Just as word-processing programs took the tedium out of typing, genealogy software programs have revolutionized how you keep track of your family tree. They turn your scrawled notecards into a powerful database and let you display and print your family tree with an ease and sophistication unthinkable only a few years ago. Beyond input and output, moreover, many programs actually help you jump-start your research, and come bundled with disks packed with data.
But how do you pick the program that’s right for you? Here are the most important factors you should consider:
• PRICE: The genealogy programs reviewed here range in price from free (Personal Ancestral File) to $99 (The Master Genealogist, Gold Edition). Most are priced between $30 and $50. Expect to pay more for software packages with extra features, such as advanced photo-editing capabilities, or bundled with data CDs. Some programs, such as Family Ties, Family Tree Maker and Generations Grande Suite, are widely available through electronics warehouses and discount department stores; keep your eyes open for rebate offers. You can buy others through dealers specializing in genealogy products (see <www.cyndislist.com/software.htm#Vendors> for a list to get started) or directly from the manufacturers. Be sure to visit the program’s Web site for more details and to download a demonstration version, if available.
• COMPUTER REQUIREMENTS: Here we review nine of the top genealogy programs for Windows PCs and highlight two popular titles for the Apple Macintosh. The writeups note the minimum Windows version and how much memory (RAM) and hard disk space you need to run each program. All have modest hardware requirements. The most demanding program, Family Tree Maker, runs best with 32 MB of RAM and needs 95 MB of hard disk space for a full installation.
•EASE OF USE: Most of these programs come with a printed manual and feature extensive online instructions. If you can’t find the answer to your question in the manual or in the program’s help screens, you can usually get more assistance by phone, fax or e-mail. Family Ties is the only program reviewed here that has a toll-free number for technical support.
These nine programs vary a lot, however, in terms of how easy it is to enter information, navigate through the generations displayed on screen and search for individuals based on criteria such as dates and places of birth and death. From just about anywhere in Personal Ancestral File (PAF), by far the easiest program to use, you can get clear, concise online help specifically geared toward the task at hand. The Master Genealogist and Ultimate Family Free are the hardest to use and you can expect to spend more time reading their manuals. But both programs also let you document your research more precisely and produce the most professional-looking books.
• DOCUMENTING SOURCES: It’s crucial to record where you found each piece of family information so that you and others can assess its reliability. If you write that your great grandfather traded horses with Jesse James (as mine is said to have done), you should also note whether this is just a piece of family folklore or that you found a written record of the transaction. In either case, you ought to describe the source by telling who told you the story or where you found the bill of sale.
All the programs reviewed here let you document your information, but some make the process easier. The comparison chart rates each program’s documentation help (how well it guides you in the proper format for citing various kinds of sources) plus its capacity for recording sources (the mechanics of creating and reusing source citations).
• REPORTS: Once you’ve compiled your family information, you can share your family history in print or electronically. Some programs do an especially good job with standard reports or produce unique charts with photos and graphics. A family group sheet, for example, summarizes your information on a couple and their children, while a pedigree chart shows an individual’s ancestors, usually for four or five generations. Both help you see at a glance what you know about your family and where you need to do more research. Most programs produce a variety of other charts and reports, including wall charts, calendars, timelines and maps.
Book-form reports present your family history in narrative form. They use a standard numbering system to outline an individual’s ancestors (an “Ahnentafel” report) or descendants (a “Register” or “Modified Register/NGS Quarterly” report).
Some programs have multimedia capabilities to edit photos, create a slide show or even put together an interactive scrapbook with photos, sound and video. Others, such as Family Origins, excel at Web publishing.
• FILE MANAGEMENT: Genealogy software makes it easy to share family files and avoid re-entering the same research others have done. GEDCOM (an acronym for Genealogical Data COMmunication) is the standard file format used to exchange files between different programs. You can use your genealogy software to create a GEDCOM file with information on your family and then e-mail the file for another researcher to use, even with different software. While names, relationships and dates and places of birth, marriage and death usually transfer well, other information such as notes and sources may not. So if you are collaborating closely with another researcher and regularly exchange computer files, it may be easier if you both use the same program.
