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Using Dropbox with Roots Magic to Go


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#1 Elynn

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Posted 08 December 2020 - 02:16 PM

For years I have used Roots Magic to Go installed on a USB drive on my work laptap during lunch periods and other lulls in work time.  It has always worked great.

 

Recently, my company has stepped up security and is requiring external drives/USB drives/etc to be encrypted with Bitlocker.  If you don't encrypt, you cannot write data to the media according to the Lan group.  I don't want to use encryption on my drive, but I thought that I would still be able to read my database from the drive.  In attempting this, I get "Error unable to open database file (14)".  Under properties, read only is NOT checked.  However, under advanced attributes "File is ready for archiving" is checked.  I tried to open my database using my administrator authority, but got the same error.  I have no issues using RM or RM to go on my personal laptop.

 

I have a Dropbox account, but I have never used it for RM/RM to Go.  Would I be able to load RM to Go onto Dropbox and access my databases from Dropbox rather than a USB drive?

 

Thanks.

 

#2 Renee Zamora

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Posted 09 December 2020 - 05:51 PM

No, we don't recommend that you live edit a database inside of cloud storage like Dropbox. You could store the backup on Dropbox and restore that to the computer. Otherwise, it's probably best to talk with your IT person so see how they want you to handle this. 


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#3 Elynn

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Posted 10 December 2020 - 11:30 AM

Renee - what about loading RM to go on Dropbox?



#4 Renee Zamora

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Posted 14 December 2020 - 04:34 PM

You could see if you could get the RM To-Go files to your computer using Dropbox. Then save them outside of Dropbox to the computer to run. 


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#5 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 14 December 2020 - 08:37 PM

If your company restricts USB drives, they may well restrict Dropbox as well.

 

In any case, I don't think the RM-to-Go process will write the files anywhere but to a removable device. So you would then have to reverse copy the contents of the removable device back to a folder under the Dropbox folder on your home computer. You would then have to leap the hurdle getting Dropbox to work on your work computer where security is tight. I can't speak to whether this will work or not because I don't know how tight security is on your work computer. Assuming that works, you will have to then copy your files out of the Dropbox folder on your work computer to another computer. Then I don't know if RM-to-go will even work if it's not running from a removable device. Renee can probably speak to whether it's supposed to work in this environment, even if it's basically designed to work from a removable device. And you will have another hurdle of whether your RM executable file will be allowed to run under your work computer's security rules. Finally, if all those hurdles can be overcome and you can use RM on your work computer, you will have to undo each step in turn to get your data back to Dropbox and back to your home computer and from there back to your main RM database. It all sounds so convoluted to me that I am not sure of the wisdom of trying to accomplish it.

 

Jerry



#6 Renee Zamora

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 12:48 PM

I have every version of RM To-Go from 7.5 on installed on my computer for testing purposes. All you need are the files that go on the flash drive. It will run in any folder. But, I still wouldn't recommend running it or the database file from inside a folder syncing with the cloud. 


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#7 Elynn

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Posted 16 December 2020 - 03:57 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions.  Most of the time I am too busy at work to even take a lunch break, but there are slow times so that seemed ideal to do some research.  I don't install anything on my work laptop that is non-work related.  I could have my removable device encrypted, but then I would have to worry about that on my regular laptop and other PC's that are not encrypted.  Oh well - it is what it is.



#8 MarieCusack

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Posted 04 January 2021 - 03:34 PM

I can't speak about accessing Dropbox from a work computer, but I highly recommend saving all media files, the Roots Magic database and any other related files on Dropbox. Sure makes it easy to do family tree work from any device and from any location. Best part is that other family members can assist with creating and saving research files, and uploading to the database. This creates ONE master location for all of our work.

 

My uncle and I have been using this method of collaboration for two years now and it works like a dream. He lives two hours away from me and previously he would do his work on his own laptop. We only see each other a couple times a year so he would keep track of all the changes he made and load files to a USB stick. He couldn't just bring me a RM-TO-Go file, because at my end, I too am working on the same database and am also making changes and additions. Installing his RM-to-go file would overwrite all changes I had made, and he would not be able to incorporate my changes. So when he'd visit, we would huddle over both of our laptops. I would make his changes to my laptop - one by one. Then, he would make my changes to his laptop - one by one. What a waste of our time.

 

Both of us working from ONE master database on Dropbox and saving our files to ONE location has worked beautifully, with a few caveats: 

* only one person can have the database open at a time, otherwise a 'conflicted copy' gets created and only one set of changes is saved in the master database. So we phone each other to see if the other is working in it before opening the database.

* you may need to purchase extra space on Dropbox for a large volume of files

* you should do regular backups onto a laptop of the database and all media files - just in case catastrophe strikes.