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If you have already finished the initial setup of ACCOUNTS and gotten to the main window, please skip down to the section on Passwords towards the end of this Help page.
Initial Startup Window
The first time you start ACCOUNTS after you install it, the program will show you the following window:
You can also get to this window via the File ⇒ New Database menu option.
The window should be mostly self-explanatory, if you read the options in it carefully. New users, whose organization has not used ACCOUNTS before, should stick with the first option (the default) and just click OK. (You also use that first option to create an additional database for another organization.)
Users who have a backup database from a previous installation, either because they have to re-install after getting a new computer or having their computer rebuilt, or because they are transferring the program from another user in their organization, should pick the second or third radio button option (depending on what type of backup they plan to restore) and click OK. Users who already have databases and somehow get to this window by mistake can select the fourth option, to prompt to open an existing database.
If you selected the 2nd option, to restore a backup database, please see Restoring Backups for more details about the restore process. The startup windows described in the section below will not be shown.
Note: If you do select this 2nd option, check the filename of the backup that you have received, or that was emailed to you. It should be something like OrganizationName-YYYY-MM-DD.HH.MM.SS.S4ABackup or OrganizationName-YYYY-MM-DD.S4ABackup, where OrganizationName is the File Name from the Maintenance ⇒ Organization Info window in the program (details below), YYYY-MM-DD represents the date the backup was made, and HH.MM.SS is the time. (If it is an email backup, it will be named something like OrganizationName-YYYY-MM-DD.HH.MM.SS.S4AEncryptedBackup or OrganizationName-YYYY-MM-DD.S4AEncryptedBackup.)
If you selected the 3rd option, to restore an Internet backup, please see Restoring Internet Backups for more details. The following window will come up when you choose that option:
To get the Unique ID into this window, you have to first copy it to the Window clipboard from wherever you have it stored, the click the Paste ID from Clipboard button on this window to get it displayed here. (You can also carefully type it in manually, or directly paste it into the entry field.) After clicking OK and entering the Internet Backup password that it will next prompt you for, you will be able to select from the Internet backups - choose the most recent one. As with choosing the 2nd option in the window above, the further startup windows described in the section below will not be shown.
The fourth option allows you to re-open an existing database that has been used in the program before.
Initial Startup Window for Remote Database Version
For the Remote Database Version, the window is slightly different, as follows, though it has largely the same meanings.
Further Startup Windows
In the more usual case where you selected the first option in the initial startup window, for new users, the program will prompt you with several additional startup windows before you can start entering transactions.
In this window, you enter your organization's basic information (name, address, fiscal year start if different from the calendar year etc.). You can also come back later and change this basic organization information with the Maintenance ⇒ Organization Info window.
Startup Accounts Window
This window prompts you with a number of options about how your chart of accounts should be initialized.
Once you are finished with that, you go on to the following window, where you can make further detailed edits to your chart of accounts.
Edit Chart of Accounts Window
This window lets you add additional accounts to your Chart of Accounts, and/or edit the ones that are there already. (It uses the Maintenance ⇒ Chart of Accounts window.) Depending on your choices in the previous window, either an entire chart of accounts may already be present, or at least an account for your General Fund will already be there.
Evaluation and Licensing Window
If you do not yet have a license key for your organization for ACCOUNTS, or have not yet installed it on this computer, the next thing you see will be the Evaluation and Licensing window. Please read the Help on that window for details. During your initial evaluation of ACCOUNTS, you can just click Continue on that window to go on to the main window.
For the Remote Database Version of the program, license keys are not needed, but the Evaluation and Licensing window will still show up every time you start the program until you purchase it.
Register the Program Window
If you have not yet registered the program, or informed the program that you have already done so online or on another computer, you will also be prompted about registering ACCOUNTS, with the following window:
You may already have registered using the form on the REGISTER page on the web site, in which case you can click the second button in the window above. If you click the first button, another window will now come up prompting you to register.
There are a couple of passwords you can set up in the program, for program entry with different permissions, and other purposes, with the Maintenance ⇒ Change Password sub-menu options. See the page on Passwords in the Program for full details.
For the Remote Database Version this is done differently, with login email addresses and passwords, not just passwords. You may want to use the Maintenance ⇒ User Administration ⇒ Administer All Users and Maintenance ⇒ User Administration ⇒ Edit Your Login menu options to add additional users and set their permissions, or change your own login including your password. See Remote Database Version User Management for full details.
Other Initial Setup
One thing you must do is set up your chart of accounts with Maintenance ⇒ Chart of Accounts.
Unless this is a complete startup organization, with no financial history, you will want to enter your Opening Balances in all accounts that have balances as at the date before you are going to start entering transactions into ACCOUNTS, with Actions ⇒ Opening Balances.
Another setup step you may wish to do before you start using ACCOUNTS includes selecting your organization's desired naming for various classes of accounts, and various reports, with the Maintenance ⇒ Entity Names window.
See also: the Regular Operating Procedures page for an introduction to your daily activities.