Family History Programs
Before being too swamped with paperwork it is best to put your information into a program designed specifically for Family History. There are many Family History Programs available both free and available for purchase. When starting out you are probably better off opting for a free program until you see how you are going. Any research done when you decide to upgrade to a more involved program can be easily transferred by a GEDCOM (GEnealogical Data COMmunication). Most commercial products accept GEDCOMs.
One of the easiest free programs to use is the PAF file available free from the LDS site at www.familysearch.org
Another popular free program is the standard program from Legacy at http:// www.legacyfamilytree.com/ this program can be upgraded at a later date to a deluxe version (for minimal cost) when you are comfortable with using the basic program.
There are other programs available for free and can be found by searching Google.
There are several good programs available for purchase from good book stores or software outlets and these vary in price. Make sure these programs are compatible with your computer.
When using a computer program it is necessary to back up your work (via a GEDCOM) onto a disc or memory stick on a regular basis. This saves a lot of work if the unthinkable happens and your computer crashes and you lose all your research. A GEDCOM can easily be transferred to a new program without the need to manually type all the information again.
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