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How to Connect QuickBooks to Several Computers

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The ability to access QuickBooks data from multiple computers can be an important necessity for a small business. On a local network where different computers need to access this data, a Windows file-sharing infrastructure must be configured. QuickBooks must also be properly licensed to access the data simultaneously from multiple locations. Connecting QuickBooks to several computers can increase productivity dramatically.

Windows XP Configuration

  • Click the “Start” button and select “My Computer.”
  • Click the “Tools” menu and select “Folder Options…”
  • Click the “View” tab. At the bottom of the list, be sure “Use simple file sharing” is not selected. Click “OK.”
  • Locate the QuickBooks company file(s) you wish to share.
  • Right-click the folder containing the file(s) and select “Sharing and Security.”
  • Click “Share this folder” and either accept or change the “Share name.” This is how the share will appear on the network.
  • Click the “Permissions” button. Select “Everyone” under the “Group or user names” section. Click “Full Control” under the “Allow” column of the “Permissions for Everyone” box.
  • Click the “Add” button. Type “Guests” without quotes and press the “Enter” key. Click “Full Control” under the “Allow” column of the “Permissions for Guests” box. Click “OK.”

Configure Windows Vista or 7

  • Click the “Start” button and select “Computer.”
  • Locate the QuickBooks company file(s) you wish to share.
  • Right-click the folder containing the file(s) and select “Share with > Specific people…”
  • Type “Everyone” without quotes and press the “Enter” key. Type “Guests” without quotes and press the “Enter” key.
  • Select “Read/Write” under the “Permission Level” column for both “Everyone” and “Guests.” Click the “Share” button. The full network path to the shared folder will be displayed. Click “Done.”

Connect QuickBooks to the Shared File(s)

  • Run QuickBooks on each of the computers you wish to use.
  • Press “CTRL + O” to open the company file.
  • Locate the shared company file on the network. In Windows XP, it is located under “My Network Places.” In Windows Vista and 7, it is located under “Network.”
  • Chose the computer containing the shared folder and double-click the company file to open it.
  • This method creates the quickest and most hassle-free setup, but you may wish to change the file-sharing security settings depending on your situation. File-sharing security is only applied to the shared folders and not the entire computer. QuickBooks must be licensed to allow multiple simultaneous accesses to the company file. If QuickBooks is not licensed in this manner, the company file can still be opened from multiple computers as long as only a single computer is accessing the file at any moment.
  • It is important to choose a “master” computer where the QuickBooks company file will reside and not move it around the network. Moving the file between different shared locations can lead to inconsistencies if multiple copies of the file are created. It is acceptable to create a backup copy of the company file in a different location as long as the backup copy is never modified independently from the original company file

 

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