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Sage Peachtree FAQ's

Q: How often should I backup my Sage 50 data and how should I do that?

A: You should backup every day. Even if your entire system is backed up each night on external media, you should still make a separate backup of your Sage 50 data files, as restoring individual files from system backups can sometimes be very difficult. You should always do your backup from within your Peachtree company by selecting File->Backup.

You may backup to your workstation, another computer or externally to a CD, external hard drive or “thumb” drive. Whatever media you select for your backup, you should always know what drive letter (D, E, etc.) is assigned to that drive. You should have separate media for each day of the week. When backing up from within Sage 50 make sure you select the checkbox to “Include company name in the backup file name” this will create a backup file name that includes the company name and date. Starting in the 2010 versions you can automate the backup process.

Q: I want to print a quarterly report for state unemployment that would list my employees, their social security numbers, and taxable gross wages so I can attach it to the unemployment report. Is this possible?

A: Yes. All you have to do is to go to Reports->Payroll->Payroll Tax Report. When the “Modify Report” screen appears, go to the “Sort By” drop down and select “Employee Name.” Then go to the “Tax ID” dropdown and select “AZSUI ER”. Then go to the “Quarter” dropdown and select the proper quarter. Then select “Columns” icon in the upper right hand corner of the screen to select the “Fields” for your report. Once on the “Fields” screen, go to the upper left and select “None.” Now go down the left column that says “Show” and in that column, click on the box to the left of the “Employee Name,” “Social Security Number” and “Taxable Gross.” Now click on “Social Security Number” and to the right click on “Move Up”.

This action will reverse the order of the report and the social security number will print first, then the employee name, and then the taxable gross wages. Now say “Ok” and the report will display. Go to the top left to “Save” and give the report a new name. After it was saved, the report will show again on the screen. Close the report. You will now see your new report at the top of the list under Payroll Reports.

Q: I need to refund money to a customer - do I need to set them up as a vendor?

A: No, when you are in payments, change the vendor ID to Customer ID and then you can select your Customer and issue a check. You can also receive money from a vendor under receipts, by making a similar change.

Q: If I backup to my C drive, is that ok?

A: Yes, as the first step in protecting your accounting data. However, you should also backup to a removable media such as a CD, external hard drive or “thumb” drive, which should be taken offsite daily. We suggest a minimum of 3 units and rotating them so that you would never have to re-enter more than 1 or 2 days of entries. Additionally, you should maintain permanent offsite copies of your data at key times such as just prior and just after closing a year.

Q: How do I track the units sold and the cost of a product or service?

A: You can do this by going under Maintain Inventory, setting up a new item and selecting “Stock Item” as the “Item Class.” This tells Sage 50 to track and calculate information about the item. This could be sales price, purchase cost, quantity on hand, and units sold.

Q: When starting a new company do I have to wait until I enter my Beginning Balances before I begin entering transactions?

A: No, you can enter GL Beginning Balances at any time (individual customer and vendor balances need to be entered prior to entering receipts or making payments).

Q: How can I get the word “duplicate” to stop printing on my checks and invoices?

A: Do not enter a check or invoice number in the entry screen, it will give you a prompt to enter next number when you go to print. (Or you can permanently change this within forms design).


What is a fast way to get a look at a customer/vendor account?
A: Go to Maintain->Customers/Prospects or Maintain->Vendors and choose the applicable ID. Then got to “History” tab and this will bring up activity for the last 12 months. In 2010 and later versions there's a Customer Management tab which can be customized to show you much more detailed information in a customized format with drill down capabilities.

Q:  I'm doing job costing, how can I enter miscellaneous amounts to my job?

A: Make a “fake” journal entry. First set-up a new chart of accounts number for “job cost clearing.” Then go to journal entries, for the reference use something like “JCMISC”, for the account number enter the new “job cost clearing” number. For description, enter whatever you would like to see on your job cost report.

Enter the amount you want to see on your job reports as a debit and then in the column where it asks for the job id, enter your job number and phase/cost code, if applicable. The second line of the journal entry will use the same account number and description. The amount will be the same as the prior line but will be entered in the credit field. Do not enter a job on this line.

Q: How can I make Peachtree calculate sales tax for construction projects where only a percent of the total is taxable?

A: Multiply the sales tax rate (i.e. 6.3 % tax rate by the 65 % construction portion) (.063 x .65 = .041). Use the 4.10 % as the tax rate. When you multiply your gross sales amount by the adjusted tax rate you will get the correct amount of sales tax.

Q: I have a laser printer but would like to take advantage of the two part laser check, how do I set up Peachtree (soon to be Sage 50) to do this?

