QuickBooks 2007 Installation Guide
The structure of QuickBooks changed starting with the 2006 version, and additional structural
changes have been added to QuickBooks 2007.
Network users are most affected by the changes. Businesses that set up QuickBooks for access
by multiple users working on a network may find the installation of QuickBooks 2007 more complex
than installing versions earlier than 2006.
Users who run QuickBooks on a single computer will not notice anything different from
previous installation processes, except the text on the Installation Wizard windows has changed.
Several elements are involved in a QuickBooks 2007 system. If you’ planning to use QuickBooks
on a single computer, all the elements are automatically installed on, and run from, that computer.
However, in a network you can install and configure QuickBooks to use the elements in separate
computers. The following elements are included in your QuickBooks environment:
The QuickBooks software, which includes the database.
The database manager.
The data file host.
The data files.
The software and the database manager are installed from your QuickBooks software CD; the
host is a function; and the data files are the company files you create. The following sections provide
more (and clearer) details.
In addition, for QuickBooks installations on servers that hold company files that are accessed
by other users on other computers on a network, QuickBooks installs software (called the database
server manager) to manage network access to the files on the server. You can install the Database
Server Manager without installing the QuickBooks software application. More information about
this network component is in the section “ ,
Installing QuickBooks on a Network File Server” later in
The Software and its Database
The database is part of the QuickBooks software. The database is the container for the data you
create when you work in a company file. The database stores your data in a logical manner,
maintaining the links between data, and providing data retrieval services when you need reports.
Examples of the links between data are vendors and their linked bills and payment checks;
customers and their linked invoices and payments; items and their linked income accounts; and so
The Database Manager
The database manager is a software component that manages the database. Armed with
intelligence about the nature of the QuickBooks database, the database manager makes sure data
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that needs to be written to the database is correct and appropriate before permitting the write (to a
user, ‘ means ‘ save’).
Users actually “talk to”the database manager, and the database manager “ talks to”the data
file. All communication between the user and the data file takes place through the database
The Data File Host
Hosting is a function, or a role, that a computer plays for a specific company file (or a group of
company files). You can think of a host as an usher, or a doorman. When company files are stored on
a computer, that computer is acting as the host for those data files. If the host computer is part of a
network, it is probably also hosting access to its data files for users on remote computers.
Data files are the company files you create in the QuickBooks database. In addition, your work in
QuickBooks may create additional files, such as tax forms, budgets, data resulting from your use of
advanced features, etc.
Preparing for Network Installation
If you’ using QuickBooks 2007 in a network environment, with users accessing company files that
don’ reside on their own computers, you have to prepare your network to make sure the elements of
the QuickBooks system work properly. In the following sections I’ describe how to create the
optimal setup for using QuickBooks over a network.
TIP: In this section on network installation procedures I occasionally refer to the Network
folder. In Windows 2000/XP this folder is named My Network Places; in Windows Vista
the folder is named Network.
If you’ installing QuickBooks on a single computer (no network exists, or you don’ use your
network for QuickBooks), you can skip this section and jump right to the section titled “Installing
QuickBooks 2007” .
Designating a QuickBooks Data File Server
In the context of your QuickBooks installation, a data file server is a computer you designate as the
“ . server’
keeper of the data files” This is not the same definition of ‘ re
you use when you’ describing
network designs such as peer-to-peer and client/server networks.
For your QuickBooks system, you can create a QuickBooks server even if you’ running a peer-
to-peer network (a Windows Workgroup) instead of a client/server network (a Windows Domain,
which is a more complicated network form, requiring the installation of a Windows Server product).
Creating and Sharing Folders for Data Files
Because users from other computers on the network need to access files on the computer holding the
data files, you must share the folder on the server that holds those files. The process of sharing a
folder accomplishes several important and useful tasks:
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Shared folders are displayed in the Network folder of remote users when they
open the icon for the computer that holds the share.
Shared folders on one computer can be mapped to a drive letter on another
You can configure user permissions on a share, to determine who can access the
files in the shared folder, and what they can do with those files.
Before you can share a folder, however, you must create the folder. My own experience is that
living with QuickBooks is much easier if you don’ put data files in the folder that QuickBooks uses
as the default data folder, because that folder is buried deep in a folder tree, which is not a
convenient place for users who need to find files to copy them or back them up.
