You may need to reinstall or move QuickBooks to another computer for several reasons. Use the following steps to complete this process.
If you're using a US version of QuickBooks Desktop (single user ONLY), check out the new Migrator Tool! It moves your program AND your files (up to three) with little effort on your part.
The tool is already available in QuickBooks 2019 and it's being rolled out in phases in older supported versions.
Reinstall or move your QuickBooks Desktop installation
- Have your product and license information available.
- Uninstall existing QuickBooks program before attempting a reinstall.
- On the computer where you want QuickBooks Desktop installed, download the installation files or insert the CD.
- Install QuickBooks Desktop as you normally would. See Install QuickBooks Desktop for more detailed steps.
Common questions about reinstalling or moving an existing installation
What if I don't have my CD?
What if I don't have my license and product numbers?
Will I need to register QuickBooks after I reinstall or move it?
- Go to Help > Register QuickBooks to start the process.
- After you enter your business phone and zip/postal code, Intuit will detect that your copy of QuickBooks was already registered and will record the registration information for the new computer.
Note: If you reinstall QuickBooks on a computer where it was previously registered, you will not be required to register again. QuickBooks will detect that your copy of QuickBooks was already registered and will not prompt you to register.
What about my company file(s)?
- Moving your QuickBooks installation does not move your company files. Your company files must be copied to the new location separately. See Move your company file from your old computer to your new computer.
- Reinstalling QuickBooks over an existing installation does not affect your company files. You can open your company files with the reinstalled copy of QuickBooks as you normally would.
You can now move your QuickBooks Desktop version and company files in a few clicks using the Migrator tool.
How the tool works
- You must be the Admin user to use the Move QuickBooks tool.
- You’ll create a complex password to unlock everything that is transferred on your new computer.
- Write the password down so you don’t forget it. You’ll only need this password once.
- The tool will copy up to the last 3 company files opened (and all supporting files) to a USB flash drive.
- You’ll use the USB flash drive to physically move the files but the migrator tool does all the technical work.
- The tool will download the right version of QuickBooks Desktop to your new computer and sets it up with your files.
- The tool won’t reformat your drive or erase any of your other files.
What you’ll need
- Have your new computer connected to the internet
- A USB flash drive with enough free space to hold your QuickBooks files. The Move QuickBooks tool will tell you how much free space you need. Most people need between 150 and 250 MB.
What gets copied
We will copy all of the data required to get QuickBooks Desktop up and running on your new computer. None of your data will be deleted from your old computer.
The tool DOES copy:
- QuickBooks Desktop details: This includes the version & others details required to install QuickBooks Desktop on your new computer
- Recent company files: QuickBooks will copy up to the last 3 company files that you opened on the old computer, including sample files
- Related files, custom templates & forms
- QuickBooks letters and templates
- Scheduled & memorized reports
- Local attachments
- Printer Setting (PrintEng.ini, wpr.ini, and QBPrint.qbp)
- Spell Checker (spell.ini and UserDictionary.tlx)
- Financial Statement Designer (FSD clients)
- Financial Statement Designer (FSD data)
- Cash Flow Projector (.cfp)
- Business Planner (.bpw)
- Loan Manager (.lmr)
- Statement writer (for QuickBooks Accountant)
- Advanced reports (for QuickBooks Enterprise)
The tool does NOT copy:
- Multi-user setup: If you are using QuickBooks Desktop in a multi-user setup, the configuration will not be copied to your new computer.
- Payroll & payment setup: If you have payroll or payments services set up on your old computer, you will have to log in again on the new computer as part of our effort to protect your data.
- Intuit Data Protect (IDP): If you have Intuit Data Protect, you’ll need to uninstall it on the old computer, sign in again on the new computer and go through the setup process. All previous backups will still be available.
- Older Company Files: Any company files that you haven’t recently opened will not be copied. QuickBooks will copy only the 3 most recently opened company files. Any others will have to be moved manually or restored from IDP.
- Backup files: Any manual backups that you created will not be copied.
Moving your program and files
On the old computer:
- Go to QuickBooks File menu > Utilities > Move QuickBooks to another computer.
- Select I'm Ready, then create a one-time password.
- Choose the USB flash drive you will use, then wait for all the needed files to be copied.
On the new computer:
- Insert the USB flash drive.
- Wait for the Move QuickBooks tool, or run Move_QuickBooks.bat file from your flash drive.
- Enter the password you created, then select Let's go.
- Wait for the Migrator Tool to finish.
Note: This will depend on the speed of your computer and internet, and the size of your company file/s.
Your migrator files will be automatically deleted from your USB flash drive when you’re done. Your QuickBooks files will still be on your old computer. We strongly recommend you change the name of the file(s) on the old computer to avoid using the wrong file.
What to do next
Since the tool does NOT copy some information, you may need to do additional tasks in order to get up and running on the new computer.
Depending on what you have on the old computer, you may need to: