Suggestions from a former Quicken user

Philip's Avatar


16 Oct, 2020 05:03 PM

I have used Quicken since 1990 and recently switched to MoneyDance after getting increasingly annoyed with Quicken. I am delighted to have found an alternative program that does not require online data storage. I am presenting these suggestions with the hope that the MoneyDance programmers will take them into consideration, to make MoneyDance both better and easier to convert to from Quicken.

1. Rather than a 2-step export-then-import process, a "wizard" utility that will go directly into the Quicken data file and import selected (or all) accounts from that data file. Having an IT support business, I know that the 2-step process is daunting for many people. Also, I found that exporting-importing an entire Quicken data file created many errors in the numbers, sometimes putting all credits in the debit column of an account. This was resolved by importing each account separately. There were still some duplicate transactions created, although not very many. A utility (aka "wizard") in MoneyDance as described above would eliminate these issues and - I am sure - bring in many new users to MoneyDance.
2. The register should be specific to the type of account, and register columns should be removeable. For example, the registers for all non-checking bank accounts, credit cards, assets all have a Check# column even though the check# column should only be displayed in checking accounts, and is just another column to tab through.
3. The Tags field should be removeable if the user doesn't use Tags
4. The filter row about the transactions area (i.e. All, Unconfirmed, etc) should have a toggle to display or not display it. It wastes screen space if not used, and a hide/unhide button would be useful.
5. When selecting an account register to be displayed, the user should be able to scroll down to the unused row at the bottom to start a new transaction rather than clicking on New Transaction or using the keyboard combo to do so. A minor issue, but another efficiency issue to reduce unnecessary mouse or keyboard use.
6. According to the MoneyDance online Help, a transaction can be recorded/memorized by clicking the Memorize button. This must be a hidden key as it is not on any MoneyDance register that I have used. A keyboard shortcut to memorize a transaction would be very useful. It be nice be able to select from memorized transactions.

I hope this helps improve MoneyDance and bring in more users.

  1. 1 Posted by dtd on 17 Oct, 2020 12:50 AM

    dtd's Avatar

    I'm just a user, and moved from Quicken to Moneydance as you did.

    So, please understand I'm agreeing with you, but throwing in my bit as well (as I did a year ago)

    1) Users can be educated to the export/import process, so a lot of work to an automated process is not as important as getting the import right. The major issue is investments, but I see your points as well. Relying on "QIF import is not a good thing, but the best we can do" is a maguffin, as there are things WRONG in the import that could be improved.

    2. Being able to change fields would be nice. End of comment.

    3. Removing tags should be part of item 2. No need to remove a capability entirely, hiding it would be enough.

    4. Maybe I don't understand, but knowing if something has been confirmed is a big deal to knowing if your data matches the bank.

    5. The new transaction area is out of date and could be updated.

    6. Memorize is about (to my knowledge) adding an older transaction to a list of items that can be viewed and used. It's automatic. I don't think it's the best way to do it, but it's sort of a compilation.

    Again, I'm just a user and throwing in some thoughts, and maybe in a couple of cases, allowing clarification.

  2. 2 Posted by philwiener on 17 Oct, 2020 08:19 PM

    philwiener's Avatar

    Good conversation.


    RE #3, perhaps I used the wrong term. By removing the TAG field from the register I meant to remove it from the display – essentially hide it. TAG is a basic field in MoneyDance and I would not suggest removing the field itself from the database.


    RE #4, Having the ability to filter by, for example, Uncleared, etc is a good feature, although one that I would rarely use, so being able to hide the line with the filters would provide a simpler interface. Not a big issue, although it came up because a few times I accidentally clicked on one or another of the buttons and was startled to find many missing transactions (which were hidden with the filter active). I’ve learned from that, so it’s not a big deal.


    RE #6, I would like to have some control over what is displayed, so that I can remove previous transactions from being displayed if I am unlikely to do a similar transaction again.


    All in all, though, I’m impressed with MoneyDance and have stopped doing double-entry in both MoneyDance and Quicken, and am now using only MoneyDance.

  3. 3 Posted by derekkent23 on 17 Oct, 2020 09:18 PM

    derekkent23's Avatar

    I am not support staff, just a user.

    Not sure if you are aware and if it helps, but there is a SINGLE and TWO LINE MODE.

    The Single mode hide the second line.

    Highlight any transaction right click and make a selection.

    Hope this helps

  4. System closed this discussion on 16 Jan, 2021 09:20 PM.

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