GedCom Table Import

I hear that tables will be available in DT Pro. Will it be possible to import lineage-linked gedcom files as tables?

How will the table function work in the practical sense? Will we create them within the DT first and then import the data? Or will we be able to import tab-delimited files and have DT create the tables on the fly?

I am particularly interested because I maintain a hug database in gedcom format and I’d love to ability to work with it in DT Pro.

You will be able to

  1. create new tables/forms
  2. import existing data (TSV/CSV files)

But I’ve never heard of “gedcom” files before - could you send us an example? Than I could check if importing will be possible.

Did any users ever follow up on this?

Is it possible for DT to “read” GEDCOM files so that their content can be displayed–even if it isn’t possible to put them into a workable sheet?

I can send a GEDCOM file via email, but here’s a snippet of the header and first person (plus the first line of the second) of the sample file that comes with Family Historian. Note that GEDCOM files can be opened by any text editor, but I’m unable to see the content of them in DT, so something must be missing.

2 VERS 6.2.7
2 NAME Family Historian
2 CORP Calico Pie Limited
1 FILE \\VBOXSVR\Folder\FamilyHistorianSampleProject.ged
2 VERS 5.5
1 _UID {[random hex string]}
1 _ROOT @I6@
0 @I1@ INDI
1 NAME Anthony Edward /Munro/
2 _USED Tony
2 SOUR @S2@
3 PAGE Page 79
3 QUAY 2
2 DATE 12 JAN 1922
2 PLAC Cheltenham, Gloucester, England
2 ADDR The Cottage Hospital, 15 Dalglish Lane, Cheltenham
2 SOUR @S2@
2 SOUR @S13@
2 NOTE Anthony weighed 8lbs and 3ozs at birth.  He was 3 weeks early, born at 12.12am.
2 FAMC @F3@
2 DATE JUN 1927
2 PLAC Cheltenham, Gloucester, England
2 ADDR The Priory Church, Tonley, Cheltenham
2 NOTE Anthony had 4 god-parents.  Two of each sex.  Apparently all 4 attended his baptism, but their names are not known.
2 DATE FROM 1927 TO MAY 1941
2 PLAC Cheltenham, Gloucester, England
2 ADDR 12 Sharps Lane, Cheltenham
2 _SHAR @I1@
3 ROLE Resident
2 NOTE 4 bedroom bungalow.
2 _SENT {date} {individual} lived {place}< at {address}>< with {role=resident}>, with his parents.
1 OCCU gardener
2 DATE FROM 1940 TO 1940
2 SOUR @S19@
1 OCCU soldier in the Gloucestershire Regiment
2 DATE BET JAN 1941 AND 1945
2 NOTE Tony signed up as soon as he reached 18, and was involved in the D-day landings before going on to serve through France and Germany.
1 OCCU landscape gardener
2 DATE FROM 1945 TO 1967
2 SOUR @S19@
2 NOTE After demob from the army Anthony returned to Gardening.
2 DATE BET NOV 1950 AND 1957
2 PLAC Lewisham, London, England
2 _SHAR @I1@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I3@
3 ROLE Resident
2 DATE FROM MAY 1957 TO 1965
2 PLAC Clifton Wood, Bristol, England
2 _SHAR @I1@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I3@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I8@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I6@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I7@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I92@
3 ROLE Resident
2 ADDR 2 Clifton Wood, Bristol
2 NOTE Large 5 bedroom terraced house, opposite the docks, with a good view over the warehouses
2 DATE FROM MAY 1965 TO 1986
2 PLAC Clifton Wood, Bristol, England
2 _SHAR @I1@
3 ROLE Resident
2 _SHAR @I3@
3 ROLE Resident
2 ADDR 2 Clifton Wood, Bristol
1 OCCU novelist
2 DATE FROM 1967 TO 1992
2 SOUR @S9@
2 SOUR @S11@
2 NOTE 2 novels published.  Names not known.
2 DATE DEC 1998
2 PLAC Bristol, England
2 ADDR Bristol Royal Infirmary
2 CAUS a stroke
2 DATE DEC 1998
2 PLAC Bristol, England
2 ADDR St Mary's Anglican Church
1 FAMC @F3@
1 FAMS @F1@
1 FAMS @F2@
1 OBJE @O10@
2 _ASID 2
1 OBJE @O1@
2 _ASID 1
1 NOTE A lover of the great outdoors, Anthony could never be persuaded to work in an office.  He was a keen gardener and enjoyed many outdoor sports, such as rambling and sailing.  He described himself as a writer, but produced only 2 published novel
2 CONC s in his life, and occasional pieces for Punch.
1 NOTE @N1@
2 DATE 28 OCT 2015
3 TIME 12:05:50
0 @I2@ INDI
1 NAME Julia Amanda /Fish/

For reference: GEDCOM Specification

  1. Quit DEVONthink.
  2. Open /Applications/Utilities/
  3. Paste:
    defaults write com.devon-technologies.think3 AdditionalPlainTextExtensions -string .ged
  4. Relaunch DEVONthink and import a .ged file.

At a minimum, you’ll be able to view the text.

1 Like

DT probably does not recognize them as text files. There’s a hidden preference (i.e. you have to set it from the command line) that adds the “ged” extension (or whatever it is) to the list of files considered to be text. Verbatim from the help:


$ defaults read com.devon-technologies.think3 AdditionalPlainTextExtensions

2014-07-31 08:25:27.101 defaults[21950:3312262] The domain/default pair of (/Users/eb/Library/Preferences/com.devon-technologies.think3 AdditionalPlainTextExtensions) does not exist

# This “error” shows there are no additional formats specified.

$ defaults write com.devon-technologies.think3 AdditionalPlainTextExtensions -string .otl.todotxt

$ defaults read com.devon-technologies.think3 AdditionalPlainTextExtensions


Searching for “hidden” in the help menu should give you the full text.

1 Like

OMG. This revolutionizes how I do my genealogy/historical research. I most ponder revising how I do things.

:earth_asia: :rocket:

For other genealogists out there, Family Historian 6, which I run in VirtualBox (question is out on stability of FH7 in emulators), uses a GEDCOM file as its data container–so if you index the location of that file and make sure you don’t change anything (because you ARE able to edit the GEDCOM in DT3), you can at least see all of your non-media information that is in the program, even if you have to do a bit of thinking to determine which person it is linked to. The GEDCOM file, after all, is a structured text document, so you just have to search for the first previous 0 line… As I said, I have to think about this. This is just pure stream-of-consciousness-excitement.

And I’m late for work.


Can you make a setting on that, that makes the .ged read-only?

You could use a smart rule to automatically lock them.

1 Like

The .GED files are already not editable, at least they’re not here.

I was able to edit one from within DT3.

How? I didn’t see any option like that on the list.

Indeed. I must have had mine in a test database I had locked.

I didn’t see any option like that on the list.

The action in the smart rule would be Mark > as Locked.

1 Like

Nevermind…it just took a bit of time

I did a smart rule to lock all .ged extensions on startup, closed DT3, and reopened it, but I was still able to change a file (verified outside of DT3 in the file system in TextEditor). Am I missing something?

I have a locked .ged file and I can’t edit it.

Post a screen capture of the file selected in DEVONthink. Thanks.

All good. It just took a bit of time.

Glad to hear it :slight_smile: