RM9: publish on MyRootsMagic or HTML Website?

Looking for opinions on which way to publish my data. I have a server with space and I run other websites so there is no barrier there if I were to select the HTML road. What are pros and cons of each?

MyRootsMagic is free and relatively easy to use. It does not require you to own and operate a Web site. It’s fairly limited in the amount of space which it supports. For example, my RM database of about 40,000 people is too big to be hosted at MyRootsMatic. You have to load an entire RM database to MyRootsMagic. So if you load your entire RM database, it will include all your unproven or speculative people. To get around this, you could make another database that just includes your proven people. Or you could make another RM database that will fit in MyRootsMagic. I don’t use MyRootsMagic except that I have played with it just a little bit. But I think I remember that it privatizes people who are still living.

The HTML sites can be hosted on any Web hosting site, including on a Web site you already own and operate. RM does not enforce any size limits. Such things would depend on your Web hosting service. You would generate the HTML pages on your local hard disk and then upload them via FTP or something similar. The generated HTML pages seem to be pure static HTML and not to depend on any server side scripting support. A wide variety of formats are supported, such as FGS and Pedigree Charts and narrative reports. There are privatization options which are available.

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Jerry - is the 40k people too large because of the HTM pages generated or do you have a lot of included media? I have 60k people but essentially NO media at all, though a fair amount of text/note data associated with many people. My rmtree file is 92 Mb.

Have you ever tried The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding? I think TNG generates some pretty good looking websites.

myrootsmagic.com doesn’t store any HTM or HTML pages. It stores your RM database - your *.rmtree file. The HTML is generated dynamically. And actually, I think that myrootsmagic.com only supports RM7 format databases which are *.rmgc files and that the MyRootsMagic Publish process for RM9 produces a quasi-RM7 format file.

You can load more than one RM database to myrootsmagic.com, but because it’s a free service, there is an overall limit of 200MB for each RM user. I’m a little fuzzy about media files and how they fit in with the 200MB limit. You can upload “photos” but I’m not sure if that means it uploads all your media files including ones associated with facts or citations that are only images of documents or if it only uploads photos linked to the person record.

It only uploads whole databases, but there are filtering and privatization options so your site can display only chosen people. So you don’t necessarily have to make a separate filtered RM database as I suggested in my initial posting, except that you still might wish to make a separate filtered RM database to stay within size limitations.

MyRootsMagic documentation

I have looked at TNG but I have chosen instead to go with GedSite. It generates HTML pages which I host on my own Web site. The GedSite vendor has a partnership with a web site vendor that you can use if you don’t have a web site of your own or if you don’t want to have to create one. A sample page created from my RM data may be found at

Sample Page Created By GedSite Using RM Data

That’s a lot of good info Jerry, thanks. I had not really explored alternative ways to publish, so I’ll add GedSite to the list for review.

The 2 styles lead to 2 lists of pros and cons. Either the pages are generated dynamically (TNG) - which makes maintenance and updating easier but it can’t be shared on a CD (for example). Or the pages are generated once statically (GedSite) - making it more time consuming to revise and reissue but it can be saved on a CD. Costs are both minimal since I already have the webspace.

A significant driver for my efforts is longevity. I wont be here forever. I can pay for a few decades of online storage before I go or I can cut CDs and distribute them to family and others or I can do both. I will not save my data on Family Search or Ancestry because then I effectively lose control of it. The RM7/9 hosting by RM seems too limited in space and to require effort to carve things up just to fit (tedious for maintenance).

Not a choice to be made easily … a project for 2024 I think. Thanks for your help.

On the longevity issue, I have considered making CD’s which contain HTML pages produced by GedSite and distributing to family members. Doing it that way, I could consider including living people on the CD’s.

My biggest genealogy outcome each year is printed narrative reports for family reunions - essentially printed books. Everybody wants all their newest grandbabies included, so it definitely includes living people. But printed reports are very limited about including documents such as census pages and courthouse marriage records and death certificates. It’s a lot of paper and it’s hard to make many of the documents very legible on paper. Plus it’s hard to find a book format for the printed page that does a good job of including the documents on paper. I certainly don’t think RM’s Book feature does that in a satisfactory manner. My online pages with my RM data displayed by GedSite certainly don’t include living people. But maybe CD’s with my RM displayed by GedSite might be a good choice for being able to include living people.

The GedSite vendor has a companion product that will make e-books. But the e-books produced in this manner are not really any more printable than a bunch of HTML pages would be. e-books can simply be surrogates for printed books and they can look very much like printed books. But they don’t have to be that way. If e-books operate with things like hyperlinks to images, they are not very different from HTML pages which don’t translate very well to paper because of the hyperlinks. To me, the e-books produced by the GedSite vendor operate more like HTML pages than like printed books.