Bamboo invoice simple & clean free open source invoicing

This is a Review and demo of Bamboo Invoice its a free web based invoicing application.

Quick summary

The application is 100% complete but you’ll need a web hosting account to get it installed and working for your business.

It’s very simple but supports all the features you’d expect in doing an invoice. The user interface is clean and easy to use. For the most part I found it intuitive — never had to look for too long to find what I needed.
I could create an invoice, generate a PDF, send it by email to a client, and record the payments.
Couple of things were missing or couldn’t be found:  mainly recurrent invoices. I found how to duplicate an existing invoice but couldn’t set invoices to automatically repeat themselves every month.
The online payment support could be a plus, especially since its a paid option on most online systems.

Pros

  • Its nice looking and intuitive
  • Open source and customizable
  • Multi-language

Cons

  • No recurring invoices
  • No Online Payments
  • Requires a web hosting account

Screen shots

Detail of an Invoice

Detail of an Invoice

Invoice In PDF

Invoice In PDF

Reports

Reports

Online Demo

We installed a demo at Open Source Software As A Service so you can try it your self:
http://www.osaas.org/bambooinvoice/
Demo account is:
Username: demo@osaas.org
Password: demo123
PS: the demo resets itself every hour.

Description

BambooInvoice was built by designer and programmer Derek Allard. He wanted something sexy visually but also the programing code. It uses Ajax and PHP with CodeIgniter framework.

Installing it take a bit of time if you are not familiar with installing PHP / MySQL applications, but its easy to hire Open Source experts to do that for you.

Using BambooInvoice is a nice experience; the user interface is fluid and things move up and down. The use of Ajax make it snappy and responsive.
I could create a few invoices and setup some customers pretty quickly and with ease. I like the PDF generation, as it makes the invoices looks professional and makes them easy to print when sending them by email.
One thing that was not intuitive was the payment terms. I could only set it up globally for all the invoices whereas it would be nice to have it for each customer.

I found a few features missing; nothing critical — especially for a free product — but they would be quite useful: recurrent invoices, online payment, past due visualization, and past due reminders.

Derek the developer answers questions directly in the forums with an active community of users.

Overall, for a free product created by one developer, it’s pretty nice.

Pricing

FREE
If you like it or use it, you can donate something to Derek the developer:
http://www.bambooinvoice.org/index.php/donate

Features

  • Ajaxified user interface
  • Setup Clients’ accounts with attached contacts
  • Set your own currency
  • Translated in lot of languages
  • Support VAT / Sales Tax
  • Multi User
  • Customize invoices with your own logo
  • Generate invoices in PDF (for friendly email and printing)
  • Send invoices by Email

Installation requirements

BambooInvoice is built using PHP 5 and needs a database (MySQL and MySQLi 4.1+ are known to work, and drivers are included for MSSQL, Postgre, OCI8, SQLite, and ODBC). In order to generate PDFs, you’ll need the DOM extension enabled.

Competition

Open Source:
Simple Invoices: http://www.simpleinvoices.org/
Ofuz: http://www.ofuz.com

Not Free:
- http://www.freshbooks.com/
- http://www.roninapp.com
- http://invoicemachine.com/
- http://outright.com/
- http://oe.quickbooks.com/
- http://www.simplifythis.com/
- http://curdbee.com/
- http://lessaccounting.com/
- http://www.freeagentcentral.com/
- http://invotrak.com/
- http://blinksale.com/
- http://www.invoicera.com/
- http://www.billonsite.com/
- http://www.tradeshift.com/
- http://www.getballpark.com/
- http://www.billingboss.com/
- http://www.paysimple.com/
- http://www.invoiceplace.com/invoice/
- http://www.billingorchard.com/
- http://www.billmyclients.com/
- http://www.invoicesmadeeasy.com/
- http://www.simplybill.com/
- http://www.invoice2go.com/

2 Responses to “Bamboo invoice simple & clean free open source invoicing”

  1. Christer says:

    Nice review, I was looking for a Bamboo-review.
    The new and updated version of Bamboo now has online payments and recurring bills as well…a very good alternative for smaller businesses…

  2. Nathan says:

    Fantastic. Thanks for the review. It’s just what I’ve been looking for.

    There are so few invoice programmes that can accommodate for true negative tax.

    Cheers
    Nathan

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