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enable new users to simply load database copies


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#1 Tom Rianhard

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Posted 02 January 2020 - 10:50 AM

Under the heading of 'flailing deceased equines', I have broached this subject in a few other forum entries.

 

Let me try to sell it in a RM marketing way; I am a senior; I want to pass along family history information to other, younger family members who, at this time, do not want to actively pursue family history data collection and storing in files. However, they do have an interest in being able to fine and display that history. I want to supply them with RM databases and a means to display them, and hope that subsequently their familiarity with tha app and the data will encourage them to get the main app and seek more information to update the database. The RM Essentials App fits this requirement, but the means to access the databases is far too convoluted to enable those with limited interest to expend the time and learning to accomplish it!

 

My long range intent would be to share database files with others in such a way that they would be independent of my dropbox (or other) sharing approach. To explain this differently, I would want remote users to be able to load a copy of a database from cloud storage, or texts and emails, into a regular or 'essentials' version of RM on a apple device, and these users would be able save the database to their device, locally, disconnect from my cloud storage, and still have access to, and 'own' the database.



#2 TomH

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Posted 02 January 2020 - 10:20 PM

Your message implies to me that the problem you see is the "convoluted way to open a database with RM Essentials on an apple device". What is it that seems so convoluted that it would deter the mildly interested (the disinterested are a lost cause)?

Tom user of RM7630 FTM2017 Ancestry.ca FamilySearch.org FindMyPast.com
SQLite_Tools_For_Roots_Magic_in_PR_Celti wiki, exploiting the database in special ways >>> RMtrix-tiny.png app, a bundle of RootsMagic utilities.


#3 J P

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Posted 03 January 2020 - 01:12 AM

Your message implies to me that the problem you see is the "convoluted way to open a database with RM Essentials on an apple device". What is it that seems so convoluted that it would deter the mildly interested (the disinterested are a lost cause)?

Do you mean on an iPhone or iPad? Or on a Mac? Please make clear to what variety of Apple device you are referring.



#4 Renee Zamora

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Posted 03 January 2020 - 08:04 AM

Another option is to upload a MyRootsMagic website and share it with them. 


Renee
RootsMagic

#5 Tom Rianhard

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Posted 06 February 2020 - 07:54 PM

Thanks for your responses.

 

Renee, 2 questions;

1. Should I have received an email that there were responses to my entry? i didn't.

 

2. MyRootsMagic sounds interesting! If I share access to this site, can a person with a share download a copy to the Essentials product?

 

J.P. I am mainly interested in the Essentials products on the iPhone and iPad, although I don't know enough about the Mac environment and don't really want to exclude it.

 

TomH, my Essentials copies on my iPhone and on my iPad can load from 1. storage on this device, or from Dropbox.

If the file or files are on this device, they do NOT show in the builtin 'Files' App/Process. Also, if you transfer a RM database file to my devices via shared OneDrive/iCloud/GoogleDrive/Box/etc, it doesn't show in the 'on this device' display. Note that iCloud comes built in, not added in. This leaves Dropbox. the people that I wish to share with are not eager, or may not want to install Dropbox. They really should not need to. Also, I tried to work with, or through, Dropbox. I had worked in Data Processing for 50 years, on the technical side, installing and maintaining mainframe operating systems. I had difficulty sharing RM databases with my iDevices, and in using the Dropbox help information online. When working with others, I found it complex to try to create useable instructions. So far, I have not succeeded. I hope to push a simpler approach.

Thanks



#6 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 06 February 2020 - 11:09 PM

Minor terminology issue: RootsMagic Essentials runs only on a PC or Mac. The thing that runs on an iPhone or iPad is a totally different program called the RootsMagic Mobile App. So do you want your family members to run on a PC or a Mac? Or do you want your family members to run on an iPhone or iPad?

 

Jerry



#7 TomH

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Posted 07 February 2020 - 03:49 AM

1. Should I have received an email that there were responses to my entry? i didn't.

Depends on your Notification settings
 

2. MyRootsMagic sounds interesting! If I share access to this site, can a person with a share download a copy to the Essentials product?

I think you can have the option of downloading a GEDCOM from the MyRootsMagic.com website but not the actual RM database file. Of course, the GED file can be imported into RM Essentials or any other software that supports GEDCOM. You will want to explore the level of privacy you get from it. Are living people exposed to the public? If not, can privileged persons see their living relatives?

