Data file recovery, not in backup format

Yes, I will admit to my shame, that I am not a regular user of the Manager’s backup function. I’ve learned my lesson, but now, to my problem.

Immediately after I installed the most recent release of Manager, an IOBit uninstaller screen popped up in the lower right corner of my screen. It asked if I wanted to delete the residual files. I assumed that the new release had uninstalled something from a prior release and, since I had used IOBit many times safely, I told it to go ahead.

I discovered later that it had deleted the data files which I had not backed up using Manager.

I recovered the files, with the expected alpha-numeric name followed by .manager. But when I tried to reload them using the “Import Backup” option in the “New Business” tab I was informed that they weren’t in the correct format.

Is there any way to salvage my six weeks of data?

Someone smarter than I am will have to answer your question. But I will caution you not to take any further steps or empty your trash/recycle until they do. Manager creates several files, only one of which is the data file. Others do things as innocuous as store window position/size information. Wait for an expert (most likely @lubos) to answer before doing anything else. Good luck.

Thank you, very kind. I do have the data files (at least, what appear to be the data files), but I will sit patiently. Oh, and nothing was ever sent to the trash/recycling bin. That might have made it easy.

I don’t know IOBit. But if the “residual files” were deleted, where did they go if not to trash/recycling? (You never said what operating system you were using.)

As a matter of curiosity, after you recovered the files, where did you put them?

I was running Windows 7 at the time. The files were recovered by using a data recovery program (which I paid for, I suppose I’m desperate) I copied the recovered files to a folder on my hard drive named “Utilities.” They have the proper names with the .manager file type and are listed as having between 68 - 81 KB.

I’ve switched over to Windows 10.

I suspect your recovery program did something that is preventing Manager from recognizing the files. @lubos may have an easy solution or ask you to participate in a team viewer session. I’m optimistic you’ll get your data back. Keep your fingers crossed.

Thank you. May I borrow your optimism? It’s either that or reconstruct six weeks worth of accounts.

I’ll wait patiently with full confidence.

What data recovery program did you use? I have had some good success with a program called Easus Data Recovery. You can use the free version for up to 1GB I think - I have the paid for version as I use it to recover data for my clients. I have an old version however as I tried their new versions and didn’t like their new versions at all. So can’t say how the new versions work in terms of reliability.

I will be honest and say that unfortunately its never been reliable to recover data from Data Recovery Programs as sometimes the files are a bit corrupted like your Manager files. Backing up your data is the only way that you can guarantee all your data is recoverable. Try Easus Data Recovery and see if that works. If that fails, I would suggest that you just reconstruct your data as it will be less work to do that than for anyone to try and recover the data from your Manager files if they are badly corrupted. Having said that, I would contact Lubos first and see if he can do anything with it, as he may able to edit out the corruption and just leave the bulk of the data - however there is the danger that some data will be wrong and or missing. It might be more accurate to reconstruct the data yourself to be honest.

The Backup in Manager should really be used to export your data to another computer. I would not use that as a backup. I have asked the developer to rename it to export business as I think its a false sense of security thinking that you have a backup for your accounting data which will be of no use if your hard drive fails! Invest in a proper backup program and backup all your data on a daily basis. I use Syncrify but I use this backup for my clients as well as my computer and laptop. In addition I use Syncrify to sync my data between my laptop and computer so Syncrify meets my needs, but it may not be suitable for you as you would need to buy a small computer to run the Syncrify Server software and if you only want to backup Manager and nothing else it would be massive overkill - but I assume that you have your documents, emails etc that you would want to backup. A NAS (Network Attached Storage) System may be more suitable for your needs - I would recommend Synology. But the problem with them is they are slow and underpowered. However, if you don’t have tons of stuff to backup, then it should not be a problem. The most important feature for a backup should be that you set it up and forget it and it runs every day automatically.

Good luck with your data recovery. Once you have your data back, make sure that you get your backup sorted out!

Surprisingly, or perhaps not so surprisingly, EaseUS Data Recovery was the program I settled on after looking at several. That’s what I used to recover my files. I’m glad to hear an expert opinion on the subject.

Also, thank you for the backup suggestions. Rest assured that that is my highest priority now.

It seems that my best choice is to start reconstructing the accounts while hoping for a way to import the recovered file. I can always use different company names and compare the two. Well, off to find the necessary paperwork, hoping that someone will come up with an easy and quick solution in the meantime.

Thank you.

What I do is print out all my purchases invoices that the supplier supplies so that I have paper proof of all my expenses. I think that this is essential in the event of a tax audit.

Ya, I am not sure how good Easus is nowadays as I didn’t like their new versions. But the fundamental problem is that recovering data has never been 100% reliable so I prefer to rely on backup which is 100% reliable!

You’re right, of course, that backup to an external drive is the best choice. If only I had done that. Well, lesson learned.

EaseUS was free for the small amount of recovery I had to do, that was a big plus. Data recovery has been a once-every-seven or eight-year event for me, so I got careless.

@Charles1952, the files you have recovered from hard-drive would have exactly the same content as if you would click Backup button within Manager. So you did it right up to this point.

The reason why Manager complains the file wasn’t in the correct format was that it was simply not recovered by recovery program properly.

If file would be damaged in a small way, then Manager would try to fix it. If Manager complains about the file not being in the correct format, it means the whole file is probably bunch of random characters. Basically the recovery program didn’t recover anything (except for the filename which is not important at all).

I’m afraid you will need to reconstruct your records from scratch. Do proper backups from now on and don’t rely on recovery programs. They are not reliable.

Dear Lubos (Mr. Lubos? Lubos Some last name? My Tech Lord Lubos?),

Thanks very much for the news, I’m grateful. Maybe not so much for what the news is, but I am glad that the question has been resolved and I can proceed with confidence.

By the way, I’d like to join the thousands of other people who are extremely impressed with your creation and your care for it (and your users).

I would also get rid of that program IOBit uninstaller as its dangerous to have something like that. Rely on Windows Add/Remove Programs to uninstall programs as it does a good enough good. Yes windows does get a bit sluggish over time but its so easy to re-install windows assuming that you have split your hard drive into two sections - one for windows and one for your data.