Choosing Your (GED) Export Options | Legacy Family Tree

by JL Beeken on 7-23-2013

Legacy Family TreeThe preamble to this is a long story so I’ll go straight to the punch line. How do you choose your export options for a Legacy file?

Of all the amazing things Legacy does, sometimes you don’t know what Legacy doesn’t do until you want something from out in left field. And who’s to say whether that makes sense or not? If you need it, you need it.

If you export a Family File from Legacy you basically have no choices. You can choose what people you want to export but that’s about it. Everything else goes automatically.

If you export a GED from Legacy you have more choices, but you’re still forced to export at least Name with Birth, Christening, Death, Burial and Marriage dates and places.

So, what if you don’t want to? What if you want only Names and Marriages, or Names and Research Notes? Or just Names?

This may be a situation where you’re working on gradually merging two Legacy files. Or you may be interested in sending a partial file to someone else.

Exporting a GED from Legacy and then importing it into a Family File is a way around not having enough export options for the Family File.

A gedcom is really just a text document so it opens in a text editor. I use Notepad++ because it has more options than the Windows version.

Export Options That YOU Want

So, say you export a gedcom with a minimal amount of information as described above because that’s all you can do.

Export Options, Legacy Family Tree

I removed everything else from the defaults and saved the list because I’m going to be using this one over and over again.

All I want out of this list are the Names, Sex (to prevent the unmarried people from being tossed around) and Tag 3. The rest would truly get in my way.

When I open the GED export in Notepad++ I get a very long file (over 2,000 lines for 200 people) that looks like this:

GED Export, Legacy Family Tree

From here it’s a really simple matter of using Search and Replace (‘Match whole word only’) to delete the tags I don’t want; i.e. BIRT, BURI, CHR, DATE, DEAT, MARR and PLAC replaced with blank.

Search & Replace, Notepad++

This takes about 2 minutes and leaves a whole mess of dates and places throughout the file but it doesn’t matter.

When I import this file into Legacy I will be asked if I want Legacy to put the unrecognized items somewhere else. It’s looking for the placement tags that I just deleted. The answer to this is an emphatic NO.

Import Options, Legacy Family Tree

An un-tick will do.

When this GED has finished importing into Legacy I get exactly what I want; the Names, Sex and Tag 3.

Everything else is gone and I can merge this file into my main database without all the other information I don’t want right now. When I’m ready I’ll work in split-screen view and use Drag and Drop but that’s another day.

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