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Cannot open certain RMGC files


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#1 Cyberherbalist

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 09:50 AM

I'm running version 7.5.9.0 on Windows 10.

 

I don't know if this is a bug or a feature -- perhaps the files in question are corrupted somehow?

 

I have two rmgc files that I last accessed back in June 2018, but I cannot open them now.  When I navigate to the files using the file open dialog, and highlight the file in the dialog, the Open button remains disabled.  Meanwhile, with the rmgc file that I last accessed a couple of days open (my "master" file, as it were), when I highlight this file the Open button is enabled and I can open it.  All three files are in the same folder.  None of them is marked "Read Only".

 

Any ideas?



#2 Kamolga

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 12:44 PM

If you are on a folder synchronised to the cloud (like OneDrive), it can happen they just put a shortcut when file is unused (to save space on hardisk), sometimes you have to download a file locally to get it work properly. The size is about 1kb instead of the few thousands it should be (right click and properties).

 

If not, I would try to open it with SQLiteSpy to see if it is corrupted...if you can open it there and have names in NameTable, it means the issue comes from the software (RM), so I would reinstall it.


Rootsmagic 7.5.9.0 with a lot of SQL queries (SQLiteSpy) and a bit of Family Historian 6.2 (tree view and map)


#3 Cyberherbalist

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 02:09 PM

If you are on a folder synchronised to the cloud (like OneDrive), it can happen they just put a shortcut when file is unused (to save space on hardisk), sometimes you have to download a file locally to get it work properly. The size is about 1kb instead of the few thousands it should be (right click and properties).

 

If not, I would try to open it with SQLiteSpy to see if it is corrupted...if you can open it there and have names in NameTable, it means the issue comes from the software (RM), so I would reinstall it.

 

I should have thought of that, but yes that was the problem.  Actually, OneDrive itself seemed to be having trouble -- usually I've had no problems syncing with files in that cloud, but this time there was an error occurring.  I got onto the OneDrive website and downloaded the folder in question, and I was back in business!

 

Thanks!



#4 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 02:33 PM

For a very long time, I included OneDrive as a part of my (probably overly complex) backup strategy. But over the last few months, I have chosen to abandon OneDrive. It has become a "true cloud based service" instead of being a  "mirror a hard disk in the cloud service". It seems to be keeping the data primarily in the cloud and only to store it on your hard disk when you are actually using the data.

 

I don't know exactly when the change to OneDrive took place and I didn't happen to see much publicity about it. But it's a terrible decision. I don't know why anybody would put their RM data or any other data in OneDrive with the way OneDrive presently works. I'm not going to entrust my data to OneDrive nor to Apple nor to anybody else. I'm going to keep my data local and back it up myself. My backup strategy will definitely include cloud based mirroring services, but no cloud based storage services.

 

In the unlikely event that anybody from Microsoft does genealogy and uses RM and is on these forums and is listening, I would advise you that Microsoft's decision to make OneDrive into a "true cloud based service" instead of being a "mirror a hard disk in the cloud service" has totally ruined the utility of an otherwise perfectly useful product. I hope it's not the ruin of Microsoft, but the direction Microsoft has been going lately - like how Windows Updates will reboot my machine out from under an open RM session - is not encouraging. I don't like the Mac user interface, and some of the things Apple is doing are about as bad as Microsoft. It really is all very discouraging. Unless I'm willing to go to Linux for my desktop, Microsoft and Apple are about the only shows in town. I do have a Linux server in my house, but that's not the same as using Linux on the desktop.

 

Jerry

 

P.S. There is surely a valid question as to whether OneDrive, Dropbox, and their various competitors are truly backup solutions. The answer is yes, no, maybe, and it depends. I don't think mirroring is adequate as your only backup solution. But as I said, it can be part of a good backup strategy as long as that is not the only thing you do. And OneDrive isn't even mirroring anymore.

