Import from another genealogy program

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There are several ways to import your family tree into Gramps from another program. The best way depends on what program you want to copy the information from.

Gramps to Gramps

This is the easy one. The simplest and safest method to move all your information from one Gramps program to another on a different computer is to choose Family Trees -> Export from the first Gramps. Follow the instructions, choosing GRAMPS Package for the format to save. And do not forget to disable privacy filter.

Copy the file created by Gramps to the destination computer. Then in its Gramps, choose Family Trees -> Import and select the transferred file.

Standard GEDCOM as transfer tool

Most programs for family history can export and import GEDCOM (.ged) files.

  1. Check the documentation for your program to learn how to create a GEDCOM file with all your data.
    • If you have a choice, GEDCOM 5.5 Standard is usually the safest type of GEDCOM.
  2. In Gramps, choose the Family Trees icon in the toolbar, or in the menu Family Trees->Manage Family Tree, to open the Family Tree Manager. Create a new Family tree, give it a good name, and click on the Load Family Tree button to open.
  3. Now that a Family tree is loaded, choose in the menu Family Trees -> Import
  4. Locate the GEDCOM file created by your program, and choose Open.
Check The Results

Check your data carefully once imported into Gramps. There are many things GEDCOM does not support that may be lost during transfer. In addition, many commercial programs do not create standard GEDCOM files. Gramps aims to support the GEDCOM 5.5. standard.

Take special attention that your media files are transferred too, and found by Gramps. In the menu Tools -> Utilities, you will find the Media Manager, with which you can change the path of your media objects to the new path if needed.

Import instructions from different programs


Ancestrologie seems to produce non-standard gedcom for some kinds of data. In general such problems should be repaired prior to importing into Gramps.

Programs for fixing some of the known problems

Download and uncompress (gunzip) to obtain executable scripts. Some additional explanations and data interpretations (or guesses) may be found in the comments.

  • .. script to fix non-standard gedcom address data REPO citation within a SOUR record. It replaces the (crash-causing) address data with a REPO reference and adds a REPO record containing gedcom-standard address elements.
  • .. script to fix non-standard LATI/LONG PLAC data that should be in a MAP structure per the 5.5.1 spec.
  • .. script to fix various non-standard gedcom usage or gedcom extensions, by converting the otherwise unusable data into a special NOTE entry like:
 2 NOTE APPX=Ancestrologie/2007.0.0.761 DATX=_ANCES_XINSEE 75111

The data (in this case 75111) may be absent or extend to CONT lines. The non-standard elements converted to APPX notes include:

  • _ANCES_CLE_FIXE .. special internal reference : "Who they are ?"
  • _ANCES_ORDRE .. considered non-critical, events classification
  • _ANCES_XACTE .. non-critical (certificat found = 1)
  • _ANCES_XINSEE .. INSEE geographical code (evidently simplified 5-digit)
  • EVEN F .. invalid EVENTS_RECORDED format in a SOUR record
  • EVEN I .. (same)
  • LIEU .. a subdivision of place, is not our place but a division
  • XTYPE .. these seem to be OBJE subordinates
  • XIDEN .. considered non-critical, media object used for primary media (photo)
  • XMODE .. " (file is not present at the FILE address)

In addition, one other change, replaces a non-standard "FILA" item to the gedcom 5.5.1 generic FACT item (in INDIVIDUAL_ATTRIBUTE_STRUCTURE) provided for exactly this kind of data.

 1 FILA Enfant légitime 
 1 FACT Enfant légitime

Users are invited to correct/clarify the above information or notify us of additional problems with non standard gedcom or gedcom extensions.

Please also feel free to provide feedback on broken scripts or incorrect fixes

GEDCOM produced by is not fully readable by Gramps 2.0.x and 2.2.x (Relationship lost). This is Bug#899:fixed for 3.0. Also, you can use for fixing broken GEDCOM generated by

Family Tree Maker (FTM)

GEDCOM is currently the only option for copying your data out of Family Tree Maker and into Gramps. Follow the instructions above for Standard GEDCOM.

Specific instructions for FTM2005:

Select File->Export File->Entire File... In file dialog, enter a filename and select "GEDCOM(*.GED)" from the "Save as type" dropdown. In the "Export to GEDCOM" dialog, set the following:

  • Destination: FTM
  • GEDCOM: Version 5.5
  • Character set: ANSI (Gramps will convert to UTF-8 upon import)
  • Deselect "Indent records"
  • Select "Abbreviate tags"

Media objects must be imported manually. It's a painfully laborious process. Here's a trick that might help ease the pain: Bring up the "Scrapbook" view on any family member. Hit F2. This lists all individuals. By double-clicking on an entry, it will take you to that individual's scrapbook page. Hitting F2 again will bring up the list at the point where you left off.

Description or value associated to event on place field

Gramps made an exception for Family Tree Maker, which violates the GEDCOM spec by using the PLAC field to store the description or value associated with the event. Unfortunately, Gramps cannot fix all errors and tries to do the best for properly importing user data.

Known issues or custom extensions

  1. Blank lines
  2. Issues on date string
  3. PHON in INDI records
  4. PLAC for general data
  5. The source quality is coded as a NOTE rather as QUAY
  6. Marriage start status
  7. Double dates use the first date rather than the second

Programs for fixing some of the known problems

  • FTWGEDfx is an open source freeware to fix the GEDCOM output from Family Tree Maker Version 7.0 for Windows.

