If you are using a third-party add-on program that works with QuickBooks Desktop versions, there is an ongoing problem that may cause QuickBooks to crash when you try to use your add-on product. I’ve talked about the QuickBooks 2013 R7 bug fix before, but there is a lot more to this than I originally realized. Here is what I see at this point, and how to fix the issue.
Please note that all of this probably only applies to the US versions, so far as I can tell.
What Is The Problem?
If you are using a third-party add-on product that accesses the Windows Desktop version of QuickBooks, the R7 update to the program may stop your add-on product from running properly. Odds are you will see QuickBooks crash with an unrecoverable error when the add-on product tries to do certain operations. Some add-on products won’t do this, it depends on what QuickBooks data structures they are working with. You may see this error window:
This is a major problem, as many businesses rely on QuickBooks add-on products for their daily operations.
Releases, Releases, What is in YOUR Wallet?
What “release” are you running? Open your QuickBooks file, then press the F2 key to open the “product information” window. In the top line you will see your “release” information. For example:
This tells me that I’m running QuickBooks Accountant 2013, and that I have Release R7P+(U130606A). That is a lot of info.
The “R7P” portion tells you that you are running the R7 release. QuickBooks starts off with the R1 release when Intuit issues a new year of product, and as they fix bugs they generally bump up the release number. See my article on the QuickBooks 2013 R7 release to see what they fixed this time.
The rest of the line, the “U(130606A)” portion, has to do with “critical fixes”. This is a way for Intuit to get a patch out to us quickly without going through the more formal “R-level” update. It is a new feature in QuickBooks 2013, and we haven’t had a real test of it until now. Note that you might not see this notation at all.
What is confusing to me is that this number does NOT necessarily indicate that you HAVE a critical fix installed!
Prior to last week, you would see the notation “U(121026B)”. All that means is that your copy of QuickBooks has made a connection to the Intuit update server. If your program hasn’t connected, you probably won’t see any notation like this at all.
This week, you will probably see “U(130606A)” like I show above. That means that Intuit has made a “critical fix” available, dated June 6 2013 (the “130606” part). If you see this, then QuickBooks has downloaded this critical fix to your system, but it hasn’t necessarily installed it. All this means is that the connection was made, and that some files have probably been downloaded, but the patch might not have been applied.
Another confusing issue – this notation may show up but it might not apply to you. For example, this latest critical fix resolves a problem in the R7 release. But, you may see this notation if you have an earlier release, like R6.
This shows that the file is at R6, but it has the 130606 notation, which only applies to R7. Has anything changed? Supposedly not. The critical fix is there, waiting for an update to R7.
I’m totally confused by this. The notation shows, but might not apply to me. The notation says something is downloaded (maybe), but not necessarily installed. How do I know if this has been installed, and what it does?
Critical Fixes Don’t Always Get Installed
Let’s set aside the issue of the notation showing on releases that it doesn’t relate to, lets just talk about knowing if it has been installed or not.
On a conceptual level, if you see the notation about a critical fix, and that applies to your current release, you should expect that the patch is installed. With this particular update (R7 and 130606) I was telling people that “if you see R7P+(U130606A) you have the fix”. Then I started getting a lot of calls about 3rd party add-on products. People had this release notation, but they still could not use the add-on products. What gives?
It seems that critical fixes won’t always apply. According to Intuit, if you are running Windows Vista or later and have UAC enabled, you have to run QuickBooks in the Run as Administrator mode to get the fix to apply properly. Few people run QB this way normally!
- Right click on your QuickBooks icon and select Run as Administrator.
- Select Help then Update QuickBooks.
- Select the Update Now tab.
- Scroll down and select Critical Fixes
- Click Get Updates.
- When the program is done, exit QuickBooks
- Restart QuickBooks as you normally would. The patch should apply.
Wow! – that is a lot of work, and you don’t know when you should do this because you don’t get notified of the availability of the critical update, and you don’t know what release it applies to!
