The Bottom Line
If you're looking for genealogy software that's easy enough to use without the manual, yet full-featured enough to satisy a professional genealogist, then you should definitely check out RootsMagic. From beautiful charts and flexible book publishing, to easy data entry and advanced sourcing, RootsMagic offers something for everyone.
- Simple, intuitive interface
- View and copy between multiple databases
- Customizable interface, fact types, reports and charts
- Does not allow direct import - GEDCOM only
- Charts aren't very pretty in their default format (you can customize though)
- Only available for Windows
- Three navigation views -Pedigree, Family, & Descendants- provide multiple looks at the family tree.
- Multiple databases can be open on screen at the same time with drag and drop between databases.
- 60 predefined fact types (birth, death, occupation, etc) plus the ability to customize your own.
- A number of graphical chart options, including box charts, hourglass charts and wall charts.
- True sources database allows a source to be entered one time and reused for multiple facts.
- Multiple report options are available, as well as the ability to create custom reports.
- Create complete family history books with narrative, charts, photos, index, toc and bibliography.
- Print reports and books directly, or save in Adobe Acrobat(PDF) or Rich Text Format(RTF).
- Add photos, sound clips, video clips and documents to any person, family, place, source, or event.
- Integrated backup and restore help you safeguard your data.
Guide Review - RootsMagic 2.0
Sophisticated and powerful, RootsMagic is also the easiest to use genealogy program that I have ever tested. Adding family members is very intuitive and the multiple naviagation views and search features make it easy to keep track of where individuals fit into the family tree. Version 2.0 adds new charts and reports, including hourglass, timeline and wall charts; the NEHGS register report; and ancestor and descendant box charts. Sources can be created once and reused multiple times, and a Source Wizard is also available to help novice researchers include the necessary information in the proper format. Excellent research planning and tracking tools in RootsMagic include a correspondence log, interactive problem list, missing information list, and "to do" lists for specific individuals, families, or the entire database. Full multimedia scrapbook and family history book publishing capabilities round out the complete genealogy package. Most of the features in this comprehensive program are not unique, but where RootsMagic shines is in bringing them all together in a program that's easy to use right out of the box. And, if you have a question or want to make a suggestion, excellent support -- in the form of FAQs, message boards, and mailing lists -- is available from the RootsMagic Web site where the software's author, Bruce Buzbee, is an active participant. My favorite for the best all-around program, RootsMagic 2.0 does an outstanding job of covering all of the genealogy bases.