Can I split my quicken data into two (by account) and be able to switch between them?

In particular, can I switch between the two in the mobile app and the web app?

Prompted by a discussion in another question, I'd like to split my tax deferred accounts (non-Roth IRAs, 401(k)) out into a separate file. Transfers between them and "normal" accounts just aren't handled right in Quicken Mac (apparently QWin can handle this) because they aren't just moving money, they have tax consequences. Transfers between would be recorded as offsetting "income" and "expense" on both sides.

And, of course, I want to retain history for both.

That seems like it would be doable. The question is can I easily switch back and forth between the two in all three apps?


  • Quicken Anja
    Quicken Anja Moderator mod
    Hello @urbanian,

    Thank you for reaching out to the Community with your question.

    The short answer would be yes, it is possible. However, this will require some work as there is not a quick one-step way to do so.

    Please, follow the steps below--
    1. Got to File
    2. export
    3. Quicken Windows Transfer File (QXF)... (yes, even if you are on Mac)
    4. Save the exported file somewhere you can easily locate it (i.e.: DeskTop)
    5. Go back to File
    6. New...
    7. Start from Scratch
    8. Follow the prompts until it takes you to the new and empty data file
    9. Close the Add Checking Account pop-up
    10. Back to File
    11. Import
    12. Quicken Windows Transfer File (QDF, QXF)...
    13. Select the .QXF file you previously exported
    14. Click Ok once you receive the message saying that the import was successful
    Once that is done, you should see that all your banking accounts (Checking, savings, money markets, credit cards, etc)were added to this new data file. The investment accounts will remain in your original file and not be imported to the new file as these account types do not export nor import.

    Here are steps in case you would like to rename the new file from the name Quicken will auto-assign to it--
    1. File
    2. Rename
    From there you can switch back to your original file by following the steps below and then delete the banking accounts from it--
    1. File
    2. Open Recent
    3. Select the original data file name
    4. Click Open
    Let us know how it goes or if you have any additional questions!

    Quicken Anja

    -Quicken Anja
  • urbanian
    urbanian Member ✭✭
    Thanks for the reply!

    This would retain all of the history (back to about '03) for checking, credit cards, etc?

    From the above, I conclude that yes, it is possible to have two separate Quicken files and switch back and forth between them. But after your procedure, do those local files sync to separate web and mobile app accounts? I guess I'm not as concerned about the retirement accounts other than desktop, so maybe that's not such a big issue.

    It may be simplest to just copy the file and treat the two as separate and see what happens.
  • Quicken Anja
    Quicken Anja Moderator mod
    edited May 2020
    Hello @urbanian,

    Thank you for your response, and I apologize for the delay.

    For your first question, yes, it should retain all history as reflected in your original file. Once the import completes, I recommend reviewing the balances for each account in the new file and then comparing it to the original file to verify that it was accurately and successfully imported. Let me know if you find any discrepancies. I may be able to help if anything specific is noticed.

    As for your 2nd question, after the process has completed, yes they do create separate cloud accounts. They will both will also be accessible through the Mobile and Web companion apps as well. Let me know if you need instructions for either or both apps and I'll be happy to provide that information to you as well.

    Definitely feel free to reach out again if you have any further questions or if I need to clarify anything!

    -Quicken Anja

    -Quicken Anja
  • urbanian
    urbanian Member ✭✭
    HI, Quicken Anja, I finally got around to trying this.

    I followed your instructions, and it all seemed to work pretty well. Except:

    (1) In the "new" file, all of the transactions seemed to be there (even in the investment accounts, but all of the cleared/reconciled information for bank accounts (some of which don't believe in Quicken, small bank), meaning that would all need to be re-reconciled. (For over a decade of transactions.)
    (2) I couldn't find the original, unchanged file. I suppose I might have accepted the default name for the new file, and that overwrote the original file, but I didn't get any alert that I was doing something stupid.

    Anyway, I restored from the backup I made before starting the process, and I seem to be back where I should have been.

    But then, I tried the simple approach of making a copy of my data file under a new name. I didn't play with it much, but it sure seems that I ought to be able to delete the appropriate accounts from each file and get what I wanted: Retirements in one file, non-retirements in the other. Yes. I'd want to change the online file name for one so I could see both in mobile.

