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Record Number on Reports


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#21 kbens0n

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Posted 01 November 2009 - 04:59 PM

[*]Is Rec# still the internally generated and changeable record number, now exposed but undeditable?

The Rec# in RootsMagic has always been an internally generated and NOT CHANGEABLE record number, always exposable but uneditable "per-database".

[*]Is Ref# essentially #3 above but without uniqueness protection?

Ref# is the REFN {REFERENCE} tag from the GEDCOM specification and has no uniqueness requirement.

[*]#2 has not been implemented.

The Rec# in RootsMagic is BOTH #1 and #2 (from the user you quote) with the exception that it has always been exposed in RootsMagic.

[*]Do Rec# and Ref# now appear at the users option where they are wanted?

Tools->File Options->Number to display after name seems to be the only overall control for the user.

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#22 TomH

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Posted 01 November 2009 - 10:49 PM

The Rec# in RootsMagic has always been an internally generated and NOT CHANGEABLE record number, always exposable but uneditable "per-database".


Ref# is the REFN {REFERENCE} tag from the GEDCOM specification and has no uniqueness requirement.


The Rec# in RootsMagic is BOTH #1 and #2 (from the user you quote) with the exception that it has always been exposed in RootsMagic.


Tools->File Options->Number to display after name seems to be the only overall control for the user.


Thanks kbens0n. You're always very clear & helpful.

I note there is another identifier to be seen in GEDCOM exports, e.g.:

1 _UID E1D2B1100E974A6EB952C403C5A32C609725

The Help screen describes it thusly:

ShareMerge When you add a person to your database, RootsMagic assigns a unique ID to the person, which will never be assigned to any other person in any other RootsMagic database (yours or someone elses). If you send a copy of your database to a friend or relative (either in backup or GEDCOM format), and they make changes to the database and return it to you (in GEDCOM format), you can import that GEDCOM into your database, and use this option to automatically consolidate the changes.

This is clearly not a user-friendly ID and is only exposed in the GEDCOM but has the sought-after uniqueness property.

So we have two system generated person identifiers:
  • UID - globally unique to the record for that person, constant until deleted, invisible within the application, visible in GEDCOM exports with the _UID tag. Other databases containing the same person will have different UIDs for that person unless they were restored from a backup of the reference RM database.
  • Record Number or Rec# - serial number assigned to each new person added to the database starting from 1 and unique within the db but not externally; currently, deletions have no effect on the remaining Record Numbers because the deletions are merely flags. RM4 has no pack or compact utility to eliminate 'deleted' persons from the datafiles as was the case in FO, after which record numbering started all over again. I'm sure this is an issue that Bruce et al must be working on because the RM data file will just keep growing as people merge trees with duplicate persons.
Plus 1 or more optional Reference Number (Ref#) facts that can be added to a person by the user - no system generation, no uniqueness test, user free to enter any alphanumeric characters. RM4 supports 1 Ref# fact per person in the People view and as a suffix to names in displays and reports. While RM4 allows additional Ref# facts per person, this muddles sorting on the Ref# field in the People view and may affect the suffix displayed.

That's my take, so far...

Tom user of RM7550 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.