Moving your Quicken data to CheckBook and CheckBook Pro

First, you’ll need to get your data out of Quicken and into a QIF or QMTF file:

  1. Open Quicken so you can see your data.
  2. Go to the File menu near the top left corner of your screen and down to Export. If you see a submenu, click a menu item that includes “QIF” or “QMTF”. If you don’t see a submenu, click Export.
  3. If you see additional options, be sure to tell Quicken to export all of your transactions for the entire date range you’ve been using Quicken.
  4. Save the exported file to your Desktop so you’ll have no trouble finding it.

Now that you have a QIF or QMTF file with all your Quicken data in it, let’s bring that file into CheckBook:

  1. Open CheckBook or CheckBook Pro.
  2. If you haven’t created a document yet, you should see a small window with three choices. Click the Create a New Accounts Document button and save your new document in your Documents folder.
  3. Select an Account to import into. If you need to create a new Account, leave the Starting Balance field set to 0.00.
  4. Go to the File menu near the top left corner of your screen, down to the Import submenu, and click the QIF or QMTF… menu item. A window with a file browser will appear.
  5. Navigate to your Desktop, select the QIF or QMTF file you exported from Quicken, and click the Import button at the bottom right corner of the window. The Import Options window will appear.
  6. At the top of the window, click the Import Account button to reveal a menu of accounts in the QIF or QMTF file, then click the name of the account you want to import.
  7. Leave the rest of the options for now and click the OK button at the bottom right corner of the window. A preview of the Entries you’re about to import will appear.
  8. Give the preview a look to be sure everything looks as you expect. Quicken will only export certain data, so if a column is empty that’s just because the data for that column wasn’t in the QIF or QMTF file. When you’re ready to continue, click the OK button at the bottom right corner of the window. CheckBook will ask if it’s OK to continue. Click the Continue button and your Quicken transactions will now appear as Entries in your CheckBook Account.

Repeat steps 3 through 8 for all the Quicken accounts you want to import and you’re all set.

One tip: after importing, you’ll probably want to reconcile right away. Look in Quicken for the last balance you reconciled, click the Reconcile button at the bottom of the CheckBook document window, and enter that last reconciled balance in the Statement Balance field, in the Statement column at the bottom right. Don’t focus on the Account column for now – you won’t need it yet. As long as you haven’t marked anything as “cleared” in Quicken since your last reconciliation, your Statement Balance should match your Resolved Balance, so your Unreconciled total should now be zero. Click the small Reconcile button below the Unreconciled total, confirm you want to reconcile, and you’ve completed your first CheckBook reconciliation. Hooray! Now click the Entry button at the bottom of the window to get back to managing your Entries.

Contact Splasm Support at if you need any help along the way!

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macOS Catalina vs. Audiobook Chapters

Update: Looks like macOS 10.15.2 resolves this one, folks. We tested syncing to a 4th-generation iPod and an iPhone running iOS 13.3 and both got their chapter stops, just like the good ol’ Mojave and earlier days. You have our permission to update to 10.15.2 😛.

A few folks who’ve recently upgraded to macOS Catalina and love Audiobook Builder wrote us this week. Since the upgrade, they haven’t seen chapters in audiobooks created with Audiobook Builder and synced to their Apple devices. Some had even spent an hour or two on the phone with Apple’s support team, only to be told the issue must be in Audiobook Builder itself.

So we ran some tests. And some more. And a couple of hours of testing later, we felt enough confidence to say, no, the issue isn’t in Audiobook Builder. It’s in how the Finder in Catalina is – or, rather, isn’t – syncing chapter data to each device.

Our tests showed that all’s well on Mojave. Sync a “homemade” audiobook from iTunes on Mojave to a 4th-generation iPod or an iPhone running iOS 13.2.2 and you get chapters. Sync the same audiobook from the Finder on Catalina to the same devices and no chapters.

Then we tested audiobooks we purchased from the iTunes Store. Same results. You’ll need to remove purchased audiobooks from your device and sync them back again, if you wanna try this at home.

Poking around a bit, we learned the sync process itself aced optimizing processor and memory use, maximizing storage life, and minimizing battery wear and tear, not to mention saving the user a few seconds so playback begins immediately, by parsing out the chapters and storing them in a cache from the get-go so the device doesn’t have to do it every time an audiobook is played. Thank you Apple!

The only catch is it’s not working now – and the only variable is Catalina.

So we dashed off a bug report to Apple. We’ll keep you posted, but get in touch at if you need any additional details in the meantime.

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Audiobook Builder 2.1 is ready

Audiobook Builder 2.1 brings compatibility enhancements for macOS 10.15 Catalina’s Books and Music applications, featuring extra preferences so you can spec where you want your audiobooks saved now that Books manages your audiobooks and Music manages your music. Outputting M4B audiobooks? Use the Save Audiobooks to setting. Opting for more compatible M4A music tracks? Go for the Save Music to setting. Go to the Audiobook Builder menu at the top left corner of your screen and click the Preferences… menu item to see these new settings. We’ve also maintained compatibility with iTunes in macOS Mojave and earlier, so if you’re holding off on the Catalina upgrade everything will work just as it always has, plus 2.1’s minor user interface enhancements and a bit of accommodation for some of the “homemade” audio files out there.

