Tuesday, December 1, 2009

2.0.9 Released

I am releasing this without much changes, because I believe it's now at stable enough state that I can release this as an official "Beta" at SourceForge.net.

Change Log
  • Hidden the console log and created a system tray icon where user can right click and terminate the application, or open a new dsBudget window on a browser.
  • Made the mechanism to save the document little bit more efficient.
  • Updated the installer so that it will use the document location stored in the dsbudget.conf by default


  1. This is AWESOME. Such a tremendous amount of development - this is really coming together.

    I definitely think it's ready for "beta" at this point.

    I know wasn't comfortable using dsBudget at all for my regular day-to-day budget adjustments until I think 2.0.6, and even then I was a little worried about it. But I knew that I wouldn't see a lot of potential bugs if I didn't take a slight leap of faith. Either way, I've been backing up my file like a crazy person.

    Anyway, I've been fully comfortable using dsBudget for my everyday budgeting since the last couple of 2.0.7 versions.

    I know the tray icon seems like a small adjustment, but to me it makes a BIG difference in the secure feeling of the program. Command prompts look scary - makes you think about old-school viruses and the like.

    Excellent work man ... you seem to out-do yourself daily.


  2. I just wanted to send a word of praise for your great budgeting program. While there's a lot of additional functionality that I'd love to see, it's truly an innovative interface of sorts that really does allow me to see the overall picture of things.

    I certainly look forward to watching your progress, and as a fellow Software Engineer at the University of Kansas, I certianly can appreciate the work that you put into this project.


  3. Hi there,

    I've been using your software since 2007, and it's been the best budgeting software I've found so far for my own purposes (specifically being able to add a description for my purposes, so I remember what they are and if I had already entered them!). I just today downloaded the version for windows. Kudos for all your great work.

    However, there are a couple of changes that I would love to see.

    1. What happened to the tab/feature that let you know the total amount of money spent/saved for the month? I REALLY loved that feature alot, and unless I just am not seeing it, it seems like you got rid of that?

    2. Some online functionality (not an engineer, so have no idea how difficult this might be), so I could enter in expenses when not at home.

    3. A place set aside for "pay yourself first" without making "savings" an expense, like I have to set it as now.

    4. A way to have different sources of income listed and tallied positively, instead of negatively (as deductions). For example, I will sometimes perform odd jobs, receive income as gifts, or get cashback checks. I would love to be able to have a way to have those amounts add up automatically. Because I like to keep track of what those things are, and their amounts, currently, I mark them as deductions, include their info / income amount in the description field, and then set the deduction amount as $0. I feel like this could be much easier.

    5. As you can tell, I'm very focused on saving, so I have another request to that end. I'd love a page that tallied the amount of money saved (or lost, I suppose), over the course of a year, listed out by month, so I don't have to manually add and subtract each month's totals. That would be very helpful in helping me to achieve my savings goals.

    6. Also, if there was a way to differentiate long-term expenses (such as tuition) that are anomolies from the day-to-day expenses, that would be great. It's just hard to look at a -$2000 budgeting tally for a month, just because I had to pay tuition in that particular month.

    Anyway, even with all these suggestions, again, I find your software to be the best out there -- including Mint.com, Yodlee Moneycenter, and the myriad spreadsheets I've tried. Keep up all the good work!


  4. Also, one other suggestion: While the graphs are useful, they take up a lot of space. Having to hide each one individually is sort of a pain. If you were able to auto-hide / auto-show all of them at once, that would be much easier!

    Thanks again,

  5. Financista:

    dsBudget is still under development, so there are at least a few things that haven't been implemented yet.

