Learn How To Create And Restore A QuickBooks Portable Company File

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If you’re a long-time user of QuickBooks Desktop, you were likely reminded to back up your company file – either through the logoff process, or encounters with QuickBooks Support. There’s a chance your company has used the same file over a sustained period; we’ll say a year or two. With that, your file would be considerably sizable. Granted, there are multiple storage solutions to archive your backup files – flash drives are popular for their price to storage ratio. What if you’re in a situation where that isn’t a possibility? Enter the QuickBooks portable company file.

What Makes a Portable File Useful for Users of QuickBooks Desktop? 


The strengths of a portable company file are significant reduction in size, without time spent the verification process; and re-indexing file data, which made it one of my go-to maneuvers when I addressed data integrity as a previous member of QuickBooks Support.

If you were to tackle data integrity, in textbook fashion, it would be in this order:

  1. Rebuild the company file.
  2. Verify File Data
  3. Manually address errors found in the Verify Log
  4. Create and restore a portable company file, if all else fails.
  5. Restore the most recent backup of the company file.

A portable company file’s reduction ratio gives you the opportunity to email a copy of your file, attachment size limitations notwithstanding. Or, if you need something fast while your flash drive is packed with content you can’t delete immediately.

Is There a Catch in Creating a Portable File in QuickBooks?

There are considerations you need to account for, when going this in this direction. It contains only your financial data, meaning it won’t contain the following:

It also doesn’t contain the Transaction Log (.TLG) File. This file, though often a thorn in the side of company file performance, is helpful in certain data restoration efforts – since it is used to help restore transaction data, through a specific process.

What are the User Security Implications in a Portable File?

Only the QuickBooks Administrator or an External Accountant user can send a portable file. If you end up having to create and restore a portable file, then you need to asses, or re-assess who would have access to such users, other than yourself.

Is It Easy to Create a QuickBooks Portable Company File?

Creating a portable company file takes only three steps:

  1. Click “File,” from the top menu.
  2. Bring your mouse cursor to “Send Company File.”
  3. Click “Portable Company File.”

You will get a popup where you can change the location where the portable file will be saved and stored. You won’t have the option of changing its name; QuickBooks’ naming convention is such it will clearly label the file as a portable file.

What Do I Need to Know When I Restore a Portable File?

Exercise Discretion in Where Your Restored File is Saved.

You don’t want to overwrite your working file, unless that’s the intention. But, it’s best practice to restore the file, then verify the information and data integrity of the restored file.

Is Restoring a Portable (.QBM) File Different From Restoring a QuickBooks (.QBB) Backup File?

Unlike restoring a backup file through the various locations in the menu tree, there are specific ways to restore a portable file. If you’re in a QuickBooks Desktop Company File already, just take these steps:

  1. Click on “File,” from the top menu.
  2. Click on “Open or Restore Company.”
  3. When the popup appears, click on “Restore a portable file.”
  4. Click “Next.”
  5. A popup will appear to “Open Portable Company File.”
  6. Locate where your portable file is, if the immediately shown location doesn’t have the file you need to restore.
  7. Once you find it, click “Open.”
  8. Another popup will appear, asking where you want the restored file to be saved.
  9. Click “Next.”
  10. Navigate where you want it saved.
  11. If you desire to save it in the same space as the last working file, be sure to name it differently to avoid inexplicable overwrites.
  12. Click “Save.”

If QuickBooks Desktop just launched, take these steps to restore your portable file:

  1. In the “No Company Open” Window, click “Open or restore an existing company.”
  2. Like the earlier process, click “Restore a portable file.”
  3. Click “Next.”
  4. Once this occurs, you will repeat steps 5 – 12 in the previous example.

You’ll see the restoration process in effect. Depending on how big your file is, the time to restore will vary. If you have an administrator password in place (highly recommended), you’ll need to enter it for the restoration to complete. Once you get the congratulatory popup, and click “OK,” your workspace will be restored.

In Data Damage Situations, Why Wouldn’t I Want to Restore a QuickBooks Backup File First?

