Frequently Asked Questions - 2.0

Yes. IBANs are very long, bank account numbers. LedgerSMB has no problems storing, retrieving and using these without any issue.

Yes. SEPA (Single Euro Payments Area) requires support for very long bank account numbers (IBANs or International Bank Account Numbers). LedgerSMB can store and use these numbers without problems.

Assuming you have created a backup file using, you can restore your database using the command:

 $ pg_restore [options] your_backup.bak

It should be pointed out that it's not possible to restore a backup to a database with a different name than the one you made the backup from!

If the database to restore into doesn't exist: replace [options] with -C new_database.
If you want to restore replacing an existing database: replace [options] with --clean -C new_database.

Note: You need to restore the roles backup before restoring the data backup.

FAQ Category: 

The table below lists the compatibility of LedgerSMB versions with Perl versions. Products for which support has ceased due to End-of-Life date being reached are not listed and should not be used.

PostgreSQL compatibility
PostgreSQL 1.4.x 1.5 planned 1.6 planned
5.10 yes yes no
5.12 yes yes no
5.14 yes yes yes
5.16 yes yes yes
5.18 yes yes yes
5.20 yes yes yes
5.22 yes yes yes
5.24 yes yes yes

Versions 1.0, 1.1, 1.2 and 1.3 are not in this table due to the fact that they're past End of Life.

FAQ Category: 

In the '' administrative interface, there are 2 buttons:

  • Backup database
  • Backup roles

One creates a backup of the content of your database. The other creates a backup of the roles.

Roles are elements which are required to exist before creation of a database, and assign fine-grained access control.

When restoring, you need both files and you need to restore the roles before the database.

FAQ Category: 

The answer to this question depends on what using means to you.

As a user of the web application, yes, there should be absolutely no problem using a recent (as in: no more than 2 or 3 years old) web browser in order to take advantage of all the features available.

As a platform for running a LedgerSMB server, it's simply been too long since it has been last tested. You might be able to make it work at the expense of considerable effort. If you do, please comment on this FAQ or contact the mailing list to let us know about your process and results!

Those running a LedgerSMB server on the Windows platform - that we know of - do so with virtualization techniques such as VirtualBox.

Operating system: 

The short answer is that TeX doesn't know how to deal with UTF-8 (or rather non-ASCII) characters. XeTeX has been designed to work around these limitations. The easiest way to generate PDFs is to install Xe(La)TeX and use the 'xedemo' templates - these templates have been 'ported' from LaTeX to XeLaTeX.

Distribution specific install instructions listed below.

Debian / Ubuntu 

Install texlive-xetex that includes xelatex

apt-get install texlive-xetex

but you need to patch LaTeX::Driver
Install liblatex-{driver,encode,table}-perl for latex

apt-get install liblatex-{driver,encode,table}-perl

and libmoosex-followpbp-perl for Template::Plugin::Latex

apt-get install libmoosex-followpbp-perlafter that:

apt-get install libtemplate-plugin-latex-perl  (or cpan Template::Plugin::Latex)


LedgerSMB xelatex configuration

Install xelatex and change the LedgerSMB configuration from the menu:
System -> System Defaults -> Templates directory
Change to "xedemo"

Change a path

From the mailing list: (Chris Travers)
Right now, I am open to suggestions on a better approach, as the Template::Latex api's don't seem to work to do this, but I resorted to changing the paths in LaTeX::Driver::Paths directly (find the location with locate LaTeX/Driver/ This file gets written at installation time for the LaTeX::Driver module and so I consider it reasonably editable.

locate LaTeX/Driver/

If locate is not installed you can do:  find /usr . |grep "LaTeX/Driver/"
/usr/share/perl5/LaTeX/Driver/  ( Debian / Ubuntu )

Make a backup copy of  LaTeX/Driver/ (you have to have root priviliges to do this or use sudo)

cp /usr/share/perl5/LaTeX/Driver/ /usr/share/perl5/LaTeX/Driver/ the path to your path for LaTeX/Driver/

User your text editor to edit LaTeX/Driver/  (you have to have root priviliges to do this or use sudo)

In LaTeX/Driver/ change

$program_path{pdflatex} = '/path/to/pdflatex;


$program_path{pdflatex} = '/path/to/xelatex';


This is the error you get, if you do not change:
/usr/share/perl5/LaTeX/Driver/  (Debian path)  :


latex error - pdflatex exited with errors:
l.26 \RequireXeTeX
! Fatal fontspec error: "cannot-use-pdftex"
! The fontspec package requires either XeTeX or LuaTeX to function.
! You must change your typesetting engine to, e.g., "xelatex" or "lualatex"
! instead of plain "latex" or "pdflatex".
! See the fontspec documentation for further information.
! For immediate help type H <return>.
l.38 }


The utf8 character "hack fix"

Before making this change will UTF8 characters appear as squares in the PDF file. To print utf8 characters in pdf files, you must make the following change:

These are the steps:
su root
open /usr/share/perl5/LaTeX/
in your text editor
go to line 174 on Debian Squeeze (6.x) and line 176 on Debian Wheexy (7.x)
you see "write_file( ..." there

".tex", $source


".tex", {binmode=>':utf8'}, $source


Font fix

In order for Verdana to work, install the package ttf-mscorefonts-installer (Debian/Ubuntu)

apt-get install ttf-mscorefonts-installer

In versions 1.3.28 and up, the demo templates no longer depend on Verdana though, but use the non-proprietary Liberation font set, which can be installed using

apt-get install fonts-liberation


Code reference to LedgerSMB

The code for this is LedgerSMB/Template/


Active support

Versions 1.4 and higher are under active development and are supported by the community.