 

The simpler approach from the standpoint of your mildly interested relatives is probably a more complex one for you: generate and maintain  a website with restricted access with GEDCOM and/or your RMGB backup available as a download. 


Tom user of RM7630 FTM2017 Ancestry.ca FamilySearch.org FindMyPast.com
SQLite_Tools_For_Roots_Magic_in_PR_Celti wiki, exploiting the database in special ways >>> RMtrix-tiny.png app, a bundle of RootsMagic utilities.


#8 Tom Rianhard

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Posted 10 February 2020 - 08:00 PM

Thanks, Jerry, for your gentle correction of what I as a big error in my above request and, honestly, I am wondering if some of my unsteady  efforts to share my databases. I also want to ask a question about how to share a database via Dropbox; Is there correct way to share? I have looked at the Dropbox help website, and perhaps it's me, but I found the help info a little disorganized.

 

I also think that I could share a database using the 'airdrop' function in my iPhone to my target's iPhone, if I knew what the target person would need to do with it,

 

Thanks



#9 TomH

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Posted 11 February 2020 - 06:06 AM

I'm a sparse user of DropBox but sharing a file or a folder is what I use it for the most. It doesn't seem a big deal and is similar to other services like Google Drive, OneDrive, and, I expect, iCloud. I'm unacquainted with AirDrop but the former have a local drive app you install on your base computer and mobile apps for your iOS or Android devices. The latter are probably of little use in this context until there is a fully functional RM app that can use media files stored on the server.

 

The computer apps all set up their respective folder, named the same as the app, wherever you specify it to be located on your local drive. You would move your RM Data and Media folders to a folder under the cloudsync folder and revise the RM Program Options > Folders settings accordingly. Optionally, do the same for Reports and GEDCOM. You then share the RM folder by right-clicking on it in the file explorer and selecting the Share function that corresponds to the cloudsync app. That will open up a dialog for you to specify the email addresses of those with whom you wish to share the folder. Alternatively, you open the cloudsync host, login with your account, navigate to your folder and set up the sharing there.

 

Typically, you can restrict the other people to viewing and downloading the files and that is advisable.

 

The caveats about pausing sync when you open the database file remain with the possible exception of OneDrive on Windows which automatically pauses the syncing of an open RM database file..  


Tom user of RM7630 FTM2017 Ancestry.ca FamilySearch.org FindMyPast.com
SQLite_Tools_For_Roots_Magic_in_PR_Celti wiki, exploiting the database in special ways >>> RMtrix-tiny.png app, a bundle of RootsMagic utilities.


#10 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 11 February 2020 - 07:32 AM

I'm not sure what the main thrust of your question is about sharing via Dropbox. If all you wanted to do was to give somebody a copy of a file - any file that's in Dropbox - you can right click the file in Windows File Explorer and there will be a Share option in the drop down menu. Clicking the option will place a URL on your clipboard that, for example, you could email to somebody. Using that URL and with no username or password or other security they can then download the file to their PC. The other person does not have to install Dropbox or know anything about your Dropbox account for this to work. If the file you shared in this manner was your RM database, the person you shared with could then download RM Essentials for free and open the file in their PC.

The process for using Dropbox to get your RM database onto an iPhone or iPad is very different from this. Where to you really want the RM database to be?

 

Jerry



#11 Tom Rianhard

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Posted 19 March 2020 - 01:46 PM

Thanks for your responses!

I want to provide copies of different databases to sundry people, many of them younger generations. Even though most users would be on Windows PCs, I think that most of those users would be rabid cell phone users, so if I could get them using a portable copy of a genealogy file in their hip pockets, they would be more inclined to continue supporting these databases in later years. Hence my focus on the iPhone/iPad world.

I have used MS OneDrive in the past to share files and folders. I attempted to use Dropbox to share RM databases, but with very limited success, probably due to my limited understanding. In particular, I have family in California, and I live in New England, with one primarily using an iPad.

Jerry, a few questions (and incidentaly, kudos on your tips on the Descendants narrative generating, very complex); 

1. As far as the Windows/Essentials environment, would any of the file sharing sites work?

2. With Dropbox, is there a difference with sharing a file, or sharing the folder with the file? And are the media in a sub-folder of that same db folder?

