windows Explorer or do I need to be using Quicken at the time? If the latter, do I do a backup or export to create the file with a new name? What do I need to include in the name - anything in particular?
    You may change the name in Windows File Explorer.  I suggest using short (8.3) names.  For example, QData.QDF.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    How do I get my quoted posts to be indented and on a gray background like the ones from @Sherlock?
    You need to accumulate 51 points:  Introducing Community Ranks!

  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    Answer ✓
    > @Sherlock said:
    > You need to accumulate 51 points:  Introducing Community Ranks!

    Thanks, @Sherlock. I can appreciate the rank system, but setting off a quoted post would be doing a favor to all readers, not just the writer.

    On another topic, is there any way that I can have my user name changed from "Lynn in Arizona" to "Jim in Arizona" without losing the history of posts? Over the past several months I have been gradually taking over the family Quicken duties from my wife, and now I'm the guy. She was the primary Quicken user for many years.
  • Quicken Sarah
    Quicken Sarah Alumni ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓

    On another topic, is there any way that I can have my user name changed from "Lynn in Arizona" to "Jim in Arizona" without losing the history of posts? Over the past several months I have been gradually taking over the family Quicken duties from my wife, and now I'm the guy. She was the primary Quicken user for many years.
    Hello,

    Your username has been changed to "Jim in Arizona" as requested, however you may need to refresh the browser before the change takes effect for you.

    To confirm, updating the username does not affect the history of posts associated with the profile.

    Hope this helps,

    Sarah

Answers

  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    They are left from when you restored a backup and did not remove the date from the file's name.  The first date with the time (2020-09-12.PM02.19) was an Automatic Backup that was restored, the second date (2020-09-30) from a Manual Backup.


    -splasher  using Q continuously since 1996 -  Subscription Quicken  -  Win11
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • volvogirl
    volvogirl SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    It means you backed up and then continued in the new backup file instead of the original current file.  And then again and again.  So over time the file name keeps getting longer.  
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    Please expand on "did not remove the date from the file's name." Am I supposed to make changes to the file name between the time I back it up and the time I restore it? Or do I change the name before making the backup? Most likely in this case, the backup was made on another computer before it was restored on mine.
  • Frankx
    Frankx SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Hi @Lynn in Arizona,

    You asked - "Am I supposed to make changes to the file name between the time I back it up and the time I restore it?". 

    The short answer is "yes".  When you restore a backup file - that basically makes the restored file your primary or main Quicken datafile.  As such, you should remove any date information from that new datafile AFTER you've restored it (not before you restore it).  And it really doesn't matter which computer the backup was "made on" or "restored on".

    So, after you restore a backup file,  it now becomes your datafile and therefore you should change the name back to whatever name you used for your datafile before you had the problem (which caused you to revert to a backup).

    Hope this helps.

    Frankx

                            Quicken Home, Business & Rental Property - Windows 10-Home Version

                                             - - - - Quicken User since 1984 - - - 
      -  If you find this reply helpful, please click "Helpful" (below), so others will know! Thank you.  -

  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Please expand on "did not remove the date from the file's name." Am I supposed to make changes to the file name between the time I back it up and the time I restore it? Or do I change the name before making the backup? Most likely in this case, the backup was made on another computer before it was restored on mine.
    It's really a question of what you're attempting to accomplish.

    The embedding of a date (and time) in the backup file name tells you when the backup was created.

    When you restore a backup, you may choose a name for the restored file.  If you're just going to be viewing the file, you might want to maintain the date (and time) in it's name.  For example, you might use the backup to export a transaction report of an account to help resolve a reconciliation discrepancy.  If you're going to be using the restored file as an active Quicken file going forward, you may not want to maintain the date (and time) of the backup used to restore the file in the files name.

    One way to think of it is, if you're going to be backing up the file, it probably shouldn't already have a date (and time) in it's name.
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    Thank you for all the prompt responses. I think I'm understanding most of this. As implied by my original post, I put a short note into a backup file name to remind me what the primary change was that caused me to back up - perhaps something like "updated and reconciled credit union accounts." Of course a note like that would have no meaning in a datafile name. In almost all cases I do not end up restoring a backup file. It's just insurance in the event that I do have to restore.
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Since you are "tweaking" the file name from Quicken's default format, it doesn't know what to remove from the backup file's name to return it to the original file's name during the restore.  That means that you would need to "untweak" it after the restore using Windows Explorer and then double clicking on the renamed file to get Quicken to open it and remember it as the "new" last file used in the recent file list on the File menu.
    -splasher  using Q continuously since 1996 -  Subscription Quicken  -  Win11
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    BTW, you should be routinely making backups of your Quicken data file, not just on special occasions.  Just how much rework are you willing to do if your hard disk crashes and backups should be made to something other than your local harddrive, I suggest a couple of thumbdrives and you alternate between them so that if one dies you haven't lost everything.
    -splasher  using Q continuously since 1996 -  Subscription Quicken  -  Win11
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    I still find the relationship between data file names and backup file names a bit confusing. I would like to clean up my file names going forward and would like some guidance in doing that.