In Windows XP, the default data file folder is:
\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\Intuit\QuickBooks\Company Files
In Windows Vista the default data file folder is:
When you use a file folder in a more convenient location (such as creating a folder
C:\QB2007Data or C:\QB2007CompanyFiles) QuickBooks learns and remembers your preferred
location, and heads there after you’ opened and saved a file.
Creating Data Folders in Accounting Firms
In an accounting firm, the paradigm for data folders is more complicated. Except for the accounting
firm's own QuickBooks company file, the data files belong to clients. Accounting firms have to store
data files in a way that matches the needs of their client base, including (but not necessarily limited
to) the following scenarios:
Keeping client data files for multiple versions of QuickBooks. Each
client’ company files must be stored in a folder that’ designated for the version
of QuickBooks used by the client (e.g. QB2007ClientFiles). If an accounting firm
opens a client file in a version of QuickBooks that's later than the version being
used by the client, the client won't be able to open the file when it's returned.
Tracking clients' data file names that don't necessarily match the
clients' names. A client named IvensCo (the name by which the client is known
in the accounting firm) may have a datafile named IC-Inc. (for Ivens Consulting,
Inc.). Some clients have multiple data files (IvensCo may have another data file
named, oh let's say, CPA911PublishingLLC).
Keeping multiple types of files for clients. Some accounting firms keep
associated files, such as spreadsheets, pro formas, cash flow analysis, tax return
files, etc. for some or all clients.
To make sure that client files are stored correctly, many accounting firms find it most efficient
to create data folders for each version of QuickBooks they support, with subfolders for each client
using that version of QuickBooks.
TIP: If clients running an earlier version of QuickBooks upgrade to QuickBooks 2007, it's
easy to move the client's subfolder into the QuickBooks 2007 data folder.
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Sharing Data Folders
To share a folder, open the Computer folder (named My Computer in Windows 2000/XP and
Computer in Windows Vista) and navigate to the data folder you created. Right-click its icon and
select the command for Sharing. (The text for the command differs depending on whether you're
working in Windows 2000, Windows XP, or Windows Vista, but the word Share or Sharing is always
If you have multiple data folders for multiple versions of QuickBooks (usually found only in
accounting firms), you must share each folder to allow network users to get to their contents.
Accounting firms that have subfolders for clients within the shared folders don't need to share all
the client subfolders, because when a folder is shared, by default its subfolders are also available to
The data folders are called parent folders, and the client subfolders are child folders. Users on
client computers can map a drive to the shared parent folder, and then open the appropriate child
folder to locate the data file they need (see the section "Mapping Drives to the Shared Folders", later
in this document to learn about the mapped drive feature).
TIP: Some accounting firms prefer to create one top-level folder (e.g. QBData) and then
create a subfolder for each version of QuickBooks (\QBData\QB2007, \QBData\QB2006,
etc.). This means that network users only need to map a single drive to all the QuickBooks
data folders, and then open the appropriate version of QuickBooks to see all the client
folders for that version.
If you're running Windows XP, the dialog you see, and the way you create the share, differs
depending on whether you're using Simple File Sharing. (See "Simple File Sharing" later in this
section to learn how to create a file when Simple File Sharing is in effect). Without Simple File
Sharing, the Sharing dialog that appears in Windows XP looks like this (and the Sharing dialog for
Windows 2000 looks similar, offering the same options).
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Select the option labeled Share This Folder to create a share that appears automatically when
remote users open the Network folder and select the computer that holds the share.
In Windows Vista, the Sharing dialog is different (the choices you made in the Network and
Sharing Center may cause the text on your dialog to differ from the text seen here). Click Share to
share the folder.
Setting Permissions for Network Users
When you create a share to make it available to remote users, you must also set the Permissions for
those users. This means you determine which users can access the files in the share, and you also
determine what actions those users can perform on the files.
In Windows 2000, the operating system automatically gives all network users
access to the folder, with Full Control over the files in the folder (which means
all users can view, modify, create, and delete files).
In Windows XP and Windows Vista, the operating system automatically gives all
users the ability to view the files (the technical term is Read), but they cannot
modify or create files. Both of those permissions are required when you're
working in QuickBooks.
To change the default permissions in Windows XP click the Permissions button to open the
Permissions dialog. Select the Everyone group, and then select the option for Full Control.
