GEDcom cleanup, how do I do this?

I’ve installed Gramps, am using Linux. Please no Windows solutions, this is Linux, PCLOS, windows have been defenestrated.

I have a large mess. I downloaded the GEDcom files from and am stumbling through the Gramps instructions. I have no pictures, just a little box with a red X, a description of the photo with file missing and no tools to fix the problem.
No citations and a lot of no good links, thousands. I have not been able to find in the instructions where to begin with cleaning up GEDcoms that don’t fully install. In fact I haven’t found much that seems to work.


In Gramps you only see a red x redx if the media object (photo etc) does not exist on your local hard drive this is because the GEDCOM file format does not contain any media only references to the online media which you may have to download individually to your local computer. (mentioned by GEDCOM files are text-only; pictures, charts, books, and similar items from an original file are not included in a GEDCOM. )

A thirdparty addon to DownloadMedia exist but only seems to be for I suggest you give it a try?

As you’ve worked out GEDCOM is not very good at its job!

Maybe this Chrome addon can help you get your media from Ancestry

Download all media to a folder structure of your choice, then in your prefered text tool (i.e. notepad++)
You can search for the common url for media in the gedcom and replace it with you local path… It might be you need to use some regular expressions to replace the URL with the path, but it shouldn’t be that difficult to do in i.e. Notepad++ or similar tools.
(or you can do it in Gramps)

I have never tested it, so I don’t know if it work (I do not use either Ancestry nor myHeritage)

Or you can go the detour using RootsMagic7 and Treeshare, syncing your tree in RootsMagic, then export a gedcom from RootsMagic and import it to Gramps…
I do not know if the Treeshare function is in the free version of RM though…

Yes, that is exactly what I see. I use geni too as it is connected to myheritage. I don’t have anything in documents in that service except for those that went from myheritage to them. Their user interface is more difficult than myheritage. My main service has been as it has a large variety of collections to find documents and track down people.

Rootsmagic doesn’t work on Linux, otherwise I would be tempted to use it. Gramps says it has features I want, I can’t figure out yet. Not interested in paying money for stuff that don’t/won’t work. I’m going to try the chrome despite the security warning that claimed screenshots of your browser are going to hackers, maybe that’s fixed by now?

Trying to use chrome, no joy. For one I don’t get the page that has “Media Gallery”. I have a menu tab that says “Gallery”. already has a download button that grabs a single item for download. This feature would take a lifetime and be difficult to keep track of. The download feature of the chrome extension just isn’t working as advertized. Nothing seems to change in the downloads folder


you could try RootsMagic to download your tree and associated media. (The free version will be ok for this)
You can create a gedcom from RM to import to GRAMPS and that should also show your linked media in GRAMPS

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RM is for windows. But you are saying RM would download all the media plus the GEDCOM that I could then create a file for Gramps? If I borrow someone’s window computer, I could do this?
I would like to save the Census forms, marriage and birth certs, yearbooks, military stuff, newspaper clips, etc… . There are hundreds if not thousands of these docs, take a decade to do this by the each.

Shouldn’t Gramps be able to do this with it’s web/internet capabilities? I haven’t got much function out of Gramps yet. It seems like I should be able to log into via Gramps and pull my data out directly. Maybe all I need is to find someone who knows how to use Gramps?

Gramps respects copyrights, even Ancestry’s onerously broad ones. To build-in such a datascraper feature (that you suggest should already exist) would require an extravagant provenance tracking system & copyright compliance system. In essence, any material sourced through Ancestry cannot be freely re-distributed.

Even if you choose to upload exclusively owned media to Ancestry and then download for import elsewhere, you have agreed to overlay their terms & conditions on that fork of digital property.

I, for one, recommend NEVER passing data through Ancestry. Although, you might use them to point you in the direction of the data source … where you can acquire usage rights without their highly restrictive overlay. So long as it isn’t done with a tool the violates their T&C.

I don’t expect Ancestry to be anthing but jerks about this… to the point of slapping violators (& enabling tech providers) with punitive lawsuits.

With an estimated 3 million customers paying $25-$50 per month (many at promotional discount rates), they’d be darn foolish to make it too easy to harvest the data and cut that revenue stream. They DO have commercial agreements with some partners. But I’d hate to wade through the contracts, penalty clauses & payola involved.

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The creator of Download Media only uses Geni as an example. If the URL links in the Gramps media records can access the media in Ancestry with the user’s login it ‘should’ perform the download.

This example shows how this tool would be used with the Geni website, but other websites would be similar.

All the downloaded files will be stored in one folder.

If the Preferences → General tabs Base path for relative media paths: is set, then the media are downloaded there, otherwise, a folder/directory called ’ mediadir ’ is created in the user’s home directory, and the media files are put in that directory.

A major caveat, I have not tried the tool on Ancestry. I have never stored my files online.

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Great to know for later, thanks …

Yes, it is for Windows, thats why I called it a “detour”.

If you read about the Treeshare feature it says that you can upload to a new Ancestry tree, or download an ancestry tree RM and Ancestry. this video are about the treeshare:

I don’t have a paid Ancestry account, so I have never tested it … I only know that RM do have this feature. I dont know if it actually download the media but in the video I link to he say that the download of an ancestre tree to a new RM tree actually downloads all images to …

But as I say, I have never tested it.

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