Alternatives to Quicken

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Postby AltaRed » 15 Dec 2007 14:48

Bylo Selhi wrote:If you can, install Q08 on a different PC from Q02 so that if the upgrade runs into any problems you can continue to use Q02 while you resolve the issues with Intuit. (It's possible that Q02 and Q08 can coexist on the same PC. I didn't try because I have several PCs at my disposal.)


I doubt co-existing will work. Indeed, when I upgraded from Q02 to Q07, I let Q07 install according to directions where it saves a set of Q02 data files into a separate sub-folder, uninstalls Q02 and then installs Q07 and then converts a set of Q02 data files to Q07. I ended up with some wierd error dialog boxes when I started using Q07. Intuit Technical Support had no answers for those issues.

So I uninstalled Q07, went into Windows Explorer and found a lot of old residual Q02 files left over from the prior Q02 uninstall, manually deleted all of these files, deleted the Quicken folder in its entirety (except for a set of Q02 data files), re-installed Q07, and it worked fine (current updating problem notwithstanding).
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Postby Peculiar_Investor » 15 Dec 2007 16:03

Since I really haven't followed Quicken versions since Q02, could someone please advise on the different versions for Quicken 2007 as I thought I might try searching eBay for a copy. Has anyone gone this route with success?

I currently run 2002 Deluxe as I need the investment features. At least that is what I recall on why I bought that version.

I would also be interested to hear from anyone who moved from Q02 to either Q07 or Q08. How difficult a move was it?

I saw Bylo's suggestion about validating in the current version and the recommendations to install first on another PC, which would be my plan. I think Bylo's parallel path method makes the most sense, even if it means a bit of extra effort.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 15 Dec 2007 17:42

Peculiar_Investor wrote:versions for Quicken 2007

You'd need Quicken XG 2007 to get the investment features. I see that this year they no longer call it XG, but you still need the $100 version.

If you're in no hurry to buy, I've seen Quicken on sale from time to time at places like Staples and Future Shop for $80.
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Postby Jaunty » 15 Dec 2007 17:55

I too use Quicken 02 and the data has been updated at least twice from earlier versions. I don't use any of the download data or banking services. However, I've considered moving to a newer version before Intuit creates a version to which I can't upgrade. Had almost decided against it - 'O2 does the job and Excel lets me sort the data by account, country, type of investment etc., although I have to enter the data manually here too. BMO OL and E*Trade have all the up to date data on market price available to me.

Bylo - I'll save the data re the upgrade process in case my concerns about data obsolecence get the best of me.

As for Intuit's Tech support, I tried it 2 or 3 times with a question re QuickTax (not a Rev. Canada type question). Presumably their help center is in a country without taxes as the answers were from somewhere out in the ozone. Helped me decide to switch to UFile last year, although price and ability to deal with a small home business were also contributing factors.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 15 Dec 2007 18:00

Jaunty wrote:I've considered moving to a newer version before Intuit creates a version to which I can't upgrade.

If they do that, e.g. suppose Q09 no longer imports data from Q02, then all is not lost. Just "borrow" a copy of Q0x [where 2 < x < 9] long enough to do the conversion. Then import those files to Q09+.
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Postby AltaRed » 15 Dec 2007 18:06

Bylo Selhi wrote:If they do that, e.g. suppose Q09 no longer imports data from Q02, then all is not lost. Just "borrow" a copy of Q0x [where 2 < x < 9] long enough to do the conversion. Then import those files to Q09+.


Just be sure to have an intermediate version sitting on the shelf that works with XP. FWIW, Q07 does an intermediary update on Q02 when it converts Q02 files to Q07 anyway.
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Postby Jaunty » 15 Dec 2007 18:11

Bylo & AltaRed - thanks guys. And AltaRed your earlier info regarding the upgrade has been included in the saved info re Quicken upgrades. Should have mentioned that earlier.
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Postby asdfvcx » 15 Dec 2007 18:17

Bylo Selhi wrote:However another online feature, downloading bank account and credit card transactions from your financial institution, will also stop working on Q02 at year end. I use that feature almost daily, in part as vigilance against fraud and identity theft.

There is one possibility to get around this. (I might have even seen this link here, I honestly can't remember where.)

You can download from the most banks in csv or text format. You can then import this into Excel or the OpenOffice spreadsheet. From there, there are free macros to convert the spreadsheet into a qif file. You should then be able to import the qif file into quicken.