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In Windows Vista, select Everyone from the drop-down list at the top of the dialog and click
Add. By default, the permission level set is Reader. Click the arrow next to the Reader Permission
and select Co-owner.
Sharing Folders with Simple File Sharing
If your Windows XP computers are configured for Simple File Sharing, the steps required to share a
folder are slightly different. With Simple File Sharing enabled, right-click the folder and select the
If you select Share This Folder on the Network, the check box for the option Allow Network
Users To Change My Files is available (it's grayed out until you select the first option). This is the
same as providing Full Control permissions to the Everyone group.
Mapping Drives to the Shared Data Folders
On the other computers on the network (the client computers), make it easy for users to access the
files they need by mapping a drive to the folder on the server that holds those files.
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Mapping a drive means you assign a drive letter to a shared folder on another computer. On the
computer that’ mapping the drive, some drive letters are already used, such as C:, D:, and perhaps
even more (depending on how many hard drives, CD drives, or removal media drives are already
attached to the computer).
When you open the Computer folder, you see all the drives on the computer. When you map a
drive to a shared folder on another computer, you see that mapped drive in the Computer folder, too.
It also appears as a drive in the drop-down list you see at the top of any Open dialog. This makes it
easy for QuickBooks users to find the shared folder on the file server when they use the Open dialog
On the client computer, open the Network folder and navigate to the listing for the computer
that is acting as a file server. When you double-click that computer’ icon or listing, all the shared
resources on that computer are displayed. You may see multiple shared resources, because the
computer may be sharing a printer in addition to sharing one or more folders.
Right-click the folder with the name that indicates it holds the QuickBooks data files, and
choose Map Network Drive to display the Map Network Drive dialog (this dialog is from Windows
Vista, but all versions of Windows offer the same options even though the dialog looks different).
By default, Windows XP and Windows Vista select Z: for the first mapped drive, and then work
backwards through the alphabet as you add more mapped drives. Windows 2000 offers the next
available drive letter (usually E: or F:, depending on the number of drives attached to the computer)
and works forward. You can accept the default drive letter, or choose a different one (many network
users choose "Q" for QuickBooks). Choose Finish to save your selection.
Be sure the option Reconnect at Logon is selected, so every time you start your computer it
connects to the folder on the server represented by the mapped drive letter. Otherwise, you have to
go through the process of mapping the drive every time you start your computer, or you have to
navigate through your network to reach the server and the shared folder every time you use
In accounting firms that have multiple shared QuickBooks data folders (QB2006Files,
QB2007Files, etc.), with client subfolders under each share, you only need to share, set permissions,
and map drives to the parent folders.
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When users open the appropriate parent folder in the QuickBooks Open A Company dialog, all
the client (child) folders are displayed. Users need only double-click a child folder to find the file
Installing QuickBooks 2007
Before you begin installing QuickBooks 2007, give some thought to the installation location. If
you’ updating a previous version of QuickBooks, you can install QuickBooks 2007 in the same
folder as that previous version. However, that action means that if you have any problems you can’
“ back”to your previous version in order to continue to run your business until you resolve the
I generally tell users to create a folder for this installation on Drive C ( e.g., C:\QB2007), and
use that folder instead of the default subfolder under Program Files that the QuickBooks
installation program uses. In fact, I advise creating folders for all software installations, avoiding
the Program Files location that many software companies use.
You can copy your company files to the new location and update them (don’ update the original
files, keep them with the previous version of QuickBooks). Then, if something isn’ working properly
in QuickBooks 2007 you can always return to the previous version (and the previous data files) to
keep working while you solve any QuickBooks 2007 installation or file access problems. Later, when
things are running smoothly in QuickBooks 2007, you can uninstall the previous version of
QuickBooks and delete the old data files.
Accounting firms must always create a folder for the QuickBooks 2007 software, in order to
keep all the versions of QuickBooks in their own discrete folders. Otherwise, they can’ continue to
support clients using previous versions.
Installation starts automatically as soon as you insert your QuickBooks software CD. (If the
installation program doesn’ start automatically, open the Computer folder, navigate to the CD
drive, and then double-click Setup.exe to start the installation.) QuickBooks installation is
performed in two parts, both of which are wizard based.
The QuickBooks Installation Interview is first. In this part of the process you
select the manner in which you want to install QuickBooks (single computer or
The QuickBooks Installation wizard runs after you’ made your selection in the
Installation Interview window.
