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Archiver > TMG > 2008-06 > 1214758515

From: Lee Hoffman <>
Subject: Re: [TMG] Importing FTM (newbie to the list)
Date: Sun, 29 Jun 2008 12:55:15 -0400
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C McKay wrote:
>I'm not sure why I had such good luck with the transition, given what
>appears to be a universally poor experience in the thread. I
>recommended TMG to a couple of people at a genealogy jamboree this
>weekend, and raved about the ease of transferring FTM files. I hope I
>haven't misled them.

You probably have not. A lot depends on what, how and where a user
entered their data in FTM (or some other program. If the user
entered data into another program in the way that program was
designed, then there would be no problems. Wholly Genes realizes
that many users enter some data into the other program fields in ways
that the other program is not designed. Usually this "mis-entered"
data is data that was never considered by the other program's
designers (or the designers _assumed_ the users would enter the data

While Wholly Genes has anticipated many of these _different_ entry
styles and made provision for them, it is up to the user during
conversion to select the TMG Import options that use these
provisions. This is why we experienced users recommend that new
users try importing small subsets of the data from the other
program. The small subset should, of course, be representative of
the full data; but being small, it can be imported quickliy, reviewed
for errors, and other import trials (using different import option
settings) can be done to find the best set of options for the user's
data. Once that "best set of Options" is found, the full import would be run.

At this point, the user should have a good idea of the problems
(usually not many) that should be reviewed and corrected in TMG.

Naturally, if the user knows that their data on the other program is
not well-entered, is lacking in documentation, or whatever then that
knowledge _may_ cause them to decide to re-key their data. This is a
lot more likely if the amount of data in the other program is
relatively small -- they probably would re-key 300 people and less
likely to re-key 3,000 people. However, I have seen a user re-key a
large database because they thought it would be better for them.

About a third of their way through the re-keying, I found out what
they were doing. I asked for a print-out (with corrections) from
their old program. Then I took the old program files home, imported
it into TMG, and made the corrections that user had given me. I them
took that TMG backup file of that imported and corrected data back to
my friend who was them about 75% complete in his re-keying. The
import that I made was very satisfactory to my friend. Granted, I
was well experienced with TMG while he was not. But the end result
would still have been the same in less time than the full re-keying.

The main problem is that my friend did not do the preliminary work of
doing multiple imports of a small subset of his data. Thus he did
not see that there were options to allow for most of the "oddities"
in his data.

I always recommend the multiple import review using a small
subset. On the other hand, every user is different in their
data. So, it may be that some users will get better results by
re-keying. However, this group will always be very small.

Hope this helps -

Lee Hoffman/KY
TMG Tips: <>;
My website: <>;
A user of the best genealogy program, The Master Genealogist (TMG)

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