Wednesday, April 15, 2009

File Recovery Project

At one time all of my genealogy files were in the DOS Personal Ancestral File (PAF) format on an IBM ThinkPad laptop. When the clock battery on this computer wore out it wouldn't boot up any more. I paid a computer shop to put the files from the hard drive on a Kingston thumb drive. Then I set the thumb drive aside and complained about how much work it would be to move the files from the thumb drive to my replacement computer, a Dell Latitude laptop where I intended to load them into the RootsMagic genealogy program.

The issues involved in the process aren't worth going into in this posting. Suffice it to say, there are many steps involved and I have to do part of the work on a desktop computer that also has issues. The biggest problem is that the "note" field in my PAF files use a period (.) to separate paragraphs. Those place holders must be removed and replaced with a carriage return before converting the old PAF files to RootsMagic.

As of yesterday morning the five largest files hadn't been converted. It had been so long since I worked on this project I had trouble understanding the notes I wrote the last time I worked on the project a year ago.

I'm using this posting to announce that yesterday I was sucessful in converting the Adam Henthorn, of Monroe Co., Ohio, file of 6,405 individuals and 2,379 marriages. I worked most of the day on the project. After the file was loaded into RootsMagic a test revealed that there is enough information to produce a Register genealogy report of nearly 700 pages.

At least four files, probably all larger, remain to be converted: James Henthorn; William Henthorn; Conger; and Yoho. There is one large file that seems to be damaged. I'll probably have to accept that I lost all of that work. Based on the Adam Henthorn project I estimate it will take four full days to complete the work. I'm hopeful that I'll be able to accomplish these projects in due time.

Mr. Dickie

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