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QuickBooks Cloud Access by Qbox

Scale New Hts BahamasI recently attended the Scaling New Heights QuickBooks training conference.  For the first time, it was held off-shore in the Bahamas.  QuickBooks Cloud Access continues to be a leading discussion point.

With the many takeaways, one stands out. A lot of customers are asking about Cloud access for their systems.  Fishbowl Inventory lead the way without breaking the bank.  They developed a ‘Web Client” to access a local Fishbowl database anywhere.  The customer merely uses a standard Web Browser to access their server in the local office.  This is very economical versus traditional Hosting of QuickBooks Desktop software.  While this technology is available for QuickBooks Enterprise Desktop, it’s very far down on Intuit’s development list.

In the meantime, there’s a Hybrid solution for QuickBooks Software users. You can use a solution called Qbox to access your file from remote locations.  It’s not true Multi-user access, but for small firms with a limited budget, this might provide just enough access without committing to cloud hosting such as Right Networks.  This only costs about $100 per year, and can be used for backups too.  If you want to work from home at night or on vacation, this offers a very good alternative for anywhere anytime access.

QuickBooks Installation Network

QuickBooks Enterprise installation is designed for the Local Area Network (LAN).  However, more and more businesses need access from other locations.  The question becomes how do you access the LAN from a remote location?  You may get a Virtual Private Network to work, but it’s not supported by Intuit.  There are other services such as GOTOMYPC or Logmein.  These are ok for smaller applications, but you must have a vacant computer available on your LAN.

I’d prefer you to use a method supported by Intuit.  Under Windows Server 2008, it was called Terminal Server.  This is a great method.  Your speed is usually better, and you can get larger datafile sizes.  QuickBooks Enterprise is installed on the Server only, and all computing happens there.  Therefore, your remote computers can connect to the Server over the internet.  The server does all the work and behaves as if the user is sitting in front of that machine.  You would not install QuickBooks Enterprise on your local computer.

After Windows 2008 (R2 and later), “Terminal Server” was renamed to “Remote Desktop Services” (RDS).

Using RDS, you can do it yourself (DIY), or outsource.  If you outsource, there are many hosting companies available.  If you DIY, you can acquire the Computer Server and Windows licenses yourself, but this is a larger investment up front and requires on-going maintenance.  Unless you have your own internal IT staff with capacity, it might be better to use a hosting company.

Also, QuickBooks Enterprise is the only financial desktop software supported by Intuit for RDS or Terminal Server.  While you may get QuickBooks Pro or QuickBooks Premier to work with RDS, it’s not supported by Intuit.

QuickBooks Enterprise Hosting

QuickBooks Enterprise Hosting in the cloud is red hot these days. However, the cloud hosting part is not free. That is a common misconception because you pay a subscription fee for QuickBooks Enterprise. But you need to install the software on your own equipment, or pay a hosting company.

Installation on your local computer system is by far the most common method. However, if you’d like to Host QuickBooks Enterprise in the cloud, you could ballpark your monthly fee at $50 Per User, each month. Therefore, 10-users of QuickBooks Hosting would budget out at $500 per month plus tax. (Fees are subject to change and are presented for an illustration only; contact us for any current discounts on QuickBooks Hosting).