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QuickBooks Condense Data Utility – Reduce Your Company File Size

QuickBooks Desktop Condense Data Tool

Are you stressed over the performance of your company file due to its size? Well, you no longer need to worry! We understand, QuickBooks Company File is amongst one of the vital parts of the QB applications as it contains all the relevant data of your organization. However, company files that are 5-10 years older or more face issues owing to their enormous size.

However, with QuickBooks Desktop 2023, you can now reduce the overall size of your file and still keep all your data secure by using the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility. The updated features of the QuickBooks condense repair tool provide the option of removing the audit trail that, reduces your file size leaving all the detailed transactions. You might be wondering how to condense QuickBooks file? To help you with that, we have provided you with all the related aspects of the QuickBooks condense tool in this blog ahead.

QuickBooks condense data utility allows you to shrink or compress the size of a large company file, which affects the normal functionality of your QuickBooks application. It helps you by saving an archival copy of your company file. Besides, it also removes and summarizes the old closed transactions. It can help you to import your Company File from Desktop to the Online version of QuickBooks. However, the advantages aren’t restricted to these, there are several other benefits as well. Before you proceed with the condensing process, there are several facts related to the condense data utility that you must be aware of. We have covered all such factors in the next section of this blog.

What are the errors that you can face while using QuickBooks Condense Repair Tool?

Before you dive deep into the process of using the QuickBooks Condense Repair Tool, let us first look at some of the error codes that you may experience while using the condense data Tool.

  • The transactions of your server will go on hold, and funds will not get deposited.
  • The process of condensing QuickBooks files might freeze while minimizing the file size.
  • The transactions that are held up in the form of Funds will not get deposited in the process of condensing the QB company file.

So these were some of the QuickBooks Condense Data Errors that you might face. Now let us move on to the next part and learn more about the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility tool.

It’s essential for you to stay assured that condensing is amongst one of the favorable options when it comes to your company file. Taking all this into consideration, below we have listed several facts related to the QuickBooks File Condense Utility that will help you get a clear picture of the functionality of this tool:  

Irreversible Process:

  • The size of your company file might be large.
  • You might be near a list limit.
  • When you have upgraded all your hardware.

May Or May not be Affected by the Size of your Company File:

When Compress a Company File in QuickBooks reduces file size, it’s mainly because it removes transaction detail and lists entries. The lists won’t decrease if you are using the inventory items. Thus, only a few transactions may be condensed and the file size won’t change much. It won’t condense open transactions and thus, the file size is not affected.

List of transactions that aren’t removed by QuickBooks File Condense Utility:

  • Unpaid Sales Tax in Pay Sales Tax column (They are open transactions).
  • Undeposited Funds’ payments (If not deposited to a bank account).
  • Bills, bill payment checks, and bill credits (If not linked to each other).
  • Payroll Transactions (If the data is before the last day of the year or unreviewed W2 of an employee).
  • Invoices, payments, credit memos, and refund checks (If not linked to each other).
  • Estimates of invoices (Non-posting entries can’t be condensed into posting transactions).
  • Transactions linked to a non-condensable transaction.

Not meant to repair File Damage:

If you’re thinking of condensing a damaged company file instead of repairing it by using QuickBooks Condense Data Utility, then it might not serve your purpose. In that case, you will have two options:

  • Restore a backup company file
  • Create a new company file.

There are several reports that might be affected due to the condense period. Below we have listed all such reports:

1. Account-based and Item-based Reports:

There won’t be any change in the account-based reports as entries on accounts are not affected due to the condensed process.

  • Profit & Loss (accrual)
  • Balance Sheet (accrual)
  • Statement of Cash Flows (accrual)
  • Trial Balance (accrual)

However, the item-based reports will be blank because all of the item data would be deleted by the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility.

  • Sales and Purchase reports
  • Job Costing reports
  • A/R and A/P Aging reports

2. All Cash Basis Reports:

The cash basis reports will be inaccurate due to condense period. Also, you’ll not find any links from Cash Into Income or from Cash Out to Expenses. For example: If you entered an invoice on February 1 and payment on March 1, it will be shown as linked in the past records. 

3. Reports filtered by Class:

Any transactions summarized by the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility will not have classes assigned. Therefore, if you run a Profit and Loss by Class report it will show all amounts in the unclassified column.

4. Sales Tax Liability Report:

In today’s time, you’ll no longer find invoices with sales tax. A Condensed journal entry has an amount credited to income accounts, but QuickBooks has no way of knowing what part of the income is taxable and which part is non-taxable. Also, the Tax Collected from the invoices that don’t exist is shown as zero.

