Tuesday, March 29, 2011




This information was taken from course entitled “The Best Things In Life Are Free: Freeware For Family History” on Utah Valley PAF Users Group website:  http://uvpafug.org/classes/dons/dons-fhfreeware.html.




This class will discuss and demonstrate some programs that are freeware or inexpensive shareware for genealogy.

  • "Freeware" means completely free with no "nag" screens; can use freely and give copies to anyone else
  • "Shareware" means that if you plan to use it regularly, you should send a specified donation (usually small) to the author at the address given in the program.
  • "Open Source" means freeware including the source code, so you can edit it if you know programming
  • "Apps" means applications, i.e. software

Most of the programs below are freeware and many could be listed in two or more categories

Helpful tip: Hold down the Control key while clicking on a link - This opens the link in a new window while keeping your place in the old window

  1. PAF 5.2 -- http://www.familysearch.org/ -- Free and still a good program to use until you need something more; can get help for it at any FHC
  2. PAF Companion 5.2 -- http://www.familysearch.org/ -- Additional reports not in PAF 5.2, including fan charts; free trial version only does 3 generations; full version is on CD bundled with PAF 5.2 CD from the LDS Church Dist Centers (about $8) or can be ordered online
  3. Ancestral Quest -- http://www.ancquest.com/ -- Has a free version (Ancestral Quest Basics), as well as a 60-day free trial of full version; can be used to link to and download from new FamilySearch; full version is free to use in FHC's
  4. RootsMagic -- http://www.rootsmagic.com/ -- Has a free version (RootsMagic Essentials); can be used to download from new FamilySearch; full version is free to use in FHC's
  5. Get My Ancestors -- http://www.ohanasoftware.com/ -- Freeware to download data from new FamilySearch -- Family Insight is also from Ohana Software - commercial program, but free to use in FHC's; links your PAF database to new FamilySearch
  6. Legacy -- http://www.legacyfamilytree.com/ -- Free version (Standard version); full version is free to use in FHC's
  7. Family Tree Builder -- http://www.myheritage.com/family-tree-builder -- Free genealogy program
  8. Smart Genealogy -- http://freewareapp.com/smartgenealogy_download/ -- Free genealogy program; can import/export Excel and GEDCOM files which is sometimes very helpful
  9. PhpGedView -- http://www.phpgedview.net/ -- Freeware to generate web pages from your GEDCOM for on- and offline use; requires PHP (also free) 


  10. PAF Pal -- http://www.ohanasoftware.com/ -- free helpful utility for PAF 5 databases to expand and contract US state names and add "USA" after every state; can then change "USA" to "United States" globally, as nFS wants now
  11. GENViewer Lite -- http://mudcreeksoftware.com/genviewer.htm -- free and commercial versions; very fast and helpful to read and analyze GEDCOM's and databases from several genealogy programs
  12. Addnote -- http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gumby/ged.html -- free utility to add a note to every record in a GEDCOM
  13. Addsour -- http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gumby/ged.html -- free utility to add a source to every record in a GEDCOM
  14. GEDCOM Viewer -- http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=90339 -- Open source program to view GEDCOM files
  15. OurTimelines -- http://ourtimelines.com/ -- Free website that makes timelines of world events during your ancestor's life; can be personalized with up to 10 events of your own ancestor's life; can then save as pdf or html file and link it into your PAF program like a photo
  16. OnePageGenealogy -- http://roots.cs.byu.edu/pedigree/ -- Makes pdf's of large pedigree and/or descendant charts from GEDCOM's
  17. Pedigree Viewer -- http://labs.familysearch.org/ -- Trial release of new FamilySearch program by LDS Church to view large pedigree and descendant charts
  18. Parish Locater -- http://www.parloc.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/ -- Program and database of 15,000 parishes in the United Kingdom; draws maps with nearby parishes
  19. Parish Locater for Windows -- http://web.onetel.net.uk/~gdlawson/parfind.htm -- Program and database of 25,000 parishes in the United Kingdom
  20. PRF Magnet -- on http://www.ohanasoftware.com -- Downloads data from Pedigree Resource File index (index only, no notes nor sources) on FamilySearch
  21. FamilySearcher -- http://myweb.cableone.net/kevinowen3/FamilySearcher.htm -- Searches IIGI and several other web sites for names in a GEDCOM 


  22. Adobe Reader X -- http://www.adobe.com/products/reader/ -- Free reader for pdf files
  23. FastStone Capture (version 5.3 is last freeware version, later versions are shareware) -- http://www.aplusfreeware.com/categories/mmedia/FastStoneCapture.html -- Excellent screen capture utility that also captures entire scrolling screens
  24. FastStone Image Viewer -- http://www.faststone.org/download.htm -- Good image viewer that also has screen capture features, but doesn't capture scrolling screens
  25. Namexif -- http://www.digicamsoft.com/ -- Renamer for digital photos that copies date and time from metadata and puts them at start of file name, so sorting arranges photos in chronological order; can add other descriptive terms after the date/time for further ease of searching
  26. Irfanview -- http://www.irfanview.com/ -- Photo editor, converter, and slideshower; many features, including batch conversions
  27. Picasa 3 -- http://picasa.google.com/#utm_source=en-us-more&utm_campaign=en-pic&utm_medium=et -- Google's free photo organizer and editor; uses facial recognition to help you organize and name people in photos
  28. GIMP -- http://gimp-win.sourceforge.net/stable.html -- Freeware open source photo editor -- GIMPShop is an interface that makes GIMP menus look and act like PhotoShop
  29. Oscar's File Renamer -- http://www.portablefreeware.com/?id=69 -- Good batch file renamer that allows you to see what the file name changes will look like before you actually change them 