 



#5 Cyberherbalist

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 03:12 PM

 

P.S. There is surely a valid question as to whether OneDrive, Dropbox, and their various competitors are truly backup solutions. The answer is yes, no, maybe, and it depends. I don't think mirroring is adequate as your only backup solution. But as I said, it can be part of a good backup strategy as long as that is not the only thing you do. And OneDrive isn't even mirroring anymore.

 

 

I've actually never considered OneDrive (or DropBox for that matter) to be backup solutions.  I hardly ever use DropBox, and even then only when I want to share data with other people.  I put essential files into OneDrive so that I can access them away from my home base.  For example, I live in both the US and the UK, but primarily in the UK.  I prefer not to carry my laptop from the UK to the US. I have a desktop in the US, and I use OneDrive to share files between both homes. 

 

Another solution would be to carry an external drive on the airplane, but I'd rather not -- for one thing, the 4th Amendment protection from search and seizure does not apply at the border!  It's not that I worry they might find something in my files, but if for some reason they decided i look suspicious, they'd be looking at my files with a fine toothed comb.  It's simpler to just provide them with nothing to see.

 

For backup, I do local backup using Acronis backup software and a pair of 4 TB external drives.  For me it is rather difficult to use a cloud backup solution (I used to use Carbonite, which saved me once upon a time) because in the UK I live out in the countryside with very slow internet connnectivity: like 12 mbps down, 1 mbps up, on a good day.  At my house in the US it's more like 100 mbps down and 20 mbsp up.



#6 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 08:54 PM

Since I posted my last message, I researched the OneDrive situation a little bit more. It first appeared in Windows 8 in 2015. But Windows 8 was very unsuccessful and I personally never installed it, holding out for something better. I only moved to Windows 10 about a year ago, and for whatever reason I only noticed  that OneDrive wasn't keeping files locally until three or four months ago. I've been phasing it out ever since. Of course, OneDrive is a part of a larger Microsoft strategy that I totally disagree with. Namely, put all your data in OneDrive and put OneDrive clients on all your devices. OneDrive of course is built in to Windows itself. Thus all your data is in OneDrive and isn't really on any of your devices. It's AVAILABLE to all your devices but it's not really ON any of your devices.

 

If you ever installed Windows 8 or if you installed Windows 10 before I did, you may have experienced this "all your data is in the cloud" approach before I did.

 

I love my iPhone and my iPad and I really dislike a Mac. And of course I have the RM mobile app on my iPhone and my iPad. But Apple has been into this cloud stuff longer than Microsoft with its iCloud service. It's almost like the computing model is returning to the old centralized data center model from the 1960's and 1970's that users hated so much and that the "personal" computer did so much to overthrow. I think it's ironic that Microsoft and Apple, two of the prime movers in the "personal" computer movement have gone over to the dark side.

 

Jerry

 



#7 Kamolga

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Posted 12 July 2019 - 12:12 AM

I have been using onedrive for very long time, and it was perfect (especially since I work with Microsoft Office) until they decided to go through this local shortcut system that I find difficult to control (no benefits for me since I can handle my local hard disk space by myself, only issues).I was very happy with selecting folders to synchronize and leave the other ones online only (which I do with SharePoint). I lost archives and templates of years of work because of a massive cut and paste of shortcuts instead of files (the bin handle a certain amount of files,many were just lost.


Rootsmagic 7.5.9.0 with a lot of SQL queries (SQLiteSpy) and a bit of Family Historian 6.2 (tree view and map)


#8 Cyberherbalist

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Posted 12 July 2019 - 12:14 AM

 

I love my iPhone and my iPad and I really dislike a Mac. And of course I have the RM mobile app on my iPhone and my iPad. But Apple has been into this cloud stuff longer than Microsoft with its iCloud service. It's almost like the computing model is returning to the old centralized data center model from the 1960's and 1970's that users hated so much and that the "personal" computer did so much to overthrow. I think it's ironic that Microsoft and Apple, two of the prime movers in the "personal" computer movement have gone over to the dark side.

 

 

I had to laugh when I read this, because as a retired programmer, I started out as in IBM mainframes (distributed model), but eventually switched over to personal computers -- which my mainframe buddies described to me as "the Dark Side"!

