You can open 2 company files at the same time in the same year of QuickBooks Accountant, QuickBooks Professional Bookkeeper, and QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise. The first file you open is labeled Primary and has a few limitations. The second file is labeled Secondary and has more limitations. If you close the primary file when 2 companies are open, the secondary file becomes the primary file.
Note: This only applies to QuickBooks Desktop company files within the same year. You can have two company files open in two separate years of QuickBooks Desktop without the Primary/Secondary file restrictions.
Note: Users permissions cannot override the restrictions shown below.
There are 3 ways to open a secondary file:
Note: Do not use File > Open or Restore Company to open a second company file.
When 2 company files are open, you cannot perform the operations listed in the table in either file.
Manage Fixed Assets
QuickBooks Statement Writer
Export Balances to Lacerte Tax
Export Balances to ProSeries Tax
Add any QuickBooks Add-ons
Install Intuit Partner Platform (IPP) applications
Intuit Data Sync (IDS)
Setup, Reset, or Syncing Data
Internet connection setup
Set up an Internet connection from the Windows Control Panel
Registration and licensing
Register QuickBooks, License Sync, change a license, unlocking to Premier, and add seats
Any application that uses the QuickBooks Software Development Kit (SDK) to connect to QuickBooks
Tax Product Integration
Integrate with TurboTax, Lacerte, or ProSeries
Update QuickBooks Desktop
Download an update to QuickBooks Desktop. If Automatic Download is on, the updates will download, but they are not installed until you exit from both files
When 2 company files are open, in addition to the operations listed in the preceding table, you cannot perform the operations listed here in the secondary file.
Order checks and envelopes
Set up account for Online Services
Import Web Connect file
Create Online Banking message
Set check reorder reminder
Participating online institutions
Learn about online bill payments
Change Online Banking mode
Advanced Service Administration
Customer Credit Card Protection
Planning and Budgeting Tools
Prepare Letters with Envelopes
The Collections Center
These Credit Card Processing activities:
Complex Password Setup for Credit Card Protection
Customize Design and Layout
Estimate, Purchase Order, Sales Order, Invoice, Sales Receipt, and Credit Memo forms
File Menu Items
All items on the Import and Export sub menus of the Utilities menu
Ship Fed Ex Package
Ship UPS Package
Track or Cancel a Shipment
Update Web Services
New Business Checklist
All items on the checklist
My Payroll Service (all items)
Add, Edit, and Delete Payroll Items
Create Termination Check
Edit Filing Methods
Edit Payment Due Dates/Methods
Entering Time: Use Weekly Time Sheets, Time/Enter Single Activity
Excel: Client-Ready Payroll Reports
Get Payroll Updates
Process Payroll Forms Adjust Payroll Liabilities (Liability Adjustment) Edit/Void Paychecks Change New Employee Default Settings
Set up Workers' Comp
Start Scheduled Payroll
Word: Customize Letter Templates
Worker’s Comp: List, New Workers Compensation Code, Create/Edit Experience Modification Factor
You can only set up a printer in the primary window.
Restricted in the secondary window
QuickBooks Help can be open in only one window. If Help is already open in one window and you click Help in the other window, Help does not open again. Use the Help in the other window to search for a topic.