MYOB AccountRight 2011: Upgrade issues

December 27, 2011

Bottom line: I can’t use the new version of MYOB!

I held off upgrading my business accounting package (MYOB) until the Christmas break. I wanted to have time to do the upgrade (MYOB suggested 1 hour outside normal work hours), and time to learn about some of the new features. I’m glad I held off — within a few days of releasing their v2011, they had released a service pack (SP) for it, addressing ‘issues’ presumably related to the upgrade process and things that just didn’t work once your MYOB files were upgraded.

So, come Boxing Day (December 26), I was relaxed enough to do the upgrade and had set aside half a day for it. I read through the Release Notes (yes, people actually read these!), which included the steps for the upgrade and what to do both before and after. I backed up my two MYOB files, installed v2011 and then the SP, as instructed. I upgraded my two MYOB files. All this took about 45 minutes or so.

And then I came to a screeching halt.

One thing that MYOB does when you do an upgrade (and about every 6 months thereafter) is activate and/or confirm your files and your installation of the software are legitimate. I don’t have an issue with that… as long as it works! But it didn’t work for me. And nor did a few other things.

Fortunately, I made a backup and didn’t uninstall v19, so I can continue to use that until MYOB open their customer support lines on Wednesday 28 December.

Here are my issues with this upgrade:

  • I can’t confirm either of my MYOB data files via the internet. Without confirmation, I CAN’T USE MY OWN DATA. I have a legitimate installation of MYOB and pay almost $500 a year for their upgrade/support, yet I can’t access my own stuff and I can’t contact them as they’ve closed their support lines only a short time after releasing this new software. I understand that their staff need a Christmas break too, but even a skeleton staff would help — there must be many businesses that take advantage of the holidays to upgrade their business software. Also, there’s no ‘grace period’. Even Microsoft allow you to use their Office products for several days/instances before you must activate.
  • I can’t confirm via phone either as the phone # and serial # is not displayed, as documented in the Release Notes. I just get a blank screen with a title.
  • I couldn’t choose a network location for my library folder. I got error messages no matter what I put in for the network path. For example, I tried these \\<servername>, \\<servername>\myob (yes, that folder exists and is shared), and the IP address of my server, all as instructed. None worked, so I ended up choosing the default My Library.
  • When I selected My Library, there’s no indication of the file path for the installation of your MYOB files and no option to change the location! What other software does this?? I only discovered the file path by doing a Windows search; the path in Windows XP is the Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\MYOB… folder. (see this Support Note for the locations for other operating systems: http://myobaustralia.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/myobaustralia.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_faqid=33728&p_sid=JdhaHxMk&p_lva=33830) One user on the Forum said it most eloquently: “Libraries. Fixed location does not work for me and others. I want to keep my data where I want it. Remember it is my data, not yours. Makes backing up all my data simple.”

Other issues documented in the Release Notes are of concern:

  • Many existing features in v19 and earlier are not yet available in v2011. I don’t use any of these listed in the screen shot below, but if I did, I’d be mightily annoyed with MYOB that they seem to have released a half-baked product. Perhaps they were under pressure to get it out before the end of the year. Personally, I’d rather they waited and got it right and did the proper testing before releasing software that LOSES features people have come to rely on.
  • All your custom reports are gone. Phhttt. Gone. Just like that. And you can’t get them back or convert them — you have to set them up again. Platitudes like ‘…making this task a lot easier’ are worthless if you’re the poor bunny who relies on custom reports and has to set them all up again. I don’t have many — perhaps 6, only 1 of which I use regularly — but I’m still not happy that there’s no conversion option for these and that I’ll have to spend time setting them up again.
  • User accounts become inactive and you are forced to assign users to roles. They sell the package I use to small businesses only and sell it as a single user system. Often the only person using MYOB is also the owner of the business. One user. So why is MYOB forcing these small businesses to use roles? That seems like overkill. Sure, I can understand it for their medium to large business and enterprise packages, where many people can be using the same MYOB file. But not for the single person small businesses.
  • Any images you’ve used in your previous MYOB installations have to be relocated to a new folder and they CANNOT BE MORE THAN 200 KB is size! 200 KB? What year are we in — 1992??? What a ridiculous restriction. And there’s no explanation as to why, either.