    I've got a few comments on your remarks ... Sorry for the length of this, hopefully this will be of some help. If you have any questions, you can also feel free to email me at nate@nate-silva.com


    1) "feature that let you know the total amount of money spent/saved"
    I can tell you, the developer (Soichi) has already mentioned his intention to include the report features you're missing from SimpleD. In addition to this blog, there's also a discussion forum where you'll notice a thread about this very issue:

    2) "online functionality"
    I've actually brought up this issue myself, as I at least like to have the ability to update expenses from my work machine, and also my home one. I know I'd like to be able to post the program to my webspace and access it that way, but a lot of other folks don't seem to like having their stuff online.

    I've used two solutions for this issue ... hopefully one of them might suit you.

    One way is to simply install the program to a thumb drive, and take it with you. This way, the program files live on the thumb drive, and you don't even need to install the program on the various machines.

    The other way, which is now how I prefer to go about it, is to utilize a free service called DropBox (www.dropbox.com). Essentially, it's an automatically updating online folder that's linked to any machines you choose.

    I have two machines linked. As soon as I update the budget on one computer, DropBox will update the files online, and carry them over to the other machine. There's a couple more specifics with using Dropbox with dsBudget ... just ask and I'll elaborate.

  6. Financista (continued):

    3) "pay otherself first"
    You mentioned having to enter in savings as an expense .. I still do this myself in dsBudget out of habit from SimpleD. But I'm thrilled to say that dsBudget features the ability to enter negative values (unlike SimpleD). This means that if you wanted pay yourself $200 each month for savings, you can enter that 200 as a new income item under the income section as "-200". This would prevent the need to enter it as an expense in the budgeting categories, or as a deduction on your paycheck.

    4) "different sources of income listed and tallied positively"
    I'm confused by this ... you have always been able to enter as many incomes on a page as you want, you're not restricted to only one. In dsBudget, there's a link called "Add new income".

    Whenever I get a gift, or any kind of unplanned income, I simply put in a new income item for it. It's added automactically along with your paycheck income and everything else.

    5) "page that tallied the amount of money saved"
    This might be a slightly primative solution to your thoughts, but since I also like to keep track of my savings, perhaps this might help.

    By no means are you restricted to only having pages represent a given month. A page can be fashioned to be any period of time, even if that period is indefinite.

    Along with a page for each biweekly paycheck, I have a "savings" page that keeps track of all deductions I've taken from my regular income for the purposes of savings or funds.

    For example, suppose I've taken $200 out of my current paycheck that I want to save. After making the deduction from the current month's page, I then goto my savings page, and enter in a new income item in the amount of $200. Normally I'll also put down the date I've done this in the name of the income item.

    Then, I divide those funds any way I see fit on the savings page. Personally I save money for 5 purposes, so I have a seperate budgeting categories ... one for each of those 5.

    This way, I'm able to add money to my savings whenever I choose, and keep track of the spending of those savings through the budgeting categories. The savings page is a constant tally of the amounts I've saved and retained for my various needs. Here's a screen shot sample of my savings page in dsBudget:

    The only thing that became problematic after a while was the LONG list of income items. I would have about 8 to 12 of them over the course of a month since I only pull the money in once I'm certain I can afford to save it. So after a while I started adding up income items that were really old, and combined them into a "-------" entry that you'll notice at the top of the income list in that image.

    6) "differentiate long-term expenses"
    I actually attack this issue in the same manner as above. For example, every summer I goto a music camp, the cost of this is $750. Since I know this expense will be coming, and when I have to pay it ... I save the appropriate fraction amount out of each paycheck. I enter the amounts as income into my savings page. When the time comes to pay the whole $750, I mark it down as an expense from the vacation category on the savings page.

    This keeps extremely large expenditures out of my regular pay period pages ... and helps to avoid having large, ontime expenses from messing up my normal plans.

  7. Financista: said...
    "While the graphs are useful ... if you were able to auto-hide / auto-show all of them at once, that would be much easier"

    I took the liberty of submitting an enhancement request here:

    This is where you can submit requests for bugs to be repaired, or suggest enhancements.

    I like a lot of your observations ... I'm thrilled to see others are getting as much out of Soichi's (the developer) work as I am.