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QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

We have experienced difficulty with trying to share QB Desktop client company files utilizing OneDrive.  It seems as though the company file does not refresh with proper updates and/or the refresh takes added time so that the file, as saved on OneDrive, may very well not reflect the most recent updates.  It seems as though this is a known issue when I google this issue as relating to the nature of the QB file.  Has anyone else experienced this or is anyone else managing the sharing of QB Desktop company files by utilizing OneDrive without any issues?  We are otherwise considering a cloud-hosted or remote in solution, but would like to be able to save money by utilizing OneDrive to manage the sharing needs of this file.  Thanks for any insight/advice!

Best answer 09-30-2017 12:29 PM

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Established Community Backer ***

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

QB uses a Relational Database for the data file, and it is not Stand-alone; you overlooked that there are associated Utility files that get Live Updated while you work. That is why Multi-User (concurrent) has to be Managed = Database Manager Hosting app. Even if you are scrupulous about having only one computer at a time using that file stored in a Static (fixed) storage location, you still see those Utility files being updated, to keep track. That includes .tlg, .adr, .nd, .dsn, etc.

 

Unlike Word and Excel, nothing about the datafile is loaded into Local Memory and then put away when you are done. You know this, because in Word and Excel, you need to have Saved, or Saved at the end, before the file is Closed. But, as you work in QB, every single transaction and entry requires you to Save and Close or Save and New.

 

You cannot use DropBox, One drive, Google Drive, etc.

 

You can research QBox; this seems to be the only Managed Shared Storage for using QB data, as a managed relational database, that avoids creating conflicting data files.

13 Comments
ProAdvisor

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

You can't put your QuickBooks file on One Drive or any other cloud based storage. It doesn't work.

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

QB uses a Relational Database for the data file, and it is not Stand-alone; you overlooked that there are associated Utility files that get Live Updated while you work. That is why Multi-User (concurrent) has to be Managed = Database Manager Hosting app. Even if you are scrupulous about having only one computer at a time using that file stored in a Static (fixed) storage location, you still see those Utility files being updated, to keep track. That includes .tlg, .adr, .nd, .dsn, etc.

 

Unlike Word and Excel, nothing about the datafile is loaded into Local Memory and then put away when you are done. You know this, because in Word and Excel, you need to have Saved, or Saved at the end, before the file is Closed. But, as you work in QB, every single transaction and entry requires you to Save and Close or Save and New.

 

You cannot use DropBox, One drive, Google Drive, etc.

 

You can research QBox; this seems to be the only Managed Shared Storage for using QB data, as a managed relational database, that avoids creating conflicting data files.

ProAdvisor

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

Confirmation!

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

With a small ($300-$500) investment in an always on server of your own, and an IT pro to hep you set up your remote connections, you can self-host.

 

Intuit/QuickBooks offers a hosting service - no clue what it costs.

From the litte I  have read aboout Qbox it still is not true simutaneous multi-user

Established Member

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

Thank you for your thorough reply.  I do have a follow up question please...

 

When you backup and restore a QB Desktop company file, you are able to select the file path as to where to save that file.  I am presuming that the related peripheral files that you mentioned (extension types - .tlg, .adr, .nd, .dns, etc.) are saved in that same location as the company file.  So why would OneDrive be any different than saving that file to any other file path location?  In other words, why couldn't a user still use the QB Desktop file that was saved to the OneDrive location (just like any other file path location)?  Forgive me if I am missing something technical, but I very much appreciate any further response you can offer on this topic.

As you noted, we are otherwise considering a solution like QBox for sharing the company file with clients, but are wondering if that is even necessary for my business partner and I to share the file within the same office from separate PC's.  Thank you again!

ProAdvisor

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

QuickBooks isn't designed for sharing the file in the cloud like One Drive or any other cloud storage. It is designed to be stored locally on a server or a desktop. This is really the bottom line of it. 

 

You can go to a hosted environment where the data & program are stored & you log in to that computer via the internet. Of course there will be a fee & you still have to buy QuickBooks & the licenses as they use your program.

 

Other choice is to set up a network where you share the file in house.

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

"When you backup and restore a QB Desktop company file, you are able to select the file path as to where to save that file.  I am presuming that the related peripheral files that you mentioned (extension types - .tlg, .adr, .nd, .dns, etc.) are saved in that same location as the company file."

 

You can Look at your own computer system. You will see subfolders and files, and the "company filename" from the Windows file is part of the Naming of the associated utility files and subfolders. When you Restore a Backup, you will also see a folder that is created for "Restored_XXXcompanyNameHere_Files" and in this subfolder you Also see a file named "HowToRestoreExternalFiles.txt" that basically is a ReadMe file.

