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 Forum index » Taking the Puppy out for a walk » Misc
HomeBank, Grisbi & Gnucash
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri 06 Jul 2007, 18:30    Post_subject:  HomeBank, Grisbi & Gnucash  

Barry has announced that HomeBank will be part of the next version of Puppy.
As gnucash has 'died' as an option - see http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=19602 and
as it is the start of a new financial year and a new bookkeeping program is urgently needed. Is there any chance of someone producing a .pet of HomeBank? PLEASE Laughing
Quicken 'works' under wine however its complex windowing seems to defeat wine and some very confusing behavour occurs.
The only program that really works well is QuickBooks under wine however as a private bookkeeping program it is not really suitable.
KMyMoney works however it is not very good and its reporting is limited and of course it requires KDE.
I'm sure Barry would like to know that somebody is out there testing HomeBank Laughing
Cheers
Geoff

Edited_time_total
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Fri 06 Jul 2007, 20:08    Post_subject:  

Yes, test away!
I've uploaded the PET package to the usual place:
http://distro.ibiblio.org/pub/linux/distributions/puppylinux/pet_packages-2/

Note, it's small, the PET package is 182K, a good choice for Puppy, as long as it works okay. But, the developer says it's very mature as was used for many years on Amiga, it's just the GTK2 port part of it that is new.
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sat 07 Jul 2007, 03:05    Post_subject:  

Barry
Thank you very much, I'll keep you posted.
It does seem mature, their updates etc seem to be about enhancements or quite minor bugs - here's hoping.
Thanks again
Geoff
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sat 07 Jul 2007, 19:42    Post_subject:  

Barry
Well, I've had a bit of look at it.
1. It could do with an English speaker doing some of the translation from French Laughing
2. I began to suspect that this was not going to be satisfactory when as I entered the opening balances it didn't ask for class of account (asset, liability etc) and then didn't ask for the opening balance date. When I finished that I then found it could not produce a Balance Sheet nor had it calculated an Equity balance so I had no way of being able to easily check my entries.
3. This the important one - It has an almost total lack of reporting. Maybe this is a paper saving feature, however you can't even get reports on the screen. All you can get is a list of all your accounts and their balances and a list of expense and income totals. Note:- totals only, you cannot find the individual transactions that make up the total. If you find you have a 'strange' expense (or income) total you would have to manually search through all the transactions in all the accounts to hopefully find the error. This lack alone would make me reject the use of this program. There is no suggestion that the reporting will be improved in future releases.
4. There is no EXPORT facility so you can't develop your own reporting, nor can you move your data to another program.
5. The car expense feature is nice but certainly does not make up for the lack of reporting.
6. Poor internal linkage. e.g. Having defined a 'category' as an expense when posting an amount to it you still have to 'toggle' it as negative.

I would certainly NOT recommend this program.
Sorry Barrie - I really can't find anything really positive to say about it. I suppose it is better than XFinans but not by much.
I would recommend people to install KDE and use KMyMoney or get gnucash Version2 going.
Cheers
Geoff
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Sat 07 Jul 2007, 20:58    Post_subject:  

Okay, how about Grisbi? It is quite mature and has lots of features, is also small. What has prevented me from putting it in Puppy is needs Latex to print -- but I guess that could be a PET pkg.
There is also Ian's PuppyMoney.
Both of these are PET pckages, but I don't have the ltest Grisbi -- well, I'll go grab the source right now, and will upload a PET.

http://www.grisbi.org/
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Sat 07 Jul 2007, 22:21    Post_subject:  

Okay, Grisbi v0.5.9 is now at ibiblio:
http://distro.ibiblio.org/pub/linux/distributions/puppylinux/pet_packages-2/
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sun 08 Jul 2007, 06:55    Post_subject:  

Barry
I had a look at Grisbi some time ago. There is a statement on their web page which concerns me. I paraphrase but essentially it says 'the program is not suitable for associations that require double entry bookkeeping' thereby admitting that it does not use double entry.
How or why anybody would create a bookkeeping program that doesn't use double entry I can not imagine. It is just so easy to do. Without it recovery from any sort of program failure is almost impossible. With it almost anything is possible! New features can be added at will and reporting 'is a soda'. Likewise the handling of the user editing transactions.
Despite that tirade Very Happy I'll have another look at it tomorrow.
Cheers
Geoff
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Béèm


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 11782
Location: Brussels IBM Thinkpad R40, 256MB, 20GB, WiFi ipw2100. Frugal Lin'N'Win

PostPosted: Sun 08 Jul 2007, 12:45    Post_subject:  

I tried Grisbi in Windows for a start.
I had crashes, which I have addressed to the NNTP support group.
Apart from that, it is the first Bank program I encountered that supports import of .ofx and I could import transactions, the bank account was created automatically in this process, but the crash came when trying to save the account.

