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No data after upgrade

Q: I installed a new version of RTG Bills and all of my data has disappeared! Where is it?

A: Your data is where it was before the upgrade.

Prior to RTG Bills Version 2.17, the program and data had to be in the same location. So if the program did not see the data, it meant that you installed the program in a location different from its previous location. The solution was to uninstall the program and then install it in the same location as before.

Starting with RTG Bills Version 2.17, the installation program asks for the Destination Location (where the program files are stored) and the Data Location (where the data files are stored). If you choose the wrong Data Location, an empty database is installed and you won't see your data in RTG Bills.

To fix the problem, you must find the data on your computer or network. Then you should uninstall RTG Bills and install it again, with the correct choice for the Data Location.

We recommend installing RTG Bills and RTG Timer programs in this standard program location:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Rtgbills

Then you need to tell the installation program where the data is located.

For RTG Bills V2.17 and above, the standard data location for Windows XP is:

C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\RTG\RTG Bills\

and for Windows Vista or Windows 7, 8, or 10 it is:

C:\ProgramData\RTG\RTG Bills\

Your data is probably not in the standard data location, which is why you do not see the data in RTG Bills.

Where is your data?

The RTG Bills database is the file rtgbills.mdb. Find that file and you have found the data location.

If RTG Bills and RTG Timer are not used on a network, the data is probably in the "standard program location" shown above.  Remember, prior to RTG Bills V2.17 both programs and data had to be in the same location. So if you had an earlier version installed at one time, the data may still be there in the same folder as the programs:

C:\Program Files\Rtgbills

If you had RTG Bills Version 1 originally, the data might be in  the "standard program location" for Version 1:


On a network, the data location could be any shared folder on the network. Our network installation instructions recommend this location:


where you must replace MyServer with the actual name of your file server.

You can search for the file rtgbills.mdb (the RTG Bills database) to see where the data is located.  You should find at least two copies.  The larger file is your database.  The smaller file is an empty database that was installed by the new version.

When you find the database file, enter its location when the installation program asks for the Data Location.

When the installation is finished, start RTG Bills. It will automatically convert your database to the format required by the new version of RTG Bills.

Note regarding Windows Vista and Windows 7, 8, or 10:
Windows versions after XP require that your database be somewhere other than the Program Files folder.

If you are upgrading a computer from Windows XP to Vista or Windows 7, 8, or 10, we suggest that you move the data before upgrading. See Windows Vista and RTG Software.