Guided Vs. Expert Install
When the Installation Interview Wizard starts, QuickBooks offers two installation interview types:
A Guided Install and an Expert Install.
Both methods are very similar and offer the same options (with slightly different text), but the
Guided Install Interview has a preliminary window asking you whether your installation is for a
single computer or for a network, and then moves to the window that asks you to choose the specific
type of installation environment.
The Expert Install Interview asks the same question in a single window. It really doesn’ matter
which method you choose, the options are almost identical.
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Installing QuickBooks on a Standalone Computer
If you have a single computer designated for your QuickBooks accounting tasks, the installation is
straightforward. If you’ using the Guided Install, in the first window select the option labeled One
Computer. Click Next and select the option to install QuickBooks on a computer that won’ be t
sharing its files with users on other computers. Then click Install Now to begin the installation
If you’ using the Expert Install, in the first window select the option labeled Standard: Install
QuickBooks Only. Then click Install Now to begin the installation.
Note that the QuickBooks documentation and the text on the Installation Interview window can
be confusing, because QuickBooks uses the term “Multi-User”incorrectly. Mentally substitute the
phrase “multiple simultaneous users on a network”when you see that phrase.
Many businesses have a single computer running QuickBooks, but multiple users access
QuickBooks on that computer (not simultaneously), so it’ not inaccurate to think of your
QuickBooks environment as a multi-user environment.
However, if multiple users share QuickBooks on a single computer, they aren’ using
QuickBooks company files simultaneously. Therefore, your QuickBooks installation paradigm is a
standalone computer, and you should select the option Install QuickBooks Only.
Installing QuickBooks on a Network File Server
In QuickBooks 2007 you have two choices for the software installation on the data file server:
Install the QuickBooks software if a user is going to be working in QuickBooks on
that computer in addition to users accessing the files from other computers on
Install only the database server manager if no users are going to be running
QuickBooks on that computer.
The database server manager is an application that manages access to all the company files on
the data file server. It is not the same as the database manager, which manages the actual data
entry for company files (discussed earlier in this article). More information about the technology and
use of the database server manager is in the section “ Working with the Database Server Manager”
later in this document.
NOTE: If you install QuickBooks software, the database server manager is also installed,
and runs separately from the software.
Intuit’ decision to provide the database server manager as a discrete software component is
new in QuickBooks 2007, and makes installation faster and easier.
Regardless of the component you install, the computer acting as the data file server works the
same, offering remote users the QuickBooks data files and managing access to those files.
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QuickBooks Software + QuickBooks Database Server Manager
QuickBooks Database Server Manager
Company Datafiles + Database Manager
If you’ using the Guided Install, choose the option labeled More Than One Computer on the
first window, and click Next. The next window you see is almost identical to the window you see if
you choose Expert install. The options are the same in both windows (although the text differs
slightly), and you must choose between installing a full copy of QuickBooks on the data file server
(which includes the database server manager), or installing only the database server manager.
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Note that the labels for the database server manager option use the phrase “Company File
Server” The use of that phrase almost always refers to a computer, not a software application.
QuickBooks is inconsistent in its terminology in most of its documentation, and you should mentally
substitute the phrase “ ,
database server manager” which is the terminology used in some (but not
all) of the QuickBooks documentation you’ find on the QuickBooks Support web site.
Choose the option to install QuickBooks and the database server manager (I
prefer using the proper name) if anyone will be using QuickBooks on the
computer being used as the data file server.
Choose the option to install only the database server manager if the data file
server is used to hold your QuickBooks company files and nobody will run
QuickBooks on that computer.
The option labeled Install QuickBooks Only is for installing QuickBooks on a standalone
computer, or on the computers that will act as client computers. Client computers are the computers
on the network that run QuickBooks software, and work on the company files stored on the server.
Installing client computers is covered in the next section of this document.
Click Install Now to begin the Installation Wizard, which runs the actual installation process
(covered in the section “Running the Installation Wizard”).
Installing QuickBooks on a Client Computer
When you’ installing QuickBooks on a computer that won’ hold data files (the user accesses data
files on another computer on the network), choose the option labeled Install QuickBooks Only.