You can find the macros at: http://xl2qif.chez-alice.fr/

It looks a little complex and I've been meaning to get around to testing it, since my version of Q02 will timebomb soon, but I still haven't had the chance.

Has anyone had the chance to take a closer look at these?
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Postby soloman » 15 Dec 2007 19:50

Peculiar_Investor wrote:

I might try searching eBay for a copy. Has anyone gone this route with success?


Yes, earlier this year I bought a 2005 full version for $15. I was the only bidder :lol:

I'm only using it to check and categorize my credit card entries. It works OK for this. Otherwise I use Globeinvestorgold for tracking portfolio failures/successes. I looked at Quicken's portfolio tracking capabilities, but it seemed overly complicated, and the instructions not clear. At any rate I was happy with Globinvestorgold. I don't see why TDW can't create something similar to this. Then I would not have to do double entries.
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Postby Peculiar_Investor » 17 Dec 2007 01:57

Bylo Selhi wrote:
Peculiar_Investor wrote:versions for Quicken 2007

You'd need Quicken XG 2007 to get the investment features. I see that this year they no longer call it XG, but you still need the $100 version.

If you're in no hurry to buy, I've seen Quicken on sale from time to time at places like Staples and Future Shop for $80.

Futureshop appears to only have the 2008 version, at a cost of $99.99. Amazon.ca has Quicken XG 2007 at a cost of $99.99.

If my Q02 version will no longer download from my bank (RBC) after Dec 31, then I'm going to be in a hurry to purchase and evaluate. Based on reports I'm seeing, Quicken 2008 is not ready for prime time, up to R5 already, so I'm leaning towards Q07. I was just hopeful that someone would be clearing stock and have a reduced price, but no luck so far.

I've sent a message to the RBC online banking team to request clarification on versions supported. If anyone is interested, I'll post the reply when I receive it.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 17 Dec 2007 09:39

Peculiar_Investor wrote:Futureshop appears to only have the 2008 version, at a cost of $99.99. Amazon.ca has Quicken XG 2007 at a cost of $99.99... Based on reports I'm seeing, Quicken 2008 is not ready for prime time, up to R5 already, so I'm leaning towards Q07.

See what I mean. I had nothing to do with testing Q08 :lol:

Another option is to buy an earlier version on eBay et al as soloman posted. For ~$15 you'll get at least a 1-year usage extension.

Note that
1. Q03 and Q04 are no longer supported, although presumably you can still do downloads with them. Dunno how long that will last.
2. Q03, Q04 and Q05 all used product activation schemes. Make sure that you get the activation key from the seller and that they warrant that the software is unactivated.

So ideally I'd look for Q06 on eBay, etc. Hopefully you can snap one up for under $25 while you wait for a retail Q07 or Q08 to go on sale. (In the past Intuit would bundle Q0x and QuickTax during tax season for $100. Read the QuickTax thread first before you consider that option.)

BTW in my travels through intuit.ca I ran into this FAQ entry:
Why can't I use Online Banking Booster (OLBB) with my TD Canada Trust account(s)? TD Canada Trust has added a new security system to their EasyWeb Internet banking called EasyWeb IdentificationPlus. This new security feature does not work with Quicken's Online Banking Booster (OLBB) feature. That means that you can no longer automatically download your bank transactions in to Quicken. You'll have to download your transactions manually using Quicken's Web Connect...
There are similar FAQ entries for other banks like BMO and ING. This shouldn't affect Q02 refugees because that never had OLBB. We just have to continue doing what we've always done, i.e. download manually from the bank's website.
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Postby Jaunty » 17 Dec 2007 11:03

Bylo - does this mean '06 doesn't have a product activation scheme? I can't tell from what I find on the web - although I have found purportedly new Quicken '06's for $ 22.99 (U.S. version).
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 17 Dec 2007 11:50

Jaunty wrote:does this mean '06 doesn't have a product activation scheme?
The FAQ link I provided above suggests not.

Quicken '06's for $ 22.99 (U.S. version)
My comments and links apply to the Canadian version. The US version may be different, may or may not have activation, may or may not support multiple currencies, and may not even download from Canadian financial institutions. Google around.

Some current listings on eBay:
http://cgi.ebay.ca/Quicken-2008-Home-an ... dZViewItem
http://cgi.ebay.ca/INTUIT-QUICKEN-XG-20 ... dZViewItem
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Postby AltaRed » 17 Dec 2007 11:56

Bylo Selhi wrote:My comments and links apply to the Canadian version. The US version may be different, may or may not have activation, may or may not support multiple currencies, and may not even download from Canadian financial institutions. Google around.


