7 October 2010
Revised 5 February 2014.
Jon Schweitzer


When you find information on the Internet or from other computer sources or files or receive a GEDCOM file and you want to transfer the information to your genealogy program database, I suggest you use a split screen method to copy and paste and avoid manually entering the information. The biggest advantage is copying notes and sources.

You might not have to do the things below if you a using Legacy Family Tree. See the 2 links near the bottom of this page.

The split screen will have your genealogy program on the right and the other source on the left.

Open 2 applications.

If you are using Windows XP - Change your screen resolution (see below) by left clicking on Start, Settings, Control Panel, Display, Settings, adjust slider for resolution, Apply and OK. You accomplish the split screen by right clicking on the lower right Taskbar and selecting "The Windows Horizontally". Position and resize the two applications to fit the screen.

If you are using Windows 7 - Change your screen resolution (see below) by right clicking on empty space on desktop, click on Screen Resolution, select available screen resolution, click Apply, click Keep Changes and click OK. Use the mouse on one application to grab the top bar and drag it towards a side of our monitor. It will 'snap' there. Open the second application, drag the top bar in the opposite direction. Both windows will be maximized to half the screen each.

Select the screen resolution in the above operations for your size of monitor below.
14-15 inch 1024x768
17-19 inch 1280x1024
20-23 inch 1600x1200
24 + inch 1900x1200
17-18 inch Widescreen 1280x800
19 inch Widescreen 1440x900
20-23 inch Widescreen 1680x1050
24-29 inch Widescreen 1920x1200

You may also see the Windows XP split screen procedure at:  You may also see the Windows 7 split screen procedure at: If you are using a Mac OS you can try: to split the screen or look at: for more Mac OS split screen software.

If you are using a source of information from other than a GEDCOM, you can open that source on the left and open your genealogy program and choose the information in the source with Copy (Ctrl+c) and paste (Ctrl+v) into your program on the right.

If you are using a GEDCOM for your source, you have the choice of using the genealogy software program Legacy Family Tree that has a built-in capability to split the screen and work with two databases. You would convert your new source GEDCOM to work with Legacy. See these two sites from Legacy about using their split screen at: and

If you are not using Legacy, you must install an extra copy of your genealogy program in a different directory so you can access that converted source GEDCOM file and copy and paste into your genealogy program database.

If you are working with only PAF databases, you can use the split screen method with FamilyInsight. The cost for it is as little as $25. See it at

Some information about GEDCOMs is at:

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