It is extremely important to have data recovery features and tools in every software application- as QuickBooks has in the form of QuickBooks auto data recovery. After all, one can lose data in many ways and a proper mechanism to retrieve it should exist in order to allow users to gain it back to save themselves a lot of stress and hard work.
Although you may be taking every precaution to protect your data, sometimes errors can occur, either on your part or by the software. This feature allows you to recover as much of the data as possible under the circumstances and has been in QB applications since its 2012 version.
It is relatively faster as a way to reclaim lost data through the QuickBooks auto data recovery function. However, it is only recommended in case the other methods don’t work, as a last-ditch effort. This is because there are other simpler methods that you have to apply first so that you may not have to use this feature at all.
Note that the QuickBooks auto data recovery tool only exists in these software products and versions of QuickBooks (the Microsoft Windows edition)-
- QB Premier
- QB Enterprise
- QB Pro
Shortcomings of this feature
- It is not available in the QB Accountant version.
- There is a file size limit of 1.5 Gigabytes, which means only data within this range will have an ADR file generated for it. Otherwise, there will be no backup file for your data.
- It works best when your software is completely up-to-date.
How Do I Use the QuickBooks Auto Data Recovery Feature?
To know how this tool can help you recover deleted QuickBooks files, you have to first know the two ways in which it works:
- It restores lost data, which usually means transactions, with the help of the current log file for transactions and the company file.
- It uses the copies of the two files to recover all the transactions stored up until the last few hours.
Using Log Files from the Primary Transaction to Recover Lost Data
These are the steps to restore your transaction data with the help of the QuickBooks auto data recovery feature-
Step 1– Go to the Desktop and create a new folder there. Name it “QB Test”.
Step 2– Find the location of your company file by pressing the number 1 and Control keys at the same time or just the F2 key.
Step 3– Once you have found the company file’s folder, look for the .tlg file that has the same name as your company file does.
If you cannot find any such file, follow Steps A through E:-
- Press Windows+E.
- The file explorer opens, where you have to click “Organize” and then “Options”.
- Select the “View” button located on the menu-bar and tick the “File Name Extensions”.
- Tick the “Hide Extensions for Known File Types” option that is available.
- Apply the changes that you have made and then click the “OK” button.
Once you have found the file that has been mentioned, proceed with these steps in the QuickBooks auto data recovery process-
Step 1– Copy the .tlg file and paste it in the new folder that you had named “QBTest”.
Step 2– Go back to the folder that contains the company file and click on the folder named QuickBooks Auto Data Recovery.
Step 3– Copy that version of the company file that has the ADR extension, and paste it into the folder opened in Step
Step 4– Go to and rename the.QBW.ADR file and to just.QBW.
Step 5– Click on the QB application to open it and open the company file that you had saved in the QB test folder on your desktop. You can check that all of the transactions exist with the help of the account register.
Step 6– Once that is done, click “File” and then “Utilities”.
Step 7– Click on the “Verify Data” option which will ensure complete data integrity of the file. If the check completes and the copy is safe, simply move the other company file which was damaged to a different, unrelated location and replace it with this newly created and checked copy.
Using Both- Company File and Transaction File- to Restore Data
This is another method for recovering your data, which uses the.QBW.ADR as well as the.TLG.ADR files. You can follow this method through the steps given below-
NOTE- You can only recover all of the data before the last 12 hours but nothing during these last 12 hours with the second method for QuickBooks Auto Data Recovery.
Step 1- Right-click on the desktop to create a new folder which you can name as “QB Test”.
Step 2– Go to your company file’s location folder and look for the “QuickBooks Auto Data Recovery” folder there. You can find this folder using the F2 or Ctrl+1 keys.
Step 3– In the same folder, find the TLG.adr and the QBW.adr files. This will be easy as they both have the same name, just different first extensions. If you cannot find these, follow step A to E in order to do so.
Step 4– Copy and paste these two files into the desktop folder named QB Test. Rename these two- QBW.adr file to QBW and the TLG.adr file to TLG. Open your QB application and then go to the File section on the menu-bar.
Step 5– Click “Utilities” and then “Verify Data” to ensure data integrity. Once proven, replace the older company file with this one.