Getting started with Gramps Trunk

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Revision as of 00:14, 9 September 2008 by Romjerome (Talk | contribs) (Can I help finish GRAMPS 3.1?)

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GRAMPS 3.1 is the newest version of GRAMPS, but it isn't quite finished. It is in a state called "beta" which means that it is nearly done, but there are still places that need some refinement. You can help by trying this version and reporting feedback and bugs. Before embarking on this you should first read this page.

A word of caution: GRAMPS 3.1 is currently considered a development version and not for use on your real data. You can test GRAMPS 3.1 on a copy of your data though. See below for more details.

You should not install GRAMPS 3.1 as that will overwrite your regular GRAMPS. However, you can download and compile 3.1 locally, largely without interfering with your regular GRAMPS. Subtle interactions are easy to resolve for developers.


GRAMPS 3.1 should only be used on a copy of your Family Tree data! Here is a step-by-step guide to doing this:

  1. Start your old version of GRAMPS
  2. Export your data using the GRAMPS Package
  3. Quit your old version of GRAMPS
  4. Start GRAMPS 3.1
  5. Create a new Family Tree
  6. Import the GRAMPS package from step 2

Can I run my older version of GRAMPS with this new version?

Yes. See installation notes below.

I have a suggestion or have found a bug. What do I do?

Please make a note of your Feature Request, or your bug here: This is one of the most important things you can do to help the state of GRAMPS.

Can I help finish GRAMPS 3.1?

Yes! There is much left to be done. You could:

  1. Help write documentation on how to use GRAMPS 3. See Gramps 3.0 Wiki Manual
  2. Help translate GRAMPS into another language. See Internationalization
  3. Test and follow-up on issues in the tracker. See
  4. Donate money to GRAMPS. See GRAMPS Support

Installing GRAMPS 3.1

Now that you have read all of the precautions, you are ready to begin exploring GRAMPS 3.1.

The easiest method of getting the beta version is to download it from under Unstable. This is easy to get and install, but is probably a few weeks old. If you want to get the freshest code, you'll have to do a little more work. See Running a development version of Gramps.

If you are running Linux and a variation of Debian (Ubuntu), then you can download the .deb file and install it directly.

Otherwise, you should download the tar.gz file. Here is the basic installation instructions, assuming that the tar.gz file is in your current directory:

tar xfz gramps-2.90.0-beta.tar.gz
cd gramps-2.90.0-beta
./configure --prefix=/usr/local
su -c "make install"

You can then run /usr/local/bin/gramps

Warning: you will not be able to load translations on /usr/local/share/locale, because you will load /usr/share/locale, which could be translations for stable release (set on You may generate a custom launcher by adding this line:

export GRAMPSI18N=/usr/local/share/locale

if you want to use an other path, you may add this line:

export GRAMPSI18N=@prefix@/share/locale

on current (source file) before compillation and installation.

running parallel versions of trunk and branches

As stated in Installing GRAMPS 3, you can only have a dedicated file on /usr/share/local/xx/.. . If you want to have both the trunk and branches version with separate translations, consider using some Virtual Machines.

At the moment I experiment with this setup:

  • Ubuntu 7.10: running VirtualBox
    • VM1: Linux Mint : on this machine I build and installed trunk. This means running ./autogen script, make AND do a make install (as root)
    • VM2: Fedora 8 : on this machine I build and installed branches. This means running ./autogen script, make AND do a make install (as root)