I would be very surprised if a US version supported downloads from Cdn institutions. Intuit provides updates every now and then when an institution is added or has revised their protocols. Q07 just had such a 'financial institution' update this weekend.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 17 Dec 2007 12:08

AltaRed wrote:Q07 just had such a 'financial institution' update this weekend.

How do you know, i.e. did your Q07 download a new list or do a software update, etc? (Mine didn't.)
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Postby AltaRed » 17 Dec 2007 12:15

Bylo Selhi wrote:
AltaRed wrote:Q07 just had such a 'financial institution' update this weekend.

How do you know, i.e. did your Q07 download a new list or do a software update, etc? (Mine didn't.)


When I loaded the program, it asked me if I wanted to do an update. Then as it was updating, it said something like 'obtaining (or downloading, or installing) financial institution update'. Happened all within 3-5 seconds so I did not catch the precise wording.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 18 Dec 2007 09:52

Something is still screwed up with Quicken's stock quotes. (Mutual funds appear to be OK.)

1. RY (TSX)
Q02: $51.10
Q07: $51.42
Yahoo: $51.10

2. VTI (NYSE)
Q02: $147.70
Q07: $145.70
Yahoo: $143.47
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Postby AltaRed » 18 Dec 2007 11:03

Bylo Selhi wrote:Something is still screwed up with Quicken's stock quotes. (Mutual funds appear to be OK.)


Yes, they appear entirely random and inconsistent from day to day, or week to week (as also noted on Quicken forums). It is hard to believe they cannot (or will not) fix it.
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Postby foobert » 18 Dec 2007 14:02

Just upgraded to Quicken 2008 from 2002. My stock price updates are wrong by a factor of 10X on 2008, but update OK on 2002.

Used to get this problem randomly on 2002 the last 2 years or so. Hopefully they will eventually fix it.
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Postby Peculiar_Investor » 18 Dec 2007 22:32

I contacted RBC about whether a notification will be provided to advise their clients about the Dec. 31, 2007 sunset for Q2002. Here is part of their response to me (my bold).
We don't post information regarding the retirement of third party software due to a number of problems we have encountered in the past with this. We have nothing to do with the retirement of the software, and if we do post a notice, which we have in the past regarding Quicken versions, we get swamped with calls and emails from clients wanting us to explain why, and to "fix" the problem. This is a situation that is unique to Quicken at this point, and it is the responsibility of Intuit to advise their clients of this issue, which should be easy for them to do as every time you download using Quicken, the software contacts Quicken to verify the software. This is how they "retire" the software, by stopping it from any download process.

What I find most interesting is the involvement of Intuit (Quicken) to "verify the software" during each download. I was not aware of this and I suspect most others are not.

I understand RBC's position even if I don't agree with it. I'm sure RBC are going to get swamped with emails and calls from their clients either way. What I would expect to see them post is a link to Intuit Canada's website with the sunset information as a heads up to their clients that are downloading to Quicken.

I'd be curious to know what the other major banks are doing with the upcoming sunset of Q02 and the impact it will have to their clients. Do they bury their heads in the sand like RBC? It is like the children's dilemma , Is it easier to ask permission or forgiveness?
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Postby AltaRed » 19 Dec 2007 00:08

I do not believe this is unique to Q02. IIRC, this has been the case with earlier versions of Quicken as well and the reason I bought Q02 in the first place (having had earlier versions of Quicken). At some point, the ability to download is terminated by Intuit.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 19 Dec 2007 00:30

Peculiar_Investor wrote:I'd be curious to know what the other major banks are doing with the upcoming sunset of Q02 and the impact it will have to their clients. Do they bury their heads in the sand like RBC?
So far TD has said nothing. Even when I phoned EasyWeb tech support about a week ago to ask about related issues there was no mention, not even off the record, that the Grim Reaper had set its sights on Q02.

Now IIRC the last time Intuit ended support for Qxx, TD (maybe it was still CT) not only warned everyone months in advance but also struck a deal with Intuit to offer the new version of Quicken at a reduced price.

Here's a possible explanation. Intuit was very proud of their Online Banking Booster (OLBB) feature when they introduced it a few years back. The banks, at least TD and BMO that I know of, just killed Intuit's baby earlier this year when they introduced their multiple-factor secure login (what TD calls ID+.) OLBB stores your password(s) in a Quicken "password vault" so that you can log into and update multiple accounts at potentially multiple institutions with a single click. With ID+, if the login gets challenged, there's no way for OLBB to respond to the challenge question(s). So it's effectively useless. Intuit can't be happy about that. The banks can't exempt Quicken from the game of 20 questions because that would be a gigantic security exposure. Ergo, stalemate.

