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Exporting GEDCOM Files

Follow these steps to export a GEDCOM file from Legacy:

1. Click Export To / GEDCOM File from the File tab on the Ribbon bar.  (Or press Ctrl-E)
2. Click on the Options tab.
3. Select the type of GEDCOM file to produce.
4. Check the boxes corresponding to the options and records you want to include in the file.  (See explanations below.)
5. Click on the Other Options tab. Choose any desired options.
6. Click the Privacy button.
7. Select the privacy options you want to use when exporting.  (See explanations below.)
8. Click Compiler... to make sure the information about you, the compiler or creator of the GEDCOM file, is correct.
9. If you want to change the default list of field information that to be included in the GEDCOM file, click Customize.
10. When you have made all the desired settings, click Enter File Name and START EXPORT.
11. From the Export GEDCOM File dialog box, select the desired folder and type in the name of the file you want to create.  This can be any name up to 255 characters.  Often, an appropriate surname makes a good file name.

Options Tab
Producing a GEDCOM file for...
  • Legacy   A Legacy GEDCOM file contains ALL the information that can be entered into a Legacy family file.  This includes all individual field information; all notes; all sources; all events; LDS ordinance dates and temples; pictures; sound; video; list ordering and tags; as well as preferred children; spouses; and parents.  This GEDCOM file conforms to the GEDCOM 5.5 specification (with some extensions) and contains the most information.  If you are exporting a GEDCOM file to be imported into Legacy you should choose this option.
  • GEDCOM 5.5 Only   Many other programs do not have a place to put all the information that Legacy handles and an error file is generated.  If you would like to limit the export fields to mostly those accepted by other programs, choose this option.
  • PAF 2.31 and PAF 3.0 / 4.0   Since Personal Ancestral File is now used in three different flavors, 2.x, 3.x and 4.0 and since they each handle notes, sources, and repositories in radically different ways, it is necessary for Legacy to produce three special GEDCOM formats to satisfy the special needs of these programs.
  • PAF 2.31   Sources that are included in Legacy are tagged and inserted into the Notes field.  Medical and Research notes are also tagged and combined into the standard Notes field.  Note fields are broken into smaller lines between words.
    This type of GEDCOM files contains:
    - Name, sex, birth, christened, death, buried, marriage
    - Ancestral File Number and User Reference Number
    - Notes
    - Sources embedded in the Notes fields
    - All LDS ordinance information
  • PAF 3.0   Sources are exported as separate records with citations pointing to them where needed.  Note fields are broken into shorter lines by breaking in the middle of a word.
    This type of GEDCOM file contains:
    - Name, sex, birth, christened, death, buried, marriage
    - Ancestral File Number and User Reference Number
    - Notes
    - Sources as separate records
    - All LDS ordinance information
  • PAF 4.0   PAF 4.0 contains some additional information that 3.0 does not.
  • PAF 5.0   PAF 5.0 contains some additional information that 3.0 and 4.0 do not.
  • Pedigree Resource File   This format is used when contributing your information for inclusion in the LDS Church's new Pedigree Resource File.  This file is similar to the Ancestral File but the contributed files are left as received, and no attempt is made to link multiple files together.  Submission can only be done through the Internet.
  • Basic   A Basic GEDCOM file contains only the vital statistics.
    This type of GEDCOM file contains:
     Name, sex, birth, christened, death, buried, marriage
  • Generic   A Generic GEDCOM file contains:
    Name, sex, birth, christened, death, buried, marriage
    User Reference Number
    Notes
    Sources
    Events
    Baptism
    Marriage Status
  • Ancestry Online Family Tree  This file contains individuals and marriages to be exported for uploading to Ancestry Online Family Tree.
  • MyTrees.com  This file contains individuals to be exported for uploading to MyTrees.com.
  • OneGreatFamily.com  This file contains individuals to be exported for uploading to OneGreatFamily.com.

    Character Set
    Because there is a need to share genealogical information in different languages, Legacy offers three separate character sets when exporting a GEDCOM file:
  • ANSI   This character set corresponds to the Windows character set on a one-for-one basis, including characters with diacritics.  (This is the program default.)