Some programs let you have more than one family file open at the same time so that you can easily compare their contents. If you decide to combine two files, you’ll want to merge duplicate individuals. Almost every program here automates the merge process.
• RESEARCH HELP: In addition to helping you organize your family history, most genealogy software packages include how-to guides, indexes or even actual family trees. Some give you free access to online databases. Family Tree Maker comes with the most extensive set of CD-ROM and online reference resources and the most useful guide to research. The Generations Grande Suite package also includes a large collection of data CDs. Some software includes forms you can print out to keep research and correspondence logs. Family Origins and The Master Genealogist let you keep a detailed research log on disk.
Family Tree Maker and Generations, the most widely sold genealogy software on store shelves, focus on eye-catching features such as zillions of names and multiple charting options. The other programs reviewed here concentrate on more mundane, but nonetheless practical areas, like good basic charts, easy file navigation and proper source documentation.
When choosing genealogy software, keep your goals in mind. Which is more important to you, ease of use or many features? Publishing a book or publishing on the Web? Fancy charts or tools for meticulous research? All of the programs reviewed here do a good job overall, but some stand out in certain areas.
Most genealogy software is inexpensive enough that you might reasonably buy a second program to take advantage of special features not found in your main program.
Below, we take a look at the unique features of each program.
VERSION TESTED: 3.0 • PRICE: Standard edition, $39.95. CD suite, $49.95 • COMPANY: The Hope Foundation, (800) 825-8864 or (801) 816-1939, <www.ancestralquest.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Windows 3.1 or higher, 2MB RAM, 5 MB hard disk space (20 MB more for entire suite)
VERSION TESTED: 6.0 • PRICE: $49.99 before $30 rebate • COMPANY: Individual Software, Inc., (800) 822-3522 or (925) 734-6767,<www.individualsoftware.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Windows 95/98, 8 MB RAM, 5 MB hard disk space
Ease of use, great navigability, nice charts and compatibility with Personal Ancestral File (PAF) combine to make Ancestral Quest and its nearly identical twin Family Ties two of the best all-around programs. Compared to other programs widely sold in retail outlets (such as Family Tree Maker and Generations), Ancestral Quest and Family Ties print a more limited selection of charts and come with fewer data CDs. But both excel in several key areas:
• EASE OF USE: Both feature simple, uncluttered screens, extensive onscreen help and a well-organized manual. Family Ties is the only program reviewed here with a toll-free help number.
• NAVIGATION: The well-designed pedigree view lets you see both the big picture and details without switching to a different view. With five generations of names displayed onscreen, place your cursor over a name and a small window appears with details on that individual. Click on the name and the window expands to show the person’s spouse and children.
• SOURCE HANDLING: This is one of the best systems for documenting your sources. Guidelines help you create proper citations to many kinds of sources and you can arrange sources in categories for reuse.
• BASIC CHARTS: Both print good standard family group sheets and pedigree charts that let you see at a glance what you know and where you need to do more research.
• PAF COMPATIBILITY: Ancestral Quest and Family Ties can use your PAF file directly without conversion. That makes for a convenient upgrade from PAF; you can continue to use PAF 3.0 and 4.0 with the same data files.
While Ancestral Quest and Family Ties are essentially the same program sold under different names, there are a few differences:
• Family Ties is more widely available in retail outlets and is sold with a $30 mail-in rebate.
• Family Ties is packaged with a more nicely bound version of the manual and a more extensive set of extras, including the Social Security Death Index, the Centennia maps of Europe from 1792 to 1819, more than 3,500 historical pictures of British towns and a free 30-day subscription to Ancestry.com . (The Ancestral Quest CD Suite includes the Centennia maps from 1654 to 1914 and the Hammond Complete Maps of the World.)
• Ancestral Quest can save a book-form report in WordPerfect format so you can use WordPerfect or another word processor to edit the report before printing it.
Two of the best genealogy programs, Ancestral Quest and Family Ties are both easy to use and solid performers in key areas. At just $20 after the mail-in rebate, Family Ties is an especially good value.