It is like the children's dilemma , Is it easier to ask permission or forgiveness?
Perhaps children. But perhaps not a dilemna. Rather a common game played between Intuit and the banks that harms not only the participants but potentially also innocent bystanders: Chicken

At some point, the ability to download is terminated by Intuit.
Yabbut in the past Intuit offered some useful functional improvements for the cost of the upgrade, e.g. support for multiple currencies. What's on offer this time, apart from more useless eye candy that only gets in the way of existing functionality?
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Postby Peculiar_Investor » 19 Dec 2007 00:40

AltaRed wrote:I do not believe this is unique to Q02. IIRC, this has been the case with earlier versions of Quicken as well and the reason I bought Q02 in the first place (having had earlier versions of Quicken). At some point, the ability to download is terminated by Intuit.

The problem that I have is that no one is actively warning people about the imminent sunset of the product, which unfortunately will occur on Jan 1, 2008. My guess it that people over the holiday season won't be paying a whole lot of attention to their finances, but will likely get back to it early in January. Only then will they find out that downloads from their financial institution do not work. I would have been one of them, but fortunately for me someone on this forum alerted people to the upcoming deadline. Now I'm scrambling to upgrade to a more current version.

As someone who developed enterprise software previously, I fully understand the need to sunset software. But we always went to great lengths to advise customers of the upcoming event. It didn't always make us popular with the customers, but it at least gave them time to make an informed decision on their next steps.

Anyways, that is my $0.02 on the issue. I've already got an order in for Quicken XG 2007 and plan to spend part of early Jan testing before going live with a new version.
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Postby AltaRed » 19 Dec 2007 00:46

Bylo Selhi wrote:
At some point, the ability to download is terminated by Intuit.
Yabbut in the past Intuit offered some useful functional improvements for the cost of the upgrade, e.g. support for multiple currencies. What's on offer this time, apart from more useless eye candy that only gets in the way of existing functionality?


I never said it was reasonable or fair. Intuit does it cause they know they can get away with it.

As an aside, I got a lame email response today from Intuit Tech Support that simply said to try updating several times and the quotes will eventually be right. :shock: Which is pure bullshit and I told them so.

Aside #2. I did an quote update tonight for the hell of it and verified that 2 of the updates (both US stocks) were slightly off by pennies compared to Globeinvestor. The situation appears to be random.
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Postby Bylo Selhi » 19 Dec 2007 11:24

Peculiar_Investor wrote:The problem that I have is that no one is actively warning people about the imminent sunset of the product
Evidently you never registered your software (in which case you would have got an e-mail from them almost a year ago) or check their website regularly for notices like this ;)
Intuit wrote:Under this policy, the most current version of Quicken (currently Quicken 2007), plus the prior two versions, will be supported, subject to certain exceptions. Sunsetting older versions of Quicken allows us to focus resources on enhancing our products and providing support for more current versions, which are used by the vast majority of Quicken customers.

When a Quicken product is scheduled to be sunset, Intuit will provide affected customers with advance notice, generally by means of this Web site. We update this Web site periodically, so please visit us again for more information as it becomes available.


My guess it that people over the holiday season won't be paying a whole lot of attention to their finances, but will likely get back to it early in January. Only then will they find out that downloads from their financial institution do not work.
Let's hope the victims are vocal. However I suspect that the number of bank customers who use Quicken is small and the number who still use Q02 is minuscule. I doubt the squawking will be noticed.

BTW Intuit killed downloads using Q02 (.QIF file format) in the US almost 3 years ago so we've been living on borrowed time.

As someone who developed enterprise software previously, I fully understand the need to sunset software. But we always went to great lengths to advise customers of the upcoming event. It didn't always make us popular with the customers, but it at least gave them time to make an informed decision on their next steps.
Me too. However enterprises are different beasts. We also advised our customers well in advance, offered them financial incentives to get current and even continued to offer them support on a best-efforts basis even after official support had expired. (We even offered our customers support for our competitors' discontinued software. Not only was that profitable in its own right but it helped encourage them to migrate to our software. But as I said, the enterprise market is another world.)

Alas, a small number of consumers, who've been "freeloading" from Intuit for as long as 5 years, don't count.
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