Other potential issues reported on the MYOB Support Forum:

  • It’s dog slow (I can’t confirm this as I can’t get into my files, but it’s a common thread on the forum; many users have reverted to using v19)

For all sorts of other issues, see the MYOB Support Forum topics on the November 2011 upgrade: http://community.myob.com/t5/AccountRight-November-2011/bd-p/AccountRighNovember2011Upgrade

I don’t think I’ll be trusting my business and personal accounts to the latest version of MYOB for some time… It’s WAY too buggy. I wonder if I can send them an invoice for the 6+ hours I’ve wasted today on their forums and trying to get their software to work.

Update: I decided to open the sample file in the latest version of MYOB, and did some quick speed tests against the same sample file in v19. Here are my results:

  • Open Mary Jones’ card: v2011 – 10+ seconds; v19 – less than 1 second. (I re-opened it in the new version two or three times in case there was caching going on — each time it took more than 10 seconds to open)
  • Open the Spend Money window: v2011 – 7 seconds; v19 – less than 1 second
  • Enter a different date on the Spend Money window: Can’t overwrite existing and use periods as dividers in v2011, as you’ve been able to do in ALL previous versions of MYOB. You have to use ‘/’ separators or choose a date from the drop-down calendar. For those who do a LOT of data entry, this will frustrate the hell out of them.
  • Entering time billing information takes forever…
  • Generating an invoice: v2011 – 10+ seconds; v19 – 2 seconds
  • Processing payroll: v2011 – 30+ seconds; v19 – less than 5 seconds

The program is definitely MUCH prettier. But its functionality and performance leave a LOT to be desired. Pretty NEVER trumps performance, in my book.

Update 27 December 2011: It took nearly 5 minutes to get my Desktop displayed after booting up and logging on this morning. I recall seeing something about slow boot times as a result of installing MYOB AccountRight 2011 in the forums yesterday, so will restart my computer again to see if that was a one-off. If it wasn’t, I’ll try a system restore back to where I was before I installed MYOB…. The restart was at normal speed, so I’ll hold off on that system restore.

[Links last checked December 2011]


  1. Hi, this is Liam from MYOB Customer Support.

    I see you are experiencing some issues with our new version of AccountRight and are understandably frustrated. As you are aware, several problems unfortunately slipped through our rigorous quality assurance process. This situation is obviously not an ideal one, and our product development team is working hard to rectify it as our most urgent priority.

    One of the advantages of moving to a new platform for this latest AccountRight version is that we can be much more agile with our product updates (which are a common occurrence in the software industry). As you mentioned we released one of these shortly after the new software was released. Please know that we plan to release more of these over the coming months.

    MYOB relies on customer feedback when producing fixes and improvements for our software, and we are closely monitoring and responding to all comments. We would love to hear from you in person to further explore your needs. Note that our support team has not shut down for the Christmas break, though we did take the public holidays. Please call us on 1300 555 123 between 7.30am-9.30pm. You can also contact us via LiveChat by going to http://myob.com.au/supportnotes and clicking on the ‘ask a question’ or LiveChat links.

    Speak to you soon.

  2. Great report Liam – I have gone back to version 19 and going to request an extesnion on my surport plan as I pay it to get an update.
    its a terrible upgrade and I have no idea why they released it. I have offered for many years to test there product but they test it on 2 accountants who have no idea and not a person like me who using it all day every day and I do not have the time for pages to open or extra key stroke

  3. Entirely agree with you. I had similar problems including slowness.

    Pretty? Yup.

