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Learn the Lingo of Legacy

When talking about your computer and the Legacy Family Tree program with other users or Support, it’s good to know some of the “lingo.”  The most frequently misuse of words heard in Technical Support is when someone says “merge” for “import”; or “download” for “install from CD” or “download” for “copy” to a jump drive or a CD.  Knowing proper terminology will help you tell others more clearly about your computer as well as help others to communicate with you.

Back Up. To make a copy of your Legacy family file.  This can be used for archive purposes or for sending a copy of your information to a fellow researcher or family member.  It may also be used to send to Support when requested.  Multimedia files can also be backed up.

Backup. A compressed copy of a Legacy family file and/or the multimedia files (pictures, sound bites and video clips) linked to a family file. A Legacy backup file has a .zip extension.

Download. The process of transferring files from another computer on a network or the Internet “down” to a user’s computer. It is also used to describe the transfer of photos from a camera memory card to a computer.

Export.  To save data in a form that another program can read. For example, to export your Legacy family file information as a GEDCOM file for use in a different genealogy program like PAF. (Click on File > Export To for a menu of export options.)

Extension. The one to three characters after the period (dot) in a filename. The extension tells the computer and the programs installed on it what the file is. For example, the .exe extension tells a computer that a file is an executable file (a program). The .ged extension tells a genealogy program that the file is a GEDCOM file. The .fdb extension indicates that the file is a family database (a Legacy family file).

Family File. The database file that contains genealogical information about individuals and families. A Legacy family file has an .fdb extension. A Legacy family file is opened in the Legacy program.

File.  A computer file is similar to a paper document holding related information or instructions. For example, each computer file is stored as a specific unit, designated by its own filename and extension. There are family files (e.g. sample.fdb), program files (e.g. legacy.exe), picture files (e.g. asabrown.jpg), backup files (e.g., etc.

Folder. A grouping of files, similar to a file folder in your filing cabinet. C:\Legacy is a folder. A folder is sometimes called a directory.

GEDCOM. Genealogical Data Communications.  A file format standard for use in transferring genealogical information from one program to another.

Import. The process of transferring data from one genealogy application to another. For example, to import a GEDCOM file created in Family Tree Maker into Legacy Family Tree. (Click on File > Import From for a menu of import options.)

Install. To set up or load and configure a program from an installation CD or from a setup file downloaded from the Internet.

Merge. Combining duplicate records within a family file. If there are two or more records for the same individual within your family file, merging will combine their information into one record.

Program. A computer application or software that performs specific functions and tasks. Legacy Family Tree is an example of a genealogy program.

Root Folder or Directory. The lowest level on a device like a hard drive or CD where files and folders are stored. For example the Root folder for the C drive is C:\.

Sub-folder. A secondary folder inside or “nested” within another folder.  The Data folder under C:\Legacy is a sub-folder. A sub-folder is sometimes called a sub-directory.

Uninstall. To properly remove a program from the computer. This is usually done via the program's own uninstall utility, or by using Add/Remove in Control Panel.

Upload.  To transfer a file from a desktop computer to another computer on a network or “up” to a web server.


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As somebody who has been involved in the technical side of the computer industry for nearly 30 years, I have a radical suggestion. Instead of people having to learn jargon why don't we try and speak english. Then we'll discover who understands and who's hiding behind the buzzwords

We try very hard to communicate in plain English. However our first question to a user who is having a problem is "Please tell us what is happening."

It's the user who will start by saying something like "I am having trouble merging." Only after further questioning do we find out they are trying to import a GEDCOM.

Or there was the user who refered to a monitor as the "glass thing that looks like a TV." Yes that is simple and understandable, and we can and do deal with that.

Thanks for your comments.

I want to print out the Legacy News articles (or some of them, if not all), but can not see how to get a printer friendly version without all of the side ads. Is that possible?

Loran, I was able to highlight the text portion with the mouse. I started with the cursor just to the left of the capital L in Learn the Lingo and holding down the left mouse button I drug the mouse to the end of the article. No ads or sidebars. Then I pressed control c, switched over to Word and pressed control v. Bingo, there was the article. If I wanted to keep it all I'd have to do is give it a name and save it in Word.

In reply to Loran Braught. In Internet Explorer, highlight the section that you wish to print. When the print preference box 'pops up', under 'Page Range' tick 'Selection'/ Click prinr the Print button and you have your answer.

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