Can't fix Broken Links

A local computer shop upgraded my laptop to Windows 10 and I just upgraded from RootsMagic 6 to RootsMagic8. My photos show up on the charts but not when I try to print family group sheets. All my photos have “Broken Links” and I’m not having any luck repairing the links. I run the “Fix Links” function but when I click on the found files, no corrections are made. The program can’t seem to find the right files. Please help. Thank you.

Assuming you are using your system disk for your media, the best approach to figuring out the specific problem is to run the MultiMedia List report (Publish, all Reports, MultiMedia List). Include all items and save the report to your favorite format, for example PDF. Then search the report (Ctrl F) for “NOT” . This is a short version of the “Not Found” label which will be associated with every broken media link. From there you can see the full path of where the DB thinks the media file should be located (ie this is what was set in RM6). Use Windows File Explorer to identify the full path of where the files actually are now. You should see some difference in the path or drive. Before running “Fix Broken Links” make sure your default Media Folder is set correctly (Settings, Folder Settings). Then run “Fix Broken Links”, choose the “A Selected Drive or Folder” option, and navigate to the correct folder. Select the “Search subfolders” option if applicable. Repeat as needed if your media is not organized underneath a single top level folder.

A couple of other thoughts. If the difference in file paths is trivial you might want to use “Search and Replace” instead of “Fix Broken Media Links”. If your media is not organized under a common folder (such as “Genealogy/Media”) now would be a good time to do so. (Get help with that if you’re not totally comfortable moving files around.) If you are using a portable drive to house your media you could run into problems like this since the drive mapping is not static.

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RM7: latest update for MAC. Running on Big Sur. I have 4 active, unrelated RM databases, and 3 other RM db’s that only get rarely used.

About your last thought: organize media under a common folder…my media are in many different folders/sub-folders, and I back up the media (and db’s) to two different clouds—Dropbox or GoogleDrive, depending upon the db. I just upgraded Catalina to Big Sur (iMac) and many links are broken. Compounding that, I started using iCloud, too. Cloud seems to have really messed with my RM databases (there are dupes and triplicates of RM db’s).

It looks like I have a lot of cleanup to do. I liked the idea of having my media be RM database-specific. Mixing 3 or 4 totally unrelated families’ media seems like a bad idea. Is that what you do, or do you keep media together because you only have one RM database?

It’s ok to have your media files in many different folders/subfolders if that works for you. The main point I was trying to make above is that with RM8 it makes sense to have all the media nested under a common folder versus spread out all over your system. That has to do with the fact that the default “Media folder” setting is at the program level, so it applies to all of your databases. And, because RM8 stores the relative path of the media file, you’ll want to be very careful about changing the default folder when you open different databases as that could break media links.

Several people have requested that RM8 “Folder Settings” be treated as database level settings versus program level settings. If that change ever happens then your current media file/folder approach might be just fine. Also, if you want to consolidate, it might be as simple as moving your existing media files/folders under some “parent” folder to start. I realize that would disrupt your current strategy to backup media to multiple cloud vendors.

To answer your specific question, I only have 2 databases and they are small (each <2,000 people). Am also on mac and I believe the limit is 32k files per folder. I name my media files in a way that starts with the fact type and also includes the country and person or family name, so having all media for a database in a single folder works for me. I think I’d still approach it the same way if my db size was 100k people, just more subfolders. I’ve seen other people say they have subfolders by family name. Because of the way I name my media files, my subfolders would probably be based on fact type. I doubt I’d go back and rename existing media files.

Finally, there’s lots of discussion (especially in the facebook group) around having your db versus your db backups on a cloud service. I may have misinterpreted your post but if you really have your active database file on cloud storage, I suggest checking out other threads before too long.