The accounting software industry is dominated in the UK by Sage and the US by QuickBooks. Both companies would have their users to pay yearly fees for updates and maintenance, similar to modern central heating systems – and prone to break down at any moment!

Personally I haven’t upgraded since I bought QuickBooks in 2003 – it worked then and it still works today with no problems at all but for the future, I was concerned that my hardware might fail, leading to a new PC and a new operating system that couldn’t run the old software any more.
My solution is to run the whole thing on my iMac using WIndows XP in a VMware Fusion virtual machine which I plan to never update. I don’t care what Microsoft or Intuit try to sell me – for a small company like mine, it works and I will leave it well alone.
That’s one of the great things about VMware, once a system is working it can be frozen in space & time. There’s no need to ride the expensive software update merry-go-round. My QuickBooks is nearly ten years old but it’s running better than ever on my brand new iMac – what more could I want?

I also find that running XP without a network connection and on my iMac’s SSD makes it really fast. I can still print to PDF or through the shared Mac printer and I can drag files to and from the Mac desktop but with no connection to the network, there’s no looking for updates and Windows just gets on with the job.