Many firms would like to be able to access their QuickBooks Pro/Primer file from home, office or the road. Recent drops in the cost of cloud computing now make this more affordable and easier than ever before.
The process works by purchasing a virtual computer from a hosting company. If you are not familiar with the term "virtual computer", then think of it as one very powerful computer that can be segmented into many virtual computers. Millions of companies use virtual computers when the task at hand (like running QuickBooks) doesn't require the capacity of a complete server.
We have used and had good results with hosting QuickBooks in the cloud using two hosting companies: Atlantic.net and Colossus Cloud. Atlantic is slightly more expensive, but offers solid state drives. For hosting QuickBooks, you can get an adequate virtual computer from Colossus starting at about $40 per month.
The technology used to access and work on these virtual computers is called "Remote Desktop" (RD) and it works for both Mac and PCs. This technology has been around for decades, but it has gotten better in that it can print to your local printer and support multiple monitors.
RD is simple to use. All PCs have a Microsoft program called "Remote Desktop" that allows the computer to connect to another computer. Open the program, enter the web address of the other computer, enter your log-in and voila you'll be on the remote desktop. If you use a Mac, you'll need to download the free Microsoft Remote Desktop app from the App Store, but...