You can create a data file server and a client computer even if you have only one user running
QuickBooks in your organization. Many companies store all user data, for all software applications,
on a single server to make it easier to back up all the documents created by users. Users open
software on their own computers and access data files from the server. The data file server/client
user paradigm is not reserved exclusively for companies that have multiple users accessing
QuickBooks files simultaneously from multiple computers.
Running the Installation Wizard
After you’ made your choices in the Installation Interview Wizard, the QuickBooks installation
You must agree to abide by the software license.
If you’ installing the QuickBooks software you have to enter your key codes —
the license number and the product code. (If you’ installing only the database
server manager, you skip this step).
You must select a location for the installation.
For the software installation location, QuickBooks chooses subfolders in the Program Files
folder. I (along with most computer professionals) don’ like this choice, so I always advise clients to
click Change to change the location for software installations to discrete folders for each software
application they install (in this case C:\QB2007 or something similar). However, if you’ re
comfortable with housing your software in the Program Files section of your hard drive, you can
accept the default location — it doesn’ affect the way QuickBooks runs.
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Google Desktop Installation
During installation of the QuickBooks software application, you see an offer to install Google
Desktop (the offer doesn’ appear if you’ installing only the database server manager).
The text on the installation window intimates that the Google Desktop software is for searching
QuickBooks files. That’ true — this is a special version of Google Desktop that will search
QuickBooks company files for data.
But, what isn’ clear from the text in the QuickBooks installation window is the fact that the
entire Google Desktop software program will be installed.
The Google Desktop software program indexes everything it finds on your hard drive, and
updates that index constantly as you create and change documents and make other file changes on
your computer. The index takes up a great deal of disk space (depending on the number of files on
It’ not the disk space that creates problems (today’ hard drives are so large that you probably
won’ notice the loss of a couple of gigabytes). The problem with the Google Desktop software is the
overhead on your computer. The software uses processor resources, and is almost constantly
performing file reads and writes. When you first install the software it begins indexing your drive
and that can bring your computer to its knees — performing any task can take a very long time.
After the drive is indexed for the first time (and, depending on the number of files on the drive,
that can take several hours, a day, or even more than a day), the ongoing indexing actions continue
to affect the computer’ performance. Combined with the slower performance of QuickBooks 2007
and QuickBooks 2006 (when compared with QuickBooks 2005 and earlier, before the structure of
the software was changed to include the new database), the productivity levels you achieve when
using QuickBooks will be disappointing.
Unless you have some very arcane and urgent search needs that can’ be filled with the Find
feature in QuickBooks, or the Windows Search feature for all the other files on your drive, select NO
on the installation window that offers to install Google Desktop.
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WARNING: Accounting firms should never install the Google Desktop software, because
the QuickBooks data indexing functions within the Google software start every time a
QuickBooks data file is opened. On a server in which multiple users are opening multiple
files for multiple clients, the effect on performance can be disastrous.
When installation is complete, click Finish. Wait!! Don’ open QuickBooks yet, and don’ log off or
restart Windows. QuickBooks goes through a number of tasks after you click Finish, and sometimes
you can encounter problems using QuickBooks if you don’ let the installation program finish its
thing. It’ best to wait as long as ten minutes — unfortunately, QuickBooks doesn’ tell you when
it’ really finished setting up the software.
If you purchased a Premier edition, don’ take the CD out of its drive. After waiting several
minutes, launch QuickBooks. The first time you open QuickBooks 2007 you may be asked which
Premier edition you’ choosing to install, and files for the edition you select have to be transferred
to your computer from the CD.
Working with the Database Server Manager
In a network environment with a data file server acting as a host for the company data files,
QuickBooks tracks location information for every QuickBooks data file (using the server’ IPs
Address for the location) and it writes that information to a file called a Network Descriptor file.
The filename is in the following format:
If an .ND file doesn’ exist for a QuickBooks data file, remote users on the network may see an
error message when they attempt to open the file.
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NOTE: An .ND file is also created for the Accountant’ Copy file that an accountant
imports from the file created by a client. The imported file has the extension .QBA and the
ND file is in the format <Filename>.QBA.ND.
The database server manager automatically creates .ND files for QuickBooks data files and also
checks the user Permissions for the files to ensure all network users can work with the files
The database server manager runs when you start Windows in the following scenarios:
You installed only the database server manager on your data file server.
