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QuickBooks users be cautious of recent update


Update: The "update" at the root of this issue HAS NOT been issued by Intuit (see the posts in this thread), the recommended course of action for all QuickBooks 2006 and 2007 users is to run the terminal command as detailed at the bottom of this post. This will turn off all automatic updates and prevent whatever this is from installing on your system. Furthermore, at this point in time, I tend to agree with Tangrams, the user who first reported this issue in both the Apple and Intuit forums, that the best course of action for QuickBooks for Mac users is to not launch the program at all until this mess is sorted out.

At the risk of spreading unnecessary FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt), It's not FUD, we want to caution Intuit's QuickBooks users of installing the most recent update, without proper back-ups - especially if you typically store lots of important files on the desktop.

This information comes courtesy of reader Kelly, who also sent us a link to an Apple Support Thread about the issue. It appears that in the latest automatic QuickBooks update, the updater is coming up with a "not enough free space" message (regardless if enough free space actually exists - and keep in mind, this appears to be a 100K update), if the user then clicks "OK" - the result is that any documents, files or folders that were stored on the desktop are then deleted - and as of right now, no simple recovery method appears to exist.

This is what one user submitted to the Apple Support Thread:

...I took them into the genius bar at apple on 59th st, nyc. They see the issue is intuit's quickbooks auto updater. this is a serious issue that may require data recovery or a quick resolution from intuit who is obviously not yet aware of the issue.


This thread was the only place I was able to find reports of the problem - but with the number of different users commenting, on both Intel and PPC machines, Tiger and Leopard, I felt more inclined to err on the side of caution and post this warning. The issue has been confirmed by users in the comments, additionally, here is a link to a thread on Intuit's site that is dedicated to the issue.

If this has already happened to you and you aren't running Time Machine, short of using a program like Data Rescue II or File Salvage 6.1, there do not appear to be any clear cut solutions. It looks like the updater is deleting all files from the desktop, as user-generated Spotlight searches are not turning up the content.

Just another reminder for all OS X users - whether you use QuickBooks or not - it is NOT a good idea to store files or folders, especially if they are important, on the desktop! Update: I say this because of how system resources are allocated due to windowserver and icon memory usage. It can slow things down tremendously and lead to a less stable system. /Update Use your Home folder or Documents folder instead. If you really want easy Desktop access, consider creating an alias, as this will at least be non-destructive in the event of some sort of problem. Additionally, Leopard users can use the Stacks function on the Dock, and Tiger owners can drag a folder to the dock for easy access as well. Programs like QuickSilver and Overflow can also make it easy to access frequently used documents and folders.

Update: In the comments, Tom Mulhall posted this suggestion for a workaround that I think will be useful for QuickBooks users:

Before launching Q'Books, simply Get Info on the Desktop folder and
LOCK the folder. Launch Q'Books and dismiss the bogus messages. You
can then safely unlock the desktop folder for normal use (whick will
be required for other functioning of the system). You can then use
and safely quit Q'Books . Just be sure to relock your Desktop prior
to relaunching each time.

Update 2: Tom has posted two more workarounds. Instead of locking the desktop folder, this turns off the auto-update function in QuickBooks:

Fix #2 (with credit to "tangrams"); for the more savy users---

Type in terminal:

defaults write QBCheckForUpdatesKey NO

Then hit Return
Then Quit Terminal

(Editor's note: for QuickBooks 2007 users, replace QuickBooks2007 in the above query - while most of the reports I've read seem to revolve around 2006, 2007 seems to have its own update/internet related issues as well.)

OR Fix #3 (used here late Sunday night)

Open the file in Users/~your user/Library/Preferences and with Property Editor set the flag for QBCheckForUpdatesKey to Boolean "No"
save and quit Property Editor

Thanks Tom!

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