VERSION TESTED: 8.03 • PRICE: Standard edition, $29.95. Deluxe edition, $49.99 ($39.99 through dealers) • COMPANY: Genealogy.com, (800) 223-6925 or (319) 395-7300, <www. formalsoft.com> and <www.familyorigins.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Windows 95/98, 8MB RAM, 8 MB hard disk space (full install, 40 MB)
Family Origins is one of the best programs overall, but especially noteworthy for:
• POWERFUL SEARCHING: You can search your Family Origins files on more than one field at a time (such as birth date and nationality) and even find words that sound like your search term. Let’s say you’re going to a library that has an index to wills in Nelson County, Ky., covering 1785-1807, and you want a list of names to check. With Family Origins it’s easy to search your files for everyone who died in that county between those years and might have left a will there.
• WEB PUBLISHING: Family Origins gives you more Web publishing options than any other genealogy program. It automatically creates an ancestry or descendancy report ready for publishing on the Web. You can include notes, sources, photographs, an e-mail link, a surname index, a bibliography and a downloadable GEDCOM file. The program will even create a GENDEX. TXT file so that you can register your Web site at <www.gendex.com>, a popular surname index to genealogy Web pages. Family Origins is the only genealogy program reviewed here that gives you the option of either uploading your Web site to the software maker’s own site or to a server owned by your Internet service provider.
• MULTIPLE FILES: NO program does a better job of handling multiple files at once. Two databases can be open side-by-side on the screen, each showing a five-generation pedigree, and you can drag and drop information from one file to the other. You can even have multiple copies of the same database open.
• REPORTS: Pedigree charts and family group records printed with Family Origins are among the most attractive of any program. You can print more than 50 types of reports, including hourglass trees, family scrapbooks, calendars and address labels.
Family Origins has both Research and Correspondence Logs integrated with the program. Most other programs just have blank forms that you can print.
The Deluxe version comes with The Family Reunion Planner and a handy tool called Place Finder: Just enter the name of a US town or city and it tells you the county it’s in.
A nice balance between ease of use and functionality makes Family Origins a terrific program for almost any genealogist.
FAMILY TREE MAKER
VERSION TESTED: 7.0 • PRICE: 12-CD set, $45. 20-CD set, $80 before mail-in rebate • COMPANY: Genealogy.com, (800) 548-1806, <www.familytreemaker.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Pentium 90 MHz, Windows 95/98,16 MB RAM, 95 MB hard disk space
The best-selling Family Tree Maker is a comprehensive genealogy program with powerful charting and graphing capabilities. Even more notable are the information resources that come with this software package: Both the 12- and 20-CD sets include the Social Security Death Index, an index to 700,000 marriages compiled by Yates Publishing and the full text of 43 genealogy and local history books. In addition, Family Tree Maker features these major resources:
• GENEALOGY HOW-TO GUIDE: Tips for tracing your ancestry in the US and abroad.
• WORLD FAMILY TREE: The 20-CD set includes six World Family Tree CDs (Volumes 1-5 and European Origins) with family information primarily from Family Tree Maker users.
• GENEALOGYLIBRARY.COM: Sources on this subscription Web site include many US census indexes from 1790 to 1880; actual images of pages from the 1850 census for 18 states; birth, marriage and death records from 18 states; and the full text of more than 2,000 books, including more than 800 family histories. The 12-CD set comes with a free two-month subscription to GenealogyLibrary.com and the 20-CD set gives you four months.
• FAMILY FINDER INDEX: An index of names in the World Family Tree (37 volumes so far), more than 200 Family Archive CDs and GenealogyLibrary.com. The Web version, called Internet FamilyFinder, searches Web pages, too.
Family Tree Maker also prints a wide assortment of graphical family trees in a variety of styles and formats. You can customize all trees and reports with your choice of backgrounds, borders, fonts and colors. The all-in-one tree, unique to Family Tree Maker, prints everyone in your family file together in one tree. The family group sheet isn’t ideally formatted, however, and you can’t print a standard four-generation pedigree chart. There’s also no pedigree view that lets you speedily navigate without a lot of scrolling.