A: Go to Reports & Forms->Forms->Checks and choose a check. Select Customize->Options then go to the Grid / Copies Tab and change Number of Copies to 2 then select OK, Save, give the check a new form name and select Save again.

Q: How can I see a list of available ID's (customer ID's, vendor ID's, item ID's, etc) when I am getting ready to enter something? 

A: Go to Options->Global and select the General tab. Under Smart Data Entry select the checkbox next to “Drop-down list displays automatically” then select OK.

Q: How do I print my customer's custom field on my invoice?

A: Open your invoice from Reports & Forms->Forms->Invoices and Packing Slips. Select the invoice form you'd like to change and then select the “Customize” button. On the left side of the screen select Add->Data from Peachtree (soon to be Sage 50) and at the Add Data Confirmation screen “Add Data from Peachtree (soon to be Sage 50)” should be selected then select OK.

Under the Field Type drop down select “Customer Fields (Other)” and then select the data field name you want to insert, drag and drop the newly added field to the location you want it on the invoice and then save the form with a new name.

Q: Have you ever edited a payroll check from a prior period and when you tried to save it again were told it is out of balance?
A: If so, the employee in question has either received a change in pay rate or an ongoing deduction has changed. There are several ways to correct this problem but certainly the simplest way is to restore a backup prior to editing the check.

Q: I like to view my reports on the screen but sometimes they are difficult to read. Any way to improve them?

A: Yes there are some options. You can use different colors, fonts and font sizes to improve readability. For example, you can display the Aged Receivable report with the report totals in red. Make your changes in the design area in the report section.

Q: What's the best time to purge data?

A: While you can purge data as part of the closing process, we strongly recommend responding NO at that prompt. We suggest purging at the start of a weekend. You may also need to take smaller selective purges rather than a purge everything approach.

Q: I'm missing an employee's social security number. Can I do my January Payroll before I run my W2's?  

A: Yes.

Q: I need to change the account number on my Accounts Receivable Sales Invoice screen but it does not show that field since I reloaded my software. The same thing in Accounts Payable, Purchase/Receive Inventory. What's wrong?

A: Every time you load/reload the program, the “defaults” are reset to the original settings; all you have to do is click on the Options icon. Then select Global. Once in the global screen, look for Hide GL Accts. Uncheck any box that has a check mark in it. Now return to your data entry area. You should now be able to change/specify a different general ledger account number.

Q: Sometimes I get “I/O” error and then it gives a file name. If I ignore the message, it goes away. What are “I/O” errors and what can I do about them?

A: “I/O” errors mean you have damaged data. By ignoring them the problem will just get worse. There is a utility program that will attempt to clean-up damaged data. It is called Integrity Check. You may have seen reference to Integrity Check when you received the “I/O” error. You must be careful when running Integrity Check that you do only the tests that are applicable to your problem and that you perform them in a particular order. Running all of them or ones that do not apply to your particular error message could damage your data beyond repair. You need to call for telephone support to run Integrity Checks. Our staff is fully trained in the use of this utility and knows just which tests to run for which problem.

Q: Last summer I paid $75.00 to somebody to sweep the parking lot. I think it was in May or June, but it could have been in the fall. Help, I need to hire him again. Any shortcuts so that I don't have to look at every vendor or every check?

A: Using Edit -> Find Transactions you can search transactions by multiple criteria, such as Type, ID, Reference Number or even Dollar Amount. You would search for a $75.00 transaction from May 1 through September 30.

Q: I would like to have our logo print on SAge 50 sales orders and invoices. Is there any way to do that?

A: Yes, through the form design feature, you can setup your logo to print out automatically on your invoices and sales orders if the logo is stored as a “bmp” format. You can also customize the information that prints on your invoice by using different fonts and special effects.

Q: I print the same reports every month for my Accounts Payable. Some of the reports are way down on the list and I have to keep scrolling up and down. Is there any way to have the reports I use the most to be at the top of the list? 

Yes, by using the design feature, you can give the report a new name without changing the layout. Creating a “custom report” makes it automatically appear at the top of the reports list and will have a wrench in the icon.

 Are electronic accounting records adequate during an audit?
Anyone can create or alter transactions on accounting software long after the fact.  You are allowed to record electronic transactions on your software and use reports from it to prepare your tax returns.  But to prove or support   the transaction, you need source documents.  If you use electronic documentation such as images, keep them as long as you would paper records and be prepared to satisfy the IRS that such records are contemporaneous with the transactions and have not been altered since.  Be extremely careful revising or altering electronically recorded transactions and limit access to the software by others.  If audited, the IRS may ask for a full copy of your software to check the metadata for when various transactions were recorded vs. when they were revised.   

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