Import an IIf file into QuickBooks Desktop


Intuit Interchange Format (IIF) files are used to import data into the accounting program, QuickBooks. They contain information about your company’s chart of accounts, customers, vendors, and other important data. In this blog post, we will walk you through the process of importing a IIF file into QuickBooks. We will also discuss what information is contained in a IIF file and where it goes once it is imported into QuickBooks. Let’s get started!

What is the Purpose of IIF file in QuickBooks Desktop

  • QuickBooks Desktop employs Intuit Interchange Format (IIF) files, which are ASCII text TSV (Tab-Separated Value) files, to import or export lists or transactions. 
  • To handle corporate records in QuickBooks more effectively, these files make it simpler to transmit data to and from various platforms.
  • Because QuickBooks Desktop formats the file for you, importing and exporting IIF files is simple. Though technically challenging, creating iif files from start or modifying data from another programme can be challenging if you’ve never formatted delimited text files before.
  •  If you don’t have a lot of data to import, it’s quicker and simpler to enter the data directly into QuickBooks Desktop.

Read This: QuickBooks IIF Files Import Error Troubleshooting

How can QuickBooks import data?

The following items can also be imported from IIF Files to QuickBooks Desktop/Online: Bank Transactions, General Journal Entries (Import Journal Entries into QuickBooks), etc.

  • “Accountant’s Changes”
  • “Batch Transactions”
  • Various “Lists” including
    • “Chart of Accounts”
    • “Vendor Lists”
    • “Items”
    • “Customer”
  • Several “Transactions” which comprise:
    • “Checks”
    • “Invoices”
    • “Deposits”
    • “Opening Balances”
    • “Purchase Orders”
    • “Customer’s Cash Refund”

An IIF Open File IN QuickBooks Desktop

  • A text editor like Notepad or Microsoft Word can be used to open IIF files. 
  • Just choose “Open With” from the menu when you right-click on the IIF file to accomplish this.
  •  After that, pick the application you wish to use to open the file.

An Information is Contained In An IIF File

An IIF file includes details on the chart of accounts for your business, clients, suppliers, and other crucial information. It is possible to export this data from QuickBooks and then import it into another company file. When transferring data between two different QuickBooks company files, IIF files are frequently used.

Learn How to Import IIF file into QuickBooks

  • Select Utilities, Import, then IIF Files from the File menu.
  • Try for Import IIF.
  • Select OK after finding the file.
  • Importantly, we do not advise selecting Import it for myself. 
  • Later, I’ll fix it. Some of the information may not be accurate or comprehensive for your books because this option skips data review. You must also change to using a single user.
  • When the import is successful, the number of lists and transactions imported will be displayed. Click “Done.”

If Errors are Recognized, the Tool

  • Reveals how many objects were imported successfully or unsuccessfully.
  • Gives a new IIF file containing the failed transactions and an explanation of the faults that were encountered.

Review the IIF Error

QuickBooks gives you the chance to look over and fix any issues found in the.IIF file if you receive the error message “File not imported.”

  • Now click Review.
  • To find out what the file’s issues are, look for ERROR.
  • Fix the mistakes, then save.
  • Select Yes when prompted if you wish to preserve the file type.
  • File Not Imported window should be closed.
  • Introducing the updated IIF file.

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    Note: If File is Unable to Import

    The quantity of items and transactions that were successfully and unsuccessfully imported will be displayed if the import is unsuccessful. For unsuccessful records with error information, QuickBooks creates a new IIF file automatically. Then, you have three choices regarding how to proceed

    • The newly created–IIF is now open for review. Continue to the section below that says “How to review the errors in.IIF.”
    • The new IIF file’s location is revealed when you choose Open in Folder.
    • The Lists and Transactions that weren’t imported are ignored when the window is closed.

    The IIF Import Toolkit

    A reference manual for creating and using IIF import files is the QuickBooks IIF Import Kit. It includes the following elements:-

    • IIF Import Manual: A pdf file that lists recommended procedures and common iif problems.
    • The column heads used to import list data are referred to as IIF headers.
    • Example IIF files a directory containing samples of iif transactions for each version.

    Regarding the Sample Files Included in the IIF Import Kit

    • Sample files for each year’s edition of QuickBooks are located in different subfolders. The product year is crucial to IIF formatting since, for a given year, both QuickBooks Enterprise and Pro/Premier use the same IIF file format.
    • An entire set of transactions are saved in Excel format in each version subfolder. There is one of each type of IIF transaction in this whole import IIF file. an suitably formatted, comprehensive IIF file with a variety of data kinds can be seen in context using an XLS file.
    • Additionally, an IIF file containing lists and account names utilised by the example transactions may be found in each subfolder. Before importing any particular IIF samples, import the file containing the list definition first.
    •  IMPORT THE EXAMPLES NOT INTO YOUR ACTUAL COMPANY FILE. To test and practise importing the sample files, make a fresh, empty company file.

    Limitation of Importing an IIF file Into QuickBooks

    • You must be the only person logged into QuickBooks or later while importing the IIF file, and no one else should be logged in at the same time.
    • There is a limit on the number of list items you can import. To learn more, refer to the maximum amount of list entries.
    • The IIF file import process does not link transactions. After the import, for instance, you still need to link an invoice and an invoice payment.
    • Go to the Receive Payments or Pay Bills window to link transactions. Additionally, you can import and link transactions using third-party apps.
    • Data in the item’s custom fields cannot be imported when assembly items are imported.
    • Price levels that are put up on a per-item basis cannot be exported or imported.
    • Only IIF files can be used to export payroll information from QuickBooks Desktop to Intuit Online Payroll/Intuit Full Service Payroll.
    • IIF files cannot be imported or exported from one country’s QuickBooks version to another country’s QuickBooks. Taking QuickBooks as an example, moving from the US version to the Canadian one.
    • Leading zeros cannot be entered in Microsoft Excel when creating an IIF import file. You can format the column cells as Custom as a workaround.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How do I utilize IIF files in Quickbooks?

    1. Utilities can be found by going to the File menu. 
    2. Choose Import, then choose Import IIF. 
    3. The IIF file you want to import should be selected, then click Open. 
    4. To approve the import, select OK.

    Where do IIF files for import go in QuickBooks?

    1. Open IIF files by selecting File > Utilities > Import. 
    2. Locate your IIF file by browsing to it, then select it.
    3. Click Open. 
    4. Your data has been imported, according to a notice that QuickBooks displays.

    How can I fix a QuickBooks IIF File?

    Follow the steps below to fix it:
    1. File is located on the top menu. Then choose Import, followed by Utilities.
    2. Select IIF Files, then IIF Import.
    3. Tap OK after finding the file.
    4. Now click Review.
    5. To find out what the issue(s) with the file are, look for ERROR.
    6. Fix the mistakes, then save.
    7. Import the new, corrected file after closing the File Not Imported window.

    How to manually import transactions into QuickBooks Desktop?

    Transaction imports steps below:
    1. Import can be found under the File menu.
    2. Choose Transactions, then the type of importable transaction.
    3. Click Export Table Template after going to the Gear menu.
    4. Enter the template’s name and save it.
    5. Open your spreadsheet programme and the template.

    How do I Convert Excel into IIF for QuickBooks?

    1. Go to File > Click on Export > Selected Lists to IIF File > First, select the list you wish to export.
     2. After that, select OK and give the IIF file a name. 
    3. Select the IIF file’s location from the where drop-down menu, then click Save.


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