What files to keep?

I have been using Quicken for many years and want to cleanup the big Quicken folder. It seems that I only need to keep the last 5 or6 QDF files and the last 5 or 6 QDF-BACKUP files . Is that correct?

Best Answers

  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    The QDF and QDF-backup are the only files that actually contain Quicken data.
    the *.dat files are "log files" like the OFX log and the Quicken Cloud Sync log file.  The .DAT file is the log file in a "scrambled" form because they contain personal information, and as such can only be viewed from Help -> Log Files...

    As such these *.dat files can be considered temporary.  They will get recreated the next time you update things.  Quicken also from time to time creates other files that really shouldn't be there like LOG or the GPUCache folder.  Again, these are temporary files.
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  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Once imported into Quicken, the .QFX files can be deleted.
    -splasher  using Q since 1996 -  Subscription  -  Win10
    -also older versions as needed for testing
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list

Answers

  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    I have been using Quicken for many years and want to cleanup the big Quicken folder. It seems that I only need to keep the last 5 or6 QDF files and the last 5 or 6 QDF-BACKUP files . Is that correct?

    The "last 5 or 6 QDF files"?  What makes them different?
    -splasher  using Q since 1996 -  Subscription  -  Win10
    -also older versions as needed for testing
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • flotsamfred
    flotsamfred Member ✭✭
    Only to have multiple backups taken at various times . I guess you could save one and take a chance? Like having more than one SYSTEM RESTORE POINTS.
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    Only to have multiple backups taken at various times . I guess you could save one and take a chance? Like having more than one SYSTEM RESTORE POINTS.

    That doesn't explain the multiple QDF files.  Are you tracking different sets of accounts in different files? 
    I have a single "production" file that I keep my current information in all the way back to 1996.  I have several other files for testing which were created individually (not a copy of production file).  I make and keep lots of backup files, but they are all of the same data file.
    -splasher  using Q since 1996 -  Subscription  -  Win10
    -also older versions as needed for testing
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • NotACPA
    NotACPA SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    I have 3 QDF files (personal, a club, and TEST) and several backups; for each ... but I don't understand "5 or 6 QDF files" either.
    Q user since DOS version 5
    Now running Quicken Windows Subscription, Home & Business
    Retired "Certified Information Systems Auditor" & Bank Audit VP
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    I'm not sure why @splasher and @NotACPA are talking about "different data files".

    @flotsamfred said "various times".  As in I read that as one data file saved over different times.
    Not 5 or 6 different data files (as in data files with different accounts and such).

    As for the original question.  There are various opinions on how many copies over what time period to keep.

    I would certainly say 1 backup isn't enough.  And whether 5 or 6 is would more have to do with when they were saved.  You are weighing the space they take over the likelihood that you will need them, plus if you would even use them.  For instance, if you went back through your various backups and found them all corrupted up till one that is 3 years old, would you use it and try to fill in the missing data or would you just start over.

    Quicken's possibility of corrupting data files and not noticing it for long periods of time, make these decisions a lot harder.

    Some people do things like having daily backups for a week and then a monthly, ...
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  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    OK.  Now I see what I missed.

    "last 5 or6 QDF files and the last 5 or 6 QDF-BACKUP files"

    Are all of these the "same data file" like I was guessing?

    You have two "groups of 5 or 6" stated.

    Are you doing something like this:
    Current.QDF
    Copy Current.QDF
    Copy Copy Current.QDF
    ...

    Current.backup-QDF
    Copy Current.backup-QDF
    Copy Copy Current.backup-QDF


    Or are you talking about:
    MyData.QDF
    MyBusiness.QDF
    ...

    And 5 or 6 backups of each of these?
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  • flotsamfred
    flotsamfred Member ✭✭
    That’s a good point. I said 5/6 as an arbitrary number. One or two would do. What I was really trying to ask is what other type of files beside QDF and QDF-BACKUP should be kept in the quicken folder?
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    The QDF and QDF-backup are the only files that actually contain Quicken data.
    the *.dat files are "log files" like the OFX log and the Quicken Cloud Sync log file.  The .DAT file is the log file in a "scrambled" form because they contain personal information, and as such can only be viewed from Help -> Log Files...

    As such these *.dat files can be considered temporary.  They will get recreated the next time you update things.  Quicken also from time to time creates other files that really shouldn't be there like LOG or the GPUCache folder.  Again, these are temporary files.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
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  • flotsamfred
    flotsamfred Member ✭✭
    Only 1 account. Different historic dates on backup files. For years did not know to clear out older backup files so have a lot of these files and want to clean out quicken folder. But did not want to delete other files that I should keep.
  • flotsamfred
    flotsamfred Member ✭✭
    Thank you. What I was looking for.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 25
    The Quicken file (.QDF) and the Quicken Backup file (.QDF-backup) are the files you should save.  The number is up to you.  We maintain one Quicken file but, in addition to frequent manual backups (press Ctrl + B) so we may undo changes, we save daily backups for the 3 months, weekly for 6 months, and monthly for a year securely to cloud storage using Duplicati.
  • flotsamfred
    flotsamfred Member ✭✭
    Should I save QFX files
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Once imported into Quicken, the .QFX files can be deleted.
    -splasher  using Q since 1996 -  Subscription  -  Win10
    -also older versions as needed for testing
    -Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • q_lurker
    q_lurker SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    QFX files - I would apply considerations in tandem with backups. If you think you might restore a backup from 3 months ago, having the last three months of QFX files might be helpful. The companion question is whether that data would still be accessible from the financial institution.
    I have made some efforts to save a calendar year QFX for a particular FI ‘just in case’. Have not needed one yet. 
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