• Report: #667503
Complaint Review:

Neat Works

  • Submitted: Thu, December 02, 2010
  • Updated: Mon, June 11, 2012

  • Reported By: Joseph — Saratoga Springs New York United States of America
Neat Works
3401 Market Street, Suite 120 Philadelphia,, Pennsylvania United States of America

Neat Works Neat Reciepts, No Technical Support for their custom software. Lost 18 months of Data Philadelphia,, Pennsylvania

*Consumer Comment: Any Progress with NEAT?

*Consumer Comment: What 800#?

*Consumer Comment: Neat Receipts - Be Careful to Back it up

*Author of original report: Can You Say Class Action Suit?

*Consumer Comment: definitely agree with the complaint

*Consumer Comment: Neatworks is not a rip-off - This complaint is unreasonable

*Consumer Comment: Neat Works backup is not intuitive

*Consumer Suggestion: There are backup options available

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This company's program Neat Receipts is a great idea made by a poor company.  We had 18 months of records entering the receipts on this system. The hardrive crashed but their data was recovered and accessable on the old drive. However when we transfered to the new hardrive we updated the software and we could no longer open the program causing us to loose the information that we just entered forever and waisting our time.

We thought no big deal we can simply contact thier tech support like most companies and they can tell us what to do to get everything up and going and we would be back to work in no time.  So we went to the help that directed us to thier website and looked on the website and tried to find the answer to the problem and most answers they had for the problems listed we user error related issues.  Im sorry, but I do know enough about a computer to know the software not opening is not a user error.  They did not have any answers for the software it self not working properly.

We tried thier live chat to chat with a service rep and we found that they discontinued the service.  We tried to call and we were instructed to go to their website.  We went through every option on the phone system and the only one that actually got us to a person was the sales option. 

We had to scrap two scanners at a cost of over $600.00 plus the man power to enter the data was over $3000.00 dollars. This product is now available through Staples Stores DON't BUY IT!!

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/02/2010 01:36 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/neat-works/philadelphia-pennsylvania-19104/neat-works-neat-reciepts-no-technical-support-for-their-custom-software-lost-18-months-o-667503. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

Any Progress with NEAT?

AUTHOR: hjrw - (USA)

If there is any way to join others to force this company to return my data (if it really exists) from their cloud in a readable format, includeing receipt images?

If there is anything I can do to stop this ripoff company, pleasr let me know.  I was a totally satisfied customer until they went to their cloud based system.  I have now lost all data prior to Jul 1 (it is now Nov 13).


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#2 Consumer Comment

What 800#?

AUTHOR: sfricks - ()

There is no 800# on their support sight: http://neatreceipts.custhelp.com/app/home. I'm curious what number you used to contact them. I've emailed them 4 times and have gotten no response. The product isn't bad but their support is entirely non-existant.

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#3 Consumer Comment

Neat Receipts - Be Careful to Back it up

AUTHOR: bh442 - (United States of America)

I purchased the product a few months ago and it works well so far. Neat Receipts does store it's images and data in such a way as to increase the risk of data loss. Not only can the indexing information be lost, but the images themselves can be lost. You can back up the database, but be sure that you keep not only your original installation CD, but keep every patch and update you apply. Should you lose your data due to hard drive or other failure, perform the original install, then apply each patch or upgrade in succession, then try to restore your database from backup.

PaperPort takes a slightly different approach which maintains the database and images separately. Should you lose the database, the images may still exist. And in PaperPort the images can be saved as standard PDF images. While searching through thousands of images might be painful, at least they are visible without the program.

It's always a good idea to back up your data before applying any patch or software update, including patches provided by the application vendor. Be careful when upgrading or replacing computers or other components. 

Finally, always consider the possibility that the vendor could disappear tomorrow which could lock you into your current O/S or limit your hardware replacement options. Having a way to export both your images and index data insures your data won't be held hostage.
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#4 Author of original report

Can You Say Class Action Suit?

AUTHOR: Joseph Nailor - (United States of America)

It sounds like nothing has changed in the past 2 years since I posted the original post. I'm sure there is more people out there that experienced the same thing. This was a big financial loss for us.
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#5 Consumer Comment

definitely agree with the complaint

AUTHOR: jcusa - (United States of America)

I am going thru the same experience with Neat Works. On February 2012 i upgraded to Neat5 as recommended by Neat Works. From that moment on its been a nightmare. I backed up my information which due to the way the software is structured, the data base has grown to 4.8gigabytes, quite large amount of information. At that point my ordeal began with a company who has one of the worst customer service and online troubleshooting support i have ever experienced in the industry.

After searching their website for a logical answer, i decided to open up a repair ticket which was totally useless.  After waiting for days and not getting a response I decided to call customer service directly. The rep, pleasant and helpful, tried to reinstall the software and worked around my system thru his remote server, again unable to have my backup data restored into the updated version of the scanner, one that they literally force you to upgrade to. The rep could not understand the error message thus he said he would presented to his tech department to see how it could be corrected. After waiting a few day and no answer, i reopened another repair ticket, at which time, them seeing it had previously been reported, i received an email with a totally senseless solution to the problem, a problem which is the product of their own upgrade.

