Intuit released QuickBooks 2015 R6 for the desktop just a few days ago, and we are starting to see reports of some problems that relate to “custom fields.” If you are thinking about moving up to the 2015 R6 version and you depend on custom fields then you might want to hold off a bit until we know more about the issues.
I’m not saying that there aren’t other problems in this release, it is just that these are the ones that can be confirmed.
Custom Fields in QuickBooks provide you with a way to add your own information to certain lists and transactions in QuickBooks (see this article for an overview). You add them to a list (customer list, item list, etc.) and then you can add them to sales and purchasing transactions (and a limited few other transaction types).
Many people depend on the information that they enter into custom fields in transactions. Many add-on products also rely on them to hold information.
One troublesome problem is that in some installations, if you enter data into a custom field in a transaction like an invoice, and then move on to another field, the data you enter disappears. I have not been able to duplicate this in my test system, but it has been confirmed in many installations (and it is definitely a new issue in R6). At the time I’m writing this nobody knows what factors control whether this issue appears or not.
In one Intuit Community Forum discussion a correspondent says that a workaround for this is to check the “required on” flag for the field, and to not have a default value set in the custom field in the list record. Again, I can’t confirm that this works as I don’t have the problem in my test systems.
Intuit is aware of this one and they are investigating….
Update 5/1/2015: Here is a workaround from Intuit Tech Support for this problem. The issue happens if you have created multiple custom fields but have un-checked the “Use” column in the Set up Custom Fields for Items window. Any custom field shown below the one that is not selected will not work correctly. For example, looking at Premier in the screen shot below, “Style” is not in use, so “Size” will not work correctly. The workaround is to check the “Use” column for all custom fields.
Dropdown Lists Don’t Work
In QuickBooks Enterprise you have the ability to specify that you want a “User’s multi-choice list” of options for values in a custom field. Add that custom field as a column to a transaction like an invoice and you have a dropdown list of options to choose from, as shown below.
However, in the R6 update, for the same custom field, you won’t see the dropdown list.
If you have set the custom field to only allow a choice from the list then you are still restricted to options in the list, but you cannot see what those options are.
There may be more problems than this, I’m still looking at the various reports. I don’t like to list problems unless I either can reproduce them on my system, or I have a report that I can confirm either by a note from Intuit or that I’ve seen in a system that I have access to.