I do freelance computer work on the side. Right now I'm using Quickbooks 2009 to run this small business. It works fine for just about everything with one exception. It can't track detailed customer information that well. Say for example I need to store details about the computers a customer owns and details about what was done on each service call. The only place I can store such information is in the customer and job notes. Basically this is like typing a list of post-it notes. I guess what I'm looking for a an add-on for Quickbooks, or a separate piece of software or database that will preferably interface with Quickbooks, though that isn' t an absolute must. I've found a few Access databases that have decent setups but nothing tailored to exactly what I need. I'm not that proficient with Access anyway. SQL is probably out as well. The computer I run QB on is about 7 years old and and SQL server would slow it to a crawl (based on my experience with the SQL server on a much newer PC at work.)
Any input on this would be appreciated.
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Try a Google search on "contact software freeware", looking for anything that interfaces with Quickbooks or might allow a conversion from Quickbooks. Here are a couple:
I used to do all this with Access when I ran my video business with the additional duties of production management (tracking where projects were at and when they were scheduled to be done). If your SQL db isn't huge it shouldn't be a problem. I can't be certain though as I had a dedicated file server that was hosting SQL. If I had to do it again I'd probably try to do it with Sharepoint. You'd probably have to be using MS Money or something to get the hooks into MOSS though.FB-DIMM are the real cause of global warming
I checked out a few of those programs and a few others as well. Turns out most of the ones listed as free are really limited shareware or the free versions have been discontinued. I found plenty of open source CRM programs as well but they seem to be designed to run on their own server more efficiently than a home PC. Really kind of overkill for what I'm doing. I may try to find a database for Access that has what I need or put the time in to learning how to make my own Access database for this.
Thanks for the input.
I'm looking into ACT and Goldmine now. I tried vTiger CRM last night. It seemed decent but a lot of work to get running correctly. While initial install went fine, things as simple as configuring email servers required extensive searching through the help forums. I'm not the only one who ran into such issues. The help topics are full of issues similar to mine. It makes me worry that it isn't really ready for a production environment. It also moves very slowly since it works as a web client frontend for an SQL database. I don't think vTiger is the right product for what I'm doing, especially since it's loaded with options I'll never use and the ones I will use, don't work the way I really need them to.