How many backups do you recommend?

MSStateDawg
MSStateDawg Member ✭✭✭✭
I backup Quicken at every use and for years I have always kept two week's worth of backups at the ready.

What do you recommend? Is this excessive or insufficient given the numerous reasons one might need a backup older than two weeks?

Best Answer

  • Tom Young
    Tom Young SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    I might go a little further back in time.  One problem that's an on and off problem is that Quicken can sometimes change the Opening Balance of an Account.  If that problem occurred *right after* you did a reconciliation it would be nice to have a little more than a months worth of backups when you finally discovered the problem, a month later. 

Answers

  • The Keeper
    The Keeper Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    You haven't stated if your backups are on one device or multiple devices and I question why you keep two weeks' worth of backups. If your data backups are just on your computer, two weeks' worth of backups are useless if your computer's hard drive crashes. My recommendation is to back up your data to 3 or more sources, ie; your computer, a thumb drive, an external hard drive, or even dropbox. It is highly unlikely that all of your backup sources would fail at the same time.

    I can understand having several days of backup but two weeks seems excessive. You only need the latest backup to restore your data if you experience a problem which is why I question two weeks worth of backup data. 

    This is just my recommendation. Other users may have a different recommendation
  • MSStateDawg
    MSStateDawg Member ✭✭✭✭
    You haven't stated if your backups are on one device or multiple devices and I question why you keep two weeks' worth of backups. If your data backups are just on your computer, two weeks' worth of backups are useless if your computer's hard drive crashes. My recommendation is to back up your data to 3 or more sources, ie; your computer, a thumb drive, an external hard drive, or even dropbox. It is highly unlikely that all of your backup sources would fail at the same time.

    I can understand having several days of backup but two weeks seems excessive. You only need the latest backup to restore your data if you experience a problem which is why I question two weeks worth of backup data. 

    This is just my recommendation. Other users may have a different recommendation
    I keep historical backups in the event a backup file was or becomes corrupted at some point, for whatever reason.

    My backups are encrypted and stored in four places, locally and cloud.
  • Tom Young
    Tom Young SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    I might go a little further back in time.  One problem that's an on and off problem is that Quicken can sometimes change the Opening Balance of an Account.  If that problem occurred *right after* you did a reconciliation it would be nice to have a little more than a months worth of backups when you finally discovered the problem, a month later. 
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @MSStateDawg - I keep the last 5 backups on my hard drive.  My cloud account will maintain all backups for 30 days post deletion from my harddrive.   that has been good enough - never had issue with requiring a backup older than that and I've used Quicken for 28 years. 

    maintaining a backup on the cloud is an overlooked idea - glad you are doing that.
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Note it isn't as much the number of backups, but the timespan of those backups.

    For instance, awhile back there was a bug that corrupted paychecks.  It took a week or two before anyone noticed, and the recommend fix was to restore a backup and go from there.  For the people that frequent this forum that is about how fast they knew, but for others it was about a month or two, and in some cases much later.  Without a backup before the problem started one would have been hard pressed to fix the data file.

    To me that setups up the given criteria one should keep a backup that is at least as old as they are willing to rebuild.  One doesn't have to have a backup for everyday back to that point, they can be spaced out where you keep less of them as they get older.

    One other possible solution to a corrupted data file is to try to correct it by exporting/importing a QIF file, but that isn't a very easy thing to do.  On the other hand, how many people would be willing to rebuild say 5 years of data manually (if they could even find the records to do it).
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  • Should I download to a thumdrive? And if yes, should I remove each year separately
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @MargaritaFileccia

    if you are going to download to a thumdrive, where are you keeping it? is it safe from floods, fires, tornados, etc?  A safe or using a cloud service is better to avoid these risks - and they do occur! 
  • MSStateDawg
    MSStateDawg Member ✭✭✭✭
    Ok, so I finally got my bank in syncs with my Quicken, and it’s great I am totally caught up to real-time. How er, januythrough May 31 are in one place and June thru now is somewhoelse. Any suggestions on how I can mate them together?
    That is off-topic for this thread. You should submit that in a separate post rather than hijack topics.
  • jtemplin
    jtemplin Member ✭✭✭✭
    FWIW, I backup Quicken after every program exit and keep the last 10. That way, if something goes wrong with a download, or I screw something up (usually when reviewing investment transactions), I can revert to the last time I exited Quicken.

    Those backups go to disk, and my regular on-site and off-site system backup regime takes it from there (I live in hurricane country so I'm really diligent about redundancy). Although I've never needed to, I could access every Quicken backup over the past 6 months.


  • Greg_the_Geek
    Greg_the_Geek SuperUser, Windows Beta ✭✭✭✭✭
    I would suggest keeping the backup made at beginning of the month or the last one in the month for the previous 12 months as well.
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  • MSStateDawg
    MSStateDawg Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    I would suggest keeping the backup made at beginning of the month or the last one in the month for the previous 12 months as well.
    Now that's actually not a bad idea...a year or two worth of month-end backups and the daily backup for the most recent 30 days.
  • Snowman
    Snowman Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2022
    @MSStateDawg What I would do is this. First do manual backups with the backup date AND time options selected. Take 3 thumb drives and label them 1, 2 and OS (offsite). Backup every time you close Quicken. First to drive 1, the next time to drive 2 and then back to drive 1 and so on. Why? If you do backups only to one thumb drive and it fails... you are out of luck. The drive marked OS should be stored somewhere other that where the computer with Quicken is, a neighbors house, your place of work somewhere offsite in case something happens to your home. How often? What ever you think your tolerance for lost data is, a week, a month whatever that is. When drives 1 and 2 are full I would get two more drives and label them 3 and 4. Once 3 and 4 are full reformat 1 and 2 and start with them again. When the OS drive is full, just reformat it and start over.

    I use NAS drives for my backup. After every Quicken use I backup to NAS (Network Attached Storage) A. Every night NAS drive A is backed up to NAS drive B. Once a month NAS drive A is backup up to a plugin hard drive and put in a safe offsite.

    I would try to keep at least a years worth of backups for the reason mentioned above. Sometimes a Quicken issue may take some time to rear its ugly head. A couple of years ago a corrupted account did not present itself until almost 6 months after the fact. At that time I only validated my data file once every couple of months but I had a years worth of backup files. I worked my way back until I found a backup where the account was not corrupted and worked from there. I would recommend validating you data file at least once a week and probably no less than twice a month.

    I have placed a backup icon on the Quicken toolbar that automates this process for me, one click and it is done using the Complete Backup option.
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