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Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup – Instructions

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Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup: A picture showing the alternative method of selecting a local backup copy to restore in QuickBooks Desktop Pro.

Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup: Overview

            You can restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup copy, if you created local backup copies. Doing this can repair a corrupted company file in QuickBooks. You must be in single-user mode to do this. In addition, QuickBooks Desktop Pro requires you to enter or create a password for the “Administrator” user before you can restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup that contains sensitive data. Sensitive data includes credit card numbers, social security numbers, or FEIN information, for example. If you did not create a password for the administrator account before attempting to restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup, you must create one as part of the restore process.

            When you restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup, you overwrite your corrupted company data with the data from the local backup copy. You must then re-enter all transactions that occurred from the date you created the backup copy through the current day to bring your company file up to date.

            To restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup, select “File| Open or Restore Company…” from the Menu Bar. In this situation, you want to restore your data from a backup copy. So, select the “Restore a backup copy” option button. Then click the “Next” button to continue.

            The next window asks where you saved the backup copy you want to use. Select the “Local backup” option button to restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup saved to your network or to removable media. If you saved the backup copy online using that feature, select the “Online backup” option button, instead. For this example, we will select the “Local backup” option. After making your choice, click the “Next” button to continue.

            QuickBooks then opens the “Open Backup Copy” dialog box. Use this dialog box to navigate to and then select the local backup copy to use for the restore process. After selecting the file to use, click the “Open” button in the “Open Backup Copy” dialog box to return to the “Open or Restore Company” window.

            The “Open or Restore Company” window then displays the “Where do you want to restore the file?” screen. You can also reach this screen in an alternative manner than the one described this far by choosing “File| Back Up Company| Restore Previous Local Backup” from the Menu Bar and then selecting the name of the desired local backup file to use from the side menu of choices that appears. Using this method also lets you choose a local backup copy for the restore procedure from the Menu Bar and then jump immediately to this screen within the “Open or Restore Company” window. After reading the information within this screen, click the “Next” button to continue.

Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup: A picture showing the alternative method of selecting a local backup copy to restore in QuickBooks Desktop Pro.

Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup: Using the alternative method of selecting a local backup copy to restore in QuickBooks Desktop Pro.

            Next, use the “Save Company File As” dialog box that appears to navigate to, and select, the corrupted company file to overwrite with information from the selected backup copy. After selecting the company file to overwrite, click the “Save” button to continue. If overwriting a corrupted company file, QuickBooks may ask you if you wish to overwrite the file. You can click “Yes” in the message box that appears to overwrite the selected file.

            Next, QuickBooks cautions you confirm you want to do this by making you type the word “YES” into the text box within the “Delete Entire File” window, since you will likely be deleting the most current copy of your company file. You can type the word “yes” into the box and then click “OK” to begin overwriting the corrupted company file with the data from your selected backup file.

            Then enter the password for the “Administrator” account into the “Password” field in the “QuickBooks Login” dialog box that appears and click the “OK” button to finish restoring the company file. If you did not create a password yet, a “Sensitive Data Protection Setup” dialog box appears. You can enter a different name for the “Administrator” account, if desired, into the “User Name” field. Then enter a password for the user into the “New Password” and “Confirm Password” fields. Select a challenge question and enter your answer in the “Answer” field. Then click “OK” to finish restoring the file. Be sure to write down and safely secure the administrator user name and password, if you created one! Click “OK” in the information box that appears to tell you to change your password every 90 days.

            After restoring the company file, re-enter any transactions into the company file from the time the backup copy was created until the current day to make the company file “current” again.

Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup: Instructions

  1. To restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup, select “File| Open or Restore Company…” from the Menu Bar.
  2. Select the “Restore a backup copy” option button.
  3. Then click the “Next” button to continue.
  4. Select the “Local backup” option button to restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup saved to your network or to removable media.
  5. Then click the “Next” button to continue.
  6. Use the “Open Backup Copy” dialog box that appears to navigate to and then select the local backup copy to use for the restore process.
  7. After selecting the file to use, click the “Open” button within the “Open Backup Copy” dialog box to return to the “Open or Restore Company” window.
  8. As an alternative to steps #1 through #7 above, you can instead select “File| Back Up Company| Restore Previous Local Backup” from the Menu Bar and then select the name of the local backup file to use from the side menu of choices that appears. Either way, you will then proceed to step #9 below.
  9. The “Open or Restore Company” window will display the “Where do you want to restore the file?” screen. Read the information within this screen and then click the “Next” button to continue.
  10. Use the “Save Company File As” dialog box that appears to navigate to, and then select, the corrupted company file to overwrite with information from the backup copy you selected.
  11. After selecting the company file to overwrite, then click the “Save” button to continue.
  12. If overwriting a corrupted company file, QuickBooks may ask you if you wish to overwrite the file. Click “Yes” in the message box that appears to overwrite the selected file.
  13. Next, to confirm you want to do this, type the word “YES” into the text box within the “Delete Entire File” window and then click “OK” to begin overwriting the corrupted company file with the data from your selected backup file.
  14. To finish restoring the company file if you already created a password for the “Administrator” user account, enter the password for the “Administrator” account into the “Password” field in the “QuickBooks Login” dialog box that appears and click the “OK” button. You can then skip to step #20.
  15. To finish restoring the company file if you did NOT create a password for the “Administrator” user account, if desired, enter a different name for the “Administrator” account into the “User Name” field in the “Sensitive Data Protection Setup” dialog box appears.
  16. Then enter a password for the user account into the “New Password” and “Confirm Password” fields.
  17. Then select a challenge question and enter your answer in the “Answer” field.
  18. Click “OK” to finish restoring the file and be sure to write down and safely secure the administrator user name and password, if you created one!
  19. Click “OK” in the information box that appears to tell you to change your password every 90 days.
  20. To make the company file up-to-date after restoring the company file, re-enter any transactions into the company file from the time that the backup copy was created until today.

Restore a QuickBooks Company File from a Local Backup: Video Lesson

            The following video lesson, titled “Restoring a Company File from a Local Backup Copy,” shows how to restore a QuickBooks company file from a local backup. This video lesson is from our complete QuickBooks tutorial, titled “Mastering QuickBooks Desktop Pro Made Easy v.2019.”

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