Tom



#12 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 19 March 2020 - 05:07 PM

 

1. As far as the Windows/Essentials environment, would any of the file sharing sites work?

 

 

I don't know for sure all the sharing sites would work because I haven't tested them all. But a Google search suggests that they all would work and they all would work the same way.

Namely, install Dropbox or OneDrive or Google Drive or Idrive or whatever on your Windows PC. In addition to installing the software, this will create a folder on your PC named Dropbox or OneDrive or whatever, and it will create an account for you in the cloud. I think all of them have a free account option for a reasonable amount of storage - maybe 1GB or 2GB, something like that. Then use Windows File Explorer to copy your RM database (it's an RMGC file) to the folder for the sharing site. You will continue to use your RM database in its original location, not the copy in the sharing site's folder. The copy is a point in time copy and exists only to share. Then from Windows File Explorer, navigate to the folder associated with the sharing service of choice and right click your RM database. One of the many menu options from the right click will be Share. Pick this option and go through the brief sharing dialog. This dialog doesn't say who you are sharing with. It only gives you a URL. You send that URL to your relatives.

Your relatives will have to download RM Essentials and use the URL you sent them to download a copy of your RM database. They then start up RM Essentials, do a File>Open, and navigate to the copy of your RM database they downloaded.

 

Jerry



#13 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 19 March 2020 - 05:24 PM

 

2. With Dropbox, is there a difference with sharing a file, or sharing the folder with the file? And are the media in a sub-folder of that same db folder?

Tom

 

With Dropbox, there is basically no difference between sharing a folder and sharing a file. Well, when you share a file, the relative you are sharing with will just see the one file to download. And when you share a folder, the relative you are sharing with will all the files in the folder and will have to choose the one or ones to download.

Media files can be anywhere on your hard disk. They are wherever you put them. After you put them wherever you want them, you link them to RM. They are not really stored in RM. Depending on how you have managed your media files, it can be fairly easy or fairly difficult to convey them to another relative. If they are all in one folder or all in a single folder and subfolder tree, you can copy that single folder or single folder and subfolder tree to your Dropbox (or other service) folder. Your relative can download them from there. This can be easy or hard or impossible for a relative, depending on how fluent they are in dealing with files and folders.

I seldom recommend the following, but it might be best for your use case. Instead of sharing an RM database with your relatives, you could share an RM backup file with your relatives. And your backup file could include all your media files. If you do an RM backup using the with media option, RM will gather up all your media files wherever they may be on your hard disk. It would then be this RM backup file with media that you would copy to the sharing sites folder and which you would share with your relatives. It works the same way I described before. Right click the backup file and choose the Share option to get a URL to send your relatives. They would still download RM Essentials and your backup file. They would run RM Essentials and use File>Restore rather than File>Open. That would give them all your media files without further ado. It might be simpler this way than having your relatives download the media files themselves. Be aware that no matter how you do it, if you have huge numbers of media files it can take a long time to backup and restore them and they can exceed the amount of space available on a free sharing account. Just your RM database itself is extremely unlikely to exceed the amount of space available on a free sharing account.

 

Jerry



#14 Tom Rianhard

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 10:05 AM

First, I apologize for injecting RM Essentials into this discussion. It does not belong in this 'iPhone/iPad/iPod' forum and has confused the discussion that I was trying to initiate. My daughter uses an iPad and an iPhone. One son uses an iPhone perhaps 80% of the time for many functions. My older grandchildren use iPhones for much incidental use and PCs for school work. More distant relations of various generations use mixed devices. In other words, I will be sharing with many different technical environments, and I hope to get at least some in younger generations involved in their family histories, hopefully actively seeking additional detail. For the less technically savvy, I want to be able to include short installation instructions.

 

Jerry, thanks for your continued support! Some questions about the Apple arena;

1. Will these users need to install some form of Dropbox?

2. If not, how do the RM apps 'see' the files shared via Dropbox?

 

And, thanks for the idea of sharing the B/U file with media included; probably not for regular use but another arrow in my quiver.

Tom



#15 TomH

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 11:25 AM

I will be sharing with many different technical environments, and I hope to get at least some in younger generations involved in their family histories, hopefully actively seeking additional detail. For the less technically savvy, I want to be able to include short installation instructions.

