This file serves as the announcement that goes to the
comp.os.linux.announce newsgroups as well as a message to
the banal mailing list firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is BANAL?
BANAL is a bookkeeping/practice management system that allows you to
create and track invoices, clients, projects, suppliers and expenses.
BANAL is a client/server application so you can keep one set of books
on your system while allowing everyone access.
BIG NOTE: This is the last release in this series. We are about to
add a suite of tables and functionality to do support and
sales tracking. The next release will include significant
changes to the table schema as well as optional SQL support.
What is new in this release?
This release is a minor update with an easy install for Linux folk:
there's a quickstart (based on Jay Copeland's) at:
a noarch RPM for RedHat 6.x (should work on any distro)
added an 'admin stop' command and a SysV-init script to
cleanly shutdown the server
a new report called worksummary (see bk help report for info)
new script "bk-renumber" to put an invoice into your naming
new script "bk-replace" to replace an arbitrary field in a
form with a new value
fixed PostScript invoice so that they will work on Level 1
printers (the min function is a ghostscript-ism)
invoice charge items are now sorted by id for reproducability
What can it do?
For this release, BANAL can store your information, list (and allow
searching of) information and print expense cheques, generate invoices,
quotations, income and expense statements. You can also make and use
recurring and memorized transactions to ease the burden of creating them
manually. There are also commands to tell which invoices, projects and
clients are "expired" and to automatically invoice finished projects and
WIP. More reports will be added.
How do I obtain the distribution through http?
You can get the distribution from the BANAL website. This release
may be downloaded now from:
There have been significant changes to the table layout.
Before you decide that you can use this new version please review
the CHANGES file. Some stuff will be broken (not the data entry).
I just haven't had the time to write an update script. It should
be fairly straight forward, though. Especially using the 'import'
function. If you write one please consider sending it to me for
inclusion in the next release.
How easy to use is it?
Currently, there is only a command line client (bk). The client
takes a subcommand to invoke some action. There are only three
types of subcommands: list, edit and print (print now includes
statement, expired and runbatch).
By type of subcommand, I mean that to edit an invoice you type: bk invoice
While to edit an expense you type: bk expense
Once you've learned a subcommand, you've learned all of the
subcommands for that type.
How good is the documentation?
It should be adequate enough to get you started - the server running
and you running some simple commands. Let me know if this is not
the case and I'll clarify the text. The documentation is not for
me (I know the system) so your feedback is essential.
What is the copyright?
FTL Solutions Inc. holds the copyright (I am doing it under
their time), however, it is very unrestricted (read: do what you
want but don't think of suing them). There is a more detailed
COPYRIGHT file included with the distribution. This is akin to
Berkeley licensing or the Perl Artistic License.