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Return to Rootsmagic 7 with hope for RM8 soon.


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#1 Rooty

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Posted 30 August 2020 - 04:00 PM

A review of the native mac genealogy programs has left me with Family Tree Maker (tiny text on a busy screen) and rootsmagic 7 (klutzy windows interface but large text with a much better screen layout). The edit person shows all facts (events) with clickable indictors for notes sources and media. Heredis, macfamily tree and reunion all had fatal flaws for me.

 
Choosing to be an optimist on RM8 bought a year ago, my plan is:
 
1. Transfer FTM 2019 database to RM7 via FTM 2017 to 2012 or directly via gedcom. Then use the best result.
 
2. Review the RM8 videos and the RM7 print manual. Used copies can be found via a google search.
 
3. Decide on a RM7 source-citation and media organization strategy and clean up my database person by person.
 
4. Then use RM7 carefully until the blessed event occurs (or I croak).
 


#2 crashar

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Posted 30 August 2020 - 04:18 PM

In the event that you don't croak in the meantime, I would be very curious to know the overall results and any gotchas when you transfer using the FTM 2017 to 2012 route vs directly using GEDCOM.  I am in the same boat as you and seem to be suffering from analysis paralysis.  I'm trying to determine the best approach which does not completely mess up my Ancestry sources, or make a complete mess of my media, or my tree on Ancestry (I am willing to consider rebuilding that using treeshare).



#3 Rooty

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Posted 30 August 2020 - 05:22 PM

In the event that you don't croak in the meantime, I would be very curious to know the overall results and any gotchas when you transfer using the FTM 2017 to 2012 route vs directly using GEDCOM.  I am in the same boat as you and seem to be suffering from analysis paralysis.  I'm trying to determine the best approach which does not completely mess up my Ancestry sources, or make a complete mess of my media, or my tree on Ancestry (I am willing to consider rebuilding that using treeshare).

Renee recommended back converting FTM 19 to 17 and 12. RM7 can then directly import FTM12 files. I got download links from mackiev for 17 and 12, installed them, back converted my 19 files and uninstalled 17 and 12 when done. There is a magic guide on the import step.

 

RM7's file properties showed some differences between the 19 gedcom and the 12 direct file while the file compare tool gave results meaningless to me. I went with Renee despite the extra work and think I got a cleaner result.

 

Now I will carefully go through my RM7 file in detail to clean up transfer and input errors while reviewing the printed manual. You can still buy this used and I also found a free pdf version of the manual (google). The manual should help me make better source and media format choices. My media is organized in family folders with a name fomat like: smith john census can 1881.

I will upload this new file to ancestry for hints but my database is my master file not what ancestry holds.



#4 crashar

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Posted 30 August 2020 - 08:00 PM

Good to know.  The main thing which has been holding me up so far is that I don't have a clear picture of what happens to the data in each of the following scenarios.  I am planning to try the following.

  1. set up a test tree of 1 or 2 dozen people on FTM (synced to ancestry).
  2. set up sources and citations which come from Ancestry and some which I create from scratch.  Ensure at least 1 citation of each type is linked to more than one fact or person.
  3. set up media files for each type of citation coming from Ancestry and loaded from other sources by me. Try linking one media file between multiple sources (or facts, or people).
  4. set up one or two test people with clearly distinguishable person notes, research notes, fact notes.
  5. identify 1 or two Ancestry generated sources with comments and media.
  6. set up one or two citations with clearly distinguishable citation detail, citation text and web links, media and notes. 
  7. identify 1 or 2 media items with clearly distinguishable caption, date and description.
  8. ensure the tree has been completely synced to ancestry.
  9. convert from FTM to to RM using the recommended method above.

Once converted I will need to 

  1. ensure that all people, relationships, source, citations and media are intact with all facts.  What happened to citations linked to multiple facts?
  2. figure out where the FTM person notes, research notes, and event notes from step 4 above ended up.
  3. determine if the Ancestry generated sources with comments and media were transferred.
  4. verify where the citation detail, citation text, web links, media and notes in step 6 were transferred
  5. verify media caption, dates(?) and descriptions (step 7 above) are transferred.

 

Then, I want to treeshare this new RM file into an new Ancestry tree and verify the equivalent items above on Ancestry.  I particularly what to compare the tree shared ancestry tree to the FTM synced tree I started with.  

 

I suspect some things will not be where I expect in all cases.   I have tried this with a large tree but then I got bogged down in the details because I have not figured out each of these scenarios in advance.  I figure with a small tree containing intentional test cases I can get a clearer picture. 

 

Finally I need to develop a clear picture/plan of the workflow between Ancestry and RM, using Ancestry and treeshare, webhints, websearch or some combination of the three.

 

Is there anything obvious I am forgetting?

 

I would really like to get switched over before version 8 is released so I think I will be busy over the coming days.

 

H.



#5 Rooty

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Posted 31 August 2020 - 06:49 AM

Good to know.  The main thing which has been holding me up so far is that I don't have a clear picture of what happens to the data in each of the following scenarios.  I am planning to try the following.