The rep then asked me to upload my 4.8 gigabyte file to their server to see how the information could be retrieved. I waited days and days and numerous emails, no answer to my file. I then read online a solution online regarding the association of the SQL server and the Neat Works data file, but being that the version i used before the upgrade used SQL Compact instead of MySQL version,i could not follow the same solution as the one online.  Once again i email the rep who had not answer my last couple of emails, and asked him if i downloaded the version before my upgrade and tried to restore my backup data  made at that time from that version of Neat Works, if it would possibly work.  He did not have a straight answer but ask me to give it a shot. Still not a word about the huge data file i submitted for them to try to open it and help me restore my information.

I gave it a try to re establish the version before the upgrade, a very tedious and time consuming job as you cannot jump from one upgrade to another, its a sequence and its a nightmare of numbers and letter, etc. Thru research online if discovered that the backup information changes from .nrbk to .nwbk from version 4.06 to last version before the upgrade to Neat5, and in Neat 5 it changes again to .nbk thru the use of a migration module in the program.  Thru research i learned that this type of maneuvering by Neat Works is basically to maintain the software proprietary,  making it impossible to use a backup with .nrbk on versions above 4.06 and .nwbk on migration to Neat5. This makes it impossible to restore data on versions that do not coincide with particular backup made, so unfair after paying dearly for such a non functional corrupted scanning software.

As of today i have tried everything possible on my own to resolve the issue as they simply never email me anything else. When i emailed the rep and asked about my 4.8 gig data file, he simply told me it was empty. i am not a computer genius, but i do know that 4.8 gig of data cannot be empty. The last attempt to restore my data thru multiple download of update versions and upgrade, gave me error pointing toward corrupted financial information due to accounting year. The rep just simply had no answer to any of the errors including the latter one mentioned and just would not help. He advice me to try again with the original backup version and see about the financial year error, which to me sounded totally senseless. 

Its been over 3 months, they just simply closed the ticket as resolved and never heard back again, no solution, no nothing. Its very irresponsible of a company who is selling a scanner with a software that its totally non functional.  its plagued by constant crashing, the OCR its of very poor quality as it barely picks up the receipts to be placed on correct folders,  slow, un responsive when given many documents to handle at once.

On my own, I have tried to retrieve my information data with zip files, .rar, 7zip and nothing has been able to open since Neat Works places a pass code which prevents the information from being extracted by any other software. And them knowing their continuing quest to be proprietary in nature, don't even have support to a very unstable software structure which has left many without being able to obtain valuable, irreplaceable information. I see this company as very irresponsible for launching and selling a scanner without the proper support to software issues and which locks the customer to be in constant struggle with such awful software. They should be held responsible and held accountable  for all the troubles that the consumers are being subjected to and for all the information that can and will never be recovered again.

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#6 Consumer Comment

Neatworks is not a rip-off - This complaint is unreasonable

AUTHOR: P - (U.S.A.)

I can understand how frustrated this poster became, but if they had a backup of their original files why could they not install the version of Neatworks that they had been operating under prior to the so called upgrade? I would agree that the Neatworks website is not very helpful in the self-help troubleshooting department, but they do have a section on opening a problem job ticket.

I also had problems when I tried to update to version 5 and had to go onto their web-based help system from where I received a response to call tech support. When I called them I was on hold for 40 minutes before being put through to a tech. However, unlike most companies the guy I spoke to was easy to understand (o.k. so he spoke English) and knowlegable about the product and seemed eager to help resolve the problem, and what's more, did just that.This posters's comments would be more appropriate on a tech service forum, as I don't see how he has been "ripped off". 
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#7 Consumer Comment

Neat Works backup is not intuitive

AUTHOR: Loop1 - (United States of America)

It is not intuitive to backup the NeatWorks database, when most people simply backup their entire drive or their MyDocuments folder.  My computer harddrive crashed; I bought a new computer; installed Neat Receipts and come to find out I cannot access my old receipts because I did not create a .nrbak file.  The Neat Works technical support was no help, it took several iterations for them to even understand my problem.

I found a blogger who was more help than the Neat Works Technical support (http://samkear.com/tag/neatreceipts).  The Blogger explained how to copy the NeatWorks files and the SQL database; the only problem is you need to run the version of Neat Works that created your original database.   I now run Windows 7 (64bit), so I have to find a computer running XP(32bit) and install the old software v4.0.8.  The Neat Works Technical support did not even hint at a solution.

I agree with the original poster, Neat Works does a great job of marketing their product but they need to do more in making sure the lay user does not inadvertantly lose years of valuable data.  The tool should pester users to make a backup database if that is the only way to recover data.  Poor implementation and poor support.
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#8 Consumer Suggestion

There are backup options available

AUTHOR: alissa914 - (United States of America)

I had a hard drive crash and had to reinstall a backup of the software that I made. To avoid this in the future, you should make a backup of the database which the software does allow for you to do. I reinstalled a different version of the software on the machine and restored the database without an issue.

Instead of posting this to the web site that is slandering the company, it would be better for you to post this online to a different web site and ask for assistance. There are many computer users out there like myself which could have helped you in this situation. If there is anything that I learned from my hard drive crash is the true benefit of having routine backups. If it weren't for this, we wouldn't have been able to recover the data. This is not necessarily the fault of Neat Co as the software allows for you to export, import, and backup their proprietary database.

You also can sell the scanners on eBay to recover some of your funds. The software is very well done, but I agree that it does not have a power-user option to allow for you to manipulate or correct data using SQL Server Compact edition that would allow for you to correct the database or have someone correct it for you.

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