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Get Started Using your PAF file in AQ

Follow these simple steps in order to install Ancestral Questand then bring your PAF data into AQ.

  1. Backup Your Database
  2. Just as a precaution, it never hurts to backup your database before making major changes to your computer.

    1. Open up PAF with the file that you wish to bring into Ancestral Quest.
    2. Up on the menu bar, select File then Backup.
    3. Name the backup file, as desired, and click the Backup button.
    4. Once you are notified that the backup is complete, click OK.
    5. Exit out of the PAF program.
  3. Install Ancestral Quest
    1. Download the installer for Ancestral Quest 14, by clicking here.
    2. If you are prompted to Save or Run, choose Run, then continue down to step 3. If you do not see such a prompt, then save the file; if given a choice, save the file to your Windows Desktop. After it has downloaded, go run that AQ124c.exe file to install the program. If you cannot find the file, go click on the Windows Start button and choose to search for AQ14c.exe. Once you find it, double-click the file to run it.
    3. During the installer, just click either Yes or Next to proceed through the installation. With the exception of entering your name into the User name field, you should not change anything on those installer screens.
    4. Once you click Finish, the program will be installed. A message will appear notifying you that a second installer for the Collaboration feature will run, and to restart the computer after that. Click OK.
    5. During this installer, again, just click either Yes or Next to proceed. Once you click Finish, you are done installing.
    6. Shutdown and restart your computer.
    7. Once Windows has loaded up, again, you should have an icon on your Windows desktop, labeled "Ancestral Quest 14." Another icon may be present, called AQ14c.exe. You can delete this .exe file, as it is no longer needed.
  4. Bring Your Existing PAF Database File into Ancestral Quest
    1. Start up the PAF program with the file that you wish to bring into Ancestral Quest.
    2. Within PAF, go to the menu bar, and click on Tools, then click on Ancestral Quest.
    3. Ancestral Quest will open.
    4. You are prompted for the Version of AQ to use.
    5. If you are using the free version, click Use Ancestral Quest Basics, and skip down to step 8.
      If you have purchased the program and need to enter your Registration Key, click on Use Ancestral Quest.
    6. Another window appears. Click in the Registration Key box, then enter your registration key, using all capital letters and including the hyphens.
    7. Then click the Save and Continue button. You will receive notice that the key was entered correctly, or to try again.
    8. AQ then prompts you for some basic settings. Near the bottom of the window, check the box labeled Enable PAF Compatibility mode.
    9. Then, you will typically want the following options to have a checkmark next to them:
      • Capitalize Surnames
      • Use Skins (you can select a desired color scheme from the drop-down list)
      • Gender Icons
    10. Then click OK.
    11. You are asked about using links to Ancestry.com. You can adjust this later, so to keep it simple for now, just click OK.
    12. Another window opens where you are asked about enabling the new FamilySearch tools in AQ. The checkmark is already in the box to enable this, so just click OK.
    13. You should now see your PAF database loaded into Ancestral Quest.

    Note: While your PAF file is opened in AQ, the PAF program will be 'locked' (you cannot work in PAF while AQ has the database opened).

    When you are done working in AQ, close AQ. You will be returned to PAF. Any changes made while in AQ will be seen within the PAF program.

    When you are done working in PAF, close PAF.

Now that Ancestral Quest knows what database file you are using, you are not required to open PAF first, when going into AQ. You can, instead, just start AQ from the icon on the Desktop, and the database that you have been in previously will automatically open up (this works just like in PAF).