You installed QuickBooks on your data file server using the option “This
computer will run QuickBooks and will share its QuickBooks company files with
Changes to the Database Server Manager in Update R4
QuickBooks made significant changes to the database server manager for network data file servers
in the R4 update. These changes apply to the database server manager whether it’ running by
itself, or along with QuickBooks, on a data file server.
To see which Update Version of QuickBooks 2007 you have, open QuickBooks and press F2 to
display the QuickBooks Product Information window. The text at the top of the window displays the
version. If your version is prior to R4 you need to update QuickBooks, or update the database server
manager if you didn’ install QuickBooks on the data file server (see the section “Updating the
Database Server Manager”later in this document).
In the following sections that cover the database server manager, I’ discuss the differences
between the pre-R4 and post-R4 scenarios. If the CD from which you’ installing QuickBooks was
manufactured before R4 was used on the software CD, you should update all the computers in your
system to the latest version of QuickBooks.
User Permissions for the Database Server Manager
When QuickBooks 2007 was released, the database server manager ran as an executable program,
and required that the current logged on user have Administrator permissions on the computer. This
requirement was in place whether the network data file server computer was running only the
database server manager, or was running QuickBooks in hosting mode.
Before R4, the database server manager was a single application that performed two tasks:
It monitored the hard drive(s) of the computer hosting the QuickBooks data files,
looking for new data files and creating ND files for those new files.
It provided a dialog in which users could configure the drives to be monitored,
could manually perform file scans to create ND files, and could update the
database manager software.
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NOTE: The definition of “ New”is a file that is newly created by a user working in
QuickBooks, or a file that has been newly copied to the data file server. The latter
scenario exists commonly in accounting firms as network users receive files from clients
via e-mail or CD, or from a USB flash drive that is brought back to the accounting firm by a
user who was working at a client site.
Starting with R4, the tasks were split:
The task of monitoring drives runs as a Windows service.
The user configuration tasks are available by selecting the Database Server
Manager shortcut in the QuickBooks folder of the Programs menu.
Because the monitor task runs as a Windows service, you don't need to log on as an
administrator to make sure the service runs. However, you must have administrative permissions
on the computer to open the configuration software.
I know this seems complicated, but the following sections should make everything clearer.
New Terminology (Mine, not Intuit’
I found the inconsistency in the QuickBooks documentation about the database server manager, and
the database manager (the one that manages the actual data files) confusing, but that confusion is
minimal compared to the confusion created by the terminology on the installation dialogs (especially
regarding network installations) and the various documentation articles from Intuit.
Intuit has a lot of documentation available, including the in-box Installation and Startup Guide,
and a variety of articles (including white papers, FAQs, knowledge base articles, etc) on the
QuickBooks support site.
Within any single unit of documentation you’ likely to find inconsistency in terminology, but
even if an article is consistent about terminology, it’ likely the terminology used in that article
doesn’ match the terminology used in another article on the same subject.
I find it easier to support QuickBooks 2007 if I mentally substitute phrases that make sense to
me. However, I must admit that it took a while for me to get familiar enough with QuickBooks 2007
to be able to translate the components into new, logical, comfortable, terminology.
I’ enumerate my own, personal, terminology here, and you may find it helpful. On the other
hand, you may find it more confusing, and if that’ so, feel free to ignore it.
File Manager = Database Manager
I find it easier to deal with QuickBooks as a user and as a consultant if I mentally call the
component named the “ file .
database manager”the “ manager” This is the component I discussed
earlier in this document in the section called QuickBooks Elements.
In that section I called it the database manager, and explained that when users work in a
company file, they’ really interacting with the database manager, which, in turn, communicates
with the company file — users never really “ touch”the company file. Since this component is
connected to, and works directly with, data files, I find it more comfortable to think of it as the file
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Server Monitor = Database Server Manager Monitor Task
The QuickBooks database server manager monitors the drives on the server to make sure new data
files are given the ND files required for network user access. I call this component the server
monitor, because that name reflects what it does.
In fact, that’ what it does even if you’ running a version of QuickBooks 2007 earlier than R4,
but now that the tasks are split, the new terminology makes it easier for me to remember that the
monitoring task is running separately, as a service.
Database Server Utility = Database Server Manager User Dialog
As a user, I can open a dialog to configure the server monitor, and I can also use that dialog to
perform a manual scan of data files, and to update the database server monitor and server utility
(the database server manager, if you’ not using my terminology).