Family Tree Maker’s extensive information resources and charting capabilities make it a useful tool for any genealogist, whether it’s your only genealogy software or a complement to another program. (For 50 tips on getting the most out of Family Tree Maker, see <www.familytreemagazine.com/ftmtips/ tips.asp>.)
If you’re a Macintosh user and deeply into genealogy, the limited choices of genealogy programs may be enough to push you into Bill Gates’ clutches. Of the programs reviewed here, only Family Tree Maker and PAF have Mac versions, and the Mac version of Family Tree Maker lags far behind its Windows counterpart in features. There’s also one full-featured Mac-only program, Reunion.
FAMILY TREE MAKER V. 3.02
$99.99 from Genealogy.com, (800) 548-1806, <www.familytreemaker.com>. Includes FamilyFinder Index and four data CD-ROMs. Photos, video and audio are not supported. Requires PowerPC, system 7.1.2 or higher, 16 MB RAM, 15 MB hard-disk space.
PERSONAL ANCESTRAL FILE
$35 from Salt Lake Distribution Center, (800) 537-5950 or (801) 240-3800, <www.familysearch.org>. Comparable to the Windows version (see page 37).
$99 from Leister Productions, (717) 697-1378, <www.leisterpro.com>. Full-featured genealogy program including pictures, sounds and videos. Supports Web publishing. Lets you create common genealogy reports, charts and forms, as well as birthday calendars, mailing lists, questionnaires, indexes and wall charts. Charts allow onscreen editing of boxes, lines, fonts and colors. Requires system 7.5 or higher, 8 MB RAM, 12 MB hard disk space.
Generations Grande Suite
VERSION TESTED: 6.0 • PRICE: $79.95 • COMPANY: Sierra On-Line, (800) 757-7707, <www.sierrahome.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Pentium 100 MHz, Windows 95/98,16 MB RAM, 20 MB hard disk space
Beautiful charts, extensive photo-editing tools, recipe software and a huge database of names make Generations Grande Suite the most fun genealogy software you’ll find. The package is made up of several parts:
• EASY CHART lets you create every imaginable family chart format, from simple ancestor and descendant charts to enhanced hourglass, waterfall and cascading charts. As with every aspect of this program, charts are highly customizable. You can move chart elements anywhere you like, color-code boxes by individual, branch or descendant line, and enhance your chart with hundreds of family tree graphics, borders and backgrounds. No other program matches Generations’ charting flexibility.
• SNAPSHOT EXPRESS features the most sophisticated photo-editing tools of any package reviewed here. Use it to repair tears, scratches and fading; crop, rotate and resize images; adjust color, brightness and contrast; correct red-eye and overexposure. Then organize the enhanced pictures in electronic photo albums and display them in scrap-books and multimedia slide shows.
• MASTERCOOK HERITAGE EDITION comes with more than 800 traditional recipes organized by country of origin and helps you organize and print your own family recipes.
• EASY TREE lets you search, store and organize your family data. While Easy Tree is powerful and flexible, you can view only three generations at a time and it doesn’t help you match and merge duplicate records.
Generations comes with access to a large body of research data. In addition to a one-month free Ancestry.com membership, the set of CD-ROMs includes the Social Security Death Index, an index to Civil War muster rolls and other military records, a sampling of 1870 census records and the Titanic passenger list. The World Name Index lists 300 million names on the included CDs, as well as on Heritage Quest CDs and Kindred Konnections online databases, available for purchase or by subscription. Plus you get a free copy of the book Netting Your Ancestors: Genealogical Research on the Internet, by Cyndi Howells of Cyndi’s List fame <www.cyndislist.com>.
Watch for a special mail-in offer for five more CDs with the new version 6.0. For $4.95 shipping and handling, you get the entire 1790 US census and complete name indexes.
Generations Grande Suite is a comprehensive package that will help you not only research and organize your family history, but also preserve your family photographs and create gorgeous charts.
Legacy Family Tree
VERSION TESTED: 2.0 • PRICE: $49.95 • COMPANY: Millennia Corp., (800) 753-3453, <www.LegacyFamilyTree.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Windows 3.1 or higher, 8 MB RAM, 17 MB hard disk space
If you and relatives are working closely together to research your family history, you won’t find a better program than Legacy to coordinate your findings. A unique feature called IntelliShare marks all the records in your file that you, in turn, give to other researchers who may make additions or changes. When you get the files back, Legacy automatically merges all records that were marked by IntelliShare and haven’t been changed; then the only records you have to look at and merge are those that someone has altered.