End of life

If you're looking for help on how to use EOL-ed versions, please try mailing the users mailing list. If you're looking someone to create bugfixes, please check with one of the parties providing commercial support.

Version 1.3 has been declared end-of-life on 2015-12-23. The last release in the series is 1.3.47. No further releases will be made by the community.

LedgerSMB versions 1.0, 1.1 and 1.2 won't be maintained any further due to the fact that there are some known security issues which can't be fixed.

FAQ Category: 

Perl is a high-level, general-purpose, interpreted, dynamic programming language. Perl was originally developed by Larry Wall in 1987 [ ]

Perl 5 is a highly capable, feature-rich programming language with over 24 years of development.

Learn Perl

The Bernard Chan Perl Tutorial

In general: neither. The advice is to have the full source tree in /opt/ledgersmb/<version>.

Installing the LedgerSMB modules in the standard Perl search path works, but interferes with running different versions side-by-side.

To undo installation in /usr/local:

  • remove /usr/local/share/perl/5.XX.X/LedgerSMB/
  • delete /usr/local/share/perl/5.XX.X/; and
  • find and remove the .pl files that come in LedgerSMB's project root directory and bin/ and LedgerSMB/Scripts/ directories.
FAQ Category: 

How the LaTeX templates work and what is usually needed to get them up and working.

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The PDF and PS invoices are generated using a program called LaTeX which handles the layout and typesetting. The actual LaTeX files are creating using Template Toolkit with extensions for LaTeX. These extensions are in the Template::Latex package available from CPAN. The software then generates a LaTeX file which is then processed to create a PDF or PS.

Typically the first thing to do is to install a LaTeX distribution like TexLive (distributed with many Linux distributions and available for OSX and Windows). This provides LaTeX and many of the modules needed. In general I recommend that if your distro has a texlive-extras package that you install this too.

After this is installed, you must then install Template::Latex. This can be done by typing on the command line:

Note: Debian & Ubuntu look below.

cpan Template::Latex

This will also install a number of dependencies including LaTeX::Driver, which will need to know where your LaTeX binaries are. It is usually pretty good at finding them.

If things go wrong and you can't get it to work, the following commands may provide useful diagnostic information when requesting help:

>From the LedgerSMB application directory:
perl -MLedgerSMB::Template::Latex -e print

>From the doc/manual directory in the LedgerSMB application directory:
pdflatex LedgerSMB-manual

Debian & Ubuntu note:
Template::Latex is included in Template::Plugin::Latex which is now in Debian as
libtemplate-plugin-latex-perl. (It has migrated to Debian Testing ('wheezy')).
Install with apt-get install libtemplate-plugin-latex-perl

Ref: Latex in templates & Debian squeeze and xelatex

How the LaTeX templates work
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With answers from Chris Travers, Robert James Clay

FAQ Category: 

Is there a place where we could buy some consulting for LedgerSMB?
or a minimal setup according to our specs?

Take a look at Commercial Support

FAQ Category: 

Yes, its Open source. The tools we use (Perl, PostsgreSQL, Apache ++) is also Open source.
Open source means that the source code of the software is available for free to everyone and you can modify the code and distribute it yourself.

Look for a place to contribute. This means not only programming, but also documentation, theme design, art work, or architectural design. Join the mailing list.


We ask that all IRC members follow the Ubuntu Code of Conduct.

We also ask that you always use a paste site when pasting more than 2-3 lines. Paste sites include:

FAQ Category: 

The LedgerSMB community follows the Ubuntu Code of Conduct.

FAQ Category: 

Quite a few users find some of the terminology and accounting processes a little confusing at first. Some of the more popular small business accounting packages tend to hide these aspects of book-keeping from users for simplicity, so with the current user interface there is often some new ideas to grasp.

First step is the manual - the LedgerSMB manual is free and highly recommended reading.

If you would like some background on general accounting practices, there is an (unassociated) tutorial So, you want to learn Bookkeeping" which seems a good place to start.

Another excellent resource is second-hand book stores. Lots of MBA studends sell off their textbooks (presumably to finance their first business rather than pay of gambling debts) so second-hand bookstores will often have very good texts on accounting at bargain prices - these can make great reference books.

Finally it would be remiss not to recommend securing the services of an accountant to help you out with the finer points from time to time, should you feel the need or have a legal obligation to do so.

Wikipedia articles:

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