Surname files are my name for GRAMPS ".grdb" and ".gramps files. I have many of them because I have not been working on my genealogy for some time and I let several versions pass by without updating them. So I now have old files and GRAMPS cannot import them.

Not knowing GRAMPS had changed to the Berkeley database format, I began to clean up my genealogy files by moving them from their original directories, deleting unused files and trying to import/merge some files for efficiency. I was house cleaning. The consequences are that now I am getting error messages when I try to open or import older files.

Is there a way to create gedcoms from the command line without opening GRAMPS? A gedcom could be opened in the new format.

I have already read the info in the manual regarding corrupted family trees located here: http://gramps-project.org/wiki/index.php?title=Recover_corrupted_family_tree. My husband and I will work on this in the near future by any advice will be appreciated.

I have learned a hard lesson. Whenever a program upgrades, save files to the new format. I should have done that several versions ago.


On Sat, Nov 28, 2009 at 10:35 PM, Michael Lightfoot <michael.lightfoot@pcug.org.au> wrote:
On Sunday 29 November 2009 14:41:44 . . wrote:
> Duncan,
> I visited the link you included but could not find any mention of GRAMPS. I
> checked the current GRAMPS documentation and it does not mention the older
> style of saving files. Since surname databases are now managed through the
> Family Manager, I am wondering how to manage my older GRAMPS surname files.
>    1. As I asked in my previous message, should I open the older files in
>    the newest version of GRAMPS and re-save them?
>    2. When/If doing so, would it be safe to delete the old files?
>    3. Will all files re-saved as new databases be listed in the Family
>    Manager?
I have been using Gramps since version 0.7 and have never heard of "surname
files".  What is the format of these files you speak of? GEDCOM? XML?

Gramps now uses the Berkeley database format as its primary way of storing
your family trees and these databases are all under .gramps/grampsdb.  You do
not need to know the gory details of this format, including how the individual
database files are named.  That is all managed by Gramps itself.

If you wish to import a GEDCOM or a Gramps XML format file into a new
database, follow the instructions that are in the Gramps Wiki.  This works
quite well if followed carefully.  There are problems importing very old
Gramps XML files but there are documented ways to do that as well.

To summarise, Gramps stores family trees in Berkeley database files.  These
files are totally managed by Gramps itself and tinkering with them is fraught
with danger.  From the Gramps interface all databases (Family Trees) are
managed from the Menu item Family Trees --> Manage Family Trees or the button
"Family Trees" at the left of the interface.

To import data from elsewhere, create an empty (New) database (Family Tree)
and import the data into it.  There are several options to do this.

Sage advice is that you should as far as possible, store all related Family
Trees in one database.  This saves on duplicated data (and having to make any
changes to this duplicated data multiple times) and filters can be used to
view and manipulate only those parts of the data which you are currently
working on.

Michael Lightfoot
Canberra, Australia
OPC Merther & St Breock, Cornwall
see http://www.cornwall-opc.org

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