Looking for a Genealogy App for your Mac, iPhone, iPod, iPad? I got some answers UPDATED

Here are my recommendations base upon testing and usage: Updated!

Roots Magic 7 these are windows applications but can be run on MAC's via MacBridge (a customized version of Crossover) for $9.95. You will still need to purchase a full version of Roots Magic (for the license file key to use in MacBridge). Is MacBridge as good as the windows version? Sort of you can open your family information just like in Windows. the MacBridge application is stable. Someday soon Roots Magic promises a true OS X app. They have an iOS app but it is read only of your Family file so it is useless if you are away from your MAC, you can't add information with the iOS to your family file.

Pros and Cons: Very good windows application very stable, but no real MAC app, using windows emulation has its drawbacks on a MAC machines. They have great documentations and support migrating of PAF, FTM and other file formats Needs a iOS app that allows for reading and writing of genealogy data!

iFamily is a great genealogy app for the MAC, it is easy to use and support importing of data via gedcom files up to version 5.5. iFamily for Leopard is a genealogy application for people who think differently. Whereas other genealogy software tends to emphasize the family unit, this software's focus is on each individual person. This distinction is subtle and is a feature of iFamily for Leopard. In iFamily for Leopard you can see at a glance whether an individual has more than 2 parents, more than 1 spouse or the number of siblings they had. Parent-child relationships may be natural (the default), step, adopted or foster relationships. Available for purchase since October 2006, iFamily has had more than 60 versions released, leading to a richly featured product that is stable and user friendly, utilized by a healthy community of users.

Pros: great support forum, customer focused. Cons: no iOS application.

Reunion is another really great app for the MAC, it is simple to use and has a Mac World Editor's Choice Award: Reunion is a genealogy software program — a "family tree program" — for the Macintosh. Reunion is also available as a companion product on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and the iPad. Reunion Touch is an application for Reunion 11 users that replaces the previous "Reunion for iOS". The current version of Reunion 11 for Macintosh received the highest rating for genealogy software in MacWorld, MacAddict, and Mac Home Journal magazines. Reunion also received a MacWorld Editor's Choice award. The latest release 11 (2015) the upgrade price 49.95 (unless you are in PA then it is more)..

I bought this app because it was suppose to the be the best genaelogy app for the MAC (2009), upgraded to most current release it has won me back as a customer.

Pros: Great user interface (UI) good documentation Cons: iPad app cost 15.00 and you proably shell out 100.00 (49.99 for the upgrade per release) for the mac app that you must have in order to use the iOS app.

Mac Family Tree is a very visual applcation for the MAC. I have been using this app since release 3 (now at release 7), the developers have made great strides in the user interface! The reports and charts are first class! Your family tree:

Easily enter and then visualize your family history. Be it creating reports, diagrams or browsing your data in the innovative 3D view called Virtual Tree - MacFamilyTree offers a solution for every task. Get an overview of where you hail from and maybe enthuse your relatives about exploring your family's past at your upcoming family reunion.

Pros: Great UI, activily being improved, very visual, resonable price for product and updates, iOS app 15.00, iOS app can import and export gedcom files. New 7.x version is out and is a huge improvement over the original 6.x software stream

Cons: Version 7.x for IOS does require that you repurchase the application. Issues with the current release importing and exporting gedcom files even from older releases, iOS app freezes up when using large family files (31 to 43 Mb) **note this has been fixed with the last application update for iOS **, must have desk top version of software to sync data on the same WiFi network. Syncing of data takes forever on large files or just plain crashes both sides. Tech support is germany, slow responses at times. Web site is confusing since they have multiple products.

Airmail new mail app for MAC OS X Updated

UPDATE: I have purchased Airmail from the mac app store. So far Airmail supports IMAP, Exchange, POP3, email accounts (Google, mac.com, me.com, icloud.com, yahoo.com, as well as my website email). The App is $1.99 in the apple app store. So far it has preformed very well over all. I love the interface or UI!. I believe Airmail is just as good or better than the built in Mail.app! It is very easy to use.

UPDATE: Exchange support is here, POP3 is here (current release 1.38) update via the App Store!

NOWYOU CAN GET AIRMAIL 2.0 for $9.99 at the app store ( I don't think the app isworth more than $2.99 )

Running Windows on MAC OS X (Yosemite at the current time) Updated!

Ok most people folks know I am a Mac user ( we have 1 Macbook Air, 2 Macbook's 3 MacBook Pro's). That said I have the need to have access to windows (for testing web sites I create in Rapidweaver, and some genealogy applications). So what is the best way to run windows on a MAC? well I have tried them all so here is my take:

1. Bootcamp, allows a use to setup a seperate disk partition on you MAC (intel based only). This work well execept you must reboot you MAC to get to windows to run.

2. Parallels application (uses the virtual machine method) is a good product (I have been using Parallels since release 5 current release is version 9.x) it allows you to launch windows with in OS X.  The current release is version 8 it supports Windows up to Win 8.1. The product support is good. Cost of the product is about 80.00 with release upgrades for 50.00 (49.99). Why are upgrades needed ? As Mac OS X is upgraded so also must Parallels. Other costs? Yep you must purchase a fully licensed copy of windows to install as a virtual machine. Parallels has better performance in OS X. It works best on Mac's with lots of ram and disk space. Win 8.1 runs very well in Parallels 9!