One gotcha with 2.1 from the Mac App Store on Catalina: there’s a glitch in Music’s AppleScript support that prevents sandboxed applications from locating a track’s file on disk. This means Audiobook Builder’s Add Music button and menu item won’t work for now. Apple’s well aware Music’s AppleScript support for locating tracks on disk is broken, but feel free to send some feedback their way to let them know you know they know and you’re finger-drumming the 1812 overture and feel like you’re nearing mastery of syncopation already. That’s, with a blurb about the need for complete AppleScript support in Music so sandboxed third-party applications can locate file tracks on disk.

Audiobook Builder 2.1 is a free update if you already have a license for any version of 2. Click here for update details.

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CheckBook and CheckBook Pro have a slight issue on Catalina

Update, 12/23/2019:  CheckBook and CheckBook Pro 2.6.11 work around the issues with FAT volumes so your documents on external or removable volumes formatted as FAT16 or FAT32 should now work just fine.

Update, 11/20/2019:  CheckBook and CheckBook Pro 2.6.9 are now available and resolve the issue of storing your document on an external or removable volume, but we’ve discovered the fix won’t work with FAT16 or FAT32 volumes.  These are DOS/Windows formats that most USB thumb drives and hard drives are pre-formatted with, and many Mac users aren’t aware their drives are formatted this way until subtle issues like this crop up over time.  If your external or removable volume is formatted with FAT16 or FAT32, continue using the copy of your document on your Mac’s startup volume and we’ll keep plugging on a fix for the next minor update to CheckBook and CheckBook Pro.

Update, 11/18/2019:  CheckBook and CheckBook Pro 2.6.9, with fixes for this issue and more, made their way to the mothership over the weekend.  We expect the updates to be approved on Tuesday so keep an eye out!

We’re investigating an issue affecting CheckBook and CheckBook Pro folks who’ve upgraded to macOS Catalina, where their document is stored on an external drive, resulting in the application telling the user the document can’t be accessed because of a permissions issue.  This isn’t something CheckBook itself causes, as far as we can tell, but we’re on the case, learning more details, and will update you here with what we find.  In the meantime, if you have your document on an external or removable drive and get an error about permissions, your data is safe but needs to be copied to your startup drive.  Copy your document to your Documents folder and double-click it there.  CheckBook will open that copy automatically going forward.  Stay away from the original copy on the external drive until we get to the bottom of this, and get in touch at if you need any help before then!

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How to: Update your Splasm applications

Click your application name below for update instructions:

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Audiobook Builder 2.0.2 and macOS Catalina

Update, 7 PM EST, 10/15/2019:  Audiobook Builder 2.1 is out!  Head here for update details.

Update, 10:20 AM EST, 10/15/2019:  The original Audiobook Builder 2.1 submission to Apple had an issue so we submitted a fix yesterday afternoon.  We expect it to enter review soon.

Update, 12 AM EST, 10/12/2019:  We just submitted Audiobook Builder 2.1 to Apple for review, so it shouldn’t be long until it’s approved and out in the wild.

If you’ve updated to macOS 10.15 Catalina and tried to use Audiobook Builder 2.0.2 or earlier, you’ve probably hit an error when Audiobook Builder tries to add your audiobooks to iTunes.  iTunes isn’t part of Catalina – you’ll manage audiobooks in Books and music in Music – so you’ll need to follow these steps to get things going again:

  1. Open Audiobook Builder 2.0.2.
  2. Go to the Audiobook Builder menu at the top left corner of your screen and click the Preferences… menu item.
  3. If the Save to setting at the top of the window is set to iTunes Media Folder, pick something else.
  4. Make sure the Add to iTunes Library checkbox is unchecked.

That’s all you need to do to build audiobooks with Audiobook Builder 2.0.2 on Catalina. After they’re built, drag them from the location you set up in your preferences to the appropriate application – to Books for M4B audiobooks or to Music for M4A music tracks.

One other thing – the Add iTunes button and menu item won’t work, and dragging directly from Music will also fail.  Work around that by dragging the tracks you need directly from the Finder. To see your tracks in the Finder, select a track in Music, go to the File menu, and click the Show in Finder menu item. Drag from there to your Audiobook Builder project and you’re all set.

Audiobook Builder 2.1 is coming with fixes – we’re putting it through a final round of tests and plan to submit it to Apple for review later today tomorrow.  We apologize for the delay – a last-minute issue means we have to run some tests on El Capitan through Catalina – but we’ll get it to Apple as soon as we possibly can.  Keep an eye out!

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