How Do I Rebuild a Damaged Company File?

QuickBooks includes a utility to rebuild a company file in the event the file becomes damaged. Rebuilding a company file is an appropriate step in these circumstances:

  • verifying the company file (.qbw) failed
  • the verify utility returns a b-check error
  • payroll forms display incorrectly

In QuickBooks 2004 and 2005, a company file can be rebuilt without first being opened. Beginning with QuickBooks 2006 and thereafter, a company file must first be successfully opened before it can be rebuilt. That limits the functionality of the Rebuild Data utility to files where the damage does not prevent the file from opening.

To rebuild your QuickBooks company file, do the following:

  1. Run the rebuild by visiting the File->Utilities->Rebuild Data menu selection
  2. Follow the steps outlined below to backup your data
  3. Leave the rebuilding process uninterrupted until completion

Once you’ve started the Rebuild Data utility, QuickBooks will prompt you to make a backup of your company file before continuing. Follow these steps to backup your data:

Step 1 – Click Ok to backup your data

Step 2 – Choose the type (online or local) and options

Step 3 – Choose the location for your backup

Step 4 – Leave your computer uninterrupted while QuickBooks rebuilds your company file

Step 5 – Click Ok when QuickBooks has finished rebuilding your company file

Some problems benefit from running the Rebuild utility several times in succession.

Rebuilding procedures are also outlined in this Intuit knowledge base article.


  1. I am using QuicKbooks 2010 , which i upgraded to from Quickbooks 2006 (after 2006 crashed, then we rebuilt then upgraded to 2010)

    I have rebuilt the data file, now i am getting inconsistencies in the debtors.
    My statement shows:- (55450), the open balances show a total of (91903), the summary shows correctly 70639.40 which is the same as details.
    how do i streamline to show consistency in figures.

  2. Quickbook ask me to rebuild data everytime I ask for backup.

    the rebuild is successful.

    But when open quickbook next time, it ask me to :
    “the data file cannot be used because it was not fully rebuilt, please restore the file from the backup which was made prior rebuilding.”

    What happen???? how can I fix it???

    • Chief Mechanic says

      What is your version (year) and release of QB? How big is your data file? Despite the message that the rebuild process worked, it sounds like that didn’t happen and that you have some file corruption. Therefore, try running a verify and then complete these steps: 1) Press F2 2) Press F3 3) Click on the Open File tab and select the QBWIN.LOG file 4) Click the Open File button 5) Scroll down to the bottom of this file.

      The results of the verify operation will hopefully identify the error, and it will be logged in this file. With the error, you may need to contact Intuit technical support to solve it.

      Hope that helps.

      • My version is 2011, the size of data file is 27180kb,
        When I follow the above steps,

        the log shown as below:

        I don’t know what is this, please help

        ==============================* END VERIFY LOG *===========================

        formmgr.c (608) : CHECKPOINT: 4504: Thu Apr 25 12:25:28 Creating a MODAL form: formID=0, itID=9
        debug.c (773) : MESSAGE: 4504: Thu Apr 25 12:27:10 LVL_ERROR–2013/04/25:12:27:10 Admin Menu Item selected: Current Window( ) ERROR getting text for id (465)

        formwin.c (2514) : CHECKPOINT: 4504: Thu Apr 25 12:27:10 Creating form: formID=7000, itID=6
        formmgr.c (608) : CHECKPOINT: 4504: Thu Apr 25 12:27:10 Creating a MODAL form: formID=7000, itID=10