3. Fusion (VMWare product)  application ( uses the virtual machine method) is a good product as well ( I have been a beta tester for a couple of releases) it also allows you to launch windows applications within OS X. The current release supports Win 7 with Windows 8 in testing. The technical support at times is lacking since VMWare first released Fusion.  in the latest release that supports Mavericks has been performing pretty well . That said it is now stable.  Cost of the producy is about 80.00 with release upgrades for 50.00 (49.99), why are upgrades needed? As Mac OS X is upgraded (new releases) so also must Fusion.  Other costs? Yes you must also purchase a fully licensed copy of the windows operating system to install as a machine. Fusion performance on MAC OS X is good (at best lots of crashes have been reported).  The more ram and hard disk space you have on your mac the better.

4. Virtual Box (Sun Micro/Oracle) is an open source application (zero cost) that also uses the virtual machine method. Virtual box runs well on MAC OS X an allows for windows application to be launched from within Mac OS X. it supposrts  Windows (NT 4.0, 2000, XP, Server 2003, Vista, Windows 7), DOS/Windows 3.x, Linux (2.4 and 2.6), Solaris and OpenSolaris, OS/2, and OpenBSD. VIrtual Box also requires a licensed copy of the guest operating system to be installed. Support is better than Fusion  and requires about the same amount of ram and hard disk space as Parallels and Fusion.

5. Crossover  application is unique it actually installs it's own version of windows that has been optimized for MAC OS X (it also is only supports Win 95, Win XP, Vista, Server 2000, Server 2003). It uses what Code Weavers calls the bottle method (from the Wine origins). Applications are install via one of two methods via Cross tie application from with in Crossover (Codeweavers have lots of applications ported to run already) or via the standard exe file or cd rom method of installation. Pre configured applications (bottles) install all of the required windows apps and services as part of the installation process. Costs flexible from 39.99 with 1 month of support (no telephone support email only) to 59.99 12 months of email support with one free phone support incident.  Performance is great! New version is release 13.70 it has been running great.

I have tested each one of these applications on several different Mac's in many different configurations. Good luck and I hope this helps out. 

Update:

Crossover has been updated to 13.70 and runs much better on 2009 and later Intel Mac's (including MacBook Air products). So if you have to run windows apps give CrossOver a try.

 

 

Transporter replacement for Dropbox?

You might have seen a company on Facebook or on the web called Connected Data offering a product call a Transporter or Transporter Sync. The products allow you to setup your own private cloud service, Great idea right goodbye dropbox, iCloud, one drive, copy, etc.  so I purchased a sync ( it allows you provide your own usb hard drive for storage). It takes an hour or two setup and get working, To access your drive you will need a helper app ( they have the app for MAC OS and Windows) they also have apps for iOS and Android mobile devices. As well as a free account on contacted data site so you can claim your transporter device, The transporter works as advertised wight he following warnings IT DOES NOT SUPPORT SSD DRIVES, or DRIVE OVER 4 TB, you MUST PLUG IT INTO a !Gig ETHERNET port. the USB port is on 2.0 yet the recommend that you use a USB 3.0 drive. Copying of files is REALLY SLOW on both wired and wireless ethernet connections. It reformats your usb drive and wipes out all of your data. If you need to upgrade your external hard disk you must copy all of the data off of your existing transporter drive to another disk. Replace the existing drive with a new drive wait for it to reformat the new drive.. Then you can copy your old files to the new drive, and as I have stated that is a SLOW PROCESS!. Another oddity is that it does not like long file names (I found this on PDF files I use for work) I opened a ticket with support on this one to find out sorry it does not do that. File sharing is kind of different too, you have to create an email request to add people to the file or folder, in turn they have to sign up for a free account to gain access to what you are sharing. You can add other Transporter into your private cloud, they will replicate data to and from each other. 

It is a cool device but it will chew up your bandwidth since it passes data over your internet connection. 

I have to give the Transporter 2 out of 5 stars for now.  

They just released an update to the helper apps. I will test them and see what is fixed.  UPDATE: The new helper apps seem to be a bit faster in loading, updating the Transporter and Transporter Sync folders. So that is good. Now 2.5 out of 5 stars for now. 

New iOS APP reviews 3/26/2013

Ok I have not posted in a while but I have some more time.  Okay I have a few iOS apps to talk about:

Flixster is a nice app for streaming content (UltraViolet) to your iOS or MAC device. It does have some draw backs, it can't support Apple TV devices directly, the flixster service can be painfully slow since it must be streamed over wifi (unless you have a large cell data plan, and the app warns you as well). the app does support AirPlay but not in full screen mode (this is how you can send your ultraviolet content to Apple TV or a big screen TV).  Video will not stream automatically without turning on mirroring to the device (and yes Apple hides this in option iOS). The support from Flixster is less than good. 

VUDU Player is another media streaming app  for iOS and MAC (ultraviolet content) I like the user interface much better than Flixster. It also can't interface with Apple TV since UltraViolet and apple can't seem to work out terms. It also supports AirPlay and AirPlay Mirroring (same issues as Flixster).  the support from VUDU is much better overall.  If you are purchasing DVD's/BluRay with digital copies most are moving to UltraViolet instead of iTunes so you will have issues with your iOS devices. Since I travel a ton I like to have a couple of video's loaded for long plane flights. FYI GoGo (wifi in the sky most us air carriers) does not support video streaming while in flight.. 

oh yes both apps will allow you to download your content to your iOS device ahead of time. Most movies start at about 1.2 gig and go up from there.  Flixster does not support HD format either. 

Show More Posts