    Quicken currently stores my data files in the Documents/Quicken folder. The file most recently stored in that folder (last night at 7:00 pm) is named:

    Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (before adjusting investment account balances).QDF

    I store manual backups in a folder that I created. My most recent backup was done at 4:12 pm yesterday and is named:

    Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (after CSCU reconciled)-2021-08-03.QDF-backup

    I assume the first step is to simplify the name of the current data file by removing the obsolete dates and the comment in parens. Can I just change the name in Windows Explorer or do I need to be using Quicken at the time? If the latter, do I do a backup or export to create the file with a new name? What do I need to include in the name - anything in particular?
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    I still find the relationship between data file names and backup file names a bit confusing. I would like to clean up my file names going forward and would like some guidance in doing that.

    Quicken currently stores my data files in the Documents/Quicken folder. The file most recently stored in that folder (last night at 7:00 pm) is named:

    Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (before adjusting investment account balances).QDF

    I store manual backups in a folder that I created. My most recent backup was done at 4:12 pm yesterday and is named:

    Personal-2020-09-12.PM02.19-2020-09-30 (after CSCU reconciled)-2021-08-03.QDF-backup

    I assume the first step is to simplify the name of the current data file by removing the obsolete dates and the comment in parens. Can I just change the name in Windows Explorer or do I need to be using Quicken at the time? If the latter, do I do a backup or export to create the file with a new name? What do I need to include in the name - anything in particular?
    You may change the name in Windows File Explorer.  I suggest using short (8.3) names.  For example, QData.QDF.
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    > @splasher said:
    > BTW, you should be routinely making backups of your Quicken data file, not just on special occasions.  Just how much rework are you willing to do if your hard disk crashes and backups should be made to something other than your local harddrive, I suggest a couple of thumbdrives and you alternate between them so that if one dies you haven't lost everything.

    I make full backups of my Windows account periodically to a local SSD drive. But I also used Carbonite, which backs up all of my user files continuously. Files are usually backed up within seconds or minutes of when I change them.
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    > @Sherlock said:
    > You may change the name in Windows File Explorer.  I suggest using short (8.3) names.  For example, QData.QDF.

    File name has been changed. Thanks. I like QData.QDF!
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    How do I get my quoted posts to be indented and on a gray background like the ones from @Sherlock?
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    How do I get my quoted posts to be indented and on a gray background like the ones from @Sherlock?
    You need to accumulate 51 points:  Introducing Community Ranks!

  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    Answer ✓
    > @Sherlock said:
    > You need to accumulate 51 points:  Introducing Community Ranks!

    Thanks, @Sherlock. I can appreciate the rank system, but setting off a quoted post would be doing a favor to all readers, not just the writer.

    On another topic, is there any way that I can have my user name changed from "Lynn in Arizona" to "Jim in Arizona" without losing the history of posts? Over the past several months I have been gradually taking over the family Quicken duties from my wife, and now I'm the guy. She was the primary Quicken user for many years.
  • Quicken Sarah
    Quicken Sarah Alumni ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓

    On another topic, is there any way that I can have my user name changed from "Lynn in Arizona" to "Jim in Arizona" without losing the history of posts? Over the past several months I have been gradually taking over the family Quicken duties from my wife, and now I'm the guy. She was the primary Quicken user for many years.
    Hello,

    Your username has been changed to "Jim in Arizona" as requested, however you may need to refresh the browser before the change takes effect for you.

    To confirm, updating the username does not affect the history of posts associated with the profile.

    Hope this helps,

    Sarah
  • Jim in Arizona
    Jim in Arizona Member ✭✭
    > @Quicken Sarah said:
    > Hello,
    >
    > Your username has been changed to "Jim in Arizona" as requested, however you may need to refresh the browser before the change takes effect for you.
    >
    > To confirm, updating the username does not affect the history of posts associated with the profile.
    >
    > Hope this helps,
    >
    > Sarah

    Thank you for changing my username, @Quicken Sarah. I have uploaded a profile photo and received 10 more points!
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