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PostBooks is an open source accounting and enterprise resource planning business system geared toward small to medium sized businesses. It is released under a CPAL license and is thus free software. PostBooks is maintained as an open source project on GitHub but is based on the commercially licensed xTuple ERP system created by xTuple, a private software company based in Norfolk, VA.
Translations: Spanish, Chinese (Simplified), French, Portuguese, Russian, Turkish
The name PostBooks is derived from three aspects of the project. First "Post" alludes to the common concept of posting journals in accounting. Second, the name refers to the project's technological roots as it runs exclusively on the PostgreSQL database. Finally, the name suggests PostBooks as a logical step of progression for businesses that have outgrown the popular QuickBooks small business accounting product by Intuit.
PostBooks is the foundation of the xTuple ERP software solution developed and marketed by the company of the same name beginning in the year 2000. All of the xTuple ERP Editions are targeted toward small to midsize companies. PostBooks is the Free and Open Source Edition; Commercial offerings are the Standard Edition and the Manufacturing Edition. The company adopted a "community code" model, meaning that customers who purchase or subscribe to licenses for the product have access to view and modify the source code. Unlike open source software, however, the code was not made publicly available.
In July 2007 the company formally known as OpenMFG simultaneously announced the change of their corporate name from OpenMFG to xTuple and the launch of the PostBooks open source project at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention in Portland, Oregon. The project was originally to be released under the "xTuple License," a derivative of the Mozilla Public License, but xTuple was quickly criticized for introducing "yet another" open source license variant However, at that very same conference SocialText announced the release of the new Open Source Initiative approved Common Public Attribution License (CPAL). Two days later xTuple switched PostBooks to CPAL and became the second company to adopt this license which is currently the license in use today.
The first stable release of PostBooks was version 2.2.0 announced in September 2007 when its code was first made publicly available on SourceForge. PostBooks was voted project of the month on Source Forge in March 2013. Since then source code management has been moved to GitHub.
PostBooks is divided into 7 functional modules: Accounting, Sales, CRM, Manufacture, Purchase, Inventory and Products. It supports multi-currency and multi-language capability and is therefore suited for international deployment. All modules are integrated into a single common code base in the client, and reside in a single database schema on the server. The client for both PostBooks and its older and more comprehensive commercial sibling, OpenMFG, is identical. The difference between the two is completely managed in the database schema where the OpenMFG database includes additional tables and functions to support larger enterprises. At login the client checks to see whether it is logging into a PostBooks, Standard, or Manufacturing database, and changes its menu structure accordingly.
PostBooks has a mature and established community. While the project is technically maintained on GitHub, most community activity is initiated at the xTuple hosted community website where additional forums and technical documents are available.
PostBooks is written using English as the base language but has been or is being translated into several languages by the community at large including Spanish, French, German, Russian, Turkish, Chinese and Portuguese.
- Sean Kerner (2007-07-27). "OpenMFG Takes on QuickBooks With PostBooks". internetnews.com. Retrieved 2007-07-27.
- Matt Asay (2007-07-25). "OpenMFG transforms into xTuple, but misses the open-source train". CNET. Retrieved 2007-07-25.
- Matthew Aslett (2007-08-03). "Open source ERP firm second CPAL licensee". cbronline.com. Retrieved 2007-08-03.
- Ned Lilly (2007-09-06). "xTuple releases OpenMFG and PostBooks 2.2". PostgreSQL.org. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
- John Rogelstad (2013-07-18) We've Moved! xtuple.org. Retrieved 2013-07-18.