Genealogy data discs

fyonn

Active Member
Hiya folks,

not sure if this is the right place to ask this, but I figure someone must know.

My parents have been on the whole genealogy kick for a while and are enjoying it. They currently use a program called "family historian" and all has been well.

However they've seen ad's on ebay claiming to have 12 CD's worth of genealogy data that they could buy.

things like this

They're really tempted as there's likely to be some good data there, but I'm worried as I can see it's "attached" to an existing program, in this case "family tree maker" which they don't use. [1]

Has anyone got one of these sets? are the data CD's only usable by the family tree maker program, or is it just plain data like spreadsheets or PDF files? ie could they use the data, or is it tied into the program it comes with?

if they can't use them then are there are decently priced CD's of genealogy data (censuses and.. err.. whatever else is on such discs) that could be used with anything.

cheers
dave


[1] this is all complicated by the fact that they started using family historian when they had a PC, and they now have a mac. The program is now being used through crossover. I keep trying to get them to look at something like geni.com or such, but they've not shown too much interest so far.
 

IronGiant

Moderator
I'll get Mrs IG to have a look at this, I'm sure she will be able to advise :thumbsup:

Dave
 

EarthRod

Distinguished Member
Hi

What you are describing is the usual sales blurb and unfortunately the "12 CD's worth of genealogy data" will not help.

Tracing back through family surnames involves much work and effort ploughing through births, deaths and marriages GRO indexes on the internet or in the local library, and obtaining the certificates when a 'hit' is found. Also ploughing through the sensus entries is required.

There is no easy way round all this work if accuracy is required.

IMO ignore the sales stuff and all the software involved - it will cost and the outlay is not necessary.

Notebook, pencil and rubber is all that is required when carrying out the legwork! :)

Alan
 

Gossops

Active Member
The data discs that come with Family Tree Maker are viewable using the Ancestry Viewer application that comes embedded in FTM and as a standalone *.exe on the data discs (so no use for Macs then :(). The data is in a proprietary format.

To be honest, the data sets aren't that great, particularly if you're not interested in the US immigration lists, and you might do better considering one of the UK & Ireland subscription packages to ancestry.co.uk which gives full access to census data from 1841 to 1901 plus parish records, Pallot's marriages and various other sources. You can then add the data however you wish to your software of choice. Given the range of data available, you could probably strip all the data you need in a single year subscription.

My software of choice happens to be FTM, which integrates completely with the ancestry.co.uk resources so you can run searches across the available data sets from within your family tree. If you wanted to consider new genealogy software, I would recommend it. I have no idea whether there's a mac-compatible version though???

Short answer - spend your money on either pay per view items at ancestry or take out a 1-year sub. Don't forget to cancel it when you're done though, because they run their subs on an automatic renewal basis :mad:.

Hope this helps :thumbsup:

Gossops (Mrs IG)
 

fyonn

Active Member
I'll get Mrs IG to have a look at this, I'm sure she will be able to advise :thumbsup:
cheers :)

Tracing back through family surnames involves much work and effort ploughing through births, deaths and marriages GRO indexes on the internet or in the local library, and obtaining the certificates when a 'hit' is found. Also ploughing through the sensus entries is required.
oh, they do all that stuff already.. getting copies of birth, death and marriage records from various places in the UK, looking up details in libraries.. finding records of who else is buried in the same grave etcetc. they've been doing that for years, but they thought that the kind of data on these discs may give them new avenues to look down too.

The data discs that come with Family Tree Maker are viewable using the Ancestry Viewer application that comes embedded in FTM and as a standalone *.exe on the data discs (so no use for Macs then :(). The data is in a proprietary format.
ahh.. I thought that might be the case. :(

FTM is windows only so no joy there. I know they know about ancestry.co.uk but I don't know if they subscribe.


thanks

dave
 

Geordie Jester

Well-known Member
I would definately point them to ancestry.co.uk

I have signed up to the monthly service at 12.95 a month. you can cancel any time. census records and images, birth/marriage/deaths etc etc. One of the best things about it is the fact that there are so many members that you can often find people have already done some of your family tree for you. once the tree is built you can export the gedcom file for other packages.

I have tried the demo of Family Historian and was very impressed with the software. It has now expired and so Im waiting to decide on which to buy. Family Tree Maker 2010 is out on Friday so Im considering that one as it ties in with the ancestry website.
 

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