Two other factors that make Legacy a standout are:
• CITING SOURCES: YOU can place up to five source citations that you’re currently working on in a “Source Clipboard.” Then you simply click one button to document the source of any piece of information from one of these sources. That can save you a lot of time if you’re documenting several individuals found in the same series of records. Another helpful feature called AutoSource lets you automatically assign a master source to each individual record in a GEDCOM file imported into your file.
• SEARCHING IN YOUR FILES: Legacy’s powerful search capabilities let you find individual or marriage records in your file that meet certain criteria. For example, you can easily find everyone who died between 1819 and 1852 in Philadelphia.
Legacy lets you create various reports in Rich Text File format for editing with a word processor or in HTML formats, for publishing on the Web. No data CDs come with Legacy, but you do get a free one-month subscription to Ancestry.com.
Overall, Legacy not only performs all the major functions of genealogy software very well, but it’s also one of the easiest to use.
The Master Genealogist (tmg)
VERSION TESTED: 4.0 • PRICE: Silver edition, $59. Cold edition, $99 • COMPANY: Wholly Genes, Inc., (877) 864-3264 or (410) 715-2260, <www.whollygenes.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Windows 3.1 or higher, 16 MB RAM, 48 MB hard disk space
Sometimes called “the genealogy software that does everything,” The Master Genealogist shines in several areas:
• RECORDING DATA AND EVIDENCE: TMG helps you record every piece of family information and properly cite many kinds of sources. It supports an unlimited number of citations for each piece of data and easily accommodates conflicting data. Once you’ve entered the data, the Person View helps you see at a glance a chronological list of each important event in an individual’s life, including the birth of each child.
• ORGANIZING YOUR RESEARCH: TMG lets you track your correspondence and research expenses and maintain a research log for each individual. It comes with the Ancestry Genealogy Library, a CD-ROM version of several major genealogy reference works.
• NARRATIVE REPORTS: While the wording in book-form reports created with other programs usually sounds mechanical and unnatural, TMG lets you customize the wording of sentences so your narrative history sounds interesting and reflects your own writing style. Your book can include not only a name index, but also an index of place names.
• CUSTOM WALL CHARTS: Unless you have a plotter, creating a wall chart usually means printing many sheets of paper and crudely taping them together. But TMG maker Wholly Genes offers a custom chart printing service, Chartform Delivery: You send them your file and they send you a wall chart up to 3-by-30 feet complete with color photos. Prices start at $19.95; with your first order you get a second copy of the same chart free.
TMG packs in so many features that it can be a bit overwhelming, especially for the beginner. You’ll need to spend time reading the manuals, doing the lessons in the tutorial and trying out all the menu options. While TMG is one of the hardest genealogy programs to use, it offers the most comprehensive set of tools for the meticulous researcher.
Personal Ancestral File (paf)
VERSION TESTED: 4.03 • PRICE: Free download or $5 CD-ROM • COMPANY: Salt Lake Distribution Center, (800) 537-5950 or (801) 240-3800, <www.familysearch.org> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Windows 95/98/NT, 16-32 MB RAM, 20 MB hard disk space
By far the easiest genealogy software you’ll find, Personal Ancestral File does all the basics extremely well. You can download PAF for free from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ popular FamilySearch Web site <www.familysearch.org>. It’s an ideal program for the beginning genealogist.
A streamlined version of Ancestral Quest, PAF maintains that program’s outstanding file navigation system, yet it’s even easier to use:
• EASE OF USE: Clear, concise context-sensitive help, well-organized menus and an extremely well-written manual make PAF a pleasure to use. You can also download a Spanish-language version of the manual, display onscreen instructions in Spanish and print reports in Spanish.
• FILE NAVIGATION: Just like Ancestral Quest, PAF lets you easily navigate through the generations of your family using a five-generation onscreen pedigree.
