The QuickBooks 2014 R3 Memo bug has created a lot of problems for some businesses. This problem was introduced with the R3 update, but the good news is that Intuit has come up with a fix for this very quickly and we don’t have to wait for the next major release. Let’s take a look at this bug and how you can get the patch.
The QuickBooks 2014 R3 Memo Bug
In some QuickBooks transactions you can have a “memo” field both in the transaction header as well as for each detail line. For example, here is a Bill transaction, shown in QuickBooks 2013.
If we go to a report that shows the transaction details, such as this Profit & Loss Detail, you can see that the Memo column shows the memo from the detail lines. This is an important feature that some businesses rely on.
All was fine, this worked the same in QuickBooks 2014 in the R1 release, but if we look at the same transaction in QuickBooks 2014 R3 we can see that the wrong memo shows in the detail report. This is showing the “header” memo, not the one from the detail line.
Lots of complaints about this in places like the Intuit Community Forum and comments in our 2014 R3 blog article.
The Fix is Available!
The good news is that Intuit has responded to this issue quickly. Getting the fix isn’t that hard, but it might not be obvious how to do it.
Normally Intuit will release bug fixes in “R-level” releases. Currently we are in the R3 level with QuickBooks 2014. What level are you at? Press the F2 key when you have QuickBooks running and look for this information.
The next release will be R4, and it takes Intuit some time to come up with these releases. Particularly this early in the development cycle, when there are so many things to fix or update.
Last year Intuit introduced a new way to get “critical fixes” distributed without having to wait for a major R-level release. I referred to this as the critical fix feature, Intuit now refers to them as a ULIP (or Ultra Light Patch). These are, essentially, done in the background by the Update QuickBooks mechanism. Unfortunately, last year, we found that there were some problems with how this was implemented, and many people couldn’t get this mechanism to work easily.
Fortunately, with QuickBooks 2014, Intuit has been able to fix the problems with the critical fix feature, so that these “ULIP” updates can be easily installed without trouble. I’ve tested this, and it worked flawlessly, and fixed the Memo bug.
Initially this is only available if you manually force an update. To do this, on each computer that you are running the QuickBooks 2014 desktop client on (at the R3 level):
- Run QuickBooks and open your company file.
- Select Help and then Update QuickBooks.
- Select the Update Now tab.
- Click the Get Updates button.
- When the update is complete you will need to close QuickBooks completely and restart it.
The issue should now be resolved. Test it – if the problem still exists, reboot the computer and do the update again. I didn’t have to do that in any of my tests.
At the time I’m writing this you have to perform this manual update to get the fix. At some point in time Intuit will set this to occur as an automatic update, so it should install automatically, in the background (unless you have disabled automatic updates).
How Can I Tell If This Critical Fix was Installed?
This is one thing that I’m not happy that they changed, although I think that I can understand why they might have done this. You can’t easily tell if this critical patch has been installed!
In QuickBooks 2013 we would see some extra information in the Release info, such as this:
All that confusing nomenclature after the “R10P” info (the “P” is always there, we ignore it) relates to the ULIP. This indicates that a critical patch was either installed or has been downloaded and COULD be installed. It wasn’t a perfect test – but if it WASN’T there you weren’t patched.
In QuickBooks 2014 there is no way to tell from within the program that there is a critical fix installed. The only way is to look for a timestamp on a program component.
Look for your QuickBooks program folder using Windows Explorer. This can be in one of several different possibly places on your system, depending on if your computer is 32 bit or 64 bit and also if you are using Enterprise or Pro/Premier. In that folder, right click on QBWRPT32.DLL, select Properties, then look for the timestamp on the Digital Signatures tab.
This timestamp must be November 04 to indicate a successful patch. The older unpatched version will be October 10.
I really don’t like this – I think that there should be some way that you can see if a critical patch has been installed by looking at something in the F2 screen. Or, perhaps, in the information window that opens if you click the “Critical Fixes” link in the Update QuickBooks window.
In any case, thank you, Intuit, for fixing this quickly (but, darn it, try to not release new bugs when you are fixing other bugs).