I strongly suggest that what you want is an Ancestry Member Tree that you share with members of your family. The Ancestry app for iOS and Android is appealing across generations, very attractive and powerful. And the website looks great on large screen browsers. You can TreeShare up from your RM database to start the tree then decide which is going to be the master - I suggest the AMT if others are going to contribute to the tree. Those keen enough to dive deeper into analysis and reporting can get the RM app for Windows or Mac and TreeShare download from the master AMT. You can share the AMT to others as viewers or as editors, maybe even co-owner for succession planning and it can persist after you've departed the mortal coil.

 

This is a lot less technically challenging for everyone concerned than any approach involving file transfers and synchronisation.


Tom user of RM7630 FTM2017 Ancestry.ca FamilySearch.org FindMyPast.com
SQLite_Tools_For_Roots_Magic_in_PR_Celti wiki, exploiting the database in special ways >>> RMtrix-tiny.png app, a bundle of RootsMagic utilities.


#16 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 11:35 AM

The directions may be found at https://www.rootsmagic.com/App/FAQ/  This says you have to use either Dropbox or iTunes. I have a vague recollection that the iTunes technique no longer works due to changes in iTunes, but if so then I haven't been able to find that announcement. Maybe iTunes still works. Except for once in the beginning where I did it with iTunes just to see how it works, I have always done it with Dropbox. Maybe someone else on this forum who has done it more with iTunes can speak to the iTunes approach.

If iTunes still works, that might be the easiest way to do it because all your relatives with iPhones and iPads are probably already using iTunes with their device. I went the Dropbox route in the first place because I was already a Dropbox user. I have the RM app on both my iPad and my iPhone, but I use it mostly on my iPhone despite the small screen simply because that's the device I always have handy.

If you have to do it with Dropbox, you will have to create an account. A basic free Dropbox account should be plenty big enough for your RM database.

 

Jerry

 



#17 J P

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 12:29 PM

The directions may be found at https://www.rootsmagic.com/App/FAQ/  This says you have to use either Dropbox or iTunes. I have a vague recollection that the iTunes technique no longer works due to changes in iTunes, but if so then I haven't been able to find that announcement. Maybe iTunes still works. Except for once in the beginning where I did it with iTunes just to see how it works, I have always done it with Dropbox. Maybe someone else on this forum who has done it more with iTunes can speak to the iTunes approach.

If iTunes still works, that might be the easiest way to do it because all your relatives with iPhones and iPads are probably already using iTunes with their device. I went the Dropbox route in the first place because I was already a Dropbox user. I have the RM app on both my iPad and my iPhone, but I use it mostly on my iPhone despite the small screen simply because that's the device I always have handy.

If you have to do it with Dropbox, you will have to create an account. A basic free Dropbox account should be plenty big enough for your RM database.

 

Jerry

 

Things have moved on in Apple land and once one upgrades MacOS to Catalina, iTunes is no more. If you are on an earlier version of MacOS, then the iTunes method should work.

 

On Catalina, the function has moved to the Finder app, and it is still possible to use this to transfer an RM data file - not a backup file - to the RM app on iOS or iPadOS.

 

The first thing that is required is to ensure the Finder view options include the display of iOS devices. (I had to enable that.) Connect the device - you probably need to attach it via cable the first time, but WiFi attached should/will probably work subsequently. Select the device in the left hand column and one can view considerable detail about the device. Selection of the Files tab shows all the apps that support file transfer - RootsMagic appears in this list and it shows any files that have already been transferred to the device. The way to transfer a new file is not as flexible as before as there doesn’t seem to be a Browse option to select a file to be transferred. Instead one has to drag a file over the RootsMagic entry in the list of apps that support file transfer and the transfer just happens. (I pasted a copy of the file I wanted to transfer onto the desktop and then dragged that across to the Finder window and over the RootsMagic entry. I find drag and drop from a Finder window to another Finder window somewhat troublesome with a trackpad, so use a simple approach even if it requires an extra step.) If one displays the list of files that have been transferred to the RM app, the only action you can initiate from the list is to delete a selected file.

 

So, still possible, but in a different place, and a little less flexible (in my opinion)