Restoring a known good backup company file is an easy step to take, whenever it runs into issues with data integrity. The main factor, in my experience, is time spent. This is something you and your company must weigh, when taking certain measures to resolve them. Which of the following will be more time consuming and less productive?

  • Restore a known good back up, and re-enter transactions missing from the most recent backup point.
  • Rebuild your company file, then verify it after it’s rebuilt and re-opened.
  • A series of manual measures: re-sorting QuickBooks lists; date toggling transactions deemed damaged; delete and recreate transactions; etc.
  • Create and Restore a Portable Company File.
  • Send your Company File for Data Recovery, re-entering missing transactions – once the file is returned to you.

Many of these listed considerations, as well as those unlisted, depend on the amount of damage done to the data file. If you can personally determine this, that’s wonderful. If, however, you’re still uncomfortable approaching the realm of data integrity, reach out to our ProAdvisors; they’ll be more than happy to dive into what’s causing the data to be in such bad shape, then provide options to resolve it.

What If My Only Option is Restoring a Portable Company File in QuickBooks Desktop?

Key Points For Creating or Restoring a Portable File

For starters, like a backup file, it’s safest to create or restore it onto a Solid-State Drive (SSD) or traditional Hard Drive (HD). If you need to take that file to a flash drive, wait for it to finish creating the file. Once it’s done, copy or move the file to the flash drive. Despite having laid out what a portable file didn’t include once it was made, not all is lost; you can restore missing items for Loan Manager, Fixed Asset Manager, and Statement Writer by knowing where they’re located. We will provide a follow up blog on how to do this in more detail.

Summing Up

Creating a Portable File in QuickBooks Desktop can be a lifesaver during certain circumstances – fitting a copy of your company file into an extremely small space being the typical reason. The other reasons involve troubleshooting data damage affecting your ability to stay in your file reliably, or even start using it. Keep your eyes peeled for our next entry on how to get back items not having been brought over during the portable file process. If you need more clarity on this or assistance with making or restoring a portable file; or you’re having troubles with data file integrity, let us know!

How to Create and Open Portable Company File in QuickBooks Desktop?

QuickBooks Portable Company File contains the compact version of your accounting data, to transfer files to other devices through Email, USB, or Hard drive. With the little effort, you can easily create the portable files for QuickBooks, transfer it to other devices and open or restore it quickly.

QuickBooks is one of the dominating account software which is available globally. The program is used widely for tracking money inflow and outflow, payroll functions, paying bills, and manages business payments. Contact QuickBooks Support Number.


QuickBooks Portable Company File

  1. Portable Company Filesis a compact version of your accounting data.
  2. The compact size makes it easy to transfer the portable files via Email, USB drive, or hard drive.
  3. The portable files will have an extension- .qbm; hence your data will appear like this- (qbm)
  4. These files do not contain your company logo, pictures, or templates.
  5. Portable document doesn’t contain .log or .tlg file.
  6. It also doesn’t include a fixed assets file manager and load manager.
  7. Additionally, restoring the portable files helps in debug various errors in your data, as QuickBooks re-indexes the data automatically.

Note 1: Every time you open the QuickBooks to create and restore/open the portable company file, you will have to login as an admin,

Note 2:  You should know that if you provide access to portable files to any other person, then by default, he can reach all the QuickBooks files or add/delete the transactions although Password will be required to access files.

How to Create Portable Company File in QuickBooks?

Before creating the files, the first step should be to update QuickBooks to the latest version. With every new update, the company provides the solution to fix the bugs in the previous version.

You can also check for the new release at QuickBooks desktop. After Hitting F2 on the keyboard, the product information windows will appear, and from there, you can check for the current QB version and latest release (if any). Make sure to check once in a month.

Step 1: Update QuickBooks Software

  1. Open the QuickBooks program and select the “Help” tab.
  2. Now choose “Update QuickBooks Desktop”.
  3. Now select the tab “Update Now”, further you can choose “Reset Update” to clear all the previous updates.
  4. And click “Get Updates”, now wait for QuickBooks to finish downloading and installation.
  5. Restart your QuickBooks to save the new program.

