Companies dissappeared from Peachtree

A strange thing happened yesterday. All but one company disappeared from Peachtree. I had backed them up on an external hard disk. I then could not
access the extrenal disk, but after I shut the computer down and restarted it, the external disk was accessable, and now two companies were in peachtree. I finally managed to restore all companies from the external disk.
Why would Peachtree drop all of the companies?
Atticus Thomas
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