TSGS Cruiser Blog

Monday, April 26, 2010

"Bonus Time!"


I reported that I captured a database that was basically lost to me from an old Personal Ancestral File (PAF) genealogy program. It could not be used on my new computer (wasn't compatible) and the old computer will not start up. I have the PAF program, but it will not install on the new computer. I have the database on a CD, but it can not be used or read without the program. As I joyfully told everyone yesterday, I found a copy of the program installed on a flash drive with the database on it. I can use the PAF program & database by just plugging it into a USB slot on my desktop computer. I decided to make a gedcom and see if I could then add it to my Family Tree Maker (FTM) program on the hard drive of the new computer. It was a snap to convert it to a gedcom and then to the FTM format for a database in that program.

I said it was "bonus time!" Well, here it is... since Ancestry.com owns FTM they have a built-in service to allow FTM programs to search online in the Ancestry.com database. With the 17,063 names (from the PAF database) of mostly relatives of my ancestors, I can just click a little button and it will search Ancestry's database for matches. It is a good search engine that mostly just picks up the same individual you have data on in your FTM program! It includes the census images from the microfilm. This means that about 14,000 people (that were in the PAF program, but not in my regular FTM database) can now be quickly searched on Ancestry with a single click per person... I do not have to type in their name or other info on that person. I have quickly found some of these "new" people in the US Census listing families and locations of where they lived with their ages and sometimes date of birth. This is a nice bonus!

-Written by JGWest

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