Quicken Cloud Resetting All The Time & Reconciled Transactions Revert To Unreconciled

I'm having an on and off again issue with Quicken For Mac where every now and then when I open Quicken, it says that Quicken Connect/Cloud has an old file and it needs to be reset. I have Web disabled in Quicken but do connect to various financial institutions. Is there a reason this happens?

Also, from time to time, I've noticed that transactions that I've previously taken the time to properly categorize and reconcile all of a sudden become unreconciled and the category is changed to "Uncategorized". This is a credit card I have connected via Quicken Connect to download transactions automatically. It's so frustrating to have to go back and redo a bunch of transactions.

I'm not sure if these two issues are related but I'm not ecstatic about the lack of reliability. If there's one thing I hold sacred, it's data and the accuracy of that data. I feel like I can't trust the software at the moment which sucks because I use it to not only track all my personal finances but my tax reports for business purposes as well.
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  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    If you have Sync disabled in Quicken, and if you subsequently Reset the Quicken Cloud file, none of your data should be stored in Quicken's cloud, and it shouldn't prompt you to reset it. I have Sync off, and I've never been prompted to reset my Quicken Cloud file. It sounds to me like you may still have a Quicken Cloud file which is pulling in transactions from your financial institutions. Make sure Sync is turned off (Preferences > Mobile, Web & Alerts) and then Reset the cloud file (Preferences > Connected Services > Reset), and that should be the end of that. 
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    I thought the same thing but I have it disabled on the "Mobile, Web, Alerts" settings. So there shouldn't be any Quicken cloud files at all. Under "Connected Services" I do see mention of a Cloud file but I believe this is what is used to connect to my various financial institutions. I'm always careful to close Quicken completely before accessing the same file on my other device.

    I'm beginning to wonder if this issue is that I'm storing the Quicken data file on iCloud. I don't see why this would be a problem if I completely close down Quicken on one machine before accessing it on another.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    @MoMoney99 No, you have an incorrect understanding of the Quicken Cloud file. Every Quicken data file has a Quicken Cloud file associated with it, even if you aren't syncing your transaction data. If Sync is turned off when a cloud file is created, the cloud data will just have some identifying information about your QuickenID and the ID of the data file, but none of your accounts or transactions. This is what you want. But if you ever had Sync turned on and you turn it off, that doesn't wipe out your transaction data in the cloud file. For this reason, it's necessary to click that Reset button on the Connected Services page to create a new cloud file which will not contain any of your account information. Resetting the cloud file should not affect your desktop data file from accessing your accounts as they currently do. (Of course, make a backup of your Quicken data file before you make such a change, just in case you find anything goes wrong.)

    MoMoney99 said:
    I'm beginning to wonder if this issue is that I'm storing the Quicken data file on iCloud. I don't see why this would be a problem if I completely close down Quicken on one machine before accessing it on another.
    Yes, this is a major red flag. Storing the Quicken data file on iCloud (or Dropbox or any cloud service) is not recommended, not supported, and is know to cause a variety of problems over time. (Some are minor an unexplainable data glitches; sometimes it results in not being able to open your data file at all.) You can have the folder for your Quicken backup files be on iCloud, but not the live data file. Please move your data file to a location on your Mac which is not being stored in iCloud. (If you have your Mac set to store your Desktop and Documents folders on iCloud, then you need a different location for your Quicken data file. I'd suggest creating a Quicken folder inside your User home folder -- e.g. at the same level as Desktop, Documents, Movies, Music, Pictures, etc.)
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    @jacobs Thanks for confirming these details. It would be nice to find a more automated way to copy the backup file to a local folder when I do switch over to my other computer.

    I wonder if there is a way to use Automator or a script to check for a new backup file in a specified folder and if it exists, copy it over to a local folder on that device. That would save me the one step when switching between machines.
  • magoodm
    magoodm Member ✭✭
    @MoMoney99 I have done exactly what you describe. In Automator I created a workflow that zips the data file and puts it in Dropbox. I have another workflow that unzips it to my desktop on my other machine and all I have to do is drag that unzipped file to where I keep my live data file. These two workflows work for both machines.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    > @magoodm said:
    > @MoMoney99 I have done exactly what you describe. In Automator I created a workflow that zips the data file and puts it in Dropbox. I have another workflow that unzips it to my desktop on my other machine and all I have to do is drag that unzipped file to where I keep my live data file. These two workflows work for both machines.

