Doesn't it seem that on some days, computers have attitude problems, just like people do?
In addition to my previous posts about QuickBooks running slow due to insufficient memory, and QuickBooks running slow due to a disorganized hard drive, there is another potential gremlin lurking in the works too.
Your QuickBooks data file may simply be too big for its' own good.
WHO SAID THERE IS A LIMIT ON THE SIZE OF QUICKBOOKS DATA FILE?
If you scour the product related information for QuickBooks, chances are you won't find any reference to just how big your QuickBooks data file can become before it runs into trouble (if you do find it, let me know. I've been looking for 10 years...)
Take it from me - the following information is critical to your success in using QuickBooks...
THE "DANGER ZONE" FOR QUICKBOOKS DATA FILES
Based on years of field experience and reading stacks of articles about QuickBooks, your QuickBooks data file can begin to display signs of stress when they get into these danger zones:
- QuickBooks Pro - between 150 and 200 megabytes (or 150,000 and 200,000 units as described below)
- QuickBooks Premier (all versions - i.e. Contractor, Manufacturing, etc.) - same as Pro. Between 150 and 200 megabytes (or 150,000 and 200,000 units as described below)
- QuickBooks Enterprise - between 1 and 1.5 gigabytes (or between 1,000,000 and 1,500,000 units as described below)
Be aware that these "danger zones" are NOT exact numbers, but just guidelines to follow. QuickBooks isn't going to pop up any messages alerting you to potential problems in your data file (unlike all the pop ups to cross sell their other products!). You may get away with using a file bigger than these guidelines with no problems or you may begin to have trouble with files smaller than these guidelines.
BUT WHEN THE TROUBLE BEGINS
Here are some warning signs that your QuickBooks data file has gotten too big for its' own good:
- It seems to run really s-l-o-w on a regular basis
- It takes a long time to run reports of any type
- You experience unexpected error messages
- You experience unexpected disconnections on the network
- Your QuickBooks file will not verify or rebuild properly
HOW DO I KNOW HOW BIG MY QUICKBOOKS FILE IS?
That part is easy - just tap the F2 key on your keyboard and you'll then see a screen that looks like this (note the arrow pointing to the file size information):
In the sample QuickBooks file above, the file size is 14,664, which is well below the 150,000 file size unit mentioned above. This is also known as about 14,664 megabytes if you are into the techie way to describe it.
Take a look at yours right now - how big is it?
SOLUTIONS IF QUICKBOOKS IS RUNNING SLOW
I've put together an extensive discussion of the various options you should consider if your file is getting too big. Each one of them has pros and cons associated with it.
Grab your copy of my "Danger? Danger! Your QuickBooks File May Implode" guide (along with other essential QuickBooks guides too) for more insight on your options.
You will want to plan on taking action of some sort when your file gets too large. Otherwise, QuickBooks may take action all on its' own one morning and refuse to start up for you.
A SOLUTION TO DEFINITELY CONSIDER
When my clients are having trouble with QuickBooks files, we enlist the services of AccountingUsers.com and their SuperCondense file service. They can take a look at your QuickBooks file to see if it can be surgically compacted to allow you to keep working along just as you have been in QuickBooks. Don't hesitate to contact them to see what they can do for your file.