Lock Date Icon

Suggestion re lock date:

Could we please have an icon at the top of the page, perhaps by the user’s name showing whether the lock date is in place or not?

I sometimes need to remove the lock date to edit an entry, for example if a check posted as pending before the lock date has now cleared, or if I need to amend an invoice description. Whenever I remove the lock date, I always worry that I may forget to relock when I’m done and I occasionally do forget!

It would be really helpful if there was a visible lock off / lock on icon to ensure people don’t forget to reinstate the lock date, perhaps something similar to the orientation lock on an iPhone.


A suggestion to enable the clearing of pending transactions even after lock date is in place has been suggested already Allow Cheque clearing function even after lock date

Just remember to lock the system after you edit your transaction.

Yes, I just used the cheque clearing function as an example.

Yes, I know I need to remember to re lock when I’m done, which is easy when you are just amending one entry, but I often have a number of sales orders to update at a time, as I have a custom field that needs updating once an invoice has been issued or a payment made. Payments are often made in a different tax period, which means the lock date prevents me going back and updating easily.

It is quite easy to forget, or get carried away doing something else and leave the lock date unlocked. I’m just suggesting a simple safeguard… or at least it seems simple, but technologically Lubos might think otherwise.


I think this is probably easy. The program certainly knows if a lock date is in effect. I’ve put this into the ideas category.

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If it gets implemented, It should only be seen by administrators or users with full access. You don’t want limited users monitoring the status of the Lock date.

The normal way of checking something is locked is to look at the lock. When you need to be sure in practice you just check again.

I’m not convinced adding an icon somewhere adds much useful functionality.

Selective unlocking would be more useful imo. Examples of which are:

  • unlock for just the current administrator
  • unlock for the next 10 minutes

I agree with Patch. I think a better solution is to rather unlock for 30 minutes and only for users with that permission.

This would be more effective than having to manually unlock and relock.

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All of those are great ideas. But, from my experience with other software, there were two methods that worked best:

  1. Odoo uses two lock dates, one for all users (restricted users) and the other for advisors (administrators). So advisors can still work on periods locked for regular users.

  2. And it hurts to say this but, I think (Ehm) Quickbooks has the best implementation of lock dates. Everytime the lock date is edited you have to set a password that the system will ask for during every edit in the locked periods. (Note that you don’t need that password to change the lock date, you only need permissions for that; otherwise this may prove unwieldy)


I find it a hassle having to leave what I’m doing, go to settings, and click on lock date just to be sure I’ve locked the lock date… and then I get paranoid that I’ve forgotten and check when I don’t need to. Plus I have three different clients using Manager, so I have to remember to lock or check I’ve locked for three clients.

Unlocking for just the current administrator wouldn’t help much, as that’s me! Unlocking for a set period of time could work, but I don’t see the issue with also having a little icon at the top of the page, it doesn’t cause any harm and would be useful in giving some of us peace of mind.

Two separate lock dates for users and administrators could be helpful, as I have on occasion unlocked
the lock date for myself, only to have another user using the system at the same time clone an invoice and forget to update the date on the new invoice and because the system is unlocked the old date is accepted and then my bills end up in a mess, but I’d still want something to remind me to relock even if I had a separate lock date for administrators.

Re passwords being set for the lock date, I can’t say I like the sound of that at all… too cumbersome to have to enter a password for each edit, it would drive me crazy!

Once you try it, you will be hooked. In fact I’d go as far as to say that it would feel cumbersome to open the periods in the setting and the relock it. It’s the least work and the least risky.

I would prefer not because it does not address the under lying requirement well, nor is it good use of screen real estate / user interface design. To explain:

  • The underlying requirement is to minimise inadvertent modification of accounting records in old periods. Imo that is done by minimising the scope of any write access to old periods. This could be done by adding a check box to “Settings” → “Lock Date” screen titled “Temporary disable lock date for current user”. Checking this would enable the current user only to edit records prior to the lock date. The check box would be cleared on program restart, manually by this user, and possibly on a time out of 10 or 30 minutes.

