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Battle Plan Company books on the verge of rebellion? Take command with new accounting software.

By Cassandra Cavanah

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

It only takes being in business for a few months to realize howimportant it is to know exactly what's going on with yourbooks. Fortunately, there are many accounting programs that helpyou keep track of monies coming in and going out, not to mentionmanaging inventory, setting budgets, analyzing profitability,handling payroll and more.

A few years ago, Intuit's QuickBooks was the only game intown for small-business owners who didn't want to wade througha lot of accounting mumbo-jumbo to computerize their books. NowIntuit's competitors, Peachtree and DacEasy, are catching upwith QuickBooks in terms of ease of use. Both companies are bigplayers in the accounting software arena, but until recently, theirprograms were too complex for novices to grasp.

All the programs reviewed here are designed to run under Windows95 and NT, but they can also work under Windows 3.1; Macintoshversions are available as well.

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