Friday, November 14, 2014

Confusion: Using a PAF file or an AQ file?



You are using Ancestral Quest, you installed the program, located your PAF file and have been working on your family file ever since. 

As you continue to use Ancestral Quest you think you have an Ancestral Quest database, after all you are using AQ to add, link, etc. but unless you have converted your PAF file, you are still using a PAF file and missing out on features that work for an AQ file but not a PAF file.

Limitations on continuing to use a PAF file inside of AQ are as follows:

In the Edit menu, the following are disabled:

  • The Quick Entry (Advanced) feature is not available
  • Replace Names/Dates/Places
In the Tools menu, the following are disabled:
  • Color Coding
  • Tags
  • Convert Names to Mixed Case
  • Convert Place Abbreviations
  • Change Log
  • Database Check/Repair (you can open the database within PAF and use PAF's Check/Repair tool)

To check to see what kind of family file you are working on go to File,  scroll and click on "Properties", the menu that comes up clearly shows you exactly what type of file you are are working with by the extension; either .paf for a PAF file or .aq for an Ancestral Quest file or .ac for an Ancestral Quest Collaboration file.



Converting your file is not difficult and the process will leave your PAF file in tack, make a copy and change the copy to a .aq file. Go to File, scroll and click on "Database Converter":


The process provides for you to name the file and then convert the file resulting in you now fully working with an AQ database and being able to use all of the features of the program.

As you continue the learning process of adjusting from PAF to AQ, you'll notice many new and additional features to make family history even better!


Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Downloading Confusion?


When it comes to updating and downloading it can be confusing for those who are new to a program. Ancestral Quest is no different and it has 3 types of files to choose from when downloading for the first time or even updating to the latest version.

The screen one gets to for downloads looks like this:



If one looks carefully, each choice is explained, however, sometimes the explanation given is just not enough so lets take a closer look at each one.

The first one is called the "The Streamlined Installer for AQ 14". This is most likely the one individuals should choose unless they want to get involved with Collaboration. New individuals may not even know just what this is and so it is a good thing to begin with downloading and installing this first choice.

The second one is the "Collaboration Support Installer" and one can download and install this separate from the first one.  The program knows how it is connected to the original "Streamlined Installer". Collaboration is a way to have others help with one's genealogical research, to learn more about this feature check out our web page on Collaboration.

The third choice is the "Complete Installer" which has both the Streamlined and the Collaboration together in one download and one installation process.

Hopefully this will help those who struggle with deciding which one to choose whether they are downloading for the first time or just updating to a new build.


Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

A GEDCOM File: One of the Ways to Share Your Genealogy Files



The above is the symbol for sharing...there is no symbol for GEDCOM and yet that is one of things you can do when you create a GEDCOM file from your own family file database.

Most people know that sharing genealogical information can be difficult. If one shares a paper family group sheet or a typed on, the chances of that information being retyped incorrectly, even accidentally is great. 

Back in 1984, GEDCOM was developed by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and an aid to overcoming obstacles of sharing genealogical information with others.

GEDCOM stands for "Genealogical Data Communication" and is a simple plain text file that contains one's family information.

Over time, all genealogical software programs supported the ability to create a GEDCOM file within the features of that software program and became the standard for many years with some improvements along the way. There has been efforts to improve this file exchange but as of now it is still the industry standard. Wikipedia has a great article on it worth reading if one is interested in the history of this file format.

To create a GEDCOM in Ancestral Quest, one simply goes to "File" and "Export" and uses the menu box that comes up to choose what and what not to include in the actual export of the family file. This is how it looks:




Presently all the boxes are checked, but in reality one would need to be very careful of what to allow. For instance, unchecking "Full Info on Living" might be appropriate if you don't wish to share living information. "Confidential Data" and perhaps "LDS Data" should be unchecked depending on who one is sharing with.

Notice that one can also choose to only send a family or just a small amount of individuals by clicking on the "Partial" and then "Select" button. This would allow one to pick and choose only those in the family file wanting to be shared with that particular person.

"All" might be used if one was uploading their family file to an online database like Ancestry.com or MyHeritage.com and any others. One would still have to be careful not to share "Living Information" especially without their permission.

From this point after you have made your selections, click on "Export" at this point you will given the ability to name your file and press "Export" one more time so it can create your file. The usual place that these files are saved in is "My Documents", however, you can change it to wherever you wish it to be saved.

Once this is created, it now can be shared either with another person or an online database as mentioned already.

That is how simple it is. Next week we'll discuss what to do with a GEDCOM file you receive.


Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/




Monday, October 13, 2014

Duplicates...Uploading whole Gedcoms is NOT a good thing











Many individuals have family files of their ancestors and want to make sure it is "added to the FamilySearch Family Tree" sharing is a good thing.

