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File types and extensions used by QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Desktop uses different types of files to store different types of data. For example, your main company files (QBW) and backup data files (QBB) are totally different file types.

Here are common file types and extensions you may see in QuickBooks Desktop for Windows and Mac.

QuickBooks for Windows

Common QuickBooks files

File extension File type Description
QBW QuickBooks Company file When you create a company file, QuickBooks creates a file with a .qbw extension. This file holds your company file and account info. For example, if you create a company called MyBusiness, QuickBooks saves the company file as: MyBusiness.qbw.
QBB QuickBooks Backup file When you back up your company file, QuickBooks creates a backup file with a .qbb extension. Here's how to back up your company file> and how to restore your company file from a backup.

QBM

QuickBooks Portable file When you e-mail or move a company file, QuickBooks creates a compressed version of your company file with a .qbm extension.

For example, if you create a portable company file for MyBusiness, QuickBooks saves it as: MyBusiness.qbm.

QBO QuickBooks Bank Statement file When you download transactions from your bank, QuickBooks opens them from a file with a .qbo extension.You can import a QBO file to quickly get transactions into your bank register.

Additional QuickBooks files

File extension File type Description
DES Layout Designer Template file If you export a customized form template, QuickBooks creates a file with a .des extension. QuickBooks has a variety of templates. You may want to export your custom templates to use in your other company files or share with others.
QBR QuickBooks Report Template file If you export a memorized report template, QuickBooks creates a file with a .qbr extension

QWC

QuickBooks Web Connector file If you use QuickBooks Web Connector, you may need to open apps. When third-party developers create Web Connector app, they'll create a file with a .qwc extension.
qbstbl2.usa US Tax Table file (Payroll only) If you run payroll in QuickBooks Desktop, you'll need this file to get the current tax tables. It has all of the latest payroll info you need to calculate your payroll taxes.

Accountant files

File extension File type Description
QBX Accountant's Review Copy / Transfer file When you make a backup of your company file for your accountant, QuickBooks creates a file with a .qbx extension. This is the file you export and send to your accountant. When your accountant opens the backup, it becomes an accountant's copy file.
QBA Accountant’s Copy file When accountants open a .qbx file a client sends them for review, it becomes an accountant copy. This file has a .qba extension.
QBY  Accountant's Copy Import file After your accountant reviews their accountant copy and makes changes, they'll send you a file with a .qby extension. You can import and apply their changes to your company file.
QBJ General Journal Entries file If you want to add journal entries created by your accountant, ask them to send you a General Journal Entries file. This file has a .qbj extension.

Utility and log files

File extension File type Description
IIF Intuit Interchange Format file If you export your list info, QuickBooks creates a file with an .iif extension. You can use IIF files to share your lists with other company files.
ND Network Data file If you start using Multi-user mode, QuickBooks creates a file with a .nd extension. This file helps QuickBooks manage your user access settings.
TLG Transaction Log file QuickBooks keeps track of changes to your company file since your last backup. It saves this info in a file with a .tlg extension. The next time you back up your company file, QuickBooks resets the file.
LOG Event Log file QuickBooks records important events in a file with a .log extension. There are two types of LOG files:
  • Qbwin.log - records issues found during a rebuild
  • QWC.log - records Web Connect errors

LOG files can help with troubleshooting.

ECML Entitlement file When you install and register QuickBooks, QuickBooks creates a file with an .ecml extension. This file tells QuickBooks you're using a licensed product.
QBP QuickBooks Print file When you set your printing preferences, QuickBooks saves them in a file with a .qbp extension. QuickBooks auto-saves your settings. However, you may need to make changes to the file if you run into printer issues.

QuickBooks Statement Writer files

File extension File type
QSM If you use QuickBooks Statement Writer, QuickBooks saves your info in a file with a .qsm extension. QSW files can be used in Excel.
QSS If you customize statements and reports with QuickBooks Statement Writer, QuickBooks saves your settings in a file with a .qss extension. You can use this file to apply settings to other reports.
QST If you need a specific layout, you can use a template file that is already available. These files have a .qst extension.

QuickBooks for Mac

File extension File type Description
QB2016 Company file This is your company file for the 2016 version of QuickBooks for Mac.
QB2019 Company file This is your company file for the 2019 version of QuickBooks for Mac.
MAC.QBB Backup file You can use a MAC.QBB file to move your QuickBooks Mac file over to QuickBooks Desktop for Windows.
DMG Apple disk image file This is your backup Quickbooks company file. QuickBooks saves it as as an Apple disk image.
plist Apple property list files This stores your registration and preferences.

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