Multi User Mode Not Working error

Fix QuickBooks Multi-User Mode Not Working Error in Desktop

QuickBooks is an essential tool for many businesses, providing comprehensive accounting solutions that facilitate everything from payroll management to financial reporting. One of its most beneficial features is the Multi-User Mode, which allows multiple users to access the company file simultaneously, fostering collaboration and efficiency. However, there are instances when QuickBooks Multi-User Mode does not work as expected. This article aims to provide a detailed guide on troubleshooting and fixing the Multi-User Mode error in QuickBooks Desktop.

Understanding QuickBooks Multi-User Mode

Before diving into the solutions, it is important to understand how Multi-User Mode works. This mode allows multiple users to work on the same company file over a network. To enable this, QuickBooks Desktop must be installed on a server or a host computer and configured correctly. Other computers (workstations) connect to the host to access the company file.

Common Causes of Multi-User Mode Issues

  • Incorrect Hosting Configuration: Each computer must have the correct hosting settings. Only the server or host computer should have the hosting feature turned on.
  • Network Issues: Problems with the network connection can prevent workstations from accessing the company file.
  • Firewall and Security Software: Firewalls or antivirus software might block the communication between the server and workstations.
  • Database Server Manager Issues: QuickBooks Database Server Manager is essential for Multi-User Mode. If it’s not installed or configured properly, errors can occur.
  • Windows Permissions: Incorrect folder permissions can prevent access to the company file.

Step-by-Step Guide to Fix Multi-User Mode Not Working

1.      Verify Hosting Settings

  • On the Server:
  • Open QuickBooks Desktop on the server.
  • Go to File > Utilities > Host Multi-User Access.
  • Ensure this option is selected. If it says “Stop Hosting Multi-User Access,” it means hosting is already enabled.
  • On Workstations:
  • Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  • Go to File > Utilities.
  • Ensure it says “Host Multi-User Access.” If it says “Stop Hosting Multi-User Access,” do not select it.

2.      Check Network Connectivity

  • Ensure that all computers are connected to the same network.
  • Ping the server from each workstation to verify connectivity:
  • Open Command Prompt.
  • Type ping [Server Name] and press Enter.
  • If the ping is successful, network connectivity is not an issue.

3.      Configure Firewall and Security Software

  • Add exceptions for QuickBooks programs in your firewall and security software.
  • QuickBooks requires the following ports for Multi-User Mode:
  • QuickBooks Desktop 2017: 8019, 56727, 55373-55377
  • QuickBooks Desktop 2018: 8019, 56728, 55378-55382

Steps to configure the firewall:

  • Open Control Panel.
  • Go to System and Security > Windows Defender Firewall.
  • Click on Advanced Settings.
  • Select Inbound Rules > New Rule.
  • Choose Port and click Next.
  • Select TCP and enter the required port numbers.
  • Repeat these steps for Outbound Rules.

Use QuickBooks Database Server Manager

  • Ensure QuickBooks Database Server Manager is installed and running on the server.
  • To check:
  • Open QuickBooks Desktop on the server.
  • Go to File > Utilities > Setup/Activate QuickBooks Database Server Manager.
  • Scan the folder where the company file is stored:
  • Open Database Server Manager.
  • Click on Scan Folders.
  • Add the folder containing the company file and click Start Scan.

Verify Folder Permissions

Ensure the folder containing the company file has the correct permissions.

To set permissions:

  • Right-click on the folder.
  • Select Properties > Security > Edit.
  • Ensure Full Control is allowed for Everyone or specific users.

Check QuickBooks Services

Ensure QuickBooks services are running on the server:

  • Open Run by pressing Windows + R.
  • Type services.msc and press Enter.
  • Locate QuickBooksDBXX (XX represents the QuickBooks version).
  • Ensure the service is running and set to Automatic.

Configure Windows User Account Settings

  • Ensure the Windows user account has administrative rights.
  • If necessary, create a new user account with administrative privileges:
  • Go to Control Panel > User Accounts > Manage User Accounts.
  • Create a new account and set it as an administrator.

Update QuickBooks

Ensure you are using the latest version of QuickBooks Desktop.

To update:

  • Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  • Go to Help > Update QuickBooks Desktop.
  • Click on Update Now and follow the prompts.

Use QuickBooks File Doctor

  • QuickBooks File Doctor is a tool designed to fix company file and network issues.
  • Download and run QuickBooks File Doctor from the Intuit website.
  • Follow the prompts to diagnose and fix the problem.

Reboot and Restart Services

  • Sometimes, simply rebooting the server and workstations can resolve connectivity issues.
  • Restart QuickBooks services after rebooting:
  • Open Run by pressing Windows + R.
  • Type services.msc and press Enter.
  • Restart QuickBooksDBXX and QBCFMonitorService.


QuickBooks Multi-User Mode is a powerful feature that can significantly enhance productivity and collaboration within a business. However, when it encounters issues, it can disrupt operations. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can troubleshoot and resolve common issues related to Multi-User Mode not working in QuickBooks Desktop. Ensuring proper configuration, network connectivity, and up-to-date software are key factors in maintaining a smooth and functional multi-user environment. If the problem persists after following these steps, it may be beneficial to contact QuickBooks Support for further assistance.