  • ANSEL   This character set represents certain characters with diacritics as two-character combinations. Some genealogy programs require the ANSEL character set. Most others will read both character sets but there are some that will not read the ANSEL set.
  • UTF-8   This character set represents certain characters as two-character combinations.

    Changing the Default Character Set
    If you want to change the default character set to something other than ANSI, choose the set you want to use in the combo box and then click the small blue button to the right of the combo box. 

    Length of the Note Lines
    Note lines in Legacy Note fields are continuous until a carriage return is entered.  If you increase or decrease the width of the note window, all the text is reformatted within the new width.  Other programs, such as Personal Ancestral File, have fixed lengths for each line in the note field and each of these lines is exported to a separate line in the GEDCOM file.  As Legacy is exporting a GEDCOM file it breaks the long continuous lines into smaller pieces.  You can control how long these segments are by entering a number to indicate their length.  (When a GEDCOM file is imported by Legacy, the line segments are recombined to their original state.)

    Suppress <Estimated Dates> and <Places>
    Does not export dates and place that have been estimated from other, surrounding information.  Estimated dates and places can result from importing from other sources.  Dates and places with surrounding angle brackets are considered to be estimated.

    Keep embedded formatting codes within text
    Keeps any formatting codes that you have embedded in note fields.  These are codes that let you print portions of the notes italicized, bolded, underlined, and superscripted.  (If you are exporting to a program other than Legacy, these formatting codes may not be recognized and formatted as desired.)
  • Convert Formatting Codes to HTML Style - Converts any text style codes you have inserted into notes or other fields from the codes Legacy uses to codes that are used in HTML files for display in a browser.  This option should only be used if the resulting GEDCOM file is to be imported into a web-publishing program (like The Next Generation).
  • Make space strings in notes fields web friendly - Converts strings of multiple spaces in note fields into non-breaking spaces so that the output will appear as you entered it in Legacy.  Browsers convert multiple spaces into a single space.  If you have used multiple spaces in Legacy to line up columns on sucessive lines, you can use this option to keep that spacing when the information is displayed in a browser.  This option should only be used if the resulting GEDCOM file is to be imported into a web-publishing program (like The Next Generation).

    Export General To-Do Items
    If you would like the GEDCOM file to include all General To-Do items (as opposed to Individual To-Do items), select this option.  Clear the option to exclude the items.

    Show Double Dates
    If double dating is turned off in your family file but you would like to include double dates in the GEDCOM file, you can do so using this option.  See Calendar History for more information on double dating.

    Use Short Locations
    Use this option to export all the short location names (as opposed to the long location names).  The short location names often have abbreviated state, province, and country parts. 
    Export Shared Events as regular events
    If you are exporting your family file to a GEDCOM file that will be imported into another program that does not support shared events, you can choose to have any shared events exported as regular events.  This, of course, will duplicate the event information for everyone who shares each event but it is a way to make sure it is included and not lost. 
    Export Stories as Events
    Not all genealogy programs or website building software supports stories attached to people.  If you are exporting a GEDCOM file to be imported into another program that doesn't support stories, you can have the stories exported as events.  This will ensure that the information is not lost. 
    Export AFNs and User IDs as Events
    Some genealogy programs and websites do not recognize Ancestral File Numbers and User IDs when exported using the AFN and REFN tags.  If you are exporting to one of these types of places, you can tell Legacy to export this numbers as Events instead.  This way the information will be imported and attached to the person's record.
    Export all other ID numbers as Events
    Some genealogy programs and websites do not recognize FamilySearch IDs, FindAGrave Memorial Numbers, or BillionGrave Record numbers when exported using the _FSFTID, _FGRAVE, and _BGRAVE tags that Legacy uses.  If you are exporting to one of these types of places, you can tell Legacy to export this numbers as Events instead.  This way the information will be imported and attached to the person's record.
    Export Hashtags as Events
    Not all genealogy programs or website building software supports hashtags attached to people. If you are exporting a GEDCOM file to be imported into another program that doesn't support hashtags, you can have them exported as events. This will ensure that the information is not lost. 
    Record Selection - Who Do You Want to Include in the File?
    The default is All Records in the Entire Family File.  If you would like to change this, click Record Selection.  See Export Record Selection for more information.
  • All Records in the Entire Family File Select this option if you want to include every individual and family in your Family File. Selecting this option causes all subsequent options to be ignored.
  • Selected Records Contained in the Focus Group You can select specific individuals, families and entire family lines to export by placing them in a Focus Group. (See Focus Groups <focus_groups.htm> for more information.)
  • All Individual Records with a Certain Tag Level Select this option if you want to include individuals who have been tagged. Be sure to set the tag level you want to use by using the up and down arrow.
  • Export all Spouses of Tagged Individuals Check this option to include all the spouses for each individual exported.
  • Export all Children of Tagged Individuals Check this option if you want all the children of each tagged individual exported.
  • Export all Parents of Tagged Individuals Check this option if you want to export the parents of each tagged individual.
  • All Marriage Records with a Certain Tag Level This option exports those individuals who are part of tagged marriages. Be sure to set the tag level you want to use by using the up and down arrows.
  • Export Children of Tagged Marriages Check this option if you want to export the children from each tagged marriage.