 

And the way OneDrive works is actually how I expected it to work, so I've not been disappointed.  I can see how it might miss the expectations of others, however.



#9 Trebor22

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Posted 12 July 2019 - 06:34 AM

Since I posted my last message, I researched the OneDrive situation a little bit more. It first appeared in Windows 8 in 2015. But Windows 8 was very unsuccessful and I personally never installed it, holding out for something better. I only moved to Windows 10 about a year ago, and for whatever reason I only noticed  that OneDrive wasn't keeping files locally until three or four months ago. I've been phasing it out ever since. Of course, OneDrive is a part of a larger Microsoft strategy that I totally disagree with. Namely, put all your data in OneDrive and put OneDrive clients on all your devices. OneDrive of course is built in to Windows itself. Thus all your data is in OneDrive and isn't really on any of your devices. It's AVAILABLE to all your devices but it's not really ON any of your devices.

 

I think OneDrive was around before Win 8 / 2015 in the guise of SkyDrive but I seem to remember MS renamed it (perhaps because of clash with Sky?) and in the beginning you didn't need to install anything (and I think that's still the case?) you  just log in from your browser and use if that's what you prefer.

Like others mentioned it works as I expect it to, I use it to keep some files available anywhere, collaborate with others and on odd occasions when I have been away from home  backup files from my laptop. Its never been part of my home backup strategy.

One current negative, when first launched it came with 25GB of free storage but has been cut back to just 5 last time I looked :-(

I'm not keen on a lot of what MS has been doing but happy with OneDrive :-)



#10 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 12 July 2019 - 06:42 AM

 

I had to laugh when I read this, because as a retired programmer, I started out as in IBM mainframes (distributed model), but eventually switched over to personal computers -- which my mainframe buddies described to me as "the Dark Side"!

 

And the way OneDrive works is actually how I expected it to work, so I've not been disappointed.  I can see how it might miss the expectations of others, however.

 

I wrote my first program in 1965 for an IBM mainframe computer using punched cards. I worked on mainframes for many years until they were supplanted by more modern ways of computing. So I'm very familiar with the concept of centralized computing. I purchased one of the "original" original IBM PC's for home use, and I have been hooked on truly personal computing ever since, even though my career for close to 50 years remained working in data centers in a college and university environment. Even in a PC world, data still has to be secured and backed up, which creates constant tension between users (in my case, students and faculty) and the central data center. So in the corporate or academic world, there is still centralized computing. It's just blended in with desktop computing.

 

OneDrive does NOT work the way I expected, partly because I first ran (and still run) Dropbox which doesn't work that way, and partly because disk space is cheap enough and plentiful enough in a desktop world that trying to keep most of the data in the cloud and only keeping a small bit of data on the desktop doesn't make much sense. What I was forgetting or not realizing was the Microsoft's concept for OneDrive includes all user devices including mobile devices that don't have anywhere near as much storage capacity as do desktop class machines.

 

Even though I said that "Dropbox doesn't work that way", it actually does work that way on mobile devices even though it doesn't work that way on the desktop. I have Dropbox installed on my iPhone and iPad in support of RM's mobile app. That's how my RM database gets from my PC to my mobile devices. The Dropbox app on my mobile devices can see a list of all my files, but it doesn't move a file from the cloud to the mobile device until it is needed. Hence, when I update my RM database and want the new data on my mobile device, I have to get the file from "Dropbox" rather than from "On Device" - a concept that most users who run RM's mobile app are very familiar with. So I probably shouldn't have been as surprised at OneDrive's behavior as I was.

 

Jerry



#11 Rooty

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Posted 23 July 2019 - 05:45 PM

Jerry;  You may misunderstand how Apple's icloud works currently. It functions more as a synching service between phones, pads and macs than as a place to store your files. It does both if allowed but it is very easy to turn off cloud file storage and/or synching if desired. I never use icloud to store my files but Apple makes this available for those too careless to back up locally.

 

 Suggest you retry the mac OS x interface again. It is vastly superior to Windows but the apparent differences can throw windows users off kilter until they learn the different names for similar features. MacOS is rock solid, virus free and very user friendly. No updates forced down your throat or other Microsoft silliness.

