Recovering a NeatWorks database
A couple of weeks ago my computer crashed and Windows decided that it wasn’t going to boot up anymore. I kept getting a blue screen of death about half way through the boot process. The error on the BSOD was “Stop 0x0000007B” which aparently is an incredibly generic error that can mean many things.
I’m pretty sure it was infected with a rootkit because I was running a pretty shady file at the time. Despite spending hours trying to salvage the Windows install I could not get it going again. I finally decided I had wasted enough time and ended up reinstalling Windows 7 on a spare hard drive. After installing Windows I connected the old hard drive with a usb adapter and started transferring over my data.
I ran into trouble when I was trying to restore the database for NeatWorks which is the application for my NeatReceipts scanner. I’ve been using the scanner for a couple years now to create digital copies of all of my paper receipts and documents. Since I trash the paper receipts after I have scanned them the database is fairly important to me.
I had a full backup of the database stored offsite at Dropbox but it was about two weeks old and during the past two weeks I had scanned several items. I figured I would just copy the database directly off the old hard drive onto my new one and life would be great. Well it turns out that it wasn’t as easy as I had hoped but after some digging around I finally figured out how to do it.
I couldn’t find a guide for this process on NeatCo’s website or elsewhere on the web so I decided to blog about it in case someone else ends up in the same situation.
Before you move any files you have to install NeatWorks on the computer you want to restore the data on. You can install from the disk or download the software directly from NeatCo’s website. Make sure you install the same version you were using previously. I was using NeatWorks version 4 SP3b at the time so that is what I installed.
Copying the files from the old drive
To get all of the data back in place you will need to copy the directories below from the old drive to the new one. NeatWorks must be closed before you copy the files over.
Old Drive:\ProgramData\The Neat Company -> C:\ProgramData\The Neat Company
Old Drive:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\MSSQL -> C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\MSSQL
After you have copied both of those directories over you can restart NeatWorks and all of your old data should be present. When I was first trying to copy the data over I was moving the MYSQL database files but I would start NeatWorks my older data was present but the files in the incoming queue were missing. Finally I discovered the ProgramData directory which happens to contain everything that has not yet been committed to the database. One final note I should mention is when you start NeatWorks for the first time after recoverying these files you may need to hit the ‘Show All’ button if some receipts don’t show up. This button is located just below the search box when you are in receipt or document view.
Unfortunately NeatWorks doesn’t support the ability to schedule automatic backups but now that I know which directories I need I will synchronize them both to my Dropbox account.
Sam graduated from the University of Missouri – Kansas City with a bachelors degree in Information Technology. Currently he works as a network analyst for an algorithmic trading firm. Sam enjoys the challenge of troubleshooting complex problems and is constantly experimenting with new technologies.