What Is a Portable Company File in QuickBooks?
QuickBooks is a popular accounting software used by businesses of all sizes to manage their financial transactions and records. One of the key features of QuickBooks is the ability to create and share portable company files. But what exactly is a portable company file, and how does it work?
A portable company file is a compact, self-contained version of your QuickBooks company file that you can easily share with others. It contains all the necessary financial data, including customer and vendor information, transactions, and reports. The portable company file format (.qbm) is designed to be lightweight and easily transferable, making it ideal for sharing with your accountant, colleagues, or business partners.
Creating a portable company file is straightforward. In QuickBooks, go to the “File” menu and select “Create Copy.” Choose the option to create a portable company file and follow the on-screen instructions. You can save the portable file to your computer or any external storage device, such as a USB drive.
Once you have the portable company file, you can share it with others by simply sending them the file or transferring it to their computer. They can then open the file in QuickBooks and access the financial data within it. It’s important to note that while they can view and work with the data, they won’t be able to make any changes or modifications to the original company file.
Now, let’s address some common questions about portable company files in QuickBooks:
1. Can I create a portable company file from any version of QuickBooks?
Yes, you can create a portable company file from any version of QuickBooks, including QuickBooks Pro, Premier, and Enterprise.
2. Can I convert a portable company file back to a regular company file?
No, once a company file is converted to a portable file, it cannot be converted back to a regular company file format. However, you can create a backup of your regular company file before converting it to a portable file to preserve the original format.
3. Can I open a portable company file in a different version of QuickBooks?
Yes, you can open a portable company file in a different version of QuickBooks. However, it’s recommended to use the same or a newer version of QuickBooks to ensure compatibility.
4. Can I use a portable company file to merge data from multiple QuickBooks company files?
No, a portable company file is designed to be a standalone version of a single company file. It cannot be used to merge data from multiple company files.
5. Can I access a portable company file from QuickBooks Online?
No, portable company files can only be used with desktop versions of QuickBooks, not QuickBooks Online.
6. Can I use a portable company file to restore my data if my original company file gets corrupted?
No, a portable company file is not meant for data recovery purposes. It’s always recommended to create regular backups of your company file to protect against data loss.
7. Can I create a portable company file for a company that uses multi-currency?
Yes, you can create a portable company file for a company that uses multi-currency. The portable file will retain all the currency-related information.
8. Can I include attachments and custom templates in a portable company file?
No, a portable company file does not include attachments or custom templates. These elements are specific to the original company file and are not included in the portable version.
9. Can I password protect a portable company file?
No, you cannot password protect a portable company file. If you want to protect the data within the file, you can use encryption software or password protect the folder where the file is stored.
10. Can I export reports from a portable company file?
Yes, you can export reports from a portable company file in various formats, such as PDF or Excel. This allows you to share specific financial information with others.
11. Can I create a portable company file for a company that uses payroll services?
Yes, you can create a portable company file for a company that uses payroll services. However, the payroll data will not be included in the portable file. You will need to manually enter or import the payroll data into the portable file if needed.
In conclusion, a portable company file in QuickBooks is a compact version of your company file that can be easily shared with others. It’s a convenient way to provide access to your financial data without giving full control over the original file. By understanding the ins and outs of portable company files, you can effectively collaborate with others and streamline your financial processes.