Automatic Update- You can also set your QuickBooks to download the latest software automatically.

  1. Follow the same process as and click the “Options” tab adjacent to Updatenow.
  2. And select the dots to “Yes” against the “Automatic Update” and “Shared Download”.

Step 2: Create a Backup File

To create a Backup of Portable Company files, follow these simple steps.

  1. Open your QuickBooks software
  2. Click “Files” > “Switch to the single user.
  3. Again click “Files” > “Create Local Backup” (Under Backup Company)
  4. After that, click “Local Backup” > “Next” > “Browse” and then navigate to the locations to save your backup file.
  5. Finally, the system will check the files, and then you will have click “Ok” > “Save it now” > “Next”.

Step 3: Create a Portable Company File

After creating a backup and updating your QuickBooks software to the latest version, you are all set to develop the compact company file. Follow the steps to complete this process.

  1. Firstly you need to open QuickBooks software on your desktop.
  2. Further, you need to log in as an Admin with a single-user mode.
  3. Start with a click on the “File” option from the top-left corner in QuickBooks windows.
  4. Now from the drop-down list, select the tab “Create Copy”.
  5. Now choose the “Portable Company files” option in a “save a copy or backup”pop up window.
  6. Click “Next” to proceed further.
  7. Now navigate the location (preferably desktop) to save your file, and provide a unique file name. Remember to allot different names to portable files and regular files.
  8. Now you need to click “Save”.
  9. Finally, you will have click “Ok” and close the window.
  10. Now check the location where you have saved the file. It should look like – qbm

Step 4: Open or Restore Portable Company File

To restore or open the Portable files, you will have to access QuickBooks software and login as an admin.

  1. Now select the “Files” menu.
  2. After that, choose “Open or Restore Company” from the drop-down list.
  3. A new window open or restore company will appear, choose “Restore a Portable File”.
  4. To proceed further, click “Next”.
  5. Now locate the place where you have saved the portable file.
  6. Now select the file you want to work upon and click “Open” > “next”.
  7. Now again, navigate to the location to restore your file and click “Save”.
  8. Finally, you have to click “Ok” to launch the file,

Bonus Tips for QuickBooks Portable Company File

  1. It would be best if you give different names to the original data file and portable files; otherwise, the copied version will overwrite the original one.
  2. Always use an account copy while providing the company files to your accountant.
  3. Consider creating a backup company file before troubleshooting, to prevent any data loss due to some unprecedented error.


Hopefully, this document might help you to create and open the QuickBooks Portable Company File. The method will provide you a comfortable approach to access files to other devices. Before creating the file, you should update your QuickBooks software and have a backup as well. Further, you can move towards the next processes. If you are finding it difficult or have some other query, then you can contact the QuickBooks Support Number.

Backup File? Portable File? What’s the Difference?

You can save and restore your QuickBooks company file using either of them, but each has a specific purpose and set of procedures.

Your QuickBooks company file is gold. It may be the most critical file that your company maintains. So clean, frequent backups are absolutely essential.

It’s also necessary to occasionally move that file to another computer, like when you’re switching to a new PC or laptop.

QuickBooks offers two separate but similar tools to facilitate both processes, as a QuickBooks training course will tell you. You should learn to use both at the appropriate times.

Saving Your Data – And Your Bacon

Companies that lose entire accounting data files have been known to go out of business. It’s that serious. At the very least, you’ll lose an enormous amount of time trying to reconstruct your financial framework from paper documents. In the meantime, you’re making your employees, customers and vendors very unhappy.

So if you’re not in the habit of backing up, the beginning of a new year is a great place to start. QuickBooks classes walk you through the entire process, but here’s an overview.

Click File | Back Up Company | Create Local Backup. A window will open, asking if you want to save your file locally or online. Click Local Backup, then the Options button. You’ll see something like this:

QuickBooks training courses go over this window’s contents carefully; you’ll need to indicate your preferences for local backups.

