Moving Legacy Pictures from One Computer to Another

Making a multimedia backup and restoring it is the best way of moving multimedia files (pictures, sound and video files) attached to items in your family file from one computer to a second PC or laptop. Just backup your multimedia files on the first PC and restore them on the second.  In addition, if you send a Legacy family file or a GEDCOM file made for Legacy to another person, you will also need to send the pictures as a separate file and a multimedia backup is the recommended way to do this.

Backing Up Multimedia Files

A regular family file backup does not include multimedia because Legacy does not embed multimedia files in the family file; rather it only links to where the original file is stored. These multimedia files must be backed up separately.

  1. Click on File on the menu bar and select Backup Multimedia Files from the file menu.
  2. You can backup to a writable CD, a jump drive or memory stick by changing the Save In location.
  3. Give the multimedia backup file a name in the Filename field and click Save.

Alternately, when exiting Legacy, be sure to first backup your family file and then as a second step backup your multimedia files.  In addition, make sure that the multimedia backup file has a different name than your family file backup. If you use the same name the multimedia backup will overwrite your family file backup.

Restoring Multimedia Backups

The Legacy program does not (yet) have a utility that will restore (unzip) a multimedia backup. As a result, multimedia backup file cannot be restored in Legacy the same way that a backed family file can.  However, if you have Windows XP or Vista, you only need to insert your backup disk or memory stick into the new or second pc and use the Extraction Wizard that comes with Windows or Vista:

  1. Just browse to the backed up multimedia file and click on it with the RIGHT mouse button and then select Extract All from the popup menu.
  2. The Extraction Wizard will open. Click on the Next button in the Extraction Wizard window. 
  3. In the next screen type C:\ as the directory where the pictures will be extracted and then click the Next button.
  4. When restoring your multimedia files, extract them only to C:\ , where C is the letter of the drive where your multimedia files are kept. This ensures that picture and sound and paths will be preserved so that Legacy can find your files. If you extract to another location, Legacy won't be able to find the files because the extraction location is relative to the folder you select as the starting location.

If you don’t have Windows XP or Vista, then you will need a program like WinZip to restore your backed up multimedia files. Please visit to download a free copy of this program.

Please note: The multimedia backup file will only contain those pictures, sound and video clips attached to items within your Legacy family file. If you have additional images, etc. that are not attached, these will not be included, even though they may be located within the Pictures, Sounds and Videos subfolders within the Legacy folder on your hard drive. In addition, if you have more than one family file with attached multimedia files, these will have to be backed up separately.

Most people don’t add pictures, etc. as often as they add new people and data. You need to backup your multimedia files only when you have attached new images, etc. to your family file.

Be sure to get Legacy Family Tree Video Training Series - Volume 2, which contains the training CD: Picturing your Legacy: A Video Guide to Working with Digital Pictures in Legacy by visiting

Additional information on backing up and restoring files and working with pictures in Legacy can be found at and