Friday, 26 November 2010

Quickbooks SDK and Quickbooks Pro 2005 (UK)

I seem to have dived into the deep end... there are many versions of Quickbooks... and many versions of qbXML... many versions of QBFC ... and QBXMLRP ... slowly I think I might be getting my head around these ...

I've just got my code to open, begin, end and close a session with an open copy of QB Pro 2005 (UK) .. only to spend hours struggling to find out why I am getting all these "Unrecognised qbXML Version".. or "qbXML Version not supported"...

After every possible combination of SessionManager.CreateMsgSetRequest("", _maxQbXmlVer, _minVer)

Finally someone has talked some sense... QBFC10 DOES NOT SUPPORT UK3.0 ... ah... that's why I get "Country Code Incorrect".  Ok .. what does?  Hmm it appears that QBFC5 might be the only one that ever supported UK3.0...

One blogger, Doug Vanderweide, laments: "the quickbooks SDK, one of the sorriest, worst-documented excuses for a programming tool I've ever encountered." - I totally agree... I've been sitting here for 5 hours at least, and I've got so little done compared to nearly every other SDK I've ever used (perhaps apart from one mapping COM component - an early version of CadCorp).

Is it worth me plodding on?  The handy QBFC10 functionality is not available to QB2005... the client will be upgrading to 2010/2011 in the next 6 months... Let's first see if I can squeeze some functionality out of QBFC5... then have a quick go at using the QBXMLRP...(qbXML Request Process - basically XML-SOAP)

Success - QBFC5 did it! it works with values ("UK",3,0) if anyone is looking for that detail - unlikely but then I was... 6 hours to populate a spreadsheet with Customer details from QuickBooks... 24 rows... I could have typed that in a few minutes!  Their other database has 20,000+ records... So let's move one step at a time...

If I could used QBXMLRP then I'd have access to version 4.0?  Or is that just the US version?  I think the UK version is still UK3.0...  Ok... well it's good to know for future reference, that we're quite limited in what we can do if the client has a version less than QuickBooks 2008/2009 (UK) (qbXML v6).  QuickBooks 2010 UK supports up to qbXML Specification version 8.0. (US versions support up to 10.0)

right.. now to move the whole thing from Excel to Visual Studio.NET 2010... maybe fill some entities instead of the spreadsheet...

there are two QuickBooks SDK integration tools available that take all the pain from using the SDK - by RSSBus and n/software... but the one thing lacking from their websites was any indication of whether it would work with my version of Quickbooks... or any version... I think that should be made more obvious... I wasted enough time with the SDK... on top of that I wasted more time messing around with trial software that just wouldn't work on my version... I don't even know what versions those tools work on... it's near misleading, given the number of versions of Quickbooks still in the wild...  and these tools AND the SDK would help us out a great deal if it said - "Error: this SDK WILL NOT work with your version of Quickbooks in your country"

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