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Level 1

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos


When running a variety of reports (transaction detail, journal, general ledger, etc.) Quickbooks displays the memo from the first line of the general journal and puts the first line's memo as the memo for all other journal lines. When double-clicking on the transaction from the report and opening the associated journal, each line's memo is displayed. It's not practical to go through each transaction individually to see the proper memo, is there a Quickbooks report that will display each line's individual memo? One important factor to note is a memo is only entered on one side of each transaction:

Accounts Receivable  10                  Record interest due 3/31

Revenue                               10

Accounts Receivable  17                  Record interest due 2/39

Revenue                              17

How does Quickbooks choose what memo to display on reports for the lines that don't have a memo entered on them? Thanks for any help you can provide. I'm running Quickbooks Desktop Pro Plus 2017.


Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Hello there, Murray3,


I have here the report you're looking for. You can run the Custom Transaction Detail Report. Then, filter the transaction type to Journal. This will show the memo for each line. Here's how:

  1. Click Reports on the menu.
  2. Select Custom Reports, then click Transaction Detail.
  3. Click Filters.
  4. On the Search box, look for TransactionType and select it.
  5. On the Account drop-down select Journal.

Check out these articles about other custom reports:

Let me know if you need further assistance.

Level 1

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Hi MaryLurleenM,


Thank you for responding back to me! I ran the report as you suggested but am still having problems. I think the root cause is we only entered a memo on one side of our journal (e.g. the debit side, not the credit side). In the report you suggested, QB automatically fills in the memo for any journal line that didn't have a memo at the time it was entered. If the journal has several lines, the same memo is applied to each line. In our case, the same memo is not applicable to each line so am hoping to somehow turn this off. Do you know if that's possible?

Kendra H
QuickBooks Team

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Good afternoon, @Murray3.


I'd be happy to provide information by turning off the memo feature for journal entries. 


To answer your question, yes, there's a feature you can un-check in your preferences to prevent that memo from auto-filling on journal entries. 


Below are the instructions with how to turn off the memo feature in QuickBooks Desktop: 

  1. Sign in to your company file. 
  2. Click on Edit in the top menu, then choose Preferences.
  3. On the left menu, go to Accounting
  4. Under the My Preferences tab, un-check the Autofill memo in general journal entry box. 
  5. When you're ready, go to OK


Once you've completed the steps, you can also refer back to the Customizing reports in QuickBooks Desktop article, my colleague @MaryLurleenM provided above for additional information about reports. 


Feel free to follow up with me if you have any more questions or concerns. Take care!





Level 1

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Hi Kendra H,


Thanks for replying! Please let me clarify, it's not autofilling when entering the journal, but when viewing a transaction detail report. If the memo was left blank at the time of entry, the report automatically populates the memo from the first line of the journal. We use several lines in a single journal and put a unique memo on every other line. Thus, several lines in the journal will have unique memos and several will all have the same 1st line memo (when viewed on a report). I suppose the solution going forward is to make sure there is a memo on each line when entering, but that doesn't help me when running reports for past periods. Does that make sense? My preferences don't have the "autofill" option, as I'm on the "pro" version.

QuickBooks Team

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Good day, Murray3.


Chiming in to share additional details about running a report.


I understand that you want to modify the memo showing in the reports. QuickBooks Desktop will use the memo you entered on the source account. It is considered applicable to all empty lines because it represents the entire transaction in the register.


You'll want to export the report into an Excel file and manually remove the incorrect memos from there. Simply click on the Excel drop-down and select Create New Worksheet.


Also, you'll want to perform your suggestion moving forward, to enter a unique memo to each line.


Please keep on posting if you need more help with your reports. Have a nice day!

Level 1

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Hi @AlexV 

Thank you for the response! When exporting to excel and reviewing the worksheet, there is no way to tell whether the memo that is present has been autofilled from the source account or if it is one that has been manually entered when the journal was written. Is there no way for Quickbooks to simply leave an empty memo blank on the report? Is there any way to turn off the functionality applying the source account memo to all empty lines? Is there any report that will do this? It will be very tedious having to review every single transaction manually in excel to confirm the correct memo is there. It'd be much easier for there to be no memo rather than the wrong memo! Thanks for any help you can provide.

~Sincerely, a desparate Quickbooks user

QuickBooks Team

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

I know that this process hasn't been easy for you, Murray3.


Currently, the option to turn off the automatic application of a memo from the source account is unavailable. As mentioned above, the program will always utilize the memo of the source account since it represents the whole transaction. In addition, the memo of the source account will only be applied to those transactions that don't have a memo.  We'll have to manually review each transaction on the report to view the memo or export it to an excel then customize it from there.


You'll want to consider creating a separate journal entry for those transactions that don't require/have a memo in the future. This way, we'll be able to clearly view the memo of the transactions in your reports since the memo of the source account for that certain entry is empty.


You can follow the steps provided by my colleague @MaryLurleenM in pulling up the Transaction Detail Report. I've also included an article that will help you in personalizing your reports in QuickBooks Desktop: Customize reports.


If I can be of any additional assistance, please don't hesitate to drop a comment on this thread. I'll be right here to continue helping.

Level 1

Quickbooks Desktop Pro 2017 Report Memos

Hi @KlentB  and all QB contributors,


Thanks for the help! I did do the system "rebuild" but received the "Verify Master: totTrans wrong. Is ### should be ###." error and had to restore the file. I understand and am grateful for the explanation about the automatic application of the memo from the source data. I will have to manually sort in Excel for now and make sure each line has a memo in QB in the future.  Thanks!

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