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TaxACT Enterprise Installation

TaxACT Enterprise Edition is designed for tax preparers who want to store, share, and collaborate with others on the same existing network.  It is great for offices with multiple preparers who wish to share workloads, data, and responsibilities.  The program takes advantage of your existing network and allows for a shared client list, shared tax returns, and administrator as well as user level security.

First Step - Sharing Data on Your Network

In order to fully take advantage of the networking features of TaxACT Preparer's Enterprise Edition, you must correctly install the software to your existing network. You must first share data locations between the computers on which you will use the TaxACT program.

How to Share a Drive

Sharing a drive between computers requires that you 1) Allow the drive to be shared on the computer that hosts it, and 2) connect to it with the other computers.

  1. You must first share the folder on the Host computer.
    1. Open your Windows Explorer and locate the drive or folder you wish to share. You can create a new folder if you wish prior to sharing it.
    2. Right-click the drive or folder and then click on Sharing and Security.
    3. Choose the Share this folder on the Network option.
  2. You must then map to the shared location on ALL systems that will be accessing the files, including the "host" if applicable.
    1. Open My Computer.
    2. On the Tools menu, click Map Network Drive.
    3. In Drive, type or select the drive letter to map to the shared location.
    4. In Folder, type the path to the network location or click Browse to locate the shared location
    5. Click Finish.

Further assistance on sharing network resources can be found using the Windows Help function or at the Microsoft Support Knowledge Base

Things to Keep in Mind

  • If you are interested in installing the Enterprise Edition on a network drive, or putting their Client Data on a network drive, that network drive MUST be a mapped drive for all computers.
  • To share Client Data among multiple users on a network drive, all users MUST be mapped to that network drive in EXACTLY the same way.
    For Example: If the program is installed on the host on drive G:, then all other clients must map the shared resource to drive specification G:

Installing TaxACT Enterprise

There are two locations important to the TaxACT Enterprise program. The first is the location where the program will be installed and the second is where the Client Data folder will be found. By understanding these two locations and the options they provide, a preparer can get the most benefit from the sharing capabilities of the Enterprise program.

Installation Types

During the installation of the TaxACT Enterprise program, you are asked if you want to install on a Single-Computer or a Multi-Computer configuration.

  • Single-Computer Installation - You can first define your installation location of the program and then the location of the folder that will store your Client Data.
  • Multi-Computer Installation - Allows you to install as a Server and as a Client.
    • Server Installation - This option will install the program to a shared location. The program will be installed to the folder specified and you can then choose the Client Data location as well. If the folders do not exist, they will be created.
    • Client Installation - This option will allow you to locate the program installed previously by the Server Installation. If you specify a folder other than what was used when installing with the Server Installation, an error will result.

      Using this option, Windows shortcuts are created on the client computer and the program will remain in the shared network location. The client computer must be connected to the network in order to run the program.

    Note: If you wish to install the TaxACT program locally on all PC's that will be sharing data, you should use the Single-Computer Installation option and then simply specify the network shared location for the Client Data folder only.

Location for TaxACT Program

When installing as a Single-Computer Installation or the Server Installation, you are first asked where you would like to place the TaxACT program and related application files.  When installing using the Client Installation however, you must locate the folder where the program has already been installed. If you specify a folder where the program has not yet been installed, an error will occur.

The "Installation Location" is where the TaxACT program and related files are stored.  The default location that TaxACT automatically chooses is:

       C:\TaxACT\TaxACT 20XX Preparer's Edition

When prompted in the installation process for TaxACT Enterprise, you may change this location to any location you wish. This location may be...

  • A local drive such as C: or D: with your personalized folder such as My Tax Programs or other folder name.
  • A network drive location.

When installing the TaxACT Enterprise program to a location other than the default, some things must be kept in mind:

  • When an installation location is specified and the program is not already there, the TaxACT program will complete a full installation to that location.
    • If you want multiple computers to share the same program files on the network, you must choose to install each of them to the exact same location.
    • If you install on a number of computers and specify a different network location, no matter how "slightly" different they are, you will have multiple network installation locations.
  • If the program has already been installed to the location specified, most of the files will be updated however a "full" installation will not be completed.
    • When installing to multiple computers, by specifying the exact same location on all computers, each computer will be accessing the same program files, ensuring consistency with updates and installed components.

Choosing a Location for your Client Data

Just as you can direct the installation location of the TaxACT program, you can also specify where your client data will be located.

The location for your Client Data can be on a local drive which cannot be shared, or on a network drive which allows for sharing. When you are asked to specify the location for your client information, click the Browse button and then provide the folder where your Client Data should be.

Each computer sharing information will need to use the same path for the shared drive. For example, if your folder for Client Data is...
     T:\Share\Client Data
... then all computers must be mapped in the exact same way. Any variations will cause client returns to be unavailable to some computers.

 

Changing Locations After Installation

After TaxACT has been installed, you may change the location of your Client Data folder or other folders where information is kept. By opening your TaxACT program, clicking on Preparer, Master Information, and then on Directories, the folders that you can change are:

  • Client Data - This is where your client returns and preparer settings are stored.
  • PDF - If you choose to create PDF copies of your client returns, this is where they are saved.
  • Log Files - Log files contain information about the TaxACT program and changes and updates that are made to the program itself.
  • Auto-Backups - Automatic Backups of your returns go into this folder. It is important NOT to have your Client Data and Auto-Backups folders be in the same location.
  • E-files - When you choose to e-file, the information transmitted to the IRS is stored in this folder.
  • Temp Files - Temporary files created and removed during the normal function of the TaxACT program.

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