Genealogy Tips

Tools I use for genealogy

What tools do I use regularly for my genealogy research, setting up my online tree, and writing blog posts?  These include (not necessarily in order).

Microsoft Word

In 1996, I did the Certificate II in Information Technology, and from that time I started to transcribe all my family history notes and documents into Microsoft Word.  Sometimes I write my posts for my blog directly into WordPress, but most of the time I use Microsoft Word.


When I find any information of interest on the internet, I copy and paste the information to Notepad.  In the early days, I copied and pasted directly into Word, but I found that the tables tended to get corrupted.  Also, it’s quicker to copy into notepad, as it doesn’t copy all the web formatting.  At a later date I then convert the text file into a Word file.  I also use notepad when I need to modify any of the HTML and PHP files that display my family tree.

Google Chrome

I use Google Chrome as my web browser, which means I use it pretty much everyday, either researching, adding posts to my blog, updating my family tree etc.

Legacy Family Tree Version 8 Deluxe Edition

This is the program I use to set up my family tree, so I update this whenever I have additional information.

Microsoft Excel

I use Microsoft Excel for my family history index, and pretty much anything where I want to be able to work on information in table form.

Core FTP Lite Edition

This is an FTP (File Transfer Protocol) program that I use to upload or download files to the family tree part of my website (the blog part I manage directly through the WordPress interface).

Microsoft Access

I am just starting to use Microsoft Access for my family history – I am currently setting up a photo catalog in Microsoft Access, and I am also thinking about moving my family history index to Access, as it has the capability of organizing a large amount of information.  I would be able to add more detail to Access than I can in an Excel spreadsheet.


Since I have the subscription to Office 365, I have access to 1TB of storage at OneDrive for free.  OneDrive is not just for Microsoft Office files, but can be used for PDF files, images, text files, so all my files are backed up on OneDrive.  I also use a portable hard drive for back ups.