Sql Ledger Notes

This page contains unofficial notes on the use of SQL-Ledger [1], which is nonproprietary (free) accounting software. These notes are written by, and intended for, people who do not otherwise have access to SQL-Ledger documentation.

Anyone may edit this page to correct mistakes and add their know-how, so please do. With enough information, these notes could be used to create a tutorial or manual.

Feature documentation

Transactions: General ledger

A general ledger transaction may consist of a debit/credit to any number of accounts. On the "add transaction" form, there are a few lines available for making these entries. An entry will only be used if you put a number in the debit or credit box-- all other entries are ignored. With the Update button, the form will be reloaded, giving you debit and credit totals for the entries you've made so far. This is useful if, for example, you are debiting several accounts and want to know the credit amount needed to balance them. An update always provides an extra line, should you want to continue making entries. Updates do not affect the database. When the transaction data is complete, use the Post button to store it in the database.

You may notice that the "Reference" field must contain a value in order to post the transaction. This value is a user-defined ID or nickname for the transaction. In the general ledger report, this will be the name of the link that leads to the transaction's detail. A reference value need not be unique.

When viewing various data, such as a general ledger report, you can follow a link to view an existing transaction. From this form, you can edit the transaction. The Update button works as before, while the Post button now serves to modify the transaction in the database. A Delete button is available to remove the transaction from the database-- this will require confirmation.

Besides editing an existing transaction, you can also use it as a template for a new transaction, which is the purpose of the Post as new button. This is useful when a new transaction will only differ by date or amount from something you've entered before.

Menu: General Ledger --> Add Transaction

Year-end closing entry

A year-end closing entry can be generated automatically. In the "Yearend" form, enter your end of year date in the "Yearend" field, and chose a capital account to transfer the funds to. Upon pressing the Continue button, a general ledger transaction is generated which credits every expense account to a balance of 0, and debits the given capital account.

Menu: System --> Yearend

Audit control

If you enable "Enforce transaction reversal for all dates", transactions may not be altered or deleted after they are posted. If a transaction contains an error, you will have to post another transaction to reverse it. Handling errors this way is important for accounting data consistency. For example, when viewing a historical report referencing a certain transaction, it is useful to know that the transaction hasn't been replaced with something completely different, rendering the report meaningless.

There is also a "Close Books up to" field, which is used to lock transactions only up to a certain date. This can be employed for a less strict policy about modifying transactions. After completing reports for a certain accounting period, you would lock all transactions up to the end of the period, ensuring that your report does not get rendered invalid.

These locks are not permanent. You can go back to the audit control page and change the settings at any time.

Menu: System --> Audit Control



How is the "Reference" field in general ledger transactions normally used?


It seems like the HTML output of SQL-Ledger has never been run through a validator.

Regarding the income statement report, the feature of comparing to a previous period has a flaw. The numbers for the previous period will only make sense if you exclude the closing entries made on its last day, but that isn't possible if there were other transactions on that day (such as adjusting entries).

Features wanted

Option for Chart of Accounts and Trial Balance reports to not display accounts having a zero balance.

Assistance with tracking mixed accounts (prepaid expenses, etc.).

More flexible tax system (different ways of rounding, variable taxes, exceptions when to use / not use certain tax in a different way as set by a system), in particular at invoices (I see some progress has recently been made on AR/AP transactions, where taxes can be entered manually).

Other useful unofficial resources

Contributors: JohnBelmonte
HomePage · FindPage · RecentChanges · preferences
(site locked) · history
Last edited February 4, 2007 10:14 am EDT (diff)