    Note:  If an event for one of the individuals being exported is shared from an individual who is not in the group, the person who shared the event will be included in the export.  This has to be done in order for the event to be included for the people in the group who use it.

    Other Options Tab
  • Override Source options - include everything -With this option selected, all the information from each source citation detail is exported to the GEDCOM file.  If unselected, the information that is suppressed, according to the source detail options, is excluded from the GEDCOM export.
  • Export Dates in English - If you are using a non-english version of Legacy, you can choose to have all dates exported in either English or in the language you are using.  
     Note: If you are using Legacy in English, this option will be invisible.
  • Export All Master Event Definitions - Normally Legacy only exports to the GEDCOM file the Master Event Definitions that are used by the individuals and marriages that will also be exported.  If you want to include all the master event definitions from your current family file, choose this option.
  • Export All Master Locations - By default, only the master locations that are used somewhere in the resulting GEDCOM file will be exported. If you want to include all the master locations from your current family file, choose this option.
  • Include Tag Descriptions - If you would like to include your individual and marriage tag descriptions in the GEDCOM export file, select this option. 

    Privacy Options
    Privacy is of great concern when printing reports and books and when creating web sites.  Legacy provides many options so that you can suppress and eliminate sensitive information, individuals, and marriages.  These include:

    Suppression of Living Individuals and Their Families
  • Suppress Details for Living People 
  • Exclude Living People Totally 
  • Suppress Details for Deceased Spouses of Living Individuals 
  • Suppress Details for Deceased Children of Living Individuals 
    Override Privacy Settings
  • Include Private Individuals 
  • Include Invisible Individuals 
  • Include Private Marriages 
  • Include Private Child-Parent Relationships 
  • Include [[ Private ]] Notes 
  • Include Events Marked "Private
  • Include Master Events Marked "Private

    To open the Privacy Options screen, click the Privacy Options button along the right side of the screen. Also see Privacy Settings for more information about marking individuals and marriages as private.

    Changing Your Compiler Information
    If you want to change the name, address, phone number and comment lines of previously entered information, or if you want to enter this information for the first time, click Compiler...  The Compiler Information window appears where you can add or edit the entries.

    Customizing the Export File
    You can customize the GEDCOM file format in many additional ways by clicking Customize....  See GEDCOM Export Items for more information.

    AutoSource™
    The AutoSource feature of Legacy lets you automatically attach a master source to each individual when you are doing an export.  This is great way to let others know that you are the author of the information contained in the file.  It can also indicate to others that you would like to be contacted if they find additional information or changes concerning "your" people.  

    When you are about to export a GEDCOM file, you can select a master source to attach to each person by clicking AutoSource on the Export  window.  (You can also attach sources to records as you import from GEDCOM files.  See Importing a GEDCOM file for more information.)

    Starting the Export
    When you have selected the individuals and families to include in the exported GEDCOM file, click Enter File Name and START EXPORT.  Legacy prompts for a file name.  A .GED extension will be added.  Legacy then creates the file and exports the specified information. 

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