 

"So why would OneDrive be any different than saving that file to any other file path location?"

 

You are relying on Synchronization, which is not the same as "database pointer" tracking.

 

"In other words, why couldn't a user still use the QB Desktop file that was saved to the OneDrive location (just like any other file path location)?"

 

Well, one of the biggest issues is the .nd and .dsn = Data Source Name and Network Data tracking, which keep track of "who" is in the file, by computer. That is why Multi-user = concurrent use, is managed by the Database manager hosting app installed on a computer.

 

It's not Just Like Word and Excel. It is required to be Managed, as I explained, because it is a relational database.

 

"Forgive me if I am missing something technical, but I very much appreciate any further response you can offer on this topic."

 

It is Very technical. I copied this text and kept it for reference, from another forum topic, for why you cannot use a NAS (network atteched storage device, or Sharing an external drive in the office):

 

"We have to be very precise with our terminology. There is a difference in the implications of iSCSI vs just mapping a drive. It's not enough to say Quickbooks supports or doesn't support NAS devices. It doesn’t support Unmanaged devices. People who don't understand the implications can get themselves in trouble, corrupting their company files.

This also is why Static Storage such as DropBox and One Drive cannot be used.

There is a big difference between a standard NAS and Enterprise Storage.  Quickbooks needs to run on a Windows host that has "exclusive block-level" access to the storage.  There is a big difference between a device that supports Fibre-Channel and iSCSI, vs one that supports SMB, CIFS, or NFS.  

Unfortunately many "wonder machines" depend on the user to know the implications and drawbacks of the different devices.    It's one thing to have a file server to share movies and general documents.  It's quite another to host a database.  Quickbooks is a database.  Or, more specifically it is an application built over a Sybase database.    SQL-Server and Oracle have the same issues running on an external device."

 

 

"As you noted, we are otherwise considering a solution like QBox for sharing the company file with clients, but are wondering if that is even necessary for my business partner and I to share the file within the same office from separate PC's.  Thank you again!"

 

I am glad to offer QBox, but that would be used for sharing Not from the same office. We though you needed access from two computers Not Located near each other. It is a Coud location.

 

In the Same Office and wanting to share a data file = Multi-user.

 

Both computers install the QB program = you pay for two licenses or "seats." One computer is Hosting = installs the Database Manager hosting service, an app that runs at startup, and you don't need QB open on that File Hosting computer. Both computers Wired via an ethernet network, even if peer-to-peer through a router. You set up usernames in each file. Your Windows user needs to be Local Admin on the hosting computer, even if working from the "other" computer.

 

 

Established Member

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

Help! I just read this article and found out that I can NOT use Dropbox to share company files with my accountant! And I have been doing it for a couple years now....  Smiley Frustrated  It seems to have been working....  But am I in danger of losing or haveing my files corrupted at any time?  Smiley Sad

ProAdvisor

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

It’s quite possible. QuickBooks is not designed to be used that way. It needs to be used on a local computer.

ProAdvisor

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

Like stated below, it won’t work. You can end up with a damaged (conflicted) file.  

 

You may want to consider moving to QB online.   It is cloud based without all of the issues of hosting with desktop.  

Established Community Backer ***

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

It depends on what type of file you are sharing with your accountant via dropbox. You can safely store an Accountant's copy of desktop on Dropbox for them to download in lieu of emailing through QB. You could distribute a Portable Company File or a saved backup. 

Established Member

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

As far as sharing the folder, I'm not sure how that will work for you.  I couldn't imagine that multi-user simultaneous access is going to work, as others described about the nature of the DB file. 

 

I did see replies in this thread about the ability to just use the company file on OneDrive, and I wanted to add my $0.02.  I'm on QBpro 2017, and you certainly can use it on OneDrive, it'll just clobber your network constantly writing to the database file.  Even my IP cc pos terminal up at the front desk chokes when I'm in the file.  I'm a small sole prop, single user, and only make my montly entries in QB once a month for about 30 min or so it's not a big deal.  If I need to be on the file for longer, like for year end JE's etc, I will just pause OneDrive for a couple hours, or whatever, and then when I'm all finished up and closed the file, re-enable OneDrive.

Senior Explorer *

Re: QB Desktop - Saving Company File to OneDrive

It has been my experience that QB Desktop does not always like to be 'e mailed'. Other ways do transfer well. 

 

You may consider QBO so more people can access your data.

 

Cherilyn Collins