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QuickBooks update shreds Mac files

Do not install a QuickBooks update seeded over the weekend if you're a Mac user, as multiple users are reporting that the update erases files from the Desktop folder.

Updated 1:55pm with comment from Intuit below.

Mac users who installed an update to their QuickBooks software over the weekend were met with a nasty surprise: missing data.

If you're a user of Intuit's QuickBooks accounting software for small businesses on your Mac, and you haven't installed an update pushed to users over the weekend, don't.

The update caused several Mac users to lose data from their Desktop folders, infuriating many who were hoping to close their books this week for 2007, only to lose valuable purchase orders and spreadsheets. This problem doesn't appear to affect those using QuickBooks on Windows PCs, but it does appear to be causing problems for both Tiger and Leopard users.

The update apparently came along with a prompt that read, "there is not enough space to install." If you clicked yes, knowing that your hard drive wasn't even close to full, you could have found yourself with lost data, once you rebooted after installing the update.

Intuit is recommending that you NOT install the update under any circumstances if you haven't already. If you close QuickBooks and then open it again, the company says the software should no longer prompt you to install the update. Intuit said it has corrected the issue on its servers so that the update prompt won't be issued again.

If you did install the update, the company said, "our recommendation for now is to turn off your computer and do not use it further." Intuit is trying to figure out how to help customers recover the data they lost, but this sounds like this is quickly spiraling into a nightmare for Intuit technical-support employees and QuickBooks users who didn't have a backup of their files saved to Desktop.

I put a call into Intuit, asking for more details on the problem and any possible workarounds or solutions, and I'll update later if those come along.

UPDATED 1:55pm - An Intuit representative got in touch with a statement. "Intuit has resolved the issue that a limited number of QuickBooks Pro for Mac users experienced when trying to update their software. We regret any problems that this issue may have caused and are committed to working with affected customers." If you visit this page, there's a link that will allow you to sign up for technical support, or call a number for further assistance.