Thursday, May 28, 2015

dumping quicken

I have been waiting over a week for the email.  Three weeks if you include the onset of the problem.

While I was between Korea and Japan (if I remember correctly), my Quicken program started acting up.  No, not "acting up."  Not acting, at all.

Whenever I entered the password for my data file, I was informed it was incorrect.  When I arrived in Bend, I discovered that two updates to Quicken had created several problems -- one of them was mine.  Quicken no longer recognized my password. 

After spending hours with Quicken "agents" on the internet, I was informed nothing could be done until the Quicken team could produce a patch for the errors that Quicken had lodged in my program.

The long-awaited email arrived last evening.  I opened it and started to add the patch to my program -- until I read the following not-so-good news: 

Unfortunately, due to the nature of this lockout issue, we were unable to fix existing password issues caused by the R6 or R7 patch.  If you are currently experiencing a password issue, you will need to restore a file backup from a point prior to when you began experiencing this issue.
Stripped of its evident spin, that means even though Quicken caused the problem that has locked my data file, there is nothing they can do to fix it.  Unfortunately, their proposed solution is not very helpful.  All of my backup files have been locked by the same incompetence that caused my primary file to be locked.

I considered titling this essay
"dumping on quicken" because that is how I feel right now.  My instincts are that some class action lawyer is greasing up his printer in contemplation of filing a suit over this egregious conduct.  And I will jump on that bandwagon if it rolls by.

But I have a more immediate decision.  Because my most recent backup is nearly a year old (August 2014 -- the one I relied upon when my backpack was stolen), I will need to start fresh.  That gives me two obvious options.

The first is to pick a date (say 1 June) and start all over by creating each of my accounts.  That sounds easier than it is.  And it is easy for cash and bank accounts that have a specific balance on that day.

What is not so easy is credit cards with their billing and payment cycles that pay scant regard to second acts in financial tracking.  But with a bit of ferreting, I should be able to do that.

The second option is to stop using Quicken.  Most of my accounts are already online with my banks.  I can always check balances by opening each one of them.  The only thing Quicken does is give me a central location for each account -- much the same way my Outlook tracked email, tasks, and appointments.

But I have written enough essays on how Quicken has played Judas to crucify me on its cross of gold.  If I could have all of the time back I have spent on fixing Quicken, I would be -- well, younger.  The question is whether the convenience justifies the time and aggravation.

A nice ledger book may fill the gap if I decide to abandon Quicken.

I will give it some thought on my trip to Puerto Vallarta. 

"Trip?," you may ask.  Yup.  I am driving friends to the Puerto Vallarta airport.  That gesture will give me the opportunity to look at furniture and to buy a new DVD player.  It turns out that my current player is stuck in permanent update.  For all I know, the dreaded R6 and R7 may have caused that, as well.

In any event, I will have a fresh start -- one way or the other.  And anything new has to be good.

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