You can check to see if the patch applied by going to this folder (note that the “QuickBooks 2013” portion of the path will be “QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions 13.0” if you are using Enterprise):
- 32 bit systems: C:\Program Files\Intuit\QuickBooks 2013\CriticalFixes
- 64 bit systems: C:\Program Files (x86)\Intuit\QuickBooks 2013\CriticalFixes
If you see a file with a “DLL” file type there, the fix should have been applied. If you see a file with a “DAT” file type, and a size of 0KB, the fix might not have applied and you should try the process again.
This Critical Fix Might Not Work – How To Fix It
Going back to the specific problem – R7 breaks QuickBooks so that add-on products won’t work. Does the 130606 critical fix take care of it? Not necessarily.
As I mentioned, the fix might not apply if you don’t use the run as administrator process. However, there are reports of situations where even if you do this, the problem remains. There may be an error in the patch that is delivered this way (I haven’t confirmed this myself, it is what I was told by a knowledgeable person). So, here is a manual patch to fix the R7 problem, as provided to my by Intuit:
- Close QuickBooks and any third-party add-on programs that access your QuickBooks data.
- Locate the file named sdkqbimpl.dll in your computer system. This will be in the “Intuit” folder in “Program Files” (or “Program Files (x86)”), in the folder for the version of QuickBooks that you are using. Make sure you get the 2013 version of the program. NOTE that this may be a “hidden folder” in Windows – see your computer support person for information on how to view “hidden folders” in Windows.
- Rename the sdkqbimpl.dll file to something like Oldsdkqbimpl.dll.
- Download this updated file (it is a large one) by clicking on this link: sdkqbimpl.zip.
- Unzip the file to get the new sdkqbimpl.dll file – you will need a password, which is Intuit01
- Move the new DLL file to the location where you found the older file.
- Restart QuickBooks.
In every case that I’ve heard of so far, this process fixes this particular problem.
There May Be Other Problems!
The fix we are talking about here addresses one particular problem – QuickBooks crashing with error 00000 37760. There may be other issues that look similar that interfere with third-party add-ons floating around, but I haven’t pinned that down yet. Many people are seeing a message “QBXML components have not been installed” when running an add-on with QuickBooks 2013. It is not clear what is going on here, and the fixes that Intuit has listed in their website are not working.
At this time, indications are that THIS error is occurring with versions EARLIER than R7. It is thought that upgrading to R7 will fix the problem (not confirmed). Of course, once you go to R7 you introduce the “crash” problem. Luckily, that is the one that is fixed by the procedure above.
At this time all of this is very vague. There is a lot of confusion about this, since we seem to have multiple problems showing up all at the same time.
What Is The Latest Critical Fix?
Intuit has created KB article INF23122 which has information about the critical fix feature, and it will list the current value (they are calling these “ULIP”, for “ultra light patch”).
Unfortunately, at this time, the KB article doesn’t tell us what exactly the critical fix FIXED. That would be helpful information!
“Critical Fix” Is A Good Idea, But…
The original concept of the “critical fix” process is a good one, allowing Intuit to get out a fix to a problem very quickly. This particular issue is the first real test of this in a “production” environment. The R7 patch introduced a significant problem, and Intuit responded VERY quickly to this issue and got a patch going. However, it looks like some additional work is needed in their delivery system. Hopefully they’ll resolve some of these issues before they try it again.
- We need a way to positively know that the fix was applied. It is too hard to tell now. Just seeing the notation doesn’t mean that a fix relates to your installation, or that it has been installed.
- We should not have to run as administrator and manually apply the patch. Having to do that defeats the entire purpose of this. It should happen automatically
- We need to be notified of these updates, and be told what they are fixing. I hate having to stumble on a fix just by periodically looking for a revision number change, and I hate not knowing what was changed. In this particular case I was informed ahead of time, and I really do appreciate Intuit’s help with this, but that might not be the case in future critical fix situations.
- Finally, it should be obvious that the fix needs to fix a problem and not create more. It looks like this fix might not have really fixed the issue, and some people think that the process introduced some new errors, but that is speculative at this point.
All of this creates a conundrum. I usually recommend that you turn off automatic updates so that you can control how updates are managed. However, if you do that, you don’t get these critical fixes automatically, you have to manually start them. Then again, are these critical fix updates introducing new problems? I’m still thinking that we want automatic updates OFF so that we can control what is going on, but it is a policy that I’m re-evaluating.