Smaller, But Efficient

Portable files are more compact than backups, and they don’t contain letters, logos, images or templates. You can email or simply save a portable file if you want to, for example, send it through email.

The process for creating one is slightly different from the backup procedures, and it varies depending on your version. For QuickBooks 2011 and later, start by clicking File | Create Copy, then selecting Portable company file and Next. The Save Portable Company File opens. Choose the location for saving (the file name is already filled in).

QuickBooks will close and reopen, and you’ll see a message indicating that your portable file has been created. You can email that file or, if you’ve copied it to a flash drive, restore it on another computer. To do the latter, click File | Open or Restore Company | Restore a portable file | Next.

Here again, you’ll choose the location of the portable file and click Open. Click Next in the window that opens and select the desired location for the restored file. QuickBooks then converts the file into a format that can be read, and it will be available in the location you chose.

QuickBooks classes go over these procedures in greater depth, as well as explaining how to set up Intuit’s online backup service. Whichever route you take, be sure you understand the difference between these two critical procedures.

Create Or Restore a QuickBooks Portable Company File

How to Create and Open Portable Company File in QuickBooks Desktop?
QuickBooks Portable Company File provides the compact version of your accounting data, to transfer files to other devices through Email, USB, or disk drive. Utilizing the little effort, it is simple to produce the portable files for QuickBooks, transfer it with other devices and open or restore it quickly.

QuickBooks is just one of the dominating account software that is available globally. The program is employed widely for tracking money inflow and outflow, payroll functions, paying bills, and manages business payments. Contact QuickBooks Support Number.
QuickBooks Portable Company FilePortable Company Filesis a compact version of your accounting data.The compact size makes it simple to transfer the portable files via Email, USB drive, or hard disk drive.The portable files could have an extension- .qbm; hence your computer data will appear similar to this- (qbm)These files try not to contain your company logo, pictures, or templates.Portable document doesn’t contain .log or .tlg file.Moreover it doesn’t include a fixed assets file manager and load manager.

If you want to learn about How To Create Or Restore a QuickBooks Portable Company File then Contact our Proadvisors.
Additionally, restoring the portable files helps in debug various errors in important computer data, as QuickBooks re-indexes the info automatically.Note 1: Every time you open the QuickBooks to create and restore/open the portable company file, you’ll have to login as an admin,
Note 2:  you need to know that in the event that you provide access to portable files to virtually any other person, then by default, he can reach all the QuickBooks files or add/delete the transactions although Password may be needed to access files.

How exactly to Create Portable Company File in QuickBooks?Before creating the files, step one should be to update QuickBooks to your latest version. With every new update, the company gives the way to fix the bugs in the earlier version.
It is possible to search for this new release at QuickBooks desktop. After Hitting F2 in the keyboard, the item information windows will be, and after that, you can check for the current QB version and latest release (if any). Be sure to check once in a month.

How to Create and Restore QuickBooks Portable Company File?

QuickBooks is popular and most widely used accounting software which is mostly used by all-sized businesses. The information derived from it is very important and needs to be auto-saved or a backup should be maintained as the occurrence of any error that can lead to the data loss. But there are instances, unlike planned, where the user does not establish a backup of the files, and data is lost due to some technical error. It’s necessary to restore missing data or QuickBooks files at this crucial moment. We have come with this ultimate guide to help you out how easily you can create or restore a QuickBooks Portable Company file. Let’s start exploring the portable file and further will see its steps to create or restore.Get your accounting work done by experienced accountants. Fix all your accounting software errors & problems. Dial our toll-free number or connect via live chat.Connect via Live Chat

If you are using QuickBooks as a beginner then most likely you may have endless queries that needs an answer. How to restore a portable file in QuickBooks is one such query that people often find themselves confused with. This is why “Ask for Accounting” has come into the picture to provide QuickBooks expert support to anyone in need.

In order to restore a portable company file, we first need to understand what really a portable company file is. Well, it is a compressed file that is very compact in size. It is created so that one can transfer its financial data just over an email.

