19 May 2010

The Genealogy Software That Works for Me: Roots Magic

Sometime last year I was looking for a new genealogy software program to use. I had started with PAF and thought it was time to upgrade. I posted a question on twitter asking for recommendations. The program that was recommended the most was Roots Magic. I went to Roots Magic.com and signed up for the free trial. I tried it for two days and liked it so much that I bought it.

There are so many aspects of Roots Magic that I like that it is hard to narrow it down for a blog post. Here are a few of Roots Magic's benefits:

Ease of Use
  • importing files

  • entering data

  • finding people in database

  • ability to automatically search web sites from the web search view


  • large variety of facts that allows one to build an ancestor's life with detail

  • ability to share facts with others in your database. This saves one from having to document the same information and source for many individuals who share the fact. (ie. census)


  • wide selection of source templates

  • writes sources in the proper format

  • allows you to select the quality of the source (original vs. derivative, primary vs. secondary, and direct vs. indirect)

Reports and Lists

  • wide selection of reports and lists options (pedigree, family group, address list, birthday, duplicates, missing information, places, repository, source, statistics, timeline, to-do, and more)

  • one list I like to use is the source list. It will print a single source list or all sources in the database. For the single source list, it will print every use for that source. This comes in handy when going to a repository. You can see what information you have already found and for what individuals per source.

Another plus for Roots Magic is the Roots Magic To Go feature. This gives you the ability to take your data with you easily by transferring it to a flash drive.

I have barely touched on all the wonderful parts of the program. There are parts of it I have yet to use: DNA test, mapping, wall charts, family web site and LDS support. There is a book, "Getting the Most Out of Roots Magic 4" by Bruce Buzbee that is a great companion to the software.

What genealogy software works for you?


  1. I use RootsMagic, too. I figure that if I have a question about the program, I'll get an answer quicker (and probably from the company owner himself) from RootsMagic, then I would from software from a bigger company. I've been very happy with the product and have used it for about 11 months now.

  2. Amy, You are right about the Roots Magic customer service. I posted a question on Roots Magic facebook page and it was answered within the hour. Thanks for following my blog.