Not that I did not know this already, but QuickBooks is amazingly bad. And amazingly it is even worse for the Mac than it was for Windows.
I wanted to upgrade our old Windows version to the new Mac Pro version. So I bought and installed it. As usual on the Mac, the installation process itself was easy. And then the fun began.
First of all, I tried to import our old QuickBooks company data from a Windows version into the Mac version. This apparently, according to the fine print, is only possible if your copy of QuickBooks is from 2004 or newer.
The option of spending another $200 to buy an upgrade for the Windows version did not seem viable just for the need to import data from their own app into this app. So we found a less than legit version of a newer version of QuickBooks for Windows, installed it on a quarantined virtual machine instance in Virtual PC, imported the data, and then re-exported the data. This worked, allowing us to import QuickBooks data into the Mac version of QuickBooks.
At this point, things looked great and I thought the pain had subsided. But the fun had just begun. I then proceeded to try and enter a payroll item. It seem that the Mac version of QuickBooks does not come with integrated payroll, also found in another fine print item. Instead they bundle it with this really crappy app called Aatrix Top Play. The version that was installed automatically was a demo version, presumably part of the lame QuickBooks demo that comes with the PowerBook.
I find and install a separate version of this payroll app that appparently the QuickBooks installer is not intelligent enough to include automatically. Then I try to launch it. I get an error message. I go to their lame web site and find out that you have to disable File Vault in order to use their application. Their instructions imply that this is normal and acceptable. WTF? This is not a reasonable requirement to installing any app, much less one that I now do not trust. What a horrible piece of coding to not be able to work with one of the more important feature of Mac OS X. Of the more than 200 Mac apps I have installed, this is the first one to fail in this manner.
So my solution… create another user on the machine and install this awful app as that user. What a waste of time and effort. And not really a very cool solution at all. And companies wonder why Open Source software is getting such solid market traction. I thought I was paying to not have problems like this?