All about the Treasury’s free Savings Bond Wizard

Monday, July 25th, 2005
Categorized as: Current value of a US Savings Bond

While you can find out the value and current interest rate of your Savings Bonds using my US Savings Bond Calculator, the Treasury also offers software you can download and install on a Windows computer – the Savings Bond Wizard – that has more features.

Unlike my calculator, it offers you the chance to change the valuation date to something other than today and it gives you a way save your bond data for next time.

However, it’s Windows-only software that you have to download and install on your own computer. Before you go to that trouble, I recommend you begin by reading my comparison of the four most-used Savings Bond calculators.

The US Savings Bond Wizard requires a computer running Windows 95 or newer and the ability to install software.

Here’s how to get a copy. The web site you will be downloading from is the Bureau of Public Debt at the U.S. Treasury, not from our web site. When you follow the instructions on the link below, you will see a standard Save Dialog Window – create a new folder or select an existing one to save the file – sbwsetup.exe – on your own computer.

Right-click on this link and select
Save Target As or Save Link As
from the menu that appears on your screen:
US Savings Bond Wizard

After you have downloaded the file, select the Run… command from your Start menu. Click on the Browse button, find the file you just downloaded, select it, then click the OK button. If you have administrative rights to install software on your computer, you’ll be seconds away from using the Wizard.

The installation process will put a link to the US Savings Bond Wizard in your Start Menu. When the installation process is complete, find the Wizard in your Start menu and crank it up.

If you have trouble downloading the file, try a normal click on the download link above. If that doesn’t work either, here are additional downloading tips from the Treasury’s savings bonds web site.

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FDIC Insured Certificates of Deposit can pay 1 or 2% more than savings bonds when held for a similar length of time. See top CD Rates Below:


On March 13th, 2006 Arye Dethmers said:

I tried downloading the Savings Bond Wizard to my new computer (Windows XP operating system) but according to my compatability wizard it’s not compatible. I originally created my Savings Bond Wizard in Windows 98SE and the savings bond data I will be importing was also created in Windows 98SE. Is there a way to download a Savings Bond Wizard that’s compatible with Windows XP and that will also allow me to import the data that was created in Windows 98SE?

On March 13th, 2006 Tom Adams said:

Ayre – I’m not familiar with the “compatibility wizard,” but can you just ignore it? The SB Wizard works fine on Windows XP.

On October 24th, 2006 Fran Loiacono said:

I used the savings bond wizard with my old Dell PC and found the program very useful.

I’ve switched to a Mac computer OS X version 10.4.8. Is there any program I can download to access the Bond Wizard? I feel left out at this point in time.

On October 25th, 2006 Tom Adams said:

Hi Fran – there’s a program called GBonds that you may be able to get to work on Mac OS X, but I suspect your best bet is to use a program that works through your browser.

Browser-based programs don’t have to be updated and you can access your data from any computer, so upgrading your system doesn’t cause any problems.

Your two basic choices are the Savings Bond Guru and the Savings Bond Calculator.

On December 26th, 2009 Jim said:

Just updated to Mac Mini running OS X 10.6.1 (snow leopard). Savings bond wizard runs fine under Parallels Desktop 5 after migration from old Windows XP system.

On January 13th, 2010 Ed Limmer said:

I can’t download redemption values updates to my SBW. When I try the automatic update, I get the message: :”Unable to create local file”. How can I remedy this problem?

On January 14th, 2010 Tom Adams said:

Ed – This would be an issue with your computer, not with the Savings Bond Wizard. Things that would cause this might be a disk that is full, an obsessive compulsive virus checker, trying to save the file to an unwritable disk like a CD, and so on.

Tom Adams

On February 3rd, 2010 NeilB said:

I get the same error, “unable to create local file”. The disk is not full, if it trying to write to a CD, it is the wizard’s problem since there is no CD in the PC and only the wizard software would make a decision to write there. If it is my McAfee virus checker, then it is not putting out an error. When the wizard is putting out this error, it should say where it is trying to write the file so one could diagnose the problem. Note that my firewall does complain that the wizard is trying to use the internet and I get this error only after I grant it the authority to access the internet.

On February 4th, 2010 Tom Adams said:

Hi Neil – Sorry, my expertise is in Savings Bonds, not computer problems. If you’re lucky someone who has solved this problem before may leave a solution here.

By any chance are you using Windows 7? I’ve had this problem with other programs on that operating system.

Tom Adams

On February 20th, 2010 Craig Grimm said:

I, too, am getting “unable to create local file” when attempting to download redemption value updates. Yes, I just got a new Toshiba laptop running Windows 7, whereas I had been running Windows XP on my old laptop with no problems for 6 years downloading the redemption values. So, perhaps, Tom, as you surmise, it does have something to do with Windows 7. Unfortunately, my old laptop completely died this past week so I can’t go back and try downloading the redemption values there anymore.

On February 22nd, 2010 Tom Adams said:

Craig – I’ll see if I can find out anything from the Savings Bond Wizard team at the Treasury.

Tom Adams

On February 23rd, 2010 Tom Adams said:

The Savings Bond Wizard technical support team would prefer that you each contact them individually about this (“due to the numerous computer environments and personal computer settings and preferences”). You can do that here.

Tom Adams

On February 28th, 2010 BondIV said:

The issue in Windows 7 is new security settings in that version (they were there in Vista as well, but less strict).

In order for the automatic update to work, the Wizard must run with Administrator privileges. if you allow that, the updates will work without problems.

Go to where the Wizard is installed (usually C:\Program Files\Savings Bond Wizard\ or, for 64-bit versions of Windows c:\Program Files (x86)\Savings Bond Wizard\). In that folder, find the file sbwizard.exe and right-click it. Click ‘Properties’ in the menu that pops up.

In the properties window, choose the ‘compatibility’ tab. At the bottom of the compatibility section, check the box next to ‘run this program as an administrator’. Click ‘OK’

Now, when you run the Wizard, the updates Will Work

On March 16th, 2010 BondJamesBond said:

Wow Tom ! I contacted the Wizard Team today and they sent me instructions. Worked like a dream. Let the Treasury dept know they rock.

Comments Closed

June 1, 2010

After six years, over 400 posts, 3,680 real comments, and over 90,000 spam comments (thank you, Akismet, for making managing a blog with comments possible), I am closing public comments on I will contine to update the main articles on this site, but not the comments.

Virtually every question about Savings Bonds has been asked and answered on this site multiple times. Use the search feature (see the box in the gray area near the top of this page) or the detailed menu on the lower part of the home page to find the information you're looking for. If you have a copy of Savings Bond Advisor, you can ask me a question here.

Tom Adams

Savings Bond Calculator


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