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Fix portable company file issues in QuickBooks Desktop

Learn what to do if you can't create or open a portable company file.

If you're creating or opening a portable company file (.qbm) and you see an error message, don't worry. Here's how to fix QuickBooks Desktop so you can use your portable company file to move your data or repair your file.

Step 1: Create a manual copy of your company file

The issue may be as simple as your company file's location. Create a copy of your main company file and use it to create an additional portable copy.

  1. Open the Windows Start menu.
  2. Type "File Explorer" into the search and open File Explorer.
  3. Search for and find the folder that has your company file. This is usually your QuickBooks folder.

Next, follow the steps based on what you were doing when you saw the error.

If you were creating a portable company file

  1. Find your main company file with a .qbw extension. It should look like this: [Your Company File].qbw.
  2. Right-click the file and select Copy.
  3. Go to your Windows desktop, right-click anywhere and select Paste.
  4. Open QuickBooks, but don't open your company file.
  5. Select Opening or restore an existing file. Then select the Open a company file option.
  6. Browse your computer and open the copied company file you pasted to your Windows desktop.
  7. In the open copy of your company file, go to the File menu and select Create Copy.
  8. Select Portable company file and then Next.
  9. Follow the on-screen instructions to create another portable company file.

If you can create a portable company file, there's an issue with your original company file's location. Use the copied company file as your main company file from now on. Rename your original company file and put "old" in the name so you don't use it again.

If you still see an error, move on to Step 2.

 

If you were restoring a portable company file

  1. Find your portable company file with a .qbm extension. It should look like this: [Your Company File].qbm.
  2. Right-click the file and select Copy.
  3. Go to your Windows desktop, right-click anywhere and select Paste.
  4. Open QuickBooks but don't open your company file.
  5. Select Opening or restore an existing file. Then select the Restore a portable file option. Browse your computer and open the copied portable company file you pasted to your Windows desktop.

If you can open the copied portable company file, you're good to go. Use it to move your accounting data. Rename the original portable file and put "old" in the name so you don't use it again.

If you still see an error, move on to Step 2.

Step 2: Open a sample company file

Use a sample company file to create a portable company file. This tells you if there's a bigger problem with your company file:

  1. Open QuickBooks.
  2. Instead of selecting your company file, select Open a Sample File. Then open one of the sample companies.
  3. In the sample company file, follow the steps to create a portable company file. Save it on your Windows desktop.
  4. In QuickBooks, go to the File menu and select Close Company/Logoff.
  5. Follow the steps to open the portable company file you created in the sample company.

If you can restore the portable company file from the sample company, your main company file may have issues. Follow these steps to Resolve data damage on your company file.

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