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Why Sort Lists?

Accounting software, like QuickBooks, is based on one big data base. Many bits of data, or records, relate to each other in different ways. They all relate to one or more list entries in different ways.

There are a million ways for something to go wrong.

Fortunately, the software engineers that create the software we use today also create the internal tools to keep it running efficiently. We, the software users, don’t care about all the bits of data; we just want the software to work.

When things look awry in QuickBooks, there are a number of ‘fixes’ in the software. One fix is to re-sort lists that somehow can get out of order.

Some lists, like the chart of accounts, can be re-sorted from the list. Lists->Chart of Accounts.

If account numbers are turned on in QuickBooks, the chart of accounts, by default, will sort, within account types, numerically. If account numbers are not turned on, the list sorts alphabetically.

Occasionally, when something like the creation of a new account occurs, you will see the new account out of order. The above graphic shows the menu choice that will resort the chart of accounts into its correct order.

Names are a different list. It is possible to navigate to the customer list, right-click over the name list portion of the customer center, and re-sort from the popup menu.

But names are really one list. QuickBooks just presents us with the appropriate type of name, depending on what function we are trying to perform in the software.

An easier and better solution would be to re-sort the entire list in one operation. Here’s how to do that.

Open a blank Write Checks form. Place the cursor in the Payee field of the check. Hold down the CTRL key and tap the letter L.

The key combination Ctrl L will bring up a list of names in QuickBooks. In the screenshot you can see the list. Customers show because they are the first type of name to appear on the list. Scrolling down the list will reveal the other types like vendors, employees, and other.

Clicking the down-arrow by the Name button in the lower left of the Names list will show a small menu. One of the choices on that menu will be Re-sort Names.

Select that option and instantly, the list will re-sort. You can then close the list and the check form.

It doesn’t happen often, but occasionally, QuickBooks lists will need a re-sort. When something doesn’t appear right, like all the correct transactions are not being reported with the right name, this will often fix it.

Hector Garcia, CPA
Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor
12401 Orange Drive #136
Davie, FL 33330


Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia is a CPA and QuickBooks Consultant.

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One Response

  1. It kills me that I can’t re-sort email templates. From Edit >> Preferences >> Send Forms >> Company . . .why aren’t these email templates able to be sorted?! I have to delete and re-add them to change their order. Ugh!

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