5. The Sales and Purchase Detail Reports:

These reports draw their data from items on invoices and bills. Since there are no more invoices and bills, there will be no more items, and the reports will be blank with the utilization of QuickBooks Condense Data Utility.

6. The A/R Collections Report:

The A/R Collection Report will show the Condensed journal entries under No Name. The journal entries have entries to A/R that are not linked to closing transactions and are considered as open. The total is zero because all of the invoices in this trivial file are paid.

7. The Audit Trail Report:

As this Tool removes transactions from your company file, the transactions will be removed from the Audit Trail report as well.

8. Reconciliation:

  • The opening balance for your next reconciliation will be correct because Condensed journal entries are cleared transactions.
  • Your checks and deposits no longer exist, which means that your reconciliation reports are either or gone.
  • The statement date might not be shown correctly as the reconciliation gets deleted after you condense the company file.

Note: To keep your reports secure, you can create a backup of the Company File before condensing your company file using the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility. If due to any reason, you ever need to view the data from both the post-condensed company file and archival backup file, just merge their data in another program.

Steps to Preserve Your Reports Before Condensing Data in QuickBooks

One must know that the original reports are preserved in the backup and archive copy, and in any other backups that you created. If you’re confused about what an archive copy is, well, it is a regular QuickBooks company file used to view historical data that is not included in your Condensed file. QuickBooks will display Archive Copy [date the archive was created] of [company file name] in the title bar while the file is open.

You can also automate the process of QuickBooks data backup by scheduling the backup. And if you face issues with that, refer to our blog regarding QuickBooks Scheduled Backup Not Working.

Make sure to reconcile all accounts, print all reconciliation and discrepancy reports, or save these reports in PDF format, and backup your Company file before you run the Condense data utility. However, if you want to compare the performance of your company from last year, you may follow the below-given steps:

  • Firstly, you have to export the current data from your company file.
  • Then, open the Archive Copy and export the historical data.
  • Lastly, you have to combine the historical data and current data in another program.

How Does Condense Data Utility Condense the Data In QuickBooks?

Being a QuickBooks Desktop 2019 user, you no longer need to worry about the performance of your company file due to its large size. It gives you a feature of file condensing using which you can reduce your file’s overall size by keeping all your data secure. When compared to the previous condense feature which only removes transaction detail and creates a consolidated journal entry for data prior to the selected date, the updated utility provides an option to remove the audit trail which reduces your file size leaving all your transactions as it was. No doubt, it is a much faster method than the standard File Condense. You can access the data file optimization just like the traditional Condense File feature.

  • Navigate to the File menu and select Utilities. From there, select the Condense Data option.
  • After that, click on the option “Keep all transactions but remove audit trail info to date. Your file size will be reduced by about 40% (18 MB)” from the given options and then, click on Next
Condense Company file for QB 2019 and later versions
Choose How you want to Condense Your Company File?
  • It will pop up working on your file. Once completed, a window opens advising you of the total reduction in your file size as well as the location of the backup prior to the file optimization.

Before you begin to start condensing your company file (QuickBooks Desktop Premier and Enterprise 2018 and older version) using the QuickBooks Condense Data File Utility, make sure to follow the below-listed steps to back up the transactions that will not be covered in the condensation of the file. You can try to save or print them through the link that will be given in the report. Further, you may follow the below-given steps to condense your company file:

First Run the Reports:

  • Firstly, navigate to the File menu and select Utilities. From there, select the condense Data option.
  • In the first window of the wizard, select Transactions before a specific date then enter the appropriate date.
  • Make sure to mark the checkbox labeled: Optional: Create a report showing which transactions cannot be removed.
  • Then, click Next and choose Summarize inventory transactions (recommended).
  • Further, you need to select how your inventory will be Condensed and click Next.
  • Choose the transaction groups you wish to remove and then, click Next.
  • Click on Begin Condense. QuickBooks won’t begin condensing as of now but only runs the report.

After you have run the report, you need to prepare your company file for condensing the company file by following the below-listed steps:

  1. Remove your data file Closing Date. You cannot Condense data for periods after the closing date.
    • Firstly, go to the Edit menu and select Preferences.
    • Now, select Accounting and go to the Company Preferences tab.
    • Further, you have to select the Set/Date Password option in the Closing Date area.
    • Lastly, delete the data in the Closing Date box and click OK.
  2. Moving ahead, you need to run the Profit and Loss and Balance Sheet (accrual basis, all dates, by year) to find transactions that you entered before your company starting date. If due for any reason, these transactions aren’t edited to a specific date, then, you won’t be able to fix them after the Condense.
  3. Make sure to re-sort lists.
  4. To ensure that there is no data damage, you have to run the Rebuild and Verify Data utility.
  5. At last, copy your company file and back it up. Once done, save it to a secure location.

