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Restoring Internet Backups
Note: In the Web Network Version of the program, backups are done for you automatically on the server, so you do not have to do your own backups, and the following section does not apply.
Assuming that you have configured the options for Internet backups in the bottom half of the Backup/Restore ⇒ Backup Frequency and Options window, and you have previously made at least one Internet backup, if you ever need to restore an Internet backup of your current database, you do so with the Backup/Restore ⇒ Restore Internet Backup menu option.
The other time you are given an option to restore an Internet backup (which could be of any database) is the first time you run the program on a new computer, from the Startup Options window, or if you get to that option via the File ⇒ New Database menu option. This would be appropriate if you had already been using ACCOUNTS on some computer, and made Internet backups, and needed to install ACCOUNTS on another computer and restore your latest Internet backup. To be able to do that, you will need to know the Unique ID for Internet backups used on the original computer running ACCOUNTS, as well as the Internet backup password that was used.
Restoring a backup to the same computer it was made from should normally only be done if you have had your computer or hard drive die, and thus lost your database, or you have taken some action in ACCOUNTS that you need to reverse, there is no other way to reverse that action, and your backup is recent enough that you are willing to go back to it.
The other time you might want to restore Internet backups is if you have ACCOUNTS on multiple computers, with copies of the same database, and you are transferring that database between those computers. See the section on this in the Help page on configuring Internet backups for some important instructions in that case, because you have to first make sure they are using the same Unique ID for Internet backups.
In the case where you selected to restore an Internet backup from the Startup Options window, you will first be shown the following window, to paste in the Unique ID for Internet backups (which you were probably sent in an email).
It's important to understand that the Unique ID being prompted for here is not the same as as your Internet backup encryption password. The Unique ID is a random-looking string of 36 lower case letters, digits and dashes, which was originally generated by the program. Your Internet backup encryption password is something you (or whoever made that backup) picked themselves.
You will need to highlight the Unique ID from the email you have it in with your mouse, and press Ctrl+C, i.e. hold down Ctrl and press C, (or right-click, and pick Copy from the popup menu) to get it into the clipboard, then come back here and click the Paste ID from Clipboard button to paste it into the entry field. (You can't just type it in - it's too easy to make mistakes if you do it that way!) After that, click OK.
Next, whether you came in from Startup Options, or by using the Backup/Restore ⇒ Restore Internet Backup menu option, you will be prompted for your Internet backup encryption password. This must be the same password that was used to make the backup you will be restoring.
Next, you will be shown a window containing the filenames of whichever Internet backups have been stored online. A typical filename would be OrganizationName-YYYY-MM-DD.HH.MM.SS.S4AEncryptedBackup or OrganizationName-YYYY-MM-DD.S4AEncryptedBackup, where the OrganizationName is your File Name from the Maintenance ⇒ Organization Info window, YYYY-MM-DD is the date the backup was made, in that format, and HH.MM.SS is the time.
Only your three most recent Internet backups are retained online, in order that the amount of storage used on the Software4Nonprofits.com web server not become excessive. In addition, backups over 1 year old may be removed. (Of course, you should be making backups more often than three times per year, so this should not be an issue for you!) So, the maximum number of backups that will be displayed in the selection window will be three.
In the case where you have only ever made one online backup, the selection window is not displayed, and instead you are just prompted to confirm that you want to restore that one backup, with its filename (showing the date in the format mentioned above) displayed.
After this, a series of self-explanatory windows and messages will explain what steps are being done to restore your backup.
Restoring Older Backups
If you select a backup to restore that is older than your current data (i.e. you have entered further transactions, with later dates, since that backup was made), the program will give you a very explicit warning about this, and ask you twice to confirm that you really wish to do this. That's because doing such a restore will cause the more recent data, entered since that earlier backup, to be lost!