One of the few things that keeps a windows VM lying around for me is Microsoft Money. It’s one of the few applications that Microsoft have actually made a pretty good job of.

My judgment of this, though, is pretty superficial. Money provides a nice pretty cash-flow graph that lets you see, at a glance, if you’re at risk of crossing the evil overdraft limit line.

In an attempt to finally shake off the specter of windows, I periodically look at the free alternatives available and, after reading this blog, I thought it was perhaps time to give KMyMoney a look.

Rather than importing my (extensive) money files, I thought a good way to evaluate the software would be to set up a set of accounts from scratch, including all my regular scheduled bill payments. This was satisfyingly easy – actually quicker and less painful than Microsoft’s offering.

Having everything in, though, the one glaring hole I can see is that it’s all past-based – there seems to be very little in the way of forecasting other than the scheduled payments. This makes it awkward – I like to be able to evaluate whether or not a purchase is helpful by seeing what it does to my cashflow over the following weeks and months and KMyMoney just doesn’t seem to do that – at least with the current release.

So, I’m going a step further and installing the current CVS build, which the developers claim has a lot of shiny new stuff and seems pretty close to release. So, it’s compiling as we type and I’ll post my thoughts later.

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