    That’s awesome. Any chance you could share screen shots or the steps in your Automator workflow?
  • magoodm
    magoodm Member ✭✭
    @MoMoney99 If you are familiar with creating a workflow in Automator, these steps should make sense.
    To start you should put a zipped data file on the cloud service that you use. Then build a workflow as follows:
    1. Get specified finder item (point to your existing zip file on the cloud)
    2. Move finder item to trash (this deletes the existing zip file on the cloud so you can send a new one)
    3. Get specified finder item (point to your Quicken data file on your computer)
    4. Create archive (this compresses the file and point it to the location on the cloud where you keep it)

    Workflow to unzip it on the 2nd machine
    1. Get specified finder item (point it to the cloud location of the zip file)
    2. Copy finder item (I put mine on the desktop)
    3. Open finder item (I tell workflow to open it with Archive Utility app. This unzips the file and I just drag the data file to the location where my data file is located and when prompted, tell it to replace the old file.

    I hope this is understandable.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    @magoodm Thanks for posting this. I'm familiar with Automator as I have a few other workflows I created for various reason. My question about your workflow is what are you using to trigger that first workflow? Are you launching that manually to execute it when you want it to run?

    I was hoping to find a process that would automate things even more. For example, since I have Quicken create a backup as soon as I quit Quicken, the existance of a new backup file would be the trigger to then execute the script to zip up the data file and put it on iCloud/Dropbox.

    Then, once I'm on my second machine, it would see that a new ZIP file is on the iCloud/Drop and automatically run a different workflow where it would unzip the file to a local folder on the second machine and launch it.

    There has to be some way we can set triggers to automate both workflows.
  • magoodm
    magoodm Member ✭✭
    @MoMoney99 I created icons for both workflows and keep them on the dock and launch them from there when needed. I think your idea to automate the process further is great, but don't know how that might be done.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    MoMoney99 said:
    I was hoping to find a process that would automate things even more. For example, since I have Quicken create a backup as soon as I quit Quicken, the existance of a new backup file would be the trigger to then execute the script to zip up the data file and put it on iCloud/Dropbox.
    You actually don't need to do this. You can set Quicken's backup folder to be a location on iCloud or Dropbox. The automatic backups Quicken creates (.quickenbackup) are compressed, so you don't need to zip them. You only need to zip a file if you're moving your active data file (.quicken).

    So you just need to pull the latest backup to your Mac before starting your next session. If you create alias to your Quicken backup folder and leave it in your dock or on your desktop, you just need to open it and drag the backup file to your desktop. (I'm sure you can automate this; I'm just not sure it will save you much time.) 
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Jon
    Jon SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    edited September 10
    If you store your Quicken backup files on iCloud, it can pretty quickly eat up your free 5GB data allowance depending on file size & number of backups. For instance, my Quicken backup files are currently 38.5 MB. I keep the last 100 backups, so that's almost 4GB.

    If you do decide to try to automate copying your Quicken file to iCloud, a couple things you'll run into. First, the Quicken data file is a package file and the zip command line utility sees a package as just another directory. So you'll need to use the -r option with zip to get it to recursively iterate through the contents of the package.  (However, zip does preserve the fact that it's a package so you do get a correctly formatted Quicken file when you eventually unzip the archive.)

    Second, if you use cron or launchd to automatically copy your Quicken file to iCloud every day you'll run into permission problems because shell scripts run by those services don't have permission to read your home directory and Mac OS won't let you grant full disc access to a single shell script. (This is on Monterey, I'm not sure if it was different on previous versions of Mac OS.) I don't know if there's a good solution to this problem other than to throw money at it - I wound up buying Launch Control, which is a program that helps you create & edit launchd jobs. It comes with a utility that can work around the full disc access problem. (The bad solution is to grant full disc access to zsh, but that ends up giving full disc access to ALL terminal sessions & shell scripts which is a bad idea.)

    One thing I didn't try when I was getting this working last month was to copy the file using a folder action. It's possible that folder actions run with a different set of permissions that might let them access your file without having to jump through hoops. OTOH I think folder actions are just a type of launchd job so they might not be different after all; a quick Google search didn't turn up anything enlightening one way or the other & it's too late at night for me to go digging. I do know that the last time I did anything with Folder Actions it wasn't a problem but that was over a decade ago and a lot has changed since then wrt security.
    Quicken Mac subscription. Quicken user since 1990.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    @magoodm I have managed to create an automator workflow that automates the entire process of creating a new .ZIP file whenever you close Quicken on one machine. As soon as you quit Quicken, the automation detects a new backup file has been created and then goes through a series of steps to create and replace the .ZIP file with the most recent quicken data file.

