It's been easy to be pessimistic about Internet-based accounting. It started with promise that quickly turned to doubt about whether products in that category would ever catch on.

There have been a number of entrants: eLedger, which dissolved; and Bizfinity, whose Web site shows that no press releases have been issued about its product since July 2003. Intacct is in a turnaround mode. There's a company called InSynq which markets eAccounting, but which has spent most of the last year paying off debts. Best hasn't talked much about its two online entries, ePeachtree and Peachtree for the Web, for a while. Best's Accpac unit has Simply Accounting Online, but isn't beating the drums too hard for that product. Only NetSuite has shown much growth, and it did so by moving up-market.

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