In 2016, who would want a personal finance software package with no online component or support? Apparently many do when it's completely free. The best budgeting software if often a matter of personal taste and people are still downloading the now-defunct Microsoft Money now that it's available with no cost or license.
Ever since Microsoft quit producing Microsoft Money Plus in 2011, its popular personal-finance software program, they've offered a bare bones version in the form of Microsoft Money Plus Sunset Deluxe Personal Finance Software. At the time we suggested sixteen powerful alternatives to Microsoft Money.
Well, the biggest drawback is that these free versions of Money Plus have no online features or tech support. Here's the scoop from Microsoft:
On Jan. 31, 2011, all online services and assisted support for all versions of Money end. The Microsoft Money Plus Sunset versions provide an alternative version of Money with the following:
- No activation requirement. This version can be installed/reinstalled as needed without a requirement to activate.
- No online services. Discontinued services include online quotes, bill payment, statement downloads initiated by Money, data sync with MSN Money, etc. If your financial institution provides OFX or QIF statement downloads, the Sunset versions will allow you to import those statements into your Money file.
- Online Help is replaced with a local Help file.
- No Assisted Support. Self Help and community support may continue to be available for a few more years
- File conversion from older versions of Money. The Sunset versions are able to open and convert Money Plus files and files from older versions of Money (e.g. Money 2006, Money 2007). The Sunset version cannot convert files created by regional (non-US) versions of Money.
Money Plus Sunset is available in two versions: Money Plus Deluxe Sunset (designed to replace Essentials, Deluxe and Premium) and Money Plus Home & Business Sunset (designed to replace Home & Business).
Because Microsoft has removed the activation requirement and provided a public download, they're essentially giving this software away free (though that's not how they've phrased it: “This version of Money Plus Sunset can be installed stand alone, or as an upgrade to any existing installation of Microsoft Money.”).
If you're looking for PC-based financial software and don't mind the lack of online features (I never use them in Quicken), then this could be worth a try.
If you are looking for budgeting software you can download on your mobile device, see our 2016-2017 review of popular budget apps.