However, there are times when one needs to think about what they are doing. 

While individuals think it is an easy way to add their tree to Family Tree, if you use FamilySearch Family Tree, it is now done through the Pedigree Resource File program to prevent duplicates. Here is a link to those instructions.

Genealogical software programs like Ancestral Quest also allow you to upload your records but caution you to do this in small groups so as to prevent duplicates. Here is a screen shot of that menu:



The caption right on the menu states: 

While you can try to match all records in your current database with FamilySearch, it is recommended that you work with smaller groups of ancestors. To do this, use the Select options.

Again the reasoning is duplication. If there are individuals added to the FamilySearch FamilyTree they will have to be merged either by the one adding or another who will find it when looking for the same ancestor.

When you click on the 'Help' button, it will easily explain how to use this feature.

Think before you share "ALL" your ancestors and help to prevent duplicates in the FamilySearch Family Tree!

Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/

(c) 1994-2014 Incline Software, All Rights Reserved
 gfindlay@ancquest.com




Friday, September 12, 2014

Setting Ancestral Quest Preferences
















Setting one's preferences can help to make your software just the way you like it. If you don't adjust anything, the program will run fine but just with the defaults set and one may never have known there were choices to change colors, display date styles, place styles and even the size of the fonts can be adjusted. 

Go to "Tools" and scroll and click on "Preferences" which will bring up the following screen:



This is the "General" Tab where you can adjust the colors, add an ID, RIN or Family Search ID to a name and turn on the LDS features. You can also tell it which type of date entry you would like, US or European.


Under the "Database" tab you can tell the program which person to start with or just have it go to the last person you were on. When you turn on the "Log Changes" it keeps a record of all the changes you make to the family file and can be exported to a text file. This is often helpful. There are additional search features here as welll as saying how you want backup files to be named.



The next tab we'll discuss for this blog is the "Fonts" tab.



Here are you are able to adjust the fonts for the various screens in Ancestral Quest. From the notes and sources to the menu screens, just click the dropdown arrow and pick the one you need to change. Once you click what you want to adjust click on 'Change' and you can adjust the actual size of the fonts to your liking.

We will tackle a few other tabs in a future blog, in the mean time, feel free to explore them and adjust what you can to have a customized program!

Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/

(c) 1994-2014 Incline Software, All Rights Reserved
 gfindlay@ancquest.com

Friday, August 29, 2014

Correcting Spelling Errors in Those Places...



Often when entering places wrong spellings are typed. The "Quick Data Entry" doesn't know that it is a misspelling and can come up when you try to enter the correct information in for that particular place and either frustrate you or make it almost impossible to spell it correctly.

To fix this, simply go to "Edit" and scroll down to "Quick Entry Place List"




This will bring up the following menu where you will be able to fix those mis-spelled places:



Notice the choices you have, Add, Edit, Delete Name, Delete All, and Referesh.

You highlight the wrong spelled place and edit it or delete it if you already have a correct spelling in the list.

Hopefully this will assist those who are having problems with misspelled place names. Once you are done, just close out the file.

Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/

(c) 1994-2014 Incline Software, All Rights Reserved
 gfindlay@ancquest.com





Monday, August 25, 2014

Open, Restore, Import....Understanding How and When to Use them


When working in Ancestral Quest it sometimes can get confusing as to how to access one's database of names, dates and places.

People have files that end in .paf, .aq, .ged, .zip, .aqz and wonder why they many not 'open' under an 'open' command.

The reason they many not open is that they need a different command to do just that. 

The "File" menu has this drop down where you will find all of the right commands to help you open up your database files:




The files that end in .paf and .aq will open up with File and Open and then locating that file, double click it and you'l have all your family file information right there.

If you have a .ged file, this is a GEDCOM file and needs to be imported into a blank database. So one creates a new database and then goes to File and scrolls to 'Import', clicks it and locates that .GED file and again double clicks it. Once that is done the file will import into that blank database file filling it up with whatever is in the GEDCOM file.

If you have a .zip or .aqz file, this is a back up file and needs to be restored. One needs to go to File and 'restore', clicks it and locates the zipped file and again double clicks it to restore your database files.

With the end goal to being able to access one's family database, it is helpful to use the correct commands depending on the type of file available and hopefully this blog has provided some help in doing just that!


Remember Ancestral Quest is fully FamilySearch Certified!


Comments and questions are always welcome!


Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)

AQ Cues & Clues Blog:http://ancquest.blogspot.com/

(c) 1994-2014 Incline Software, All Rights Reserved
 gfindlay@ancquest.com