Here's One of the Best Genealogy Software Tools Around and It's Fully Functional, Easy to Use and Free!
Okay, talking about genealogy software is like talking about politics. Everyone has their favorite and can be vocal about it. I acknowledge and respect that.
However, we've got to go down this road together today, so I want to show you how to download and install my favorite (and free, with no strings attached) powerful genealogy program - PAF5.
PAF5 stands for Personal Ancestral File version 5.
It works with Windows and is especially wonderful with Windows XP. For you MAC users, don't despair. There is still much for you to see and do in this lesson.
If you already have a genealogy software program, there is no law against having two (or more).
Click on the "Home" Tab on the FamilySearch site, then click on the "Order/Download Products" link.
From here, click on the "Software Downloads - Free" link.
The PAF program is listed as "Personal Ancestral File 188.8.131.52 - Multi-Language (9.7 MB). Click on the "Download" button.
From here you will see a window that shows different language versions of the program. Don't worry about this. Just click the "Continue" button.
Fill out your name and e-mail address to register the PAF program. I've never had a problem from the LDS Genealogy Department sending me unwanted e-mail. I encourage you to register.
Now you will see different language versions with Download buttons by them. Click the "Download" button to the right of the ENGLISH version.
The download process begins. Do you want to "Run" or "Save" this? You want to click on "SAVE."
A "Save As" window appears. Where do you want to save this on your computer? I suggest simply putting it on your C (Local Disk C) drive. It will be easy to find when you install it.
After the file downloads, you can close your Web browser and go to your main computer screen (this is your desktop).
Look for the "My Computer" icon and click on it.
Look for your (C:) drive and click on the "Local Disk (C:)" icon.
You should see an icon named "PAF5EnglishSetup." Click on it.
The default place to install this is C:\Program Files\FamilySearch\PAF5" - this should be fine. Now click on the "Next" button.
You will see three options, one of them being "Use LDS information on screens and reports." Unless you are a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this will not be important to you. If this is the case, click the checkbox to uncheck that option.
The install of the PAF program should be complete.
Look on your desktop and look for the icon that says "PAF5." Click on it and welcome to one mighty fine genealogy software program.
The opening welcome screen give you different options. You will need to click on "New - Create a New File" to continue. I suggest that you name it "PAFTEST."
Think about this. You DO NOT have to have a main database file only. You can create many different PAF files for different purposes.
For instance, there are many places on-line where you can download a GEDCOM file. You can "Import" the information from any GEDCOM file into PAF. Also you can create a GEDCOM file or your own and "Export" it to use in a different genealogy program, share with someone, attach to an e-mail, etc.