When company ledgers were made of paper, you had to be careful not to tear the pages or spill coffee on them. Today’s electronic books require their own sort of care. Protecting your QuickBooks files is essential, not only becausethey tell the financial story of your company, but also because computers are notorious for chewing up data in all sorts of ways.
QuickBooks files have a few advantages over their paper-based relatives. Most importantly, you can easily make copies of them for safekeeping. (QuickBooks can also create a special copy of your company file so you and your accountant can both work on it at the end of the year; see page 466 for details.) If several people work on your company file simultaneously, you’ll learn when and how to switch from multi-user mode to single-user mode so you can perform the housekeeping tasks that require dedicated access. This chapter focuses on the most important things you can do with your QuickBooks files: back them up and copy them. It also explains why and how to verify, condense, and delete your files, which you’ll do less often—if ever.