  1. set up a test tree of 1 or 2 dozen people on FTM (synced to ancestry).
  2. set up sources and citations which come from Ancestry and some which I create from scratch.  Ensure at least 1 citation of each type is linked to more than one fact or person.
  3. set up media files for each type of citation coming from Ancestry and loaded from other sources by me. Try linking one media file between multiple sources (or facts, or people).
  4. set up one or two test people with clearly distinguishable person notes, research notes, fact notes.
  5. identify 1 or two Ancestry generated sources with comments and media.
  6. set up one or two citations with clearly distinguishable citation detail, citation text and web links, media and notes. 
  7. identify 1 or 2 media items with clearly distinguishable caption, date and description.
  8. ensure the tree has been completely synced to ancestry.
  9. convert from FTM to to RM using the recommended method above.

Once converted I will need to 

  1. ensure that all people, relationships, source, citations and media are intact with all facts.  What happened to citations linked to multiple facts?
  2. figure out where the FTM person notes, research notes, and event notes from step 4 above ended up.
  3. determine if the Ancestry generated sources with comments and media were transferred.
  4. verify where the citation detail, citation text, web links, media and notes in step 6 were transferred
  5. verify media caption, dates(?) and descriptions (step 7 above) are transferred.

 

Then, I want to treeshare this new RM file into an new Ancestry tree and verify the equivalent items above on Ancestry.  I particularly what to compare the tree shared ancestry tree to the FTM synced tree I started with.  

 

I suspect some things will not be where I expect in all cases.   I have tried this with a large tree but then I got bogged down in the details because I have not figured out each of these scenarios in advance.  I figure with a small tree containing intentional test cases I can get a clearer picture. 

 

Finally I need to develop a clear picture/plan of the workflow between Ancestry and RM, using Ancestry and treeshare, webhints, websearch or some combination of the three.

 

Is there anything obvious I am forgetting?

 

I would really like to get switched over before version 8 is released so I think I will be busy over the coming days.

 

H.

Suggest you are overthinking this. RM7 has a very different data structure than Ancestry and FTM so downward merging is risky. A small test file could point out issues but you will still just have to bite the bullet, switch and clean up over time.



#6 crashar

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Posted 31 August 2020 - 08:39 AM

Suggest you are overthinking this. RM7 has a very different data structure than Ancestry and FTM so downward merging is risky. A small test file could point out issues but you will still just have to bite the bullet, switch and clean up over time.

Can't help it.  I had a long career as a software developer and tester.  Overthinking it was a job requirement.  Developing test cases is in my blood. :-)



#7 Rooty

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Posted 03 September 2020 - 10:58 AM

Change of Plan - my mac RM7 horse stumbled crossing a shallow ford and broke it's neck. 

 

It turns out despite display settings of Helvetica 16, the source & place list, source edit and new source screens use a tiny fuzzy font about size 4. Also Websearch with the internal browser locks up RM7 due to a crossover bug. Nonstarters on my macbook pro 13" retina screen.

 

I will use Family tree maker 2019 to clean up and reorganize my database until RM8 appears. Then I will transfer from FTM 2021 or 22 via a direct Gedcom to RM8. It will not be worth the trouble to back transfer to FTM 2012 for direct RM import by then.

 

Bruce has many old but excellent webinars and the printed guide on RM7 which will bring me up to speed while waiting on RM8.



#8 crashar

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Posted 03 September 2020 - 02:24 PM

Curious.  I seem to be on a different path, but coming to a similar conclusion.  I listened to your comment about overthinking and tossed my plan to run a bunch of detailed scenarios in favour of jumping in with both feet.  I converted my FTM 2019 back to 2012 and imported into RM.  I keep running into roadblocks caused mainly by the differences in how RM and FTM handle shared citations, places and media.  From the previews I have seen of RM 8 it looks like these differences will be much better addressed there rather than RM 7.  None of these issues would normally be show stoppers for me, but it seems like I would be investing a lot of energy to clean things up in version 7, only to possibly end up not where I want to be once version 8 comes out.

 

So although converting to RM is my goal, I will be putting it on hold until RM 8 is available and better understood.  Hopefully, I will not be transferring from FTM 2021 or 22.  :mellow:

 

H.



#9 J P

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Posted 03 September 2020 - 03:21 PM

 

It turns out despite display settings of Helvetica 16, the source & place list, source edit and new source screens use a tiny fuzzy font about size 4. Also Websearch with the internal browser locks up RM7 due to a crossover bug. Nonstarters on my macbook pro 13" retina screen.

 

The font size problem was why I switched to using the full version of CrossOver. That allows you to change the DPI setting used by windows, so you can make those font sizes you can’t change in RM appear a sensible size. Or certainly on my 5K iMac.

 

The internal browser problem is a very old one and even before the problems it now seems to cause, most websites refused to allow its use because it was based on an obsolete version of IE and therefore considered unsafe.



#10 Rooty

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Posted 03 September 2020 - 04:54 PM

The font size problem was why I switched to using the full version of CrossOver. That allows you to change the DPI setting used by windows, so you can make those font sizes you can’t change in RM appear a sensible size. Or certainly on my 5K iMac.

