Warning about CaseMap

I’ve raved several times about the wonders of CaseMap, the miraculous legal program that makes organizing lawsuits a breeze.

Well, it was miraculous. Until I bought a new computer.

Before Greg, my tech guy, downloaded and uploaded and whatever, I had copied all my data onto CDs which got copied back into my new computer. But I hadn’t had time to finish backing up Case Map − Greg got here early. He reassured me, though, that he’d grab all the data himself and I shouldn’t worry.

I never worry.

A few days afterward, I went into CaseMap to add some stuff, but was blocked by a box asking me to register my software. Annoying, because I had registered my software when I first (over)paid for it. Still, it wouldn’t let me in without registering − and did suggest somewhere that I just might be re-registering − so I dug up my long ID number and put it in.

Horror. My data had been wiped out, or tossed around in there like flotsam and jetsam. My 25-year-long time line no longer existed in any useful form.

Boy was I mad. I called Lexis, which had bought the software from its brilliant originators. Here’s how the conversation went, after I told him what I told you, above:

Me: My data have been wiped out.

Help guy: No, that’s impossible. CaseMap wouldn’t do that.

Me: Well, it did. It asked me to register and then whoops, it had disappeared my data.

Help guy: When you get a new computer, we ask you to re-register.

Me: I understand and that’s what I did but where are my data?

That went on for a while. He kept insisting my data were in there, I kept saying that I was looking directly at what used to be my data and they were not there. After a few rounds of that, both of us growing more testy, I asked him:

Me: If you didn’t wipe out my data, can you help me find it?

Help guy: Will you let me into your computer?

Me: Sure.

So we set up that Access My Computer thing, and I had the minimal pleasure of watching him zip around with my cursor. He couldn’t find my data either. Although he kept insisting they were in there, like that old commercial for I don’t remember what.

The conversation did not end well. I told him that I still had my old hard drive and I guess I could hook it back up and make another copy of the data and load it into the mess Lexis had made. That made him testily cheery: “Good,” he said. “Why don’t you do that?”

I haven’t yet had the time to do it, although I will in a day or so. But I need to warn you that after all my raves about CaseMap, do beware: if you buy a new computer, make damn well sure you back up all your data NOT where CaseMap’s backup function defaults to, i.e., into a corner of CaseMap itself. Back it up outside of CaseMap, onto CDs or thumb drives or SOMETHING outside, even outside your computer. Outside your house, even.

Or keep your old hard drive at the ready, because you will need it.

PS. None of the other programs I use required re-registration or wiped out my data. LexisNexis, you are bad, bad boys. And you need better people on your help line.

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