    Perform? Big fat resounding NO.

    I’ve gone back to the previous version (cannot ever remember doing that with software before).

  4. […] slowness of the software, and advising anyone who can to go back to V19.6. Needless to say, after my fruitless experience over Christmas trying to install and activate the new version and reading hundreds of forum posts berating MYOB for a really crappy software version and for […]

  5. Hello All,
    I too upgraded and tried to use it for a 10 to 15 of minutes…. Literally. And decided I do not have time for this cr@p it was slow and I don’t think pretty and also backward in every way that I checked.
    Small font unable to change slow, should be super fast. V19 runs rings around it. I will not be creating new form or reports we should only have to do that once not our problem they were to lazy to think of a way to upgrade our forms.

    If they want to keep clients they should never have released it!! It needs to be recalled quick smar!!!

    Just like you would a faulty car! Because it is faulty……

  6. Performance is extremely poor. I was spent all day installing it and fixing all the form. After another day of entering data, frustrated with the speed and many function not work properly and have to re-link many account and just to be told my the technician that i should go back to the old version if i’m not happy with the new one. Absolutely a disgrace, now i have waste 2 fullday of work and about to wast another 2 days to re-enter everything into the V19.6. and re-installed V19.6. Not a very happy customer here…

  7. Great comments I did the same and was wondering If I should give it another go with the view they may have fixed it but not by the above comments
    is there anyone using it would appreciate the feed back

  8. I have just downloaded the Sp3 version with fixes and have only noticed a small improvement in speed or should I say crawl, It still does not seem to have anywhere to make the font bigger and the screens look pale and hard to see. You really have to squint to see the difference in parts of the screen shots.
    The headings in all screens seem to lap over and cover some of the icons, which by the way look like a child has designed them. Hardly a professional accounting package. I don’t see why I should have to change my computer appearance when it suits every other software that I run…. Specially V19.6.

  9. I have been an MYOB user for almost 20 years, and until the arrival of v2011, had regarded MYOB as the best software, of any type, I had ever used. I had never had a problem and had never had to contact the help desk. It was bullet proof. Since the arrival of v2011 I have tried on 3 occasions to try to persevere with v2011 but have now given up. On the last occasion, I rang the MYOB help desk and after waiting on line for 25 minutes was answered by a very patient and understanding MYOB staff member, she recommended I go back to v19.6 for the foreseeable future.

    Why did I have to ring the help desk to get this recommendation? Surely, if v2011 is that bad (and I think it is) why haven’t MYOB contacted all their users and recalled v2011, or at least told them to go back to v19.6 until all the problems with v2011 had be sorted out? Now I’ve just received a bill for $714 to renew my MYOB Cover. This is not good enough MYOB!!

  10. Yes, you are right Pete, this is not good enough, they have been talking about this product for so long and put off bringing out a few times.
    Problem is we weren’t complaining about the old version it was doing a great job and need just a few changes to keep up to date with business.

    We should also be offered a choice of whether we want to upgrade or pay a smaller fee to just get the tax tables as most of my clients hate upgrading all the time and needing to learn it all again…..

    They might have been in business for years and have come a long way just to be doing there bookkeeping by computer without have to relearn every year.

    They are trying to run a business not learn new computer software. This might be the only time they use a computer, they have factories or panel beating workshops or carpenters, plumbers etc

    Time to stand up for ourselves I think!!!