• CHARTS AND REPORTS: PAF produces outstanding family group sheets, pedigree charts and narrative reports, as well as a calendar and a variety of lists, plus it handles many of the multimedia and Web publishing tasks of commercial programs.
While PAF is a terrific all-around program, it doesn’t come with any reference databases. And though PAF lets you document your sources, it doesn’t offer much help documenting different kinds of sources.
If you’re just starting to use a computer to organize your family history, PAF is an excellent choice. All genealogy software should be this easy to use — and you can’t beat the price.
Ultimate Family Tree
VERSION TESTED: 3.0 • PRICE: $29.99 • COMPANY: Genealogy.com, (800) 397-4243, <www.uftree.com> • MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS: Pentium 75 MHz, Windows 95/98,16MB RAM, 70 MB hard disk space
This full-featured genealogy program provides the best help for documenting your sources. Also, it prints a variety of reports that can be combined to put together a professional-looking book with a thorough index.
• DOCUMENTATION: DO you have pension papers to document your great-grandfather’s service in the Civil War or is his military career just a vague family tradition you need to verify? Either way, Ultimate Family Tree will guide you step by step in recording the source. Choose from dozens of source types, from Bible record to probate file, and you get a list of the appropriate components of that kind of citation. Then just highlight each component and fill in your source details.
Ultimate Family Tree helps you create source citations based on those in Elizabeth Shown Mills’ book, Evidence! Citation & Analysis for the Family Historian (Genealogical Publishing Co., $16.95) An electronic version of this book, widely regarded as the best guide for citing both conventional and online sources used in family history, comes with the program and can be unlocked for a $4.95 fee.
• PRINTING BOOKS: You can print a wide variety of charts and reports. You can even print a complete family book in English, French or German. While the narrative text that you enter is not translated into French or German, the foreign-language reports are still a nice way to share your family history with Frenchor German-speaking relatives.
Screen views could be better: The pedigree view shows four generations of names, but no dates or places, and the family group view shows only names and the couple’s date and place of marriage. But if you want to produce a well-documented family history, you can’t beat Ultimate Family Tree.
From the October 2001 issue of Family Tree Magazine
THE SHAREWARE ALTERNATIVE
Want to try out a program before committing yourself to it? Download these popular shareware genealogy programs and give them a test run before you buy.
$49 shareware fee.
Available in many different languages.
Kith & Kin <www.spansoft.org>
$52 shareware fee.
Picking Your Program
|IF YOU WANT…||A GOOD PROGRAM FOR YOU IS…|
|Ancestral Quest or Family Ties||A good all-around program|
|An easy, inexpensive program||Personal Ancestral File|
|Ultimate Family Tree||To publish a book|
|To create a Web site||Family Origins|
|To organize your research||The Master Genealogist|
|Legacy Family Tree||To collaborate with another researcher|
|To print graphical charts||Generations Grande Suite|
|Family Tree Maker||To search databases with millions of names|
Nine Windows Genealogy Programs Compared
|FAMILY ORIGINS||FAMILY TIES DELUXE||ANCESTRAL QUEST||FAMILY TREE MAKER|
|EASE OF USE|
|Printed Manual||146-page manual||540-page manual||245-page manual||Optional 227-page manual, $17.95|
|Phone, Web, e-mail||Technical Support||Phone, Web, mail, fax, newsletter||Toll-free phone, Web, e-mail, fax||Phone, Web, e-mail|
|Fair||Excellent||Excellent||Excellent||Searching in Your Files|
|Excellent: text, word processor, HTML||Excellent: text, word processor, HTML||Good: text, word processor||Report File Formats||Good: text, HTML|
|Excellent||Excellent||Family Group Sheets and Pedigree Charts||Excellent||Fair|
|Good: box charts (standard or wall), ancestor or descendant, many lists, custom lists, address labels, calendars, hourglass tree, photo charts||Excellent: ancestor, descendant (hourglass, all-in-one, outline), fan tree, maps, timelines, calendars, labels, cards||Good: ancestry (standard or wall chart), descendants, six lists, custom lists, calendars, scrapbook page report||Good: ancestry (standard or wall chart), descendants, six lists, custom lists, calendars, scrapbook page report||Other Charts and Reports|
