TMG File Structure
Applicable to TMG v3.x & v4.x, and v5.x, v6.x & v7.x
This page contains an abstract of the TMG File Structure which is described in a file located on the Files page of the Wholly Genes website. You may download that file for more detailed information about the TMG File Structure including the content and layout of each file. The latest file (as of Sep 2004) is for TMG v3.6 although much of it is applicable to all versions.
Each TMG v4.0 and earlier dataset contains 46 files (earlier versions may vary somewhat) of the following six file types:
|Foxpro Structural Compound Index Files
|FoxPro Database Files
|Documentation File -- text file
|Foxpro Memo Files
|Foxpro Memory Variable File
|Version Control File (v4.x, earlier versions used VER instead)
The DBF, FPT, MEM, and TMG files are the only files required for backup purposes plus the DOC file if there is one. When the CDX file is not available on start-up of TMG, it will be re-created. The MEM file contains information which the user defines and some additional administrative information such as the last person and view displayed.
The DOC file is only created when the user enters information via the File=>Memo option on the top menu (or presses F7 from a main screen). Each user will vary as to what the file will contain. Uses for the DOC file would be a general description of the contents of the dataset, the name of the creator, information about any changes to the file, updates made, corrections, etc. Some users also track the status of updating the dataset along a particular line or kind of data.
Before discussing the remaining files on the right, it might be good to describe the naming convention used for each file. Each dataset is assigned a name that may be from one to seven characters in length. If you assign less than seven, TMG automatically appends enough underscore characters "_" to fill out the name to seven characters. If you assign a name with more than seven characters, then TMG will simply use the first seven characters and drop (truncate) the rest. For example, if I assign the name, HOFFMANN (eight characters), TMG will just use the first seven, HOFFMAN.
Keeping in mind that TMGW v4.0 is a 16-bit program (i.e., it was originally designed for Win 3.x), it uses the "8.3" filename convention. This means an eight character filename, a dot or period, and a three character file extension (file type). The file types in TMG are discussed above. The filename then for each file in a dataset consists of the name of the dataset plus one character. In some cases, the character is an underline "_", such as for the DOC, MEM, and TMG files (for example, HOFFMAN_.TMG). For the CDX, DBF, and FPT files, the character may be considered the "name" of the file (the dataset name notwithstanding).
Thus the files to the right complete the structure of the dataset. DBF files contain the actual data for your dataset except for data which is or may be rather large in size such as certain narrative data (i.e., the Memo field of a Tag). This large-size textual data is stored in the FPT files. Each DBF file will have a corresponding CDX file and possibly a corresponding FPT file. The table on the right shows the various DBF files, their corresponding (if any) FPT file, and their corresponding CDX file.
Each TMG v5.x, v6.x, v7.x, & v8.x project contains about 80 files of the following file types:
|Foxpro Structural Compound Index Files
|FoxPro Database Files
|Foxpro Memo Files
|TMG Log File
|TMG Project Configuration File
The DBF, FPT, and PJC files are the only files required for backup purposes. LOG files are for informational purposes only and might be requested by Tech Support in the event that you have any problems. The CDX files are not required for backup purposes. When a CDX file is not available on start-up of TMG, it will be re-created. The backup file (SQZ) created by TMG will contain files as defined below plus other files as selected by the user some of which are defined here. There may be other files (notably Timelines, Layout files, Toolbar files, configuration files, etc. not discussed here) included in a SQZ file depending on the backup options chosen by the user.
Before discussing the files on the right, it might be good to describe the general naming convention used for project files. Each project is assigned a name that may be any length. TMG then appends an underline character and one or more characters to define the specific purpose of that file and appends a three character File Extension (File Type) to further define the use of that file. Keeping in mind that TMGW v6.0 is a 32-bit program (e.g., designed for Win 9x and later), it uses the Win 9x long filename convention. This means a filename of one or more characters in length, a dot or period, and a three character file extension (file type). The filename then for each file in a project consists of the name of the project plus an underscorce character plus an additional one to three characters. In some cases, the character is an underline "_", such as for the PJC files (for example, HOFFMAN FAMILY_.PJC where the project is named HOFFMAN FAMILY). For CDX, DBF, and FPT files, the character(s) may be considered the "name" of the file although the project name plus these names is used to distinguish (for example) one set of "A" files (..._A.DBF, ..._A.FPT, and ..._A.CDX) from another set of "A" files.
DBF files are basically database files or tables containing certain data more or less akin to the descriptions given in the table to the right. Depending on the specific DBF file, it have have one or more associated files. These are FPT files that contain textual data related to the associated DBF file. Finally the CDX files are just index files to speed up the use of the DBF files.
Thus the files on the right complete the structure of the project. DBF files contain the actual data for your dataset except for data which is or may be rather large in size such as certain narrative data (i.e., the Memo field of a Tag). This large-size data is stored in the FPT files. Each DBF file will have a corresponding CDX file and possibly a corresponding FPT file. The table on the right shows the various DBF files, their corresponding (if any) FPT file, and their corresponding CDX file.
Each TMG project may also contains other files of the following four file types (these are user defined and created as needed by TMG):
|Accent Definition Files
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Citations
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Events
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Tasks
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Places
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Names
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of People
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Repositories
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Sources
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Tag Types
|TMG Filter Definition Files - List of Witnesses
* - This number indicates the files normally created for a new project. The number may be more or less as needed depending on the user's responses to various prompts during the project creation and if the user has created other Accents or filters.
A TMG Backup file may contain many more files than those noted above depending on the type of backup the user has selected and the various options selected. This would include any External Exhibit files for the project which will include any and all image and media files supported by TMG and used in the project. Below are some of the files that may be included other than those noted above.
|Color Definition Files
|DNA Laboratory Definition files
|Database Text Files Used With Timeline databases
|Descriptive Text Files used with Timeline databases
|Report Definition Files
|Backup Definition Files
|Frame Files for use with Visual ChartForm
|Text File For Logging major events in a Project
Finally, ALL versions of TMG make use of other files.
Most of these are administrative in nature and are only applicable to the
current session. A few files are retained for other sessions to
help provide continuity and consistency for the user. However, any
loss of these files does not harm your data as they are re-created as
needed. As implied, these other files are usually temporary in nature and are deleted when no
Comments to: Lee Hoffman
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