Controlling the Way Money Handles

By: Stephen L. Nelson, CPA

The newest versions of Microsoft Money make heavy use of online services and Internet connectivity. But you'll probably want to learn how to exercise a certain amount of control over the way Money works online.

Controlling Money's Connections to Online Services

You can specify how Money downloads statements from any financial institutions you are using for online services. To do this, choose the Tools menu's Options command. When Money displays the Options dialog box, click the Online Services tab.

The Downloading Statements check boxes let you specify two settings. The first check box lets you indicate that you want to add a description to the memo field for any downloaded transactions that include a description from the financial institution. This is self-explanatory.
The other check box, if selected, tells Money that when it downloads transactions
from a financial institution, it should compare those downloaded transactions to transactions
you have already entered in the account register. Leave this check box
selected. You do want Money to look for transactions in your account register first. In
this way, Money won't, as a result of downloading an online bank statement, reenter a transaction.
If you tell Money to look for matching transactions, however, you need to specify how
far back Money should look. The Match Transactions Within A X Day Range text
box lets you make this specification.
Money also includes an Online Registration check box. If selected, this check box tells
Money to remind you to register when the Money program starts. If you don't want
to be reminded to register, simply clear this check box.

Controlling Money's Internet connection
You can control which types of information Money retrieves using the Internet and
how Money connects to the Internet. To exercise this type of control, choose the Tools
menu's Options command. When Money displays the Options dialog box, click the
Connection tab.

Setting Internet Connection Options

The Internet Connection check boxes let you specify when Money should connect to
the Internet, and in the case of America Online users, how Money connects to the Internet. All of these check boxes are self-explanatory. For example, the first check box lets you specify whether or not you want to get your financial information from the Internet once a day when you start Money.

When you click the Connection Settings button in the Internet Connection area,
Money displays the Internet Properties dialog box. The Internet Properties dialog box
is a Windows Control Panel tool that allows you to make changes to your computer's
Internet connection. We are not going to describe here how to make changes using
the Internet Properties dialog box. A discussion of the Internet Properties dialog box,
first of all, isn't really necessary because programs like Money automatically make
changes to your Internet properties. Second of all, making changes to the Internet
Properties dialog box is really an advanced Windows users' topic.

Setting Browser Options

The Browser buttons let you specify how Money displays web pages. If you click the
Browse The Internet From Within Money option button, for example, Money
displays web pages inside the Money program window. If, instead, you click the
Always Use My Default Browser To Browse The Internet option button, Money opens
your web browser program and then displays web pages inside its program window.

Money Management
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