The trick to Downgrade QuickBooks Files..

Ever came to this situation where you might have to downgrade your QuickBooks Company file a higher version to lower version or Enterprise to Pro/Premier?

It can happen on multiple situations, to list a few as example.  Your accountant had opened the file in QuickBooks 2014 & send it back to you & you have QuickBooks 2012. or Somehow you started with Enterprise but then realized that you don’t need those extra features & want to downgrade for cost cutting,  There could be end number of reasons.

In this article i am sharing some hidden tool of QuickBooks & the trick to convert your Enterprise to pro/Premier or downgrading a higher version of QuickBooks file to lower version.

Disclaimer:  As per Intuit file downgrade is not possible but this trick worked for me therefore i am sharing it with the world. if you want to try this then make a copy & then work on it.

Facts : First you need to understand the data in a QuickBooks File. In broader term it contains two elements TRANSACTIONS & LISTS.

Plan of Action :  Intuit is correct we cannot downgrade the file. so the trick is to export the lists & transaction from your existing company ( higher version ) then create a new company to which you want to convert (lower version ) & import the LISTS & TRANSACTION in your new company file in lower version.

Lets get started with the trick..

  • Open  your existing company file.

Once the file is open out task is to export the LISTS & TRANSACTIONS & to do that we need to access the hidden tools of Quickbooks. The Hidden tool is under the HELP menu but needs a special key-stroke to access it.

  • Go to help About QuickBooks.


  • Once done you will get to this screen.


  • Once you are on this screen press CLRT & tap on “9” three times.  Once done go back to help menu & you will have the QuickBooks Hidden tools as shown in the pic below.


There are a lot of options but for now lets concentrate on exporting the LISTS & TRANSACTIONS.

  • go to HELP- Tech Support-Export- Export Lists which will take you to the screen shown below.4

I would advice to export off the lists which has been used on this file. Once exported save it somewhere on your desktop.     ( this would be in IIF format.) Once done you need to repeat the same steps to export the transaction.


  • HELP – TECH SUPPORT – EXPORT – EXPORT TRANSACTION. & save it on your desktop. ( this would be in IIF format)

once both lists & transaction are exported we are done with this version of QuickBooks. Now open the lower version of Quickbooks in which you wanted to convert or downgrade & create a new company file.

Once a new QuickBooks file is created in a lower version our task now is to import those TRANSACTIONS & LISTS. but before we do that we need to make a small change on those exported IIF files as if you try to import them in you will get get an error shown below.


to avoid that open the IIF files in Excel & delete the 2nd file as shown in the picture below & save the changes.


Once you are done deleting the 2nd lines from both the IIF files. (LISTS & Transactions) open your new company file & export the LISTS first followed by Transaction.

  • Go to FILE – UTILITIES – IMPORT – IIF Files.


It will take some time depending on the size of the IIF files.


Once done It will give you the prompt that the import is successful..


Once imported you are ready to work on the same file but in a lower version.

Hope this trick works for you.

Please comment with a short description of the problem, if you are not able to downgrade using these steps. i would love to work on those issues & if you think its too complicated then use our service by clicking here