By compressed company file we mean that it doesn’t include any media, such us logos or images or templates as a part of portable file.

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What is the QuickBooks Portable Company File?

It is a compact copy or replica of the financial data which you send via email or any portable media like flask or external drive. A portable company file does not include letters, templates, logos, images. It also does not comprise any transaction log (*.tlg) file. Basically, it is a proficient and eminent tool that helps you in resolving the data problems because QuickBooks Desktop re-indexes the data while restoring the portable company file.

📣 Few Important Pointers Need to Consider

✅ Before you start troubleshooting, make sure the QuickBooks program is up to date.
✅ In any case, you provide anyone with a copy of a portable copy, they immediately gain full access to the QB, and they can alter or add a transaction, as well as change the Admin password.
✅ When you are about to build or return a portable copy and replica, all versions of QuickBooks need to be signed in as an Administrator.
✅ If you have made an attempt to fix the data problems, and then make sure that when restoring the portable copy, you do not delete the original version.
✅ The best strategy is to rename the original file until the portable company file is restored.
✅ When submitting the company files to the accountant, consider using the accountant’s copy.

Things need to do Before Creating a Portable Company File

Before you start creating the files, there are few things you need to do like check for the latest QuickBooks update. Here’s how:

Update your QuickBooks software

☑ The very first, open your QB program
☑ And then go to the “Help” menu
☑ Choose the option “Update the QuickBooks Desktop”
☑ Next, hit the “Update Now” button
☑ Further, you can select the “Reset Update” option in order to remove the other previous updates
☑ And then hit the “Get Updates” option and wait till the downloading and installation completes
☑ Finally, restart the QuickBooks Desktop to save your new program.

You can also do Automatic Update but to do so you have set the QuickBooks to download the recent updates automatically with the same above steps and then hit the “Options” tab to Update Now. After that, hit “yes” against “Automatic Update” and then “Shared Download”. And that’s all your new QuickBooks updated version is ready to use further.

Create a Backup of Your Company File

It is also as important as updating the latest QuickBooks version. So, it is required to create a backup of the company file.

How to Create a Portable Company File in QuickBooks:

If you are amazed by the very definition of Portable company files as they save lot of your storage space then here is how you can create them:

1️⃣ Initially, launch your QuickBooks software on your system
2️⃣ Next, go to the “File” menu and pick the Create Copy option
3️⃣ Now, select the Portable company file
4️⃣ And then press the Next button to continue
5️⃣ Search the location where you wish to save the portable copy
6️⃣ Provide a file name that should be unique
7️⃣ Also, bear in mind that various names are allocated to portable files and standard files.
8️⃣ And then hit “Save”
9️⃣ Finally, make the last click on “Ok” and then close the window.
🔟 Your file will now be saved with an extension as .QBM

How to Restore a Portable File in QuickBooks:

Follow these steps in the given sequence in order to create a portable company file:

1️⃣ By having QuickBooks logged in, navigate to Files tab again.
2️⃣ A drop down will appear, from the options provided, click on the Open/Restore QB file.
3️⃣ From there choose the Restore a portable QB file and hit next.
4️⃣ A path will open wherein you will need to select the Portable file with .QBM extension.
5️⃣ Choose the file and hit Open.
6️⃣ Choose the path where in you want your portable file to restore and hit next.
7️⃣ Before clicking save, you would be required to rename the company file.
8️⃣ This is required so that the previous changes made shouldn’t overwrite your work in the existing file.
9️⃣ Once everything done, hit Save and your portable company file will be restored with QuickBooks.


The above steps are helpful for you to create or restore a QuickBooks Portable Company file. In any case, you’re unable to create or restore then it might be possible that QuickBooks installation is damaged or your portable file gets damaged. To get such issues resolved, you need to connect with QuickBooks technical support team by dialing a toll-free helpline number. The moment you call you will be directly connected to ProAdvisor who will look into your queries and provide you required assistance. You can drop an email at this email address or do a live chat available all round the clock.

Also Read :: How to Resolve QuickBooks Error Code 6154?

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