It makes sense to me to call this the database server utility, because that’ what it is. It opens
when I select its shortcut in the QuickBooks folder of my Programs menu.
Using the Database Server Utility
Before Update R4 for QuickBooks 2007, a shortcut to the database server manager application is
placed in the Startup folder of the Programs menu to make sure the monitor tasks start when
Windows starts. After R4, the monitor tasks are performed by a Windows service, so it’ no longer
necessary to have a shortcut in the Startup folder.
A shortcut to the database server utility is in the QuickBooks folder on the Programs menu (the
name of the shortcut is QuickBooks Database Server Manager). If you install only the database
server manager on the network data file server, that shortcut is the only shortcut in the QuickBooks
program folder (obviously, without installing QuickBooks, you won’ have a shortcut to the
QuickBooks software application in that Programs folder).
NOTE: When you install QuickBooks as a standalone installation, or as a client installation
for a network, the database server manager is listed in the QuickBooks folder on the
Programs menu, but you have no reason to open it (unless you convert the installation
from a standalone to a network hosting installation, which is covered later in this
document in the section Converting a Standalone Installation to a Network Host).
Select the shortcut to open the software. If you’ not logged on to the computer as an
administrator, it won’ open.
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In the following sections I’ go over the options and actions available in the tabs in the database
server utility. It’ important to note that the discussion and the graphics are based on the R4
Scan Folders Tab
Use the Scan Folders tab to specify the folders that have QuickBooks data files, and to initiate the
first scan of those folders. During the scanning process, the database server manager creates .ND
files for every QuickBooks data file that requires an .ND file.
You must scan the folders after you’ installed QuickBooks 2007 on a data file server and have
installed QuickBooks data files on the server. After the initial scan, the monitoring service will
watch for new files and create the needed .ND files.
To specify the folders that hold QuickBooks data files, click Add Folder to open the Browse for
Folder dialog. Expand the Computer folder and Navigate to the drive(s) and folder(s) that contain
the data files.
If you have multiple folders that contain QuickBooks 2007 data files, you have to select them
one at a time, adding the first folder, then repeating the process by selecting the next folder, and so
on. Like the QuickBooks software, the database server utility doesn’ support standard Windows
selection functions (such as holding the Ctrl key to select multiple objects).
When all of the folders are selected, click Scan. The database server utility scans those folders
and creates .ND files for all .QBW and .QBA files. The database server manager creates a new .ND
file for every file, overwriting any existing .ND files. When the scan completes, all the .QBW and
.QBA files that were given .ND files are listed in the QuickBooks Files Found section of the dialog.
Monitored Drives Tab
By default, the Monitored Drives tab selects every hard drive it finds on the computer (including
USB hard drives). The selected drives are monitored constantly to see whether a new .QBW or .QBA
file has been added to the drive.
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Deselect any drives that don’ store QuickBooks datafiles so the database server manager
monitors only the drives that need a watchful eye.
Database Server Tab
The Database Server tab displays the current statistics of the database server (the tool that
interacts between the user and the data file). It’ similar to the dialog you see when you select the
About command in a software application’ Help menu. The information includes the version
number, the name and IP address of the computer on which the database server is running, and the
status (which should say Running).
The Updates tab provides a link to the QuickBooks 2007 Updates web site, where you can check for,
and download, updates. Updating the database server manager is covered next.
Updating the Database Server Manager
If you installed QuickBooks software in hosting mode (which configures the database server
manager to run automatically), the database server manager is updated when you update
QuickBooks on the data file server. The update includes both the server monitor and the database
It doesn’ matter whether you update QuickBooks manually (by downloading the update from
the QuickBooks web site and then initiating the installation process), or from within QuickBooks
(by using the QuickBooks Update dialog on the Help menu).
However, if you installed only the database server manager you don’ have an Update feature
built into the software and you must update the application manually. On the Updates tab, click the
link labeled Check Online For The Latest Version.
The QuickBooks Product Updates web page displays a link labeled What’ New In Release X,
where X is the number of the latest update version.
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If that number is higher than the version number displayed in the Updates tab of your
installation, you need to update the database server manager.
NOTE: At the time I write this, there’ a bug in the way the database server utility displays
the version number on the Update tab. On my R4 version of the database server manager
files, the Updates tab displays R1.2523. Until the bug is fixed, or until the Update Web
page displays information that matches the version numbers used in the database server
utility, you’ just have to remember whether you’ already updated to the latest version.
