What are some alternatives to Microsoft Money?
August 22, 2016 10:49 AM   Subscribe

Microsoft discontinued support for its Microsoft Money software several years ago. I'm still using their Sunset / Deluxe version 17 and I am dreading the day that it will no longer work on future versions of Windows (I barely got it going on Windows 10, so it can't last forever). What are some alternatives to Microsoft Money?

Here are my two biggest requirements:

I know that a common answer will be Mint.com and similar applications, but the problem with those is that they only get transactions by connecting to your bank account and importing them. I need to be able to input things MANUALLY and then balance them later. If I hand write a check (not that we do so very often anymore), I need to know that money's not available, even if it takes two or three weeks to show up as a deduction in my account.

Second, I need to be able to import my entire Microsoft Money history. That software literally has every transaction I've ever made all the way back to 1988, so I don't want to lose all that 28 years of information (in case I need to look up an old transaction, or if I merely want to see my net worth across the span of my education and career).

Thank you!
posted by stst399 to Work & Money (10 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
YNAB. Meets all of your requirements. Web-based, though, which you didn't mention, but I see Windows in the tags.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 10:56 AM on August 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

Quicken and YNAB (and I believe Mint) most definitely accept manual entries. According to my experience and most opinions I've seen, YNAB is about a million times more user-friendly than Quicken unless you have unusual needs.

Sorry, can't comment on your need to import your history from Microsoft Money.
posted by JimN2TAW at 10:58 AM on August 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

I'd be inclined to build a virtual machine, with an older version of Windows, that you use only to run Money.

Rather than replacing the software, just create a stable but portable environment that's designed to support it. Within reason, you can move that virtual machine around, regardless of what OS the host machine is running. And if you keep the VM from connecting to the network, most of the security concerns about running an unsupported OS/software are mitigated.
posted by toxic at 10:59 AM on August 22, 2016 [4 favorites]

I shifted from Money to "Moneydance". It's a more direct analog to the Money experience than YNAB (this is not a slam on YNAB - just my opinion) and was fairly straightforward to migrate from. And I had data almost as old as yours, dating to the early 90s.
posted by scolbath at 11:00 AM on August 22, 2016

I switched to Quicken after MM was discontinued. On a quick glance, it looks like a MM import feature is built in, and it does offer manual entry.

FWIW I decided to start clean with Quicken, knowing I could refer back to an archived MM file if I needed to, with no regrets.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 11:00 AM on August 22, 2016

I use Mint. While I find its UI clunky, it does accept manual entries.

Can anyone say what makes YNAB superior? I'd be willing to switch, but I'm not sure what makes YNAB a better option.
posted by 26.2 at 11:15 AM on August 22, 2016

Another solution you might want to investigate is to run a virtual machine with an older version of Windows. I use this method to continue using my old accounts software (which only runs on Windows XP). This ran happily under Windows 7 and even transferred over to OSX now I run Macs. Solves the problem entirely. To protect against viruses and any other issues I don't allow the virtual machine access to the Internet so it stays entirely within its bubble.
posted by tillsbury at 1:10 PM on August 22, 2016

26.2 -- I found the content and guidance around YNAB really helpful, and it's more flexible in terms of categories than Mint. Like, infinitely flexible. (Mint might have changed in the past five years or so though.) Also, it's paid, although inexpensive, so there are no ads. It's pretty subjective, though -- if Mint is helping you meet your goals, don't bother switching.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 1:34 PM on August 22, 2016

I've been using Moneydance for a few years now after MS Money stopped being supported. I am happy with it and use it the way you describe.
posted by jkent at 1:50 PM on August 22, 2016

I use AceMoney and it can do exactly what you are asking. In fact, it works very similarly to money. My brother uses YNAB and loves it, but it is not just a money tracking program, it is also a budgeting system. I don't need the budgeting help, just the tracking help.
posted by bove at 2:26 PM on August 22, 2016

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