Experimental way

The Master Genealogist provides a way (via GenBridge) to import FTM native database.

tmg2gramps might help for generating a Gramps XML file, which could preserve more data.


Gramps can directly import from Geneweb. Choose Family Trees -> Import, select your Geneweb database and choose Open.



GenoPro can generate custom (invalid) gedcom [1] but also better one [2].

GenoPro to Gramps

Experimental converter (.gno to .gramps) on 2757.


Modifications of gedcom from Heredis to import in Gramps

With editor (like gedit ot note++) find and replace « > »:

1. Non standard tags of Heredis


1 _FIL LEGITIMATE_CHILD > suppress all lines

1 _UST MARRIED > suppress all lines

1 RESN privacy > suppress all lines

NOTE * > TITL * for medias titles (A star was added in all media notes before Heredis export)

2. Assign value Y to following to tags





1 DIV > 1 DIV Y

1 CHR > 1 CHR Y

1 ... > 1 ... Y

3. Sources and Repositories

1 QUAY "> suppress cr and values in quotes for all lines (quality appears at the end of publication value)

3 MEDI > 1 MEDI or 1 PUBL


4. Change levels in Associations

2 ASSO @398195I@ > 1 ASSO@398195I@

3 TYPE INDI > suppress all lines



3 NOTE XXX > 2 NOTE XXX If a note is associated

5. Équivalents of disks drives when loaded Linux Gramps

FILE X:\YYY\Photos\ > FILE /media/ZZ/YYY/Photos/

FILE X:\YYY\Photosjrg\ > FILE /media/ZZ/YYY/Photosjrg/

6. For people's tags located in Events instead of Attributes

Description Type

Profession > Occupation

Titre > Nobility title

No (signe) > null

YES (end of line) > null

There would be a way to assign some fields in attributes instead of events. It's a mix up.

Ifs, Oct 25 2011

Known issues

According to a Ancestris wiki, GEDCOM generated by Heredis may :

  1. Add some empty tag - need to add Y on most event DEAT, MARR, MARC, DIV.
  2. Not properly manage dates (calendars)
  3. Generate custom tags without _ : WWW, EMAIL, HEAL, etc.
  4. Not properly manage sources and repositories

There are some alternatives to GEDCOM generated by Heredis :


According to a Ancestris wiki, GEDCOM generated by Legacy may :

  1. introduce a management issue on ADDR tag : need to add a RESI tag as parent tag/level.
  3. modify MEDI tag design, which can be used into CALN.


Using GEDCOM to export data from Pro-Gen is less than ideal. Therefor a plugin was created. The plugin is included in the Gramps distribution.

To import the data Gramps needs to be able to see the Pro-Gen directory tree. This all depends on your own setup. One possibility is to ZIP everything on your DOS computer and unZIP it on your Linux PC in, say ~/pg30. You may even be running Gramps on a Windows PC and have a copy Pro-Gen on that same computer. In the following steps, we're assuming the Pro-Gen files are at ~/pg30

Import the data:

  • start gramps
  • create a new family database
  • select that new database
  • go to menu Family Trees-> Import
  • in the file dialog go to the ~/pg30/nl/data directory
  • select the .DEF of your Pro-Gen database
  • in the drop-down selection box you have to select "Pro-Gen" (it is not automatically selected)
  • click "Import"
  • wait ...

The Master Genealogist (TMG)

You have two options.


This is the easy option, but much of your data may not transfer correctly. Try it first anyway in case it works for you.

  1. Tell TMG to export your data to GEDCOM, following the instructions that come with TMG.
    • TMG gives you many options for GEDCOM exports. What works best will depend in part on the way you organised your family tree. Choose whatever you like.
    • Write down which choices you make.
  2. Follow the instructions above for Standard GEDCOM.

If the results aren't too bad, but aren't quite right, try again after changing one or more of TMG's GEDCOM export options. You'll remember what you did previously because you wrote them down. Didn't you?

Keep trying and hopefully you'll hit on the combination that works best for you.

If you can't get good results, you'll have to use the tmg2gramps method instead.


For many people, using GEDCOM will lose too much information. If this is the case for you, you might like to try tmg2gramps, though it is aimed at advanced users.

You'll see three times a progress bar for "Individuals", "Families" and "Adding children". The import process can create warnings and you can look at them by clicking on the (i) icon in the lower left part of the Gramps window. It is advised to copy and save these warnings. There can be all kinds of reasons for these warnings (for example an incorrect date) and you may want to correct the imported data afterwards.

You can also download it here.


According to a Ancestris wiki, GEDCOM generated by Visuged 8.40.0 seems to definitively corrupt your data !

  1. Partials sources
  2. Repositories are lost
  3. BAPT, ASSO are lost
  4. Internal numbers are modified

Spreadsheet import

Although the following is not a standard format, as a last resort you could also construct a spreadsheet format of your data for importing into Gramps. The CSV import option currently doesn't allow import of all Gramps data. For example, it doesn't import all of a person's events and notes. It does import/export birth, death, and marriage events---and notes for those events, people, and marriages. For more details on this format see Gramps 4.0 Wiki Manual - Manage Family Trees: CSV Import and Export.


GEDCOM Extensions should be able to handle unofficial GEDCOM extensions.