GNU Khata: Open Source Accounting Software

Looking for a free and open source accounting software? GNU Khata is one such software that is being actively developed.

Being an active Linux enthusiast, I usually introduce my friends to Linux, help them choose the best distro to suit their needs, and finally get them set with open source alternative software for their work.

But in one case, I was pretty helpless. My uncle, who is a freelance accountant, uses a set of some pretty sophisticated paid software for work. And I wasn’t sure if I’d find anything under FOSS for him, until Yesterday.

Abhishek suggested me some open source accounting software to check out and this particular one, GNU Khata stuck out.

GNU Khata is an accounting tool. Or shall I say a collection of accounting tools? It is like the Evernote of economy management. It is so versatile that it can be used from personal Finance management to large scale business management, from store inventory management to corporate tax works.

One interesting fact for you. ‘Khata’ in Hindi and other Indian languages means ‘account’ and hence this accounting software is called GNU Khata.

Install and use GNU Khata open source accounting software

There are many installation instructions floating around the internet which actually install the older web app version of GNU Khata. Currently, GNU Khata is available only for Debian/Ubuntu and their derivatives. I suggest you follow the steps given in GNU Khata official Website to install the updated standalone. Let me give them out real quick.

  • Download the installer here.
  • Open the terminal in download location.
  • Copy and paste the below code in terminal and run.
    sudo chmod 755
    sudo ./
  • That’s it. Open the GNU Khata from the dash or the application menu.

First launch

GNU Khata opens up in the browser and displays the following page.

First page

Fill in the Organization name, case and organization type, financial year and click on proceed to go to the admin setup page.

Admin setup

Carefully feed in your name, password, security question and the answer and click on “create and login”.

Home page

You’re all set now. Use the Menu bar to start using GNU Khata to manage your finances. It’s that easy.

Remove GNU Khata

If you don’t want to use GNU Khata, here is what you need to do in order to remove GNU Khata:

sudo apt-get remove --auto-remove gnukhata-core-engine

You can also use Snyaptic to uninstall it.

Does GNU Khata really rival the paid accounting software in the market? 

To begin with, GNU Khata keeps it all simple. The menu bar up top is very conveniently organized to help you work faster and better. You can choose to manage different accounts and projects and access them easily. Their Website states that GNU Khata can be “easily transformed into Indian languages”.  Also, did you know that GNU Khata can be used on the cloud too?

All the major accounting tools like ledgers, project statements, statement of affairs etc are formatted in a professional manner and are made available in both instantly presentable as well as customizable formats. It makes accounting and inventory management look so easy.

The Project is very actively evolving, seeks feedback and guidance from practicing accountants to make improvements in the software. Considering the maturity, ease of use and the absence of a price tag, GNU Khata can be the perfect assistant in bookkeeping.

Let us know what you think about GNU Khata in the comments below.

About the author
Ankush Das

Ankush Das

A passionate technophile who also happens to be a Computer Science graduate. You will usually see cats dancing to the beautiful tunes sung by him.

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