    I see no way of automating the unzipping of the quicken file once you're on the other machine so I'll just use the script you provided above. If you're interested, here are the steps to the automation workflow for archiving/zipping your data file once you've quit Quicken. For this to work, I would go into your backup folder now and set all the backup files in that folder with a RED label as that's the main trigger indicator for it determining whenever a new backup file is created:

    1. Find Finder Items (Point to your backup folder, LABEL IS NOT RED)
    2. Label Finder Items (Choose RED)
    3. Find Finder Items (Point to your Quicken Data Folder, FILE EXTENSION CONTAINS QUICKEN)
    4. Filter Finder Items (FILE EXTENSION CONTAINTS QUICKEN)
    5. Create Archive (SAVE AS "Quicken" into the same folder as your Quicken Data folder)
    6. Find Finder Items (Point to your Quicken Data Folder, NAME IS "Quicken.zip")
    7. Move Finder Items (Select a folder on icloud/dropbox etc and select the box REPLACE EXISTING FILES)

    The above steps will essentially detect whenever you have quit quicken and a new backup file is created. This will trigger a series of steps automatically that will create a new archive file of your updated data file and name it Quicken.zip. It will then move this file and over-write any previous file in your online storage folder (icloud, dropbox etc.)

    You can use this workflow on both machines but you may have to edit the folder names in the workflow steps depending on the names you've used for various folders on your other machine.

    Hope that helps.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    @magoodm Quick question - how did you make your workflow into a launchable icon on the dock? I've created the manual workflow I want to use each time I need to launch and unzip my quicken file but no idea how to make it into a shortcut with an icon on the dock to launch the workflow. Perhaps I'm setting it up incorrectly. Any guidance you could provide would be appreciated.
  • magoodm
    magoodm Member ✭✭
    @MoMoney99 After I create a workflow I click on file/save as. I direct mine to go to the desktop. You can give it a custom icon by using "Get info". From the desktop, you can drag the app to the dock.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    > @magoodm said:
    > @MoMoney99 After I create a workflow I click on file/save as. I direct mine to go to the desktop. You can give it a custom icon by using "Get info". From the desktop, you can drag the app to the dock.

    I tried this but when I click on it, it just opens Automator and shows me the workflow. It doesn’t actually run the workflow.
  • magoodm
    magoodm Member ✭✭
    edited September 11
    @MoMoney99 That's what mine does. I have to click on the Run arrow in the top right corner to actually run the workflow. I don't know how to launch the workflow by only clicking the icon.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    @magoodm So I ended up scrapping the use of Automator Workflow and instead created a Shortcut using MacOS's new Shortcut functionality. This allows me to add the short cut to the dock and upon clicking it, it launches the entire script/shortcut. Pretty easy to do, just launch the Shortcuts app and start building a shortcut.
  • magoodm
    magoodm Member ✭✭
    @MoMoney99 Sounds interesting. Can you share your script? I'd like to try to build one for my Quicken file.
  • MoMoney99
    MoMoney99 Member ✭✭
    > @magoodm said:
    > @MoMoney99 Sounds interesting. Can you share your script? I'd like to try to build one for my Quicken file.

    Here are the steps on how to create two shortcuts, one is to Archive/Zip the Quicken data file once you've closed Quicken and are done on that machine. The other is to Unarchive/Unzip the Quicken Data file and launch Quicken:

    1. Open Shortcuts app on MacOS
    2. Click on the "Shortcuts" link on the Menu Bar - PREFERENCES - ADVANCED and ensure that "Allow Running Scripts" and "Allow Deleting Without Confirmation" are both ENABLED.

    Shortcut # 1 : Archive/Zip

    1. Create a new shortcut
    2. From the available actions, choose FILE and then select the location of the Quicken Data File (you should make sure that you have the exact same folder structure and file name on both Mac machines)
    3. MAKE ARCHIVE - choose ZIP as the archive type and choose your Quicken archive file name
    4. WAIT 3 SECONDS
    5. MOVE FILE, choose the Archive/Zip file you just created and move it to your icloud folder so you can access it on the other machine

    Shortcut # 2 : UnArchive/Unzip

    1. Create New Shortcut
    2. OPEN FILE, choose the Quicken.Zip file and then choose the application you use to unarchive a file, I use KEKA which I've downloaded from the App Store. It's good because it unzips files automatically without any user interaction
    3. WAIT 3 SECONDS
    4. MOVE FILE, choose the file you just unzipped above and select the same folder/location where you normally store your Quicken Data file on both machines.
    5. OPEN FILE, choose the quicken data file

    I've attached screenshots. I've greyed out portions of my filename and username folder as they were a bit revealing of my personal name and/or information. Also, for both shortcuts, when you have them open in the Shortcuts app, you'll want to click on the settings button in the top right corner of the shortcut window and ensure that "FINDER" has full access. Let me know if you run into any issues

    P.S - Once you've created the shortcuts, just right click on them in the Shortcuts app and click on ADD TO DOCK.