  • The screen real estate / user interface issue is, displaying a locked icon never contains useful information. Locked is the normal program state so nothing needs to be done and the user does not need to think about it in this state. If you actually want a top level indication, then what is actually need is an unlock warning banner displayed only in the abnormal state, saying something like “Warning Lock date not active, transactions in old periods not protected”. Similar to batch delete and other potentially dangerous situations. Such a banner could be displayed for any user a lock date was not in force.

I strongly disagree with your idea about an unlock banner. Many users do not set lock dates at all. Why should they endure a constant warning for a feature they do not use?

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Because it protects them from inadvertently cloning a transaction from the past and forgetting to update the date for one thing. Something I have done myself. It also encourages good accounting practice getting users into the habit of locking the previous financial years.

I think that Patch has the right idea. Having a lock date as the normal program state is how it should be and there is just an option to temporarily unlock a previous financial year.

@dalacor, what is the point of requiring a lock date if there is a single user, whether on desktop, server, or cloud editions?

The number of users using the accounting program is not as relevant as you would think.

You are looking at it from the point of view that you are preventing basic users from changing previous financial years. That is one use of the lock date. Once you have “closed” the financial year and paid out the required VAT and Corporation etc taxes, you don’t want users making changes to previous financial years as this would affect your VAT and Corporation Tax figures which have already been submitted.

Another user case would be to prevent accidental creation/deletion/editing of previous years financial records to prevent discrepancies with tax calculated and paid.

So I could clone invoices for my clients from the previous financial years or I could clone a purchase invoice I made months ago to purchase the same items again. But I forget to update the date! Having the lock in place, shows me I am trying to update a previous financial year and I see this and click on today’s date accordingly. Cloning may not be the only area where accidental changes to previous financial years might ago, but is probably the most common one.

You want to be very aware that you are in effect altering a previous financial year’s transactions. Even though Manager does not use a formal closing procedure like old fashioned accounting programs where there was a whole process, you do actually need to “close” the previous financial year and have it “set” as otherwise what you have paid in VAT and Corporation Tax may no longer match what Manager says you owe. This is what the lock date achieves in conjunction with the start date.

It should be very rare that you need to change anything in a previous financial year (apart from year end accounting week). So why have the ability to accidentally alter your previous financial year. More than once, I have forgotten to update the date when cloning something.

It is good accounting practice to have a permanent lock date in place as 99.9% of the time you are only entering for the current financial year. It actually helps people who are not good with accounting to prevent them from making mistakes.

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I think the issue is being overcomplicated. We have a lock date system in place and I imagine in most cases the lock date is set by the administrator/s. What we have currently works, but I suggested a small icon that would not take up much space, showing an open or closed padlock would be a helpful little reminder to the administrator (in this case me and our accountant) that the lock date is in place, or that it is currently open.

I like the flexibility of the current system and would certainly not want it to become harder to set lock dates, or make them more restrictive. I have to open the lock date quite frequently, as I mentioned, since I have custom fields in my sales orders that need updating once I have converted one to a sales invoice and that only happens once a customer has paid, which may be a month or more after the sales order was raised and therefore the lock date often needs unlocking.

I agree a lock icon would only be necessary for those who have the ability to lock the system, so perhaps should only show according to user / administrator logged in.

If this is implemented in some form or another, I would like an option to make the display of lock date optional.

How so. Setting a Locked Date is purely a user option so how does it become “the normal program state”. How about a new Manager user, do they have this “normal program state”.

But what activates this warning ?
How does Manager constitute what an “old period” is, especially when it is a perpetual system. Some users utilise locked dates at the end of each quarter, but that doesn’t make the prior quarters of the current financial year “old periods”. You can’t use the Summary tab dates either, as they are only used for determining what data collection you want to currently display. For example, your financial year end maybe Dec 31, but you want the data displayed for the period Jul 1 to Mar 31. So where is is your “old period” to activate this banner.

But that is making the assumption that every user is using Manager for business purposes.
What about the thousands of users who don’t use Manager for business purposes, for example, the building of business financial models, why should they be forcibly imposed with this immaterial banner.

Hear Hear

Now you can’t get more simplistic than that and only gets activated when THE USER CHOOSES to utilise the option Setting > Locked Date and ticks the box - Display Lock Icon


That would be perfect!