 

The internal browser problem is a very old one and even before the problems it now seems to cause, most websites refused to allow its use because it was based on an obsolete version of IE and therefore considered unsafe.

Did the full crossover version fix the source and place list fonts? RM7 lets you change to big fonts in three other areas in program tools but not those.

 

Was it difficult to set up RM7 manually?



#11 J P

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Posted 04 September 2020 - 02:06 AM

Did the full crossover version fix the source and place list fonts? RM7 lets you change to big fonts in three other areas in program tools but not those.

 

Was it difficult to set up RM7 manually?

Yes, at least it did for me.

In RM I have all the display options set to Microsoft Sans Serif 12 point normal. Then within CrossOver, I have the DPI setting used by the Windows “virtual machine” set to 150. I seem recall that the default for the latter was set to 96 (but I made this change long ago, so I may be incorrect on the 96). You can play games with this value and the font sizes you select in RM, but they above seem fine to me. The DPI value affects the fonts you choose in RM as well as the ones you can’t modify. The higher you have the DPI setting, the lower you need the font size specified in RM.

Now, to add to the complication/confusion, I find the default font sizes used by Mac applications a little small for my old eyes when the 5K iMac is set to the default scaled size of 2560x1440, so I always have it set to 2048x1152. Clearly this affects how large the fonts in RM appear (it makes them larger).

You asked about the difficulty of installing RM under full CrossOver. I found it pretty easy, though, remember, this was now some time ago. They offer a 14-day free trial, so you could try it. Just beware that if you search for RM on the “what runs” part of their website, you will be pointed at downloading RM for Mac.

Having installed CrossOver, select Configure from the menu bar, search for Rootmagic, and then follow the prompts to install RM7. When finished, select the RM7 bottle on the base CrossOver window and then use the Wine Configuration control panel and then the Graphics panel to change the dpi setting. Note that at the time I did all this, I had to flip the Windows version - set on the Wine Configuration panel - to Windows 7 to allow me to successfully point the RM Folders at my Mac files and then back to Windows XP when I had successfully set the folders. (These were probably CrossOver bugs at that long ago time, but I needed to do this.)

Hope that helps.



#12 Rooty

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Posted 04 September 2020 - 01:39 PM

Yes, at least it did for me.

In RM I have all the display options set to Microsoft Sans Serif 12 point normal. Then within CrossOver, I have the DPI setting used by the Windows “virtual machine” set to 150. I seem recall that the default for the latter was set to 96 (but I made this change long ago, so I may be incorrect on the 96). You can play games with this value and the font sizes you select in RM, but they above seem fine to me. The DPI value affects the fonts you choose in RM as well as the ones you can’t modify. The higher you have the DPI setting, the lower you need the font size specified in RM.

Now, to add to the complication/confusion, I find the default font sizes used by Mac applications a little small for my old eyes when the 5K iMac is set to the default scaled size of 2560x1440, so I always have it set to 2048x1152. Clearly this affects how large the fonts in RM appear (it makes them larger).

You asked about the difficulty of installing RM under full CrossOver. I found it pretty easy, though, remember, this was now some time ago. They offer a 14-day free trial, so you could try it. Just beware that if you search for RM on the “what runs” part of their website, you will be pointed at downloading RM for Mac.

Having installed CrossOver, select Configure from the menu bar, search for Rootmagic, and then follow the prompts to install RM7. When finished, select the RM7 bottle on the base CrossOver window and then use the Wine Configuration control panel and then the Graphics panel to change the dpi setting. Note that at the time I did all this, I had to flip the Windows version - set on the Wine Configuration panel - to Windows 7 to allow me to successfully point the RM Folders at my Mac files and then back to Windows XP when I had successfully set the folders. (These were probably CrossOver bugs at that long ago time, but I needed to do this.)

Hope that helps.

 

WOW! A real surprise that using crossover directly and setting up your own RM7 bottle works better than Bruce's RM7 where the list font affecting source, place menu and such are all tiny fuzzy print no matter what setting you choose. Did change the dpi from 96 to 120 and will wait out the 2 week trial to confirm everything works before committing. Found and removed the crossover cd helper app which erratically consumed the cpu on my cd-less mac. Quit this process, shutdown and rebooted and so far so good. Time will tell.

 

Thank you J P. I would never have considered trying this as it seems too silly to work.

 

Wine changes:  dpi changed to 120. performance graphics left on.  

Crossover CD helper app removed to avoid revving CPU erratically on a CD less mac.

Fonts set to Helvetica 13 13 11 regular. At size 12  Arial, Helvetica, Lucidia Grande, MS san sarif and Tahoma get faint and fuzzy.  At 13 all sharpen up and are bold.
 
Final result was failure. Repeated lockup after a period of use and needed to force quit RM7. Back to FTM 2019 for database reorganization and cleanup. If RM8 appears I will jump back from FTM 2021/22 via direct gedcom. Back converting FTM 19 to 17 to 12 for direct import caused some big data  problems.