|Good: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Modified Register)||Good: ancestors (2 formats), descendants (Modified Register, 3 other formats)||Good: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Register or NGSQ)||Good: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Modified Register)||Book-Form Reports|
|Multimedia||Good: slide show, photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.||Good: slide show, photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.||Good: photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.||Good: slide show, photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.|
|Excellent: ancestors, descendants, photos, GENDEX index, down-loadable GEDCOM file. Upload to Family Origins or any other site.||Good: ancestors, descendants, scrapbook, downloadable GEDCOM file. Upload to any Web site.||Good: ancestors, descendants, scrapbook, downloadable GEDCOM file. Upload to any Website.||Fair: outline descendant tree, columnar report or genealogy report (ancestor or descendant), photos. Upload only to FTM Web site.||Web Publishing|
|Good: GEDCOM, reads/writes PAF files directly||Good: GEDCOM, reads/writes PAF files directly||Exchanging Data with Other Programs||Good: GEDCOM, reads PAF files directly||Good: GEDCOM, imports PAF files|
|Managing Multiple files||Excellent||Good||Good||Fair|
|Excellent: Onscreen research and correspondence logs||Research and correspondence logs||Good: Onscreen research log||Not Applicable||Not Applicable|
|ULTIMATE FAMILY TREE||PERSONAL ANCESTRAL FILE||THE MASTER GENEALOGIST||LEGACY FAMILY TREE||GENERATIONS GRANDE SUITE|
|370-page manual, online tutorial||231-page free download||12-page Quick Start Guide 322-page manual, CD manual||68-page manual, 368-page on-disk reference (Gold Edition includes printed copy)||293-page manual|
|Phone, Web, e-mail, mail, fax||Web, e-mail, user groups||Phone, Web, e-mail, fax, newsletter||Phone, e-mail, mail, fax||Phone, e-mail, mail, fax|
|Excellent: text, word processor, HTML||Excellent: text, word processor, HTML||Good: text, word processor, HTML||Excellent: text, word processor, HTML||Good: text, HTML|
|Good: individual, ancestor, descendant, timeline, lineage, relationship, surname summary, calendars||Excellent: descendant, pedigree, timeline, hourglass, calendars, various lists||Good: ancestor, descendant, fan, relationship, state of birth, kinship, many lists||Good: box charts (standard or wall), fan, lists, calendar, timelines, heredity statistics||Good: ancestors or descendants (standard or wall chart), lists, calendars|
|Good: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Register)||Good: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Modified Register)||Good: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Modified Register)||Excellent: ancestors (Ahnentafel, standard or lineal), descendants (Register, Record/NGSQ, The American Genealogist)||Excellent: ancestors (Ahnentafel), descendants (Modified Register, Register or Custom). English, French or German.|
|Good: slide show, photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.||Good: slide show, photo albums, photo editor. Includes photos, maps, flags.||Fair: attach photos, documents and sound files to any person, event, source or repository.||Excellent: slide show, enhanced photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.||Good: slide show, photo editor. Interactive scrapbook with photos, sound, video.|
|Good: ancestors, descendants, scrapbook, downloadable GEDCOM file. Upload to any Web site.||Good: ancestors, descendants, GENDEX file. Upload to any Website.||Good: family, ancestors, descendants, photos, downloadable GEDCOM file. Upload to any Website.||Good: person and family group sheets, ancestors, descendants, with pictures. Upload to any Web site.||Fair: individual, family, ancestors, descendants. Upload to any Web site.|
|Excellent: GEDCOM, imports Ancestral Quest, Family Origins, FTM, PAF, Ultimate Family Tree, others||Fair: GEDCOM||Good: GEDCOM, delimited text fields used by spreadsheet and database programs||Good: GEDCOM, imports PAF files||Good: GEDCOM, reads/writes PAF files|
|Good||Fair||Not applicable||Good||Not applicable|
|Excellent: detailed on-disk research log||Fair: user-definable logs on disk||Fair: research logs to print and fill out by hand||Good: research notes and reports for events and individuals||Not applicable|