  30. Audacity -- http://audacity.sourceforge.net/ -- Excellent sound recorder and editor, but parts are hard to learn
  31. WavePad -- http://wavepad.en.softonic.com/ -- Sound recorder and editor
  32. VLC -- http://www.videolan.org/ -- Good media player, has adjustments to synchronize sound and video when they don't match
  33. Skype -- http://www.skype.com/download/ -- Free program to talk through your computer and the Internet - free to talk to other Skype users worldwide, small charge to talk to any land or cell phone worldwide; requires a broadband connection 


  34. Jarte -- http://www.jarte.com/ -- Small, very fast, free text editor that handles txt and rtf
  35. IBM Lotus Symphony office suite -- http://symphony.lotus.com/software/lotus/symphony/home.nsf/home -- Free and compatible with MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint; seems to work faster than OpenOffice 3
  36. OpenOffice 3 -- http://www.openoffice.org/ -- Powerful open source office programs compatible with MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and others
  37. Gnumeric spreadsheet -- http://projects.gnome.org/gnumeric/  -- Open source spreadsheet compatible with Excel and many others
  38. NotePad++ -- http://notepad-plus.sourceforge.net/uk/site.htm -- Excellent open source text editor - very useful for many formats
  39. PDF995 -- http://www.pdf995.com/  -- Installs as a printer so you can "print" anything to pdf, e.g. PAF genealogy reports
  40. PDFX-Change Viewer -- http://www.tracker-software.com/product/pdf-xchange-viewer -- PDF utility, allows you to write on pdf files, e.g. to fill out a pdf form and save the results to print, email, etc.
  41. PDF Split and Merge -- http://sourceforge.net/projects/pdfsam/ -- Open source program to split or combine pdf files
  42. JOCR -- http://download.cnet.com/JOCR/3000-2192_4-10768898.html -- Freeware optical character recognition program for images of text on screen - small, fast, and works well, but requires that MS Word 2003 or later be installed (doesn't work with OpenOffice)
  43. Transcript -- http://www.jacobboerema.nl/en/Freeware.htm -- Helps you in transcribing from images of handwritten documents, keeps image and your typed text in sync as you move down the page
  44. Essential PIM --  http://www.essentialpim.com/?r=download -- Personal information manager (PIM); good for appointments, calendars, To Do lists, etc.
  45. TreePad Lite -- http://www.treepad.com/treepadfreeware/ -- Personal information manager (PIM), uses tree-format
  46. Tinyspell -- http://tinyspell.m6.net/ -- Spell checker that works even in PAF notes
  47. Thunderbird Email -- http://www.mozillamessaging.com/en-US/thunderbird/ -- Free email reader with many helpful features
  48. Eudora Email -- https://wiki.mozilla.org/Eudora_OSE -- Freeware email reader with many features; open source version is in progress 


  49. BelArc Advisor -- http://www.belarc.com/free_download.html -- Utility to analyze and list your computer's hardware and software
  50. Dropbox -- http://www.getdropbox.com/ -- Automatically synchronizes (copies via the Internet) whatever you put in the Dropbox folder on one computer to any other computer(s) you specify
  51. Everything - desktop search engine -- http://www.voidtools.com/ -- Very fast desktop search engine for files on your computer; very helpful to search, launch, and organize files on your computer
  52. FileSeek -- http://www.fileseek.ca/Download/ -- Free and fast search engine for text inside files on your computer
  53. Q-Dir -- http://www.softwareok.com/ -- Helpful two or more panel Windows Explorer-type program for file maintenance such as checking, copying, moving, and deleting files
  54. DupKiller -- http://www.snapfiles.com/get/dupkiller.html -- Fast program to find all the duplicate files on your computer
  55. Piriform Defragler -- http://www.piriform.com/defraggler -- Good defragger for your hard drives
  56. Glary Utilities --  http://www.glaryutilities.com/  -- Helpful computer utilities to keep your computer running smoothly; free for home use
  57. Advanced SystemCare Free -- http://www.iobit.com/advancedwindowscareper.html?Str=download  -- Helpful computer utilities
  58. JustZipIt -- http://free-backup.info/justzipit.html -- Simple zip/unzip file compression program
  59. WinHTTrack -- http://www.httrack.com/ -- Will download all or part of an entire website for offline browsing and backing up
  60. PageNest Free -- http://dailyfreeware.net/2009/08/20/pagenest-free-edition-321/ -- Website copier for offline reading and backing up
  61. Clipboard Magic -- http://www.cybermatrix.com/clipboard_magic.html -- Allows saving multiple items to clipboard
  62. Karen's Replicator -- http://www.karenware.com/powertools/ptreplicator.asp -- Freeware to backup your data from one location to another
  63. ImgBurn -- http://ask-leo.com/imgburn_free_cddvd_burning_tool.html -- Freeware CD/DVD image burner with instructions
  64. LogMeIn Free -- http://www.logmein.com (listed under Products) -- Allows you to control one computer through another over the Internet


No comments:

Post a Comment