In the NNTP support group I addressed also the lack of ghost script printing.

Well I least for the Windows version I am sure, report output can be directed to a browser and then printed.

_________________
Time savers:
Find packages in a snap and install using Puppy Package Manager (Menu).
Consult Wikka
Use peppyy's puppysearch
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sun 08 Jul 2007, 20:55    Post_subject:  

OK, cold morning and I've had time to play Laughing
Grisbi is a big advance on HomeBank
Like Homebank, some English documentation would help.
Like Gnucash, it is not very intuitive.
I have not managed to crash it.
I imported all of last year's transactions (approx 2500) from Gnucash. It sort of did it and did almost get the correct answers. Did require some massaging to get it correct but nothing too bad.
It is single entry bookkeeping which means that it has no way of checking that the data is all correct and that it balances. Unlike Gnucash.
Reporting is OK however setting up your own reports has an incredible number of options and it took me quite a while before I managed to get non-zero totals. It is not very confidence building to see a long column of figures (all debits or all credits) produce a total of zero Confused
I believe that the reporting options are quite simply 'over the top' and would be a considerable impediment to many users.
I'm still getting euro signs on some totals.
It does not know of our convention of placing the currency sign before the figures.
Being French it does get the dates correct Very Happy
Data entry or transaction entry is OK but appears to have more fields available than most users would want. That may be fixable.
You can not produce a balance sheet other than at today's date and then only on the screen.
I've had no success with printing. Mozilla could not understand the HTML file produced. Printing to a postscript file required Latex.
I will persevere with Grisbi. It does appear to be useable even if the basic design (single entry) is flawed.
Cheers
Geoff
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BarryK
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Joined: 09 May 2005
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Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Mon 09 Jul 2007, 11:34    Post_subject:  

GeoffS, this is good feedback to forward to the Grisbi developers!
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Tue 10 Jul 2007, 06:47    Post_subject: HomeBank, Grisbi and Gnucash  

I have to partially withdraw some of my previous comments about Grisbi.
The import from Gnucash might not have crashed but it made some very strange mistakes. Some of the account totals are wrong but by only quite small amounts although one is incorrect by a very large amount.
Entry of transactions is OK up to the point where you want to enter a 'split' transaction then it becomes very clumsy. You have to click on a category called 'Breakdown' which then causes a 'Breakdown' button on the current data entry form to become active. You then click on that button and an entirely new data entry window appears (completely hiding the previous one) into which you enter the lines of the split transaction. The entire 'split' transaction handling appears to have been cobbled in.
The screen handling is quite old-fashioned with all windows appearing full screen within the main program window. You can't grab the current window and move it aside while looking for something underneath.
It compares quite unfavourably with Gnucash, except that Gnucash doesn't work Sad .
Noted your comment above Barry however I'll persevere a little longer before I send anything to them. I think my patience will run out eventually -
Geoff
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
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Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Tue 10 Jul 2007, 19:49    Post_subject:  

Geoff, have you tried PuppyMoney?
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Wed 11 Jul 2007, 07:45    Post_subject:  

Barry
Yes, I did look at PuppyMoney. I'm afraid I found it far too simplistic.
So many of these programs have started life with somebody who has kept some records using a spreadsheet or maybe if they are a bit older in a 13 column cash book and it shows. Crying or Very sad

Regarding Grisbi:-
The import from Gnucash was far worse than I suspected.
As I mentioned in my previous post the final balance of each account is almost correct but in some cases half the transactions are missing. The accounts have an opening balance (which should be zero) which appears to be the total of the missing transactions. Confused
I will start the year again, without the import of last year from Gnucash.
Cheers
Geoff
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Wed 11 Jul 2007, 17:17    Post_subject:  

Can't resist a puzzle Laughing
The missing transactions were easy - there is a tiny button which controls whether reconciled transactions are displayed. Found Smile
However, the balance was still incorrect.
Went through an account and found a truly missing transaction. It involved a 'split' part of which went to an asset account and part to an expense account (category). Grisbi didn't know what to do with this, didn't bother to ask and didn't post a warning. Crying or Very sad
Geoff
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Thu 12 Jul 2007, 07:07    Post_subject:  

Ahhhhhggg!! Crying or Very sad It gets worse. Some similar transactions were 'half' entered. Half the transaction was entered (without complaint) and left unbalanced.
I would NOT recommend anybody using the Gnucash import facility unless they are prepared to do a lot of cleaning up.
Geoff
Next day -
I've finally cleaned up the Gnucash import. Lots of strange errors. It depended to some degree on which account included in the transaction was encountered first. It certainly could not handle splits which involved asset or liability accounts and categories (expense or income accounts).
I will now attempt to 'use' Grisbi for a while.

There is still the problem of printing, it needs Latex.

Grisbi crashed when I tried to change the font from the tiny one used to something a little bigger.
Sad
Geoff
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