This article appeared in the Nov/Dec 2001 issue of Everton's Genealogical Helper.

The Master Genealogist Tips

By Lee H. Hoffman


Copying Master Source Lists. One of the things that users want to do is to copy their Master Source List from one data set to another. TMG (in v4.0d and since v4.0a) allows the user to copy Sources into a new data set when it is created.  But how do you copy the Sources to an existing data set.  Before v4.0a, it could be done, but was quite cumbersome.  Now it is fairly easy. 

  First, open TMG and the data set from which you want to copy the Sources (and maybe other information).  Then, select File=>New from the top menu and enter the name of the new data set.  Since this is only going to be used once and deleted, enter any name you wish (I used delete which alerts me later that I should get rid of it).  You will now see the Create a TMG Data Set window.  Edit the data set path and file name as desired to place it where you want.  Since you will probably delete it when you are finished here, it can go almost anywhere.  Now enter any name in the First Person fields.  Again, it doesn’t matter because you will only be using this data set to copy other data.

Finally select the Master Source List option on the right.  You may also wish to select the Master Repository List option as well since many Sources will reference a Repository.  Also, because Repositories will contain places, you will probably wish to select the Master Place List option.  Thus you will probably have at least three options selected (Master Source List, Master Repository List and Master Place List).  Now click on the OK button to create the data set and open it for you.

Now that you have created the new data set, open the data set to which you wish to copy the Master Source List (and other information), and select the File=>Merge option from the top menu to display the Merge Data Sets window with the currently open data set (your old one that you just opened and to which you want to copy the data) named in the Source A field. Tab to the Source B field and click on the Search button to find and select the new data set (that I named delete) that you just created and have it appear in the Source B field. Now tab to the Destination field.  

For safety of your old dataset, you should have a backup.  In case you don’t and/or for added safety, accept the bottom option (Merge A and B into) and enter the name of a new data set in the Destination field.  This new data set also may be created anywhere and will only be used temporarily.  We’ll call it Interim for our purposes here – you may use any name you wish.  Now click on the OK button to perform the merge.

After the merge is finished, open the new (Interim) data set and review it to see that your Sources from the old data set are now in the Master Source List as well as the Sources from your old data set.  Also it would be prudent to just quickly check that all other data is okay.  When you are satisfied that every thing is okay, use the Picklist to find the false person that you entered in the new delete data set.  You may now delete this person, as they are no longer needed. 

Now select the File=>Copy option from the top menu to display the Copy/Export Data Set window.  This will have the currently open Interim data set in the Source Data Set (.TMG) field.  Tab to the Destination (.TMG) field and click on the Search button to find and select the old data set that you used to merge above.  You will be asked if you are sure that you wish to overwrite the existing data set.  If you have selected the right data set and you are sure, then answer Yes.  When it is in the Destination field, click on the OK button.  This will copy the merged data set (with the copied Master Source List and other data) over the old data set that did not have this data.

Finally, you will want to delete the data set that I called delete.  Select the File=>Delete option from the top menu.  In the Open window find and select the delete data set and click on the OK button.  If you are sure this is the correct data set, answer Yes and Yes again on the Are You Sure question to delete the data set.  You may also wish to delete the Interim data set now or you can wait until later and use it as a kind of back up until you have made a more current backup of your current data set.

Version 5.  Probably by the time this is printed, the newest version of The Master Genealogist will have been released.  It is a completely new program designed for use with the latest versions of Windows and will not have some of the problems that a few users have experienced.  While the program is completely re-designed, users of the old version will not find themselves in unfamiliar territory.  Most  of the features, function, and even screen displays have been re-designed, but care has been taken to retain the best of TMG for current users.  I expect to write more about the new version in the next issue.  For those that may be unsure about upgrading, they may be interested in Family Tree SuperTools (FTST) also from Wholly Genes.  It might be said to be a “lite” version of TMGv5.0.  Users of other programs will also find it useful.

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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