Purging prior years activities

Jorge3450 Member
Very long time Quicken user 20+ years and should like to remove closed accounts that are no longer in use after 10+ years and the securities associated with those accounts.. I seem to be reaching Quicken limitations on Securities, accounts or transactions. Need a way to cut down my different files. I am experiencing repeated crashes and lockups.


  • Jim_Harman
    Jim_Harman SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Before you get rid of historical data, it would be good to know how much you have, to see if it is a likely source of the problems you are experiencing.

    Please go to Help and hold down the Ctrl key while clicking on About Quicken. Let us know what it says in the File information box.

    Also, have you tried doing a File > Validate and Repair? What messages if any do you get when you do that?
    QWin Premier subscription
  • Thanks for your help with my problem. QDF size 235648K Accounts 50 Categories 300 memorized Payees 963 Securities/Max Ref 1880/1880
    Transactions 86560 Avail memory 2097151K Total Mem 2097151K. The validation report indicates that I have No read errors,QEL:
    All internal consistency checks passed.Number of old style Buy/Cash/Transfer investment transactions updated: 22/0/0
    No out-of-range security references found.

    Validation has completed.

    What next?
  • UKR
    UKR SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭

    To trim the Memorized Payee List of excess entries and to keep it in shape please do this:

    In Edit / Preferences / Data Entry and Quickfill make sure you have a checkmark at
    "Remove memorized payees not used in [xx] months"
    and set [xx] to something like "18". Do not set it to zero. IMHO, you should set the number to 12 or higher for best results, so that once-a-year payees don't vanish.
    Restart Quicken for the change to take effect and housekeeping to clean up the Memorized Payee List.
    Check the File Information box again to see the reduced count.

    To eliminate closed, reconciled accounts with all their transactions you can use the Year End Archive function (aka Year End Copy (YEC)). Used correctly, it will split your data file into two pieces, one with transactions prior to the specified cutoff date, the other with only the newer transactions after cutoff. See https://help.quicken.com/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=17891968
    Please note that not all transactions in all accounts are subject to removal. In active investment accounts, all securities - related transactions will remain so you don't lose historical and gain/loss information.
    After YEC, in the active (trimmed down) data file, you can now delete old, unused accounts which have no transactions any longer.
    In active investment accounts, if you wish to trim "closed lots", securities where you no longer own any shares, you can use the newer function, Archive Transactions. It will split your investment account register into two parts, leaving only those securities' transactions where you currently hold >0 shares in the active register. The rest is moved to a new Archive register within the current data file, to remain available for review.
    Having less transactions in your active register might improve performance.
    Please read and carefully follow instructions here: https://www.quicken.com/support/how-archive-investment-transactions
    Eventually, after a couple of years, you might consider splitting your data file in two using Year End Archive, with all the archived investment transactions in the archive file and none remaining in the active file.

  • Jorge3450
    Jorge3450 Member
    When you delete an account in Quicken why doesn't the number of accounts go down accordingly. Can you delete an investment archive file? Is there a database clean up that gets rid of deleted accits etc.
  • UKR
    UKR SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Jorge3450 said:
    When you delete an account in Quicken why doesn't the number of accounts go down accordingly. Can you delete an investment archive file? Is there a database clean up that gets rid of deleted accits etc.
    That's because database space is not released when you delete an account together with all its transactions.
    The only way I know of to get rid of "gas" records in a Quicken data file is to make a record-by-record copy which skips over deleted records and reorganizes the internal tables.
    Until the recent redesign of the File Copy function, this used to be a straightforward process. Nowadays it's a little more complicated ...
    To copy your data file, use the "create a copy or template" function in the File Menu / Copy or Backup Files.
    However, at this time this function will deactivate all activated bank accounts (apparently to fix some bugs in that area). After the copy has been created, you will need to reactivate all accounts.
    Whatever you do, please be sure to keep one or more good backups of your data file, preferably stored offline on USB devices. If something were to go wrong you want to have a fallback position to recover from.
    As to "the number of accounts not going down" ...
    If you created an investment archive account, you now have 2 accounts: archive account and trimmed down original investment account. Deleting the archive account reduces the count by 1, keeping the total number of accounts the same as it was before you added the archive account.
    Until you're 100% sure that you will never ever need to look up old investment transactions, for tax or other research purposes, I advise against deleting an Investment archive account. Revisit that thought in a couple of years ... maybe ...

    Quicken moderators or other experienced Quicken users ... please chime in here if you have a better suggestion or know something that I don't ...
  • Jorge3450
    Jorge3450 Member
    I really appreciate your insights in Quicken. I am very careful and always back up before I try any suggestions. As a 25+ years user I have a lot of accounts that are truly stale and have been having a lot of lock ups and crashes. I just tried to do a copy and quicken came back with file not copied. So far I have only deleted old credit card accounts and real old investment accounts. I have not deleted the archive account I created based on your suggestion! I just think that I have crossed over an internal limitation that I cannot identify. If only there was a way to deleted securities that have 0 quantities with deleted accounts and it's old transactions.