Downloading the Update File
Downloading the update for the database server manager and installing that update are separate
tasks. You have to use the computer that holds the database server manager (your data file server)
to install the update, of course, but you can download the file from any computer and copy it to the
data file server for installation.
Downloading to another computer (your own computer) is usually more convenient, because
most data file servers don’ have a user sitting in front of the computer. In addition, the “reads and
writes”during a download could affect the data file server’ performance, which annoys all those
QuickBooks users who are trying to work on files.
It’ best to download to another computer on the network and then move the file to the data file
server to install the update after everyone has finished working for the day (because you have to
shut down the database server manager to update it).
Use the following steps to download the update:
1. On the Product Updates web page, click the link labeled Manual Download to
move to the QuickBooks Download web page.
2. Click the link to the file (the file is named qbwebpatch.exe) to open your
browser’ Download dialog.
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3. Choose the option to save the file.
4. In the Save dialog, select a location on your computer to save the file, and make a
note of that location.
5. Click OK to begin downloading the file.
Installing the Update
If you didn’ download the update file to the computer that’ running the database server manager,
either copy the file to that computer across the network, or burn a CD and take it to that computer.
You cannot install an update while the database server manager is running, so make sure all
the QuickBooks users have finished their work (or tell them close the files they’ working on and
finish their work tomorrow). Then use the following steps to update the database server manager:
1. Right-click the database server manager icon in the Notification area of the
taskbar and choose Exit QuickBooks Database Server Manager.
2. In the Confirmation dialog that appears (asking if you’ sure you want to do
this), click Yes.
3. Double-click the downloaded update file to launch the update installation
4. Follow the prompts to install the update.
You must restart your computer to re-launch the server monitor properly, whether or not the
installation process displays a Restart dialog at the end of its tasks.
Converting a Standalone Computer to a Network Host
It’ not unusual for a company to install QuickBooks on a single computer, and then create a
network environment later. This happens for various reasons, such as the need to add network
users because business has increased, or because you want to use the computer that holds
QuickBooks as a data file server for multiple software applications and let your single QuickBooks
user work from another computer on the network.
You can convert a standalone installation of QuickBooks to a network host. This conversion
requires the following easy steps:
Create shared folders to hold the shared data files.
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Enable the QuickBooks hosting feature.
Scan the computer to create .ND files.
In the following sections, I’ assuming you updated your standalone QuickBooks software to
Preparing a Shared Data Folder
Data files for network users should be in a convenient location on the computer’ drive, so that it’
easy to locate the folder from remote computers, and it’ easy to back up the folder every day.
If the company files on the computer are currently stored in the location QuickBooks chooses by
default in a standalone installation, you should move them to a new, more convenient location. By
default, QuickBooks stores your company files in the All Users folder tree, specifically:
\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\Intuit\QuickBooks\Company Files in Windows
\Users\Public\Documents\Intuit\QuickBooks\Company Files in Windows Vista.
It’ best to create a folder on the hard drive for your newly shared company files (such as
Copy the files from the old location to the new location. When you navigate through the
Computer folder to find the existing files, you should understand that Windows names the
Documents subfolder in the All Users folder “ ,
Shared Documents” but the path that displays at the
top of the Computer folder calls that subfolder “ Documents” .
Enabling QuickBooks Hosting
To convert the standalone QuickBooks installation to a multi user host, open QuickBooks and
choose File | Utilities | Host Multi-User Access. QuickBooks displays a dialog asking you to confirm
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Click Yes to let QuickBooks perform the conversion tasks. When the software is configured for
hosting, QuickBooks displays a dialog to inform you of the success of the task and provides
information about running this computer as a network host for QuickBooks files.
Close QuickBooks and restart the computer to launch the Server Monitor as a Windows service,
and to enable the Database Server Utility.
When your computer is running again, log on as an Administrator and choose Programs |
QuickBooks | Database Server Manager to open the Database Server Utility. Use the instructions
that appear earlier in this document to select and scan the folders that hold QuickBooks data files,
and to select the drive(s) that should be monitored. Then you can log off and log on as an ordinary
user. Remember that when QuickBooks is hosting network users, it’ not necessary for QuickBooks
to be running.
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