People have become so accustomed to using reliable technology that they often assume that vital, irreplaceable data is safe and will always accessible. However, computer theft, flood, fire, disk failure, and viruses can render important data lost forever.
We frequently receive calls from customers following these types of events. Their earnest request is for help locating and recovering their Virtual TimeClock employee timecards. Far too often we have to be the bearer of the bad news that employee timecard data cannot be reproduced without a backup of the data that resided on a failed or stolen computer.
Where Is My Data?
Understanding where Virtual TimeClock stores your employee time clock data is an important first step. The location of your data depends on the edition you are using:
Virtual TimeClock Basic and Pro
The stand-alone Basic and Pro editions of Virtual TimeClock both store all of your data on the computer that is running the your time clock software.
Virtual TimeClock Network
Though multiple computers can be used in our Network Edition, all data is stored on the one computer that is running the Virtual TimeClock Server software.
Virtual TimeClock Server runs unattended as a background service, so users are often unsure which computer is running their TimeClock Server software. To locate this computer, find the computer that has the Virtual TimeClock Server Manager program installed. Launch the Server Manager to ensure that computer is the one currently running your TimeClock Server.
Backup Your Virtual TimeClock Data!
Because of the critical importance of backups, we’ve made it super easy to do both manual and automated scheduled backups of your Virtual TimeClock data. See our Knowledge Base article on Backups for detailed help and step-by-step instructions.
In the event of a data disaster, the following will help you get your Virtual TimeClock back up and running:
I have a backup
If you have a recent Virtual TimeClock data backup, the process is pretty simple. See our Knowledge Base article for Virtual TimeClock Basic, Pro or Network Moving Guides for step-by-step instructions to quickly reinstall and restore your Virtual TimeClock data from a backup.
I have the hard drive
If you don’t have a backup, but have access to the hard drive that formerly hosted your Virtual TimeClock data or a backup, you may be able to retrieve your data. Virtual TimeClock stores all critical data in a single file with the extension of “.vtcData”. Virtual TimeClock backups are a single file that will have a date stamp in the file name and an extension of “.vtcBackup”.
Performing a search on the drive for files with both extensions locate all Virtual TimeClock data and backup files. Database files can be manually copied and opened when you reinstall Virtual TimeClock. Backup files can be used to easily perform a data restore when you reinstall Virtual TimeClock (see I have a backup section above).
I’ve lost everything
If you don’t have a backup and lose access to the computer that hosts your Virtual TimeClock data, you’ll have to reinstall the software and start over with configuration and setup of Virtual TimeClock. We maintain the prior several versions of Virtual TimeClock for download from our web site. You’ll need your license key to download the correct version and to register the software after installation. See the Installation & Setup Guides in our Knowledge Base for detailed instructions.
The moral of the story is backup, backup, backup! It’s so easy to do and can make the difference between a minor inconvenience and a major payroll hassle.