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Install QuickBooks Desktop

SOLVEDby QuickBooks23Updated January 12, 2024

Learn how to install QuickBooks Desktop.

Once you download QuickBooks Desktop, follow these steps to install it. These are the same steps, no matter how many times you need to install it.

In this article, you'll learn how to:

Host QuickBooks on a network
If this is your first time, set up a multi-user network and install QuickBooks Database Server Manager before you continue.

Step 1: Prepare for the install

Need help finding product and license number?
  • If you bought QuickBooks from our website, you can find this info in the original purchase email. The email is sent to the Primary Admin on the account.
  • If you bought it from a retail store, look for the label in the original package.
  • If you're reinstalling, you can find this info from your Customer Account Management Portal. Please note this information is only available to the Primary Admin on the account. Click here to learn more about your Intuit account.
  • If you lost your license or product number, we can help you recover them.

Step 2: Install QuickBooks Desktop

  1. Open the file QuickBooks.exe.
  2. Follow the on-screen instructions. Accept the software license agreement and then select Next.
  3. Enter your product and license numbers. Then select Next.

Note: You will require an active internet connection to install the software.

Step 3: Decide which install type is right for you

You have two options when you install QuickBooks, You can do the express install, or custom and network.

Express install

We recommend express install if you’re:

  • A first-time user.
  • Reinstalling QuickBooks.
  • Going to use QuickBooks on one computer (not as part of a network of computers).
  1. Select Express and then Next.
  2. Select Install.
  3. When it finishes, select Open QuickBooks.

Custom and Network install

We recommend a custom install if you:

  • Install QuickBooks somewhere other than the default location (such as on a server).
  • Host your company files on a server.
  • Have a multi-user network.
  1. Select Custom and Network Options and then Next.
  2. Select the option that describes how you’ll use QuickBooks.
  3. On the next display, select Change the install location.
  4. Select Browse to decide where to put your QuickBooks folder. Most people put it in their Programs folder.
  5. Select Next to start the install.
  6. When it finishes, select Open QuickBooks.

If you see an error, please use the following troubleshooting articles:

Step 4: Activate QuickBooks Desktop

After you install, QuickBooks will ask you to activate and update it. If you need help, here's how to activate QuickBooks Desktop.

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