1.3. About this Book

This manual’s goal is to save you time. It will get you started using GnuCash as quickly as possible.

Each chapter follows a simple format. A chapter begins with a Concepts discussion which introduces general themes and terminology, addressed and used within that chapter. How-To sections, which address specific procedures follow. Finally, a Putting It All Together section ends the chapter by giving detailed, concrete examples.

Beginning users will find the Concepts sections very helpful. They provide a reference for good ways to track your finances, and serve as a general introduction to financial background and terminology. Experienced users can flip to the How-To sections to quickly scan procedures. These sections provide to-the-point steps for accomplishing specific tasks. The Putting It All Together sections present real-world examples in the form of a tutorial. Beginning with creation of a file in Chapter 2, The Basics, each successive chapter builds on the previous chapter’s tutorial.

This manual is organized into 3 main parts:

Getting Started provides you with the most basic information needed to begin using GnuCash. The chapters in this section explain concepts that are fundamental to using GnuCash. New users of GnuCash should familiarize themselves with the information in these chapters to get you up and running:

Managing Personal Finances addresses common applications and features of GnuCash in greater detail. You will see more specific cases, based on frequently asked questions about applying GnuCash to everyday situations. Here are the applications and features covered in this part:

Managing Business Finances discusses the use of GnuCash in business accounting:

This manual also includes several appendices, which contains extra information you might want to know:

Last, but not least, a glossary and index help you quickly locate topics.