After that, you have to print or save the following data as PDF’s to compare them with the condensed data and check if all your data is still intact:

  • Accrual-based Profit & Loss for all dates
  • Accrual-based Balance Sheet for all dates
  • Statement of Cash Flows
  • A/R and A/P Aging Detail for all dates, as of the report date
  • Any other reports that you, your accountant, or recommend

Now, you’re all set to use the Compress a Company File in QuickBooks Desktop. However, one must know that the condensing time may vary depending on the size of your company file and the system performance. Therefore, you’re advised to shut all the background applications to make the condensing process faster. Moreover, if you’re trying to access the company file through a network, then we recommend you to run this tool on the computer that is holding your file. However, if stored on a server, copy the file on a workstation before Condensing.

Follow the Below Mentioned Steps to Run the QB Condense Data Utility

  • Navigate to the File menu and then select Utilities. From there, click on Condense Data.
  • Go through the wizard and select the options that you require.
  • Lastly, click on Begin Condense
TransactionsUnused List Entries
Uncleared (unreconciled) bank and credit card transactions.
Transactions marked “To be printed”.
Invoices and Estimates marked “To be sent”.
ALL Estimates, Sales Orders, Purchase Order, and Pending Invoices.
ALL Time and Mileage activities.
Transactions containing unbilled expenses and items
Customers and Jobs.
Other Names.
To-Do notes.
list of transactions and list entries you will be asked to choose to remove

What is a Period Copy and How to Create One?

A period copy is a Condensed version of your company file that only contains data for a specific time period. It is only available in Premier Accountant and QuickBooks Enterprise versions. Follow the below-given steps to create a period copy using the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility:

  • Firstly, you have to go to the File menu and select Utilities. From there, click on Condense Data.
  • Select Transactions outside of a date range from the What transactions do you want to remove Window.
  • Make sure to set the correct dates for the Remove transactions before and after filter.
  • Go through the wizard and select the options that you require.

Note: One needs to know that the transactions and list entries that will be removed when a period copy is created will be the same as when you created an ordinary Condensed file.

On the basis of the last day of the month, QuickBooks will combine multiple transactions into journal entries. The data of these Condensed journal entries will no longer be sourced because there is no account present on the first line of the entry. However, you must know that you won’t be able to edit or delete Condensed journal entries.

If you want to compress a large QB file in QuickBooks for Mac, then, make sure to close all the QuickBooks windows and follow the below-given steps:

  • Open QB Desktop for Mac and then go to the File menu.
  • Then, select Utilities and choose the Condense Data option.
  • Lastly, create a backup and click OK.

Note: If you want to track inventory, then we would suggest you select the last day of the month. This won’t affect the average cost for items.

After completing the condensing process of your company file using the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility, you need to make sure that the before and after condense data reports match.

  • Try to run the below-listed reports. You may also print or save the following reports as PDF:
    1. Accrual-based Profit & Loss for all dates.
    2. Accrual-based Balance Sheet for all dates.
    3. Statement of Cash Flows
  • Further, you need to compare the after reports to the ones that you saved before running the QuickBooks Condense Data Utility. It’s crucial for these reports to be identical to the pre-Condense Data reports since they are accrual-based summary reports. Follow the below-given steps if you come across any discrepancies:
    1. Note down the transactions that are creating the differences.
    2. After that, you have to restore the backup of your company file.

We hope the information provided in this blog would have helped you get aware of all the facts associated with QuickBooks condense data utility. However, if any query persists regarding the functioning and usage of this tool, we would recommend you to give us a call on our QuickBooks Data Service Solutions Helpline Number +1(855)-955)-1942. Our experts will help you resolve all such issues at the earliest.


1. What is the QuickBooks data condense?

The QuickBooks condensed data file process typically means creating a copy of your QB data file and then saving it somewhere, and then creating a scaled-down and smaller or condensed-size version of your working company file.

2. How long does it take to condense the company file data on QuickBooks desktop?

The time taken by the QuickBooks Desktop Condense Data Utility tool to condense you data depends upon the size of your company file. If your file has grown to a large size, it will require more time to condense than usual.

3. What are the transactions in QuickBooks that are free from getting condensed?

Some of the transactions that are free from getting condensed using the QuickBooks Condense Data Tool are:

1. Payments that are recorded under the Undeposited funds basis.
2. The payroll transactions of an employee whose account is not marked by an employee’s W2.
3. The estimates of the invoices that are created by the users having admin access.

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