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Reading GEDCOM files

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  • Reading GEDCOM files

    I am new to all this so I thought I could start filling in a family tree and share it with my family. I worked on one here which my son could see but not download. So I started one on RootsMagic. I exported it to my computer as a gedcom file but couldn't open it. Then I got stupid. I downloaded software that claimed to be able to open just about any file. What I got was malware and a bunch I popups. It took me all afternoon to fix it (fingers crossed). So can anyone tell me how I can/should open a downloaded gedcom file?

  • #2
    Your malware comment makes me think that you are using Microsoft Windows (and not Mac or Linux).

    If you are indeed using Windows, try running without a standard installation*** the genealogical software named Gramps that can import and then re-export a GEDCOM

    *** A so called portable version. You can of course just install Gramps software (as it is entirely free).



    • #3
      Opening/sharing gedcom

      Did you import the gedcom to a genealogy program before attempting to open it? There's also a second, easier option for sharing: just upload the gedcom to an online genealogy site (Ancestry, Rootsweb, etc.). These sites will display your tree in a user-friendly format, with living individuals privatized.
      Last edited by WCoaster; 17 January 2015, 06:13 PM.


      • #4
        The GEDCOM format is designed for transferring data between one genealogy program and another.

        However, a GED file is plain text, so you can open it from a word processor if you want to look at the contents. It will have a bunch of records with data about individuals and how they fit together in family groups, not very easy for a human being to follow. It's the genealogy program that assembles those records into pedigree charts and so forth. Your son would need a genealogy program to see those.


        • #5
          Thanks all. I think I understand what I need to do much better now.