How Do I Resort Lists?

Lists are one of the foundations of QuickBooks, and from time to time they can become out of order.  That’s when they need to be resorted.  Some common indicators that it’s time to resort your lists include:

  • the list itself is out of order
  • an element is missing
  • new entries in a list appear at the top of the list instead of in their sorted order
  • you can’t turn on the account number preference
  • selecting a Customer:Job, Vendor, or Employee in a Center fails to display existing transactions for that name
  • Names don’t properly auto-fill when entering a Name filter on the Advanced tab of the Edit->Find… function

Resorting any list will undo any special order you’ve applied to the list, and this activity can’t be done in multi-user mode.  It’s always a good idea to backup your company file before undertaking an action that can’t be undone.

There are 8 lists that can be resorted. They are:

  1. Customers:Jobs
  2. Vendors
  3. Employees
  4. Other Names
  5. Accounts
  6. Items
  7. Memorized Reports
  8. Memorized Transactions

Since this technique is often used to address possible data corruption, we’ll outline the most efficient technique to resort multiple lists, but you can also choose to resort an individual list by opening up a Center and right clicking on a list element.

The first 4 lists are collectively referred to as Names or Entities, and there’s an easy way to resort these 4 lists:

  1. Open the Write Checks window by clicking on Banking->Write Checks or using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + W
  2. In the Pay to the Order of field, click Ctrl + L
  3. Opt to include inactive list entries by clicking the Include Inactive checkbox
  4. Click the Name button and choose Re-sort List from the menu
  5. Click Ok to resort the lists
  6. Uncheck the Include Inactive checkbox

The screenshot below shows the combined Name list in Step 4:

Our related article explains how to provide easy access to this combined list of all Names.

Resorting the Chart of Accounts and Items lists follow similar procedures, except each of these lists will have to be resorted individually.  To access the Chart of Accounts, click the Lists->Chart of Accounts menu selection or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + A.  To access the Items list, click Lists->Items.  Opt to include inactive list entries, resort the list from the button in the lower left of the window, and uncheck the Include Inactive checkbox before proceeding to the next list.

Resorting Memorized Reports and Memorized Transactions are similar to the above steps, except there’s no need to include inactive list entries since they’re not allowed on these lists.  To access Memorized Reports, click the Reports->Memorized Reports->Memorized Report List menu selection; to access Memorized Transactions, click Lists->Memorized Transactions or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + T.

After resorting lists, close and reopen your company file (.qbw) to insure that all changes are successfully written to disk.

Resorting lists is discussed in this Intuit knowledge base article.

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