GiftWorks 2015 Upgrade Instructions

GiftWorks 2015 was released on September 22 , 2014. The primary contact at your Organization should have received an email when the upgrade was released. We strongly recommend that you read all of the information provided here BEFORE proceeding.

There are two main steps to upgrading to GiftWorks 2015.  The first step is to install the GiftWorks 2015 version onto your computer.  The second step is to upgrade your existing GiftWorks database file.

Before you start the upgrade, you will want to turn the User Account Control (UAC) setting on your Computer off.   Below is a link to an article on how to do this: 

STEP 1: Locate your GiftWorks database file

  • Open your existing version of GiftWorks, but do not sign in
  • The Database Path will be displayed beneath the Database Name field. This is the location of where your database file (the .gds file) is stored

 STEP 2: Backup your Database

  • Save a backup of your GiftWorks Database file to your desktop. NOTE: This is a precautionary step – the backup file will NOT be used for the upgrade process.
  • Go to Settings > Importing, Exporting & Data Management > Manage Your GiftWorks Database > Backup the Database

 STEP 3: Upgrade to GiftWorks 2015

  • Download and Install GiftWorks 2015 on each computer that you are upgrading to GiftWorks 2015. Point your web browser to and save the downloaded file to an easy-to-remember location, like your Desktop.  When the download is complete, right-click on the downloaded file and choose “Run as Administrator” to start the upgradeChoose the “Install for Everyone” options as it appears.
  • Note: if you currently have GiftWorks Events and/or Volunteers you must also choose to install the free trial of Events and/or Volunteers.
  • After upgrading to GiftWorks 2015 on each computer, start GiftWorks and go through the license key and registration steps.  You will need to enter the license key provided at each computer.  If one or more of your computers is not connected to the internet, you can copy the downloaded file to a USB Key or CD and use that to upgrade each computer. If none of your computers are connected to the internet, contact us at

STEP 4: Upgrade the database to GiftWorks 2015

  • After all of your GiftWorks applications are upgraded, choose one computer from which to perform the database upgrade.   To begin the database upgrade process, you will sign in to your existing GiftWorks database from GiftWorks 2015.    To do this, you will need to browse to database location that you wrote down fromSTEP 1 
  • GiftWorks will recognize that your database needs to be upgraded.  Once the database upgrade is complete, start GiftWorkson each computer and sign in to your upgraded GiftWorks database.  To do this, you will need to browse to database location that you wrote down from STEP 1 

STEP 5:  Save a backup of the upgraded database file

  • After you upgrade the database file, you should save a new back up.
  • Go to Settings > Importing, Exporting & Data Management (or Database, Files and Maintenance in GiftWorks 2013) > Manage Your GiftWorks Database > Backup the Database
  • Turn the User Account Control setting back on.
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