Convert Quicken Windows to Quicken Mac without sending my data file to the cloud

raustin316 Member ✭✭
When converting my windows data to mac, I am prompted to upload my .qdf to the quicken cloud for conversion. I would prefer that my financial data not leave my computer. Is there a way to convert without using the cloud? The article on says that quicken mac will download a converter to the mac and it will be converted locally but that is not what actually happens when I attempt it.


  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    No, there is no other way to convert your data. There was originally a local converter program, but  that converter code is a 32-bit program which macOS advanced to require only 64-bit programs, it created a dead-end. The cloud converter was the solution.

    While I understand your security concerns, your data is uploaded to a cloud converter, and once the intermediate data is downloaded back to your Mac for import into Quicken Mac, the data on the cloud converter is immediately deleted. Your data is not retained on the server, so there's really not much of a risk unless you think that (a) someone is intercepting the data going to or from your Mac or that (b) Quicken is lying and secretly retaining everyone's data.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited April 5
    Since the "converter" is actually hacked version of Quicken Windows that just exports the data file using the QXF format, I wonder what would happen if one was using the latest Quicken Windows Subscription and just exported a QXF file and then imported that into Quicken Mac.

    The big unknown here is if they have kept the current Quicken Windows Subscription updated for the QXF export, or if they have just maintained the "converter" as a separate branch or such.

    Note originally the process was to export using Quicken Windows QXF export, but they changed the process because first off, the person might not have Windows machine anymore and second the part about the Quicken Windows not being properly kept up to date.  You got to love that.  Quicken Inc is a small company and still the two groups hardly work with one another for a common feature.

    EDIT I should point out, that I definitely feel that the best practice is to use the online converter.  It is the recommended process, and there is no telling about the state of the Quicken Windows QXF export.
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website:
  • raustin316
    raustin316 Member ✭✭
    edited April 16
    @jacobs While I appreciate your response, I think that you downplay the risks which are inherent in letting your data file into the internet. You should not mislead Quicken users that there are "minimal" risks to using cloud service. The news is full of stories where employees have misused company data, bad actors have attacked company servers making off with terabytes of user data. No, the risk is very real and you truly don't know what company will be hit or when it will happen. Bottom line, I feel Quicken should make this a local process to minimize privacy and security risks.

    @Chris_CPW thanks for your solution. I investigated that further and unfortunately the QXF export only works with banking accounts and therefore would not export the entire file. For me I will not be using the online converter. I just think cloud anything is high risk for privacy and security.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    edited April 16
    @raustin316 You're certainly entitled to your opinions. But I don't believe I'm misleading anyone by saying there is a minimal risk to using the Quicken converter. Minimal risk does not equal no risk, but I believe the risk is extremely low.

    Tens of thousands of people have used Quicken's cloud-based file converters for Quicken Mac 2007-to-modern Quicken Mac and Quicken Windows-to-Quicken Mac. There have never been reported problems nor data breaches. Does that insure that it could never happen? No. Is it extremely unlikely? Yes. If you are not comfortable with having your data live on a Quicken server for a minute or two — the time it takes to run the data extraction — then you will need to find another path for managing your personal finances. (Note that this is different than using Quicken Cloud, where much of your data resides permanently on Quicken's servers. While there have never been any data breaches with that service, I do believe there is definitely a difference in risk there versus the converter, where your file is uploaded, converted, and deleted within seconds.)

    As for saying they should make the converter run locally, you're ignoring the technical reason the cloud converters exist. The conversion uses a 32-bit program which simply cannot run on the current macOS. Could Quicken invest thousands of programming hours to develop an entirely new, modern converter from scratch? Yes, I suppose they could. But they won't. There's simply no economic benefit to them to do so. If they lose a few customers who simply refuse to use the existing converter, that's a far smaller loss than the enormous cost of developing an entirely new converter process. 

    If you are resolute in not using the converter, the only option I can think of for you is to spend time and money to install virtual machine software on your Mac, install Quicken Windows in the virtual machine, and continue to run Quicken Windows going forward. Or look to see if you can find a different personal finance program which meets all your needs as well as Quicken, while keeping your data local at all times. Best wishes. 
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
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