To paraphrase Allan, our Phosphorescent Phage, true data loss in CheckBook is rare, but it’s pretty easy to get in a spot where it looks like it’s gone for good. Don’t panic. You’ve got extremely good odds on things just being hidden from view. Let’s go over some of the ways Entries can come up missing and how to get everything back to normal:
- Your Entries may be out of order. You can sort by any column in CheckBook by clicking the column header – the name just above the actual data in the column, like Date, Type, Description, or Amount. If a click hits any column header besides Date, though, it could look like Entries are missing. Give the Date column header a single click and everything will get back in line. Click the header once more to flip the sort order.
- A Search option might be active. When you use the Search at the top right of the window, CheckBook hides Entries that don’t match the current Search options. There’s even a preference to keep your Search options when you switch Accounts or close and re0pen CheckBook. That lets you set up things like always hiding reconciled Entries in the Reconcile section – and it can also lead to a moment of despair if you forget a Search option is actively hiding some of your Entries. To make sure that’s not the case, click the Search field, click the magnifying glass at the left side of the Search field, and click the Clear All Search Options menu item. You can change that preference for keeping your Search options when switching Accounts by going to the CheckBook menu, clicking the Preferences… menu item, and looking near the bottom of the window.
- Your Entries may be in a different Account. CheckBook documents can have more than one Account, so you’ll want to be sure you’re in the same Account as all those Entries you’re looking for. Click the Accounts button at the top right of the window once or twice to make sure the Accounts drawer, where you can see all your Accounts, is visible on the side of the window, then single-click the name of each Account you find there to see if your data appears. You might need to try ideas 1 or 2 above for each Account, just to be sure things aren’t just out of order or hidden by a Search option or Smart Folder.
- If you’re using CheckBook Pro, you might be in a Folder or Smart Folder. Click the Accounts button at the top right of the window once or twice to make sure the Accounts drawer, where you can see all your Accounts, is visible on the side of the window, then single-click the name of each Account you find there to see if your data appears.
- Your Entries could be in a different document. You can have more than one document (you knew that, right?) and it’s not too uncommon to go up to the File menu looking for a way to create a new Account and accidentally create a new document, instead. Luckily, the File menu’s Open Recent submenu keeps track of the last few documents you’ve opened. Go to the File menu, down to the Open Recent submenu, and try each document you find there to see if your data appears.
If these ideas don’t seem to apply and things still look dire, they’re really not. Even if your data is truly gone, you could have a Time Machine backup or a backup “in the cloud”, and CheckBook even makes its own backups when it sees you haven’t used it in a week or more. We can help figure it out and, unless we’re talking major catastrophe, get you back up and running. So take a few slow, deep breaths and send a System Information report, which tells us how your Mac is set up, along with your recent system logs, where we can piece together how CheckBook’s been used over the last few weeks, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Here’s how to gather these for us:
System Information report
- Click the Finder icon on your Dock.
- Go to the Go menu at the top of your screen and click the Utilities menu item.
- Double-click the System Information icon.
- Go to the File menu and click the Save… menu item.
Save the report to your Desktop and attach it to your message to email@example.com.
- Open CheckBook or CheckBook Pro.
- Hold the Option key on your keyboard while you go to the Help menu and click the Go to System Logs Folder menu item.
- Attach each item whose name begins with “system” (without the quotes) to your message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’ll have a look and get back to you with a plan!