This article appeared in the Sep/Oct 2001 issue of Everton's Genealogical Helper.

The Master Genealogist Tips

By Lee H. Hoffman


Living Persons and Living Flag.The Living Flag may be used to designate those persons still living. With this designation the user may exclude certain personal data on those persons from certain TMG reports. The Living Flag may be set to any of three possible settings: “?” for ‘not set or unknown,’ “Y” for ‘is living,’ or “N” for ‘is not living.’ Setting of the Flag is somewhat automated in that when a Death or Burial Tag (or any tag in those Tag Groups) is added to a person then their Living Flag is set to “N.” Or when a person is added whose age is greater than the maximum lifespan entered in TMG, then TMG also sets the Living Flag to “N.” So as you enter data in your dataset, the Living Flag for deceased persons will be set automatically. However, the Living Flag will remain set to “?” (meaning not set) for everyone else since TMG does not assume they are living. Thus you will want to set the Living Flag to “Y” (meaning living) for those persons that are living.

However if you have a large number of persons in your dataset who do not have a Death or Burial tag (dates unknown or they are still living) or don’t have a Birth tag with a date earlier than the maximum lifespan, it may be a big job to set each person’s Living Flag as there may be large number of persons with the Flag not set. You can reduce the size of this project by making use of the Secondary Output feature of TMG’s List of People report. The trick is to first ensure that all deceased persons have had their Living Flag set. Then the remainder will be those that are still living.

To globally set the Living Flag for deceased persons, you would define the set in a filter on the Focus tab of the List of People report. The filter might be something like:

 Any Birth Group Date-Year         Is Less Than           AND
 Any Birth Group Date (Wide)      Is Not Empty           END
 And Include [X] Spouses  [X] Ancestors 250 Generations

Then you would select the Secondary Output tab of the Report Definition Screen and select the Change Flag option.  You would choose the Living

Flag and the To option of “N.” When the report has been generated, you would be asked if you want to change the Living Flag to “N” for those people selected. You would answer Yes. (I recommend that you answer No to the question about the Last Edited Date). TMG will now change the Living Flag to “N” for these people.

Now you will still have people whose Living Flag is still set to “?.” Some of these should be set to “N” but will have to be examined individually as there is no Birth, Death, or Burial data with which you can easily define those persons. However, this group should be fairly small and you can check them out quickly.

After you have set the Living Flag for all deceased persons, the remainder should be those that are still living and you can set them to “Y” if you wish. However, you may wish to leave some of these set to “?” until you have determined the actual status.

Easier Access to TMG’s Geographic Database. Many users would make greater use of TMG’s Geographic Database if it was not on the CD-ROM. The problem is that before the last few years, hard drives on most computers were not large enough to store the database. Now that many computers have large capacity hard drives, some users may wish to have the Geobase on their hard drive.

First, you need to copy the database to your hard drive. You may do this by inserting the TMG Installation CD into your CD-ROM drive. Open Windows Explorer to the CD-ROM drive. Then use Windows “drag and drop” feature to copy the GEOBASE folder from the CD-ROM to the TMGW directory/folder. Now remove the CD-ROM from the drive.

Now start TMG and prepare to use the Geobase as normal but without the CD in the drive. When the window appears indicating that Geobase cannot be found, click on the Browse button, and acknowledge the Notice. Use the standard Windows Open window and find the Geobase directory/folder that you just copied to the TMGW directory/folder. Highlight the GEOBASE_.DBF file there and click on the Open button. At this point, the usual Search Geobase window will appear. TMG is now set to reference Geobase from this location and you will not have to insert the CD into the CD-ROM drive for this purpose any more.


Further information about The Master Genealogist can be obtained from Wholly Genes, Inc., 5144 Flowertuft Ct, Columbia, MD 21075, on the TMG website <> or toll free at 1-877-TMG-FAMILY. TMG Tech Support is available at 1-410-715-2260 or by e-mail at <>. More help is available on the TMG Tips website <>.

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