How to Safely Upgrade QuickBooks


With each new release of QuickBooks, businesses add to their accounting power and functionality. With the recent release of QuickBooks 2012, we thought it would be a good idea to talk about how to safely make the switch from a previous edition to a new edition. The last thing you want is to lose or corrupt your company data during the upgrade process, and these steps will prevent exactly that:

Step 1: Back it up

Glitches aren’t common, but they aren’t unheard of either. You need to start by backing up your QuickBooks data file.

To do this, you need to:

  • Choose what media to use. You can use a physical medium such as a USB drive or writable DVD, or you can choose to back your QuickBooks data file up on a hard drive. Some people like to use cloud storage, such as DropBox or even Intuit Online Backup.
  • Select ” Save Copy or Backup” from the file menu. This will  take you through a wizard that asks you what and where to save your data.
  • Make sure the backup file is stored securely and safely during your upgrade process.

Step 2: Run some baseline reports

In order to verify that the upgrade process went smoothly, you can run a baseline report (perhaps the last year’s financial reports, along with a report for the current month). After you complete the upgrade, you’ll be able to compare, and make sure the data is correct in the new installation.

Step 3: Install the new version of QuickBooks

Unless you’re upgrading from a version that’s several years old, the installation process will automatically find your data files and import them. In some cases, if you’re running a much older version of QuickBooks, you might need to export your data, install the new version, and then import the data.

Once the install completes, run the same reports you ran in step 2. Compare the results with the new reports; if they match up, your installation went correctly. If not, or if there are other problems during the upgrade process, you always have that backup file from which you can restore.

Regular upgrades to QuickBooks give you greater functionality; just be sure to protect your data during that upgrade process.

Bernard Roesch About Bernard Roesch

Bernard Roesch is co-founder and Managing Partner of Mission Consulting. Bernard’s background in the early years of his career was spent in the manufacturing sector, making his QuickBooks perspective a unique one – he understands the intricacies of a complex environment and then applies his strategic skills accordingly.