    Is there some reason this would be a Really Bad Idea?
  • urbanian
    urbanian Member ✭✭
    So, let's say, for the sake of argument, I just made a copy of my Quicken 2020 (mac) file in Library/Application Support/Quicken/Documents.

    Can I make the two sync to separate Cloud Accounts?
  • Quicken Anja
    Quicken Anja Moderator mod
    Hello @urbanian,

    I apologize for my delayed response as I seem to have missed your first response!

    In regards to your first response, you may have already figured this out, but I wanted to still respond to it just in case-- Yes, you can make a copy of your original file from within Finder and remove accounts from each file, without harming either one of them.

    Also, you can rename the cloud account name for each/either data file by following the steps below.
    1. Go to the Quicken tab
    2. Preferences...
    3. Connected Services
    4. See All Cloud Accounts
    5. Select the cloud account you want to modify its name for (the data file that is in use will be bolded)
    6. Click the pencil icon to edit
    Keep in mind that when changing a cloud account name (and/or vice versa a data file name), you will need to also rename the data file name. The data file and cloud account names should always match identically to avoid any sync issues. These issues may not always occur right away and can build up over time for the simple fact that the names don't match. Follow the steps below to rename a data file.
    1. Go to File 
    2. Rename...
    As for your second question, each data file will always sync separately to their own cloud account as each data file also always creates its own cloud account, regardless of whether the data file was copied from a pre-existing data file or created separately. 

    I hope this helps!
    -Quicken Anja
  • urbanian
    urbanian Member ✭✭
    Here's why I'm confused. (Using Mac Quicken Deluxe 2020 5.16.1)

    Names below changed to protect the innocent.

    I have a data file called Our Finances.

    I quit Quicken, then in Finder I duplicate the Our Finances file and rename to New Finances.

    I start up Quicken, which opens My Finances. As a check I navigate to Connected Services I notice that the Cloud Account Nickname matches Our Finances. When I click "See All Cloud Accounts" I see Cloud Account Name is My Finances, but File Name is something different probably from when I renamed the file some months back because it's really "Our" finances, not just mine. So the cloud account name makes sense, but the file name listed is wrong.

    So I leave the cloud account name alone, since it reflects the real file name.

    So now I open New Finances, and notice that (1) The header at the top of the page still says "Our Finances." I go to Connected Services and it still says "Our Finances" for the Nickname. "See All Cloud Accounts" shows Our Finances as cloud account name and "My Finances as the file name, just as before.

    I click the pencil and change "Our Finances" to "New Finances." Closing the Connected Services dialog, I see that the header at the top of the page says "New Finances." So that seems right.

    Now I go back to the "Our Finances" file. The Cloud Account name now is "New Finances." In other words the original file is now using the nickname that I changed in the other file. And "See All Cloud Accounts" only shows the new name.

    And the mobile app only shows the Cloud Account nickname.

    Long story short, Quicken seems to be quite insistent that these two files are somehow the same file, and a change of cloud account in one changes the other.

    What am I doing wrong?
  • urbanian
    urbanian Member ✭✭
    OK, after some further experimentation.

    The procedure you gave at the beginning, when I retried it, worked fine, including the cleared/reconciled flags that didn't work the first time. An all of my mutual fund accounts seem to have transferred. Is there some other kind of investment account that wouldn't transfer?

    And yes, they do successfully sync to two different cloud files. So good.

    The one thing I find strange, and could possibly be the cause of the disaster the first time I tried this: Quicken gives you no opportunity to specify the name of the actual file when creating a new file. In this case it just tacked a "2" onto the end. And once it think's that's the file name, that's the name it uses in the connected services dialog, regardless of the actual (changed) file name.

    So, my conclusions:

    (1) The original procedure worked. But the "file name" in the Connected Services dialog isn't actually the file name, and that leads to confusion, and may have contributed to things not working.

    (2) Probably because of (1), no, you can't just rename the file and end up with two cloud files. Oh, and I just realized that the .quicken file isn't actually a file, but a directory. As a mostly Linux user, that confuses me somtimes.
This discussion has been closed.