Moving To A New Computer

Overview

This page discusses how to move RTG Bills to a new computer. Similar instructions apply if you are replacing a hard disk, but we have a separate page for those instructions:

Restoring RTG Bills On A New Hard Disk

Our goal will be to get the latest version of RTG Bills working on the new computer, with all of your current data from the old computer. RTG strongly recommends that you always use the latest version of the program.

We assume that you have access to both the old and the new computers, as well as some way to copy files from one to the other. If you do not have access to the old computer, use the instructions for restoring RTG Bills on a new hard disk.

The overall process is simple: install RTG Bills on the new computer, back up your data on the old computer, and restore your data on the new computer.

 

Part 1:
Install on new computer

  1. Download the RTG Bills installation file from the Download page.

  2. Use the installation file to install RTG Bills on the new computer. If the Data Location is on a network drive, we recommend using the UNC name, as described here:

    How to Specify the Network Data Location

  3. After the installation is finished, start RTG Bills and choose Help > About RTG Bills to see the version number. Of course, there is no data there yet.

  4. You will need a license for RTG Bills. If you already have the current version, the same license information can be entered on the new computer. Otherwise, you can obtain a license for a reduced price, which we call the RTG Bills Version 2 Upgrade. Or it may even be free: see the RTG Bills Upgrade Policy.

    Without a license, RTG Bills will stop working as soon as you transfer the old data to the new computer. There is no free trial period when you have existing data.
 

Part 2:
Install on old computer

You should now install the current version of RTG Bills on the old computer. The reason for doing that is to make sure you are using the latest version of the backup software, RTG Backup.

Warning: If you have V2.20 or above on the old computer, you must have the license information for the current version of RTG Bills before you install it on the old computer. There will be no free trial period. You won't be able to start RTG Bills without entering the license information.

Version 2.27 and above
View the System Information report to get the Data Location. You will need to enter this when the installer asks for the Data Location. Exit from RTG Bills. Install RTG Bills on the old computer, using the standard Program Location:

C:\Program Files\Rtgbills\
or
C:\Program Files (x86)\Rtgbills\

and the Data Location of the existing RTG Bills installation. When RTG Bills is installed, go to Part 3 below.


Versions 2.17 to 2.26
Start RTG Bills and choose Setup > Database. Note the location of the data. You will need to enter this when the installer asks for the Data Location. Exit from RTG Bills. Install RTG Bills on the old computer, using the standard Program Location:

C:\Program Files\Rtgbills\
or
C:\Program Files (x86)\Rtgbills\

and the Data Location of the existing RTG Bills installation. When RTG Bills is installed, go to Part 3 below.


Versions 2.16 and below
We assume that you have RTG Bills V2.01 through V2.16 on the old computer. Please read the rest of this section carefully before you proceed.

The tricky part is to figure out where your data is located. The installation program will ask for the Data Location, and you need to know what to enter there. Because the programs and data had to be in the same location prior to V2.17, your Data Location will also be your Program Location (i.e., where the RTG Bills programs are installed).

If you have a shortcut for RTG Bills on your Desktop, right-click the icon and choose Properties from the pop-up menu. The Target will show where the programs and data are located. For a non-networked installation, it usually says this:

C:\Program Files\Rtgbills\rtgbills.exe
or this:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Rtgbills\rtgbills.exe

and that means the Data Location and Program Location are this:

C:\Program Files\Rtgbills\
or this:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Rtgbills\

However, if you originally had RTG Bills Version 1 installed, you might have your programs and data here instead:

C:\Rtgbills\

If you are using RTG Bills on a network, the programs and data could be installed anywhere on the network.

Once you know where the programs and data are located, install RTG Bills on the old computer, specifying that location for both the Program Location and the Data Location.

 

Part 3:
Back up data

Start RTG Bills on the old computer and choose File > Backup to back up your data. Before you start the backup, be sure to check Include archived data.

Warning: If you don't check that option, you will be unable to restore deleted clients and matters (from the archive file).

A convenient way to do the backup is to click the Desktop button under the Backup Folder box, so the data files are stored in a folder named Backup on your Windows Desktop. The box shows the exact location.

The backup program will create two files on the hard disk, Bills.zip and Bills.rbi. Now you must copy those files to the new computer. You might copy them to a USB drive, to a flash drive, or to a shared folder on the network where the new computer can read them.

You might even be able to email the two files as attachments. However, the one with your data, Bills.zip, may be too large for some email systems.

 

Part 4:
Restore data

  1. At this point, you have backed up the data from the old computer. The backup created two files, Bills.zip and Bills.rbi. Make those two files available to the new computer, either by copying them to the hard disk of the new computer, or by making them available on a removable disk, or on a network drive, that the new computer can read.

  2. Start RTG Bills on the new computer and choose File > Restore From Backup. The RTG Restore program will start. You will need to tell it exactly where you put the backup files that RTG Backup created. It will ask you to locate the rbi file, and it expects to find the zip file in the same location.

    You also need to tell RTG Restore where to put the restored data. It must go in the Data Location on the new computer. If you aren't sure where that is, get the Data Location from the System Information report on the new computer.

  3. When RTG Restore finishes, start RTG Bills. All of your data should now be available on the new computer.

Read-Only Warning!
If you saved the files from the old computer on a CD or DVD, then copied them to the hard disk on the new computer, Windows may have made all of the files read-only. This will cause an error message when RTG Bills tries to open the database. You must remove the read-only attribute from all of the files in the RTG Bills folder. Click here for instructions.

 

Part 5:
Other data

The Data Location contains a few folders that are not backed up by RTG Backup.

You may want to copy these folders to the new computer:

  • pdf: Contains PDF-format bills created by RTG Bills.
  • ebills: Contains e-bills created by RTG E-Bills.
  • scripts: Contains portions of the RTG Scripts program, plus any scripts that you have created or modified.

and this file:

  • dictus.wds: Contains the spelling dictionary, which you may have edited.

Do not copy this folder to the new computer:

  • Upgrades: Contains RTG upgrades applied on the old computer.
 

Part 6:
Moving RTG Timer

The procedure for RTG Timer is essentially the same as the previous description for RTG Bills. Keep in mind, however, that the Data Location is different for every copy of RTG Timer.

  • Install RTG Timer on the new computer. No license is required for RTG Timer.
  • Install RTG Timer on the old computer.
  • Back up data on the old computer using File > Backup. Two files are created, Timer.zip and Timer.rbi.
  • Restore data on the new computer using File > Restore From Backup.
 

Verify correct operation

Start RTG Bills on the new computer. To verify that the data has been transferred correctly, view reports that list all items:

  • Client List
  • Matter List
     Select All Matters
  • Timekeeper List
  • Rate Tables
  • Code Tables
  • Tax Codes
  • Shorthand Codes
  • Fees and Expenses by Matter
     Select All Matters and To Date
  • Payments and Adjustments by Date
     Select To Date
  • Retainer Account Summary
     Select All Matters

You may also want to use the Client/Matter Check report to see if there are any problems in the matter information, such as missing matter names.

In addition, we suggest that you use the File > Compact Database command. It checks that the entire database can be read. It may even make your database work faster (by optimizing query statistics, for the technically inclined).

 
 
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