 

That said, RM7 on a mac is NOT a happy experience compared to windows. The fake crossover approach has an expanding list of issues which have not been addressed for years. Bruce needs a native mac version and soon. Many of us have abandoned ship after years of vague promises.



#12 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 23 July 2019 - 07:20 PM

Suggest you retry the mac OS x interface again. It is vastly superior to Windows but the apparent differences can throw windows users off kilter until they learn the different names for similar features.

 

I can use a Mac and I have tried several times to really like a Mac. It just doesn't work. I guess there are Mac people and PC people and I'm a PC person. My computer experience goes back to the punched card days of mainframes, and I am (or was) fluent with such things as IBM mainframes and Vax's and numerous flavors of UNIX. So it's not that I can't learn I Mac. I don't want to. It's like learning to like a kind of food that you don't really like.

I have known a lot of people who have switched from Windows to Mac successfully, and I have known a lot of people who are fluent in both worlds. My younger daughter is such a person. At work, she uses Windows servers and Windows desktops with lots of Access databases and Excel spreadsheets in thousands of thousands of files with lots of folders and subfolders (my way of working). At home, she is Mac all the way. She described it to me as at work, she knows all the subfolder structures and she knows where all the files are. At home, she doesn't know any of that stuff because her Mac knows it for her. That kind of fuzzy and amorphous approach to things drives my crazy.

 

I periodically kid Mac people that I will buy a Mac when I can buy a two button mouse for it that is made by Apple. I know you can plug a two button mouse from a third party into a Mac and it just works, but the left click and right click stuff from Windows just makes so much more sense to me, like I have the control instead of the machine having the control. And to this day I'm still bummed out by the time I had to drag and drop a floppy disk icon to the trash can on a Mac to eject the floppy disk. Why didn't that erase all the files on the floppy disk instead? Finally, there are many areas where I find a severe shortage of apps for a Mac or where some software that I love and need runs only on Windows (or Windows emulation of some kind on a Mac or on Unix). For example, GedSite has become as important to me as RM, and GedSite runs only on a PC. It's not quite as important to me as RM, but I use a piece of software called Metes and Bounds heavily to create maps from old deeds, and it runs only on a PC. So no, I'm good with computers but I can't use a Mac.

 

That being said, given that RM8 is being developed with a source code base that can be deployed in both the Mac and Windows environments, I worry that RM8 on Windows won't look and feel like a Windows app - simple things like the File>Open and File>Save dialogs may look and feel all wrong to a Windows user. I love my iPhone and I use iTunes on my PC to manage it because I have to. But I think the iTunes app for a PC is pretty terrible, probably because it looks like a Mac app that was ported to Windows. Another example is an excellent free graphics app called GIMP2. It is very awkward for a Windows user because it looks and feels like a UNIX app (it was developed first on UNIX and later ported to Windows). So even apps that run on Windows can fail to look and feel like Windows apps and therefore can be very awkward to use for a Windows user.

 

Jerry



#13 Rooty

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Posted 23 July 2019 - 07:48 PM

my work experience was similar to yours--80 character punch cards, then ibm mainframes and ugly dos personal computers. Whenever I had a choice I went mac because it was so much more powerful. However, I see a lot of people like your daughter who use a mac in a blind and trusting fashion with no under the hood comprehension of files and folders. I can't do that and know exactly where my files and folders all are.

 

Right and left click work pretty much the same on a mac with or without any mouse. Mac users often just use one and two finger taps on the trackpad rather than a mouse because the touchpads are so responsive and have many useful gestures.

 

You are quite right about some programs not being available on the mac or working poorly (ie RM7). However, the fall OS version will break up itunes into 3 separate apps which should make things simpler.

 

RM8 if it ever appears should be fine on either os. family tree maker has common file and program structure but looks completely different on macs and pcs. In my FTM SIG we get into confusion when a pc user tries to follow the icons/steps of a mac user or the reverse. A particular feature is there for both but how and where you access it differs.