Import from Personal Ancestral File (PAF)


PAF (5.2) is normally a straight forward import to Family Historian. If you have a very early version of PAF it is normally best to download the latest Version 5.2, then load in the data file, and export it to GEDCOM.

The Relatively Yours product also exports a PAF format GEDCOM via the Family or Group menu, so the following is also relevant.


Create New Project

Check for word-wrapping errors

First use File > Project Window and the New Project button, and select Import a GEDCOM file. The dialogue is uncomplicated, but in the Check for word-wrapping errors window, select Each row contains 1 word with a hyphen in the middle.

See Understanding Projects for more information on creating a Project from GEDCOM & media files, and using the Project Window.

Correct Problems

There are some items to watch out for such as invalid dates becoming Date Phrases, custom _AKA and _UID UDF tags, and Individual Local Note Tags, but most are fixed by the Import From PAF Plugin.

  • PAF will allow invalid GEDCOM dates to be entered, which will become Date Phrases when loaded in to Family Historian. Most should be fixed by the Import From PAF Plugin, but see Fixing Dates and Date Phrases for other options.
  • The _AKA UDF tags are for "Also Know As names" and the Import From PAF Plugin allows them to be deleted, or moved to Alternate Name fields, or Title Attribute standard facts, or AKA Attribute custom facts.
  • The _UID UDF tags can be deleted or moved to Custom Id fields using the Import From PAF Plugin.
  • Both the above UDF can also be handled via the UDF List Plugin. Sort by tag and highlight all the _AKA and _UID values, and delete them by pressing the delete key.
  • Individual Local Note Tags hold text relating to Facts and are best handled by the Import From PAF Plugin. This allows each Tag to be identified, and a Fact related text field (such as Note or Text From Source) chosen for each Tag. The text against each Tag is then moved to the chosen text field.

Family Search ~ Personal Ancestral File (PAF) discontinued in 2013. download to save, Extract All to unpack, then double-click PAF5EnglishSetup.exe to install.

Import From PAF Plugin to help convert PAF Notes to Facts in Family Historian, and fix _UID UDF, _AKA UDF, and Date Phrases.