Use this article if you encounter this message when attempting to import your QuickBooks desktop data to QuickBooks Online. We also recommend using this article in removing unused (inactive) list entries in your Desktop data before converting it to QuickBooks Online for a better experience.

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What you need to know about the Condense Data utility

  • In order to convert your Desktop data to QuickBooks Online, the file must be less than 350,000 targets.
  • When files are condensed, the archived transactions are turned into Journal Entries.
  • File size (MB) does not matter.
  • Journal Entries generate targets as well.
  • This is why the condense process can be unsuccessful.
  • Reports may not match after condensing a file.
  • QuickBooks automatically creates an archived copy of your company file in the original folder your file is saved in and names it "[Your Company File Name] Copy MM/DD/YY."
  • You can easily restore your original company file from either the backup or archive copy.
  • Make sure to store either file in a safe place.
  • See The Condense Data utility for more information.

How to check targets in a QuickBooks company file.

Windows: With the QuickBooks company file open. Press the F2 key.

Mac: With the QuickBooks company file open use CMD(?)+1.

Check the Total Targets number (the third option below the file size).

Condensing your QuickBooks for Windows data for a QuickBooks Online Import.

For QuickBooks Pro/Premier 2012 and later or QuickBooks Enterprise 12.0 and later:

  1. Select the File menu then choose Utilities.
  2. Select Condense Data.
  3. Click Yes to the message Budget data may be moved during cleanup. Do you want to continue anyway?
  4. Select Transactions before a specific date in the Condense Data window.
  5. Use the Date field to select a date. QuickBooks will remove closed transactions on or before the date you choose.
    NOTE: If you track inventory, it’s best to make the date the last day of the month. That way, your average cost for items will remain correct.
  6. Select Next.
  7. Choose a method to summarize the transactions you're removing (if you're not sure, select Help me choose).
  8. Select Next.
  9. (Optional) Select any of the check boxes for the dialog boxes that follow and click Next.
  10. Select Begin Condense.

For QuickBooks Pro/Premier 2006 - 2011 and QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions 6.0 till 11.0:

  1. Select the File menu, go to Utilities, and select Clean Up Company Data
  2. Select Yes below the message "Budget data may be moved during cleanup. Do you want to continue anyway?"
  3. Select Remove Transactions from a certain date.
  4. Use the Date field to select a date. QuickBooks will remove closed transactions on or before the date you choose.
  5. Select Next.
  6. (Optional) Select any of the checkboxes under Select Additional Criteria for Removing Transactions and click Next
  7. (Optional) Select any of the checkboxes under Select Unused List Items to Remove and click Next
  8. Select Begin Cleanup.
  9. Select OK below the message about making a backup before cleaning up the data file.

Condensing your QuickBooks for Mac data for a QuickBooks Online Import.

  1. Close all your QuickBooks windows.
  2. Select File then Utilities.
  3. Select Condense Data.
    NOTE: If you track inventory, it’s best to make the date the last day of the month. That way, your average cost for items will remain correct.
  4. Select OK. A message appears telling you that QuickBooks will make a backup file before it condenses the transactions.
  5. Select OK to create the backup file.
  6. The backup file ensures that you will still have a record of the details of any transactions that QuickBooks removes from your company file.

Success! The file is less than 350,000 targets!

Use the following articles for steps in converting Desktop data to QuickBooks Online.

Are you encountering some problems after importing your condensed file?

1. Creating a portable company file:

  1. Select the File menu then choose Create Copy.
  2. Select Portable Company File then choose Next.
  3. Save the portable company file to your desktop or create a new folder on your computer.
    • Intuit recommends you save it to a CD, USB flash drive, or other removable storage device.
    • The portable company file is saved with a .qbm extension.
    • This will provide a safeguard against data corruption or loss of data if your system becomes compromised.
  4. When prompted to close your company file, then select OK.
    Important: If you click Cancel,QuickBooks exits the wizard and doesn't create the portable file.

2. Restore the portable company file:

After you create a portable company file (.qbm) you can restore the file on the destination computer. QuickBooks decompresses the file and then rebuilds your company file. This process may take a few minutes.

  1. Select the File menu then choose Open or Restore Company.
  2. Select Restore a portable file then choose Next.
  3. Browse to the location where you saved the portable file.
  4. Select the portable file then choose Open.
  5. SelectNext.
  6. This will open a Save Company File As window.
    • To prevent overwriting your existing company file, rename the company file by typing a new name in the File name field.
    • For example, you may want to add a date or number.
  7. After renaming the file, select Save. QuickBooks converts the portable file to a regular company file with a .qbw extension.
  8. You will be prompted to perform a backup of the new company file. Follow the wizard to complete the backup.
  9. Check the file size again. If the file is more than 350,000 targets then go back and repeat the process and remove as much data as possible. The .qbw file created from the portable company file might be smaller than your condensed .qbw file. This is normal.

IMPORTANT: If the steps in this article do not resolve your problem please contact us by using the Help option at the top of any page in QuickBooks Online.

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