Here's the list of QuickBooks Desktop maximum number of list entries (list limits and custom fields) to help you manage your company data file.

List limit for QuickBooks Desktop for Windows

List name1 Max number of entries (Pro, Premier) Max number of entries (Enterprise)
Chart of Accounts 10,000 100,000
Total names: Employees, Customers, Vendors, and Other Names combined 14 500 (individual limits of each list is 10 500 >100,0002
Items, including inventory items (group items can contain only 20 individual items) 14,500 >100,0003
Items in an inventory assembly or sub-assembly 100 500
Job types 10,000 10,000
Vendor types 10,000 100,000
Customer types 10,000 100,000
Payroll items 10,000 10,000
Price Levels 100 750
Classes 10,000 100,000
Terms for receivables and payables 10,000 29,000
Payment methods 10,000 10,000
Shipping methods 10,000 10,000
Customer messages 10,000 100,000
Ship To addresses 10,000 10,000
Memorized reports 10,000 29,000
Memorized transactions 10,000 50,000
To Do notes 10,000 100,000
Sales Reps 10,000 10,000
Sales Tax Codes 10,000 10,000
Group Items & Sales Tax Group Items 50 50
Advanced Inventory Sites N/A 1,000,000
Advanced Pricing Price Rules N/A 100,000
Contacts No limit No limit
Custom Fields 20 45
Item custom field
5 15
Customers/Vendors/Employees custom fields
154 304

1Some of the items in the list are not available in earlier versions of QuickBooks Desktop for Windows.
2QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise 14.0 and later versions allow you to add up to one million names (e.g. customers, vendors, employees) and up to one million items (e.g. inventory, non-inventory, and service items). Some performance degradation is likely as your lists approach these size thresholds.
3 Current QuickBooks Desktop users can check the size and or lists of their QuickBooks Desktop company file by pressing the F2 key or Ctrl+1 and look for File Size in the File Information section of the window or List Information section.
4Customers/Vendors/Employees - 15 and 30 totals are a combination of custom fields for customers, vendors and employees.

  • In Pro/Premier, although there is a total of 15 custom fields, you cannot have more than 7 per category. For example, you could only have 7 custom fields for customers, 7 for vendors and 1 for employee.
  • In Enterprise Solutions, although there is a total of 30 customer fields, you cannot have more than 12 per category. For example, you could only have 12 custom fields for customers, 12 for vendors and 6 for employee.

List limit for QuickBooks Mac Desktop

List name1 Max number of entries
Chart of Accounts 10,000
Items, including inventory items
(Group items can only contain 20 individual items)
14,500
Job Types 10,000
Vendor Types 10,000
Customer Types 10,000
Purchase Orders 10,000
Classes 10,000
A/R Terms and A/P Terms added together 10,000
Payment methods 10,000
Shipping methods 10,000
Customer messages 10,000
Memorized reports 14,500
Memorized transactions 14,500
To Do List 10,000
Names added together (Employees, Customers, Vendors, and Other Names) 14,5002

1Some of the items in the list are not available in earlier versions of QuickBooks Mac Desktop.
2Any one of these lists can contain up to 10,000 names but they cannot exceed 14,500 combined.

Some practical limitations

QuickBooks Desktop is designed for small businesses with 20 or fewer employees and annual revenue of less than two million dollars. The ideal use of QuickBooks Desktop is to keep at least two years of detailed transactions in a company data file so that you can run comparative reports and have prior-year project information.

The rate of growth of QuickBooks Desktop company data files varies significantly from company to company. There is no "average" or "typical" data file size, since businesses track different information. How quickly a file grows depends on the number of transactions, the amount of information entered per transaction, and the number of "links" per transaction.

Example

Someone who enters 500 1-line invoices per month might find that their data file is smaller than another person who enters 100 5-line invoices per month, while someone who usually receives five separate payments per invoice would have a larger file than someone who typically receives only one payment per invoice.

To estimate if QuickBooks is right for your small business, take the average number of monthly transactions (remember, an invoice, payment, and deposit would be three separate transactions, and a bill and bill payment would count as two), and multiply by 2 KB to determine approximately how much the data file will grow each month.

Example

If your company enters an average of 300 transactions per month, the data file would grow approximately 600 KB per month (300 x 2 KB = 600 KB) or 7200 KB per year (600 KB x 12 = 7200 KB). If the annual data file size is less than 15,000 KB, then QuickBooks should be more than sufficient for the company. Note that the 2 KB multiplier does not include list information (which will also grow as new names are added to the file), and is only an approximation that may not be a suitable estimate for all QuickBooks company data files.

If performance becomes an issue or you decide you do not want to keep detailed transactions for prior years, you can condense a QuickBooks company data file. Before you condense, please read Condensing data in the QuickBooks User's Guide (in the chapter Maintaining your data) or read the QuickBooks Help topics under the keyword condense. (Both the User Guide and QuickBooks Help are found on the QuickBooks Help menu.)