How do I?
You can read about this in the program's Help. Go to Help ⇒ Move DONATION to Another Computer in the main menu, which will bring the required topic right up. Or you can read it online here.
In the program, use the Help ⇒ About DONATION menu option. That will tell you both the release number, and whether you are using the Standard, Lite, Local Network Server, Local Network Client or OnDemand version.
In the program, press F1 or use the Help ⇒ Contents and Index menu option. That takes you into the Help file. You can then find most things by switching to the Index tab at the left (if it's not already on that tab), and entering keywords you want to search on in the text box under those tabs.
If you don't find things in the Index tab, you can try the Search tab (which searches on every word in the Help text, not just topic keywords) or the Contents tab.
Of course, individual windows other than the main window in the program each have their own Help button, which generally takes you to the most relevant Help topic. And in the main window, if you press Shift+F1, it takes you to Help topic related to the section of the main window that your cursor is currently in.
Initial Download and Installation
There are several ways you can do this, outlined in the program's Help topic "Multiple User Options". You can also read that online here.
Please see the Selecting the Best Version of DONATION Software for your Needs page to help you make this decision.
DONATION will run on Windows Vista SP1 or higher, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Windows 11 or Windows Server 2008 or later on either 32-bit or 64-bit computers.
The Lite version doesn't need or use license keys.
For the other versions, when you install them for the first time, after you go through a few initial setup screens, you will come to the Licensing and Evaluation window. During your evaluation period, just click the Continue button at the top right of this window to get into the program. No license key is needed, until you decide to purchase the program.
Windows 10 S Mode is a new option introduced in 2019 for lower-end PCs running Windows, that only allows users to run Windows Store applications and the Edge browser. Since DONATION is not a Windows Store application, it cannot be run in S Mode.
You can turn off S Mode permanently and change your Windows to a regular Windows 10 Home or Windows 10 Pro version, in order to run regular Windows applications like DONATION. (However, if you do that, you cannot change it back to S Mode again.) Instructions are at https://support.microsoft.com/en-ca/help/4020089/windows-10-in-s-mode-faq. After going to that page, click on "How do I switch out of S mode?" for instructions.
The only version of DONATION that you can run directly on a Macintosh (Mac) computer is the OnDemand version, because it is cloud-based and run through just a small OnDemand client program that is also available for Macs. It will still look like a Windows program when you run it though!
For all other versions, the following information applies.
The answer to whether you can run DONATION on a Mac is "yes and no". First, DONATION is a program designed only for Microsoft Windows, and we do not expect that to change, because the programming language we write it in is not available for the Mac.
However, some newer Macs have Intel processors and allow you to boot up to either the Mac operating system or Windows. In that case, it is just like running on a regular Windows PC.
There are also programs available for your Mac such as Parallels (https://www.parallels.com) that allow it to run Microsoft Windows programs. (You also have to buy and install a copy of Windows to use with Parallels.) We do know of users who have done this successfully. If you try this, be sure to reboot your Mac after the installation of DONATION.
We have to make one thing clear, however, if you do want to try using programs like Parallels to run DONATION. We don't own a Mac, and we have no particular expertise with Macs. Thus, although we can answer the same how-to questions etc. as we would answer for users of DONATION on Windows, if you are using products like Parallels and you have any problems that are specifically related to running it on a Mac, we may not be able to help you with them. Sorry!
No, you can only run it on computers running Microsoft Windows or on a Mac, as described in the previous topic.
Purchasing and License Keys
The evaluation version will work for 60 days after installation, with an option of requesting an extension if there is some good reason that you have not been able to complete your evaluation yet. If your evaluation period expires with no extension or purchase, the program will stop working, but your data will still be there, for when you do pay and receive your license key. The only restriction in the evaluation version is that you can only create sample receipts (that do not get saved back to the database), not real receipts.
Once we receive your payment, we will send you an email acknowledgement, with instructions for requesting your license key which is done from the Licensing and Evaluation window that comes up when you start the program. That sends us an email with your license key request. We will send back the license key, with instructions for installing it, on that Licensing and Evaluation window.
Most often we are asked this when you have to reinstall the program and restore your database backup, either on a new computer, or after your computer has been repaired after a hard disk crash etc. Just request the license key again from the Licensing and Evaluation window that will be coming up when you start the program, and we will send it to you.
Generally this only happens if you have changed the Organization Name in Maintenance ⇒ Organization Info, so that it no longer exactly matches the name we generated the license key for.
You need to look at the email in which we sent you the key (if you still have it), and see what Organization Name we gave it to you for. You can then either change the Organization Name in the program back to that one (at which point your key will work again), or just request an updated key if you want to stick with your modified Organization Name.
Problems Using the Program
This is a known issue when using Gmail, when trying to send email through it from programs like DONATION that it doesn't know about. Version 3.79 and later of DONATION knows how to work around this.
To get it to work with earlier versions of DONATION, you will likely have to do what they call "Allow Less Secure Apps". We have found that setting most recently at the following address:
After making a change at that address, try the Test button in Maintenance ⇒ Email Sending Configuration in the program again to see whether it's working.
For overall assistance with this, please start by carefully reviewing your program's Help topic on "Email Sending Configuration", which you can look up in the Index of the Help, or via the Help button in either of the windows reached from the Help ⇒ Email Sending Configuration menu option in the program.
The most common problem that stops your emails from sending properly is not correctly entering your email password, or re-entering it if you have changed it.
We also have a web page listing the most up-to-date knowledge we have of the settings that work for many common Internet Service Providers who supply email addresses, which you can see here. This is the same information used in the first email configuration window's option for "Determine it from known settings based on your email address", although the web page may be more up to date if we have learned newer information and either we haven't released an update including that information yet, or you haven't upgraded your program recently.
This problem occurred because of a change to the website's security certificate made by our hosting company, that we were not aware of in advance. We wrote to all users about it in October, twice, but we still get reports of it daily as of mid-December 2021.
You can fix this by upgrading your current named version of DONATION by directly downloading it from the DOWNLOAD page on the website, then running that to do the installation. Just install that on top of your existing installation.
If you aren't sure which named version you have, check in the program's Help ⇒ About DONATION menu option.
A very few users have found that after the install, when they restart DONATION, their Donor List comes up empty. If that happens, don't worry, you haven't lost your data! Exiting DONATION and then immediately starting it again may resolve that, with your data showing again. If not, please restart (reboot) your computer and start DONATION, and your data should show again.
Of course, you should always have a good up-to-date database backup, off of your hard drive. With that, you can always recover from virtually anything bad that happens (like your hard drive dying), by restoring that backup!
For any other questions, please use our normal Support resources.