  11. Great comments – makes me stick to my plan of not trying the upgrade again but why did I just pay $714 – what gets me about MYOB they wont admit there issue. when I went to the last seminar a few weeks ago nothing was said other than how wonderful they are but they are not . what other accounting systems are there that I can start to look at

  12. I’m really p*ssed at MYOB for charging $714 for ‘Cover’ too (see https://cybertext.wordpress.com/2012/04/11/myob-theyve-got-australian-businesses-caught-between-a-rock-and-a-hard-place/). Not only is it a slap in the face for an upgrade that you can’t use, but it’s a HUGE increase on previous years’ ‘Cover’ plans. But short of shifting to other software (hard for me as I need time billing, GST/BAS, etc.), we have no other choice but to pay it to get the tax tables. That’s a LOT for tax tables…

    And the cloud option that they are sprouting? NO WAY. I don’t trust anything in the cloud. It’s MY data and I want to be in control of where it lives. Slow internet speed (where I live we’re not even on the 2012-2015 NBN rollout, so who knows when/if we’ll get decent, reliable speed) means there’s no way I’d trust the cloud with my business data.

    My other concern is that at some point they will no longer support v19.6 for tax tables etc. and we’ll be forced to go to this piece of v2011 cr*p. Hopefully all the issues will be fixed by then, but I doubt it… Their track record over the past few months hasn’t been good…


  13. I have been told u can buy myob tax tables on the internet that will upgrade not sure how but its something I may look into

  14. […] I had installed it on my Windows XP machine back in December 2011, but didn’t get to do more with it than test it on the sample company files. After the debacle with the release, I decided to continue using v19.6. […]


  16. Hi Denise

    This is NOT the MYOB Forum and I’m not affiliated with MYOB — I’m just an unhappy customer like you. I suggest you contact MYOB directly or post specific details of your concerns to their support forum.

    And yes, I’m still on v19.6 and won’t switch until the performance issues are sorted. Nothing I read on the forums indicate that MYOB have made much inroads into this.


  17. Hi

    Over the last week I have tried to load the new version of myob on two seperate computers for two different people but have experienced the same problem on both. After the extremely slow load & upgrade time I then found I had to immediately confirm the file. First computer didn’t have internet connection at the time so opted for phone confirmation only to find it doesn’t give you the phone number let alone any other details, gave up after several hours of trying to get support. Second computer actually displayed the serial number, but it was the serial number from the previous version (18)installed on that computer & obviously it had copied that at the time of upgrading as we had entered the new serial number that came with new program. Surprise surprise wouldn’t confirm. Attempted to call myob support, actually got to speak to someone, explained the situation only to be told that it was a technical question & to call that number. Customer service sucks when they can’t transfer you. Called the technical services number only to get a recorded message, “due to the high level of calls we are unable to place you in the queue please call back later” I wonder why. Glad I don’t pay for cover. Ended up telling both people to revert to their previous versions & just override the tax amounts for employees. Very unhappy at this point after recommending & using MYOB for the last 13 years.

  18. Worst product release ever! I’m moving companies for the next financial year. Waited for so long for MYOB to update their dated software and this is the cr.p we get?

  19. you should still be able to get the tax tables for 19.6 if you have paid for the upgrade- I welcome your comments as I am not going to try again and will continue with 19.7 until I find something else . MYOB service and customer relations is disapointing. but they just dont care

  20. I have using myob since v3 ( 21 years ago) . Always had multiple user network issues with a large file and now the performance issue. Im not moving to the cloud and im not impressed MYOB! . Starting to think you are becoming like Vodafone… Empty promises.

  21. Can anybody comment on the current alternatives? Is quickbooks an option? easy to convert to? etc?

    My biggest issue with this (I haven’t even installed it yet) is the fact you can’t store the data files on a proper server (only on windows PC’s, and just because MS call it Windows Server, does NOT make it a server, a NAS, or SAN, or even Linux file server would be a server, but MYOB won’t allow you to store your data file there).

  22. I can only say I am sorry I didn’t know of these issues before making the mistake of purchasing V20. I have been using MYOB for 22 years and have always found it to be user friendly and easy for small business owners, who are not accountants, to use and understand. This version is ugly!! Everything previously commented on, I can only confirm x 500%. Who on earth designed it, certainly not the people using it on a day to day basis. Can any future upgrades be trusted. I will never recommend or praise MYOB again!

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