RootsMagic App - Frequently Asked Questions

Your Family Tree at Your Fingertips!

Here are some questions we are frequently asked about the RootsMagic App:

  • How do I get support for the App?
    In order to provide this app free of charge, we are unable to provide phone or email support for it. Besides this knowledge base, we also provide a message board where you can ask questions and discuss the app with other users.
  • How do I install the RootsMagic App?
    1. Open the App Store (iOS) or Google Play (Android) on your device
    2. In the search box type "rootsmagic" (without the quotes)
    3. RootsMagic will appear in the results.
      1. On an iOS device, click the "FREE" button, then click "INSTALL APP"
      2. On an Android device, click "RootsMagic", then click "INSTALL"
  • How do I copy RootsMagic data files onto my device?
    The RootsMagic app works directly with your RootsMagic file (no conversion needed). You can copy your RootsMagic data file to your device using Dropbox. If your device is iOS (iPhone, iPad, iTouch) you can also use iTunes to copy your RootsMagic file to your device. When you start the app the first time, it will give you instructions on how to copy the file. These instructions are also provided in the next two questions.
  • How do I copy my data to my device using Dropbox?
    1. Select the "File" option at the bottom of the app, then select the "Dropbox" option that appears.
    2. If you haven't previously connected to Dropbox from the RootsMagic app:
      1. You will be directed to Dropbox to sign in
      2. Dropbox will ask you to authorize the RootsMagic app. Click the "Allow" button to authorize the RootsMagic app.
      3. A folder called "Apps" will be created in the root of your Dropbox Folder. Inside of the "Apps" folder will be created a "RootsMagic" directory.
    3. Place your database (the .RMGC file) into the Dropbox/Apps/RootsMagic directory on Dropbox
    4. After Dropbox has synced your files select "File" then "Dropbox" again in the RootsMagic app. The app will display the list of RootsMagic files in the Apps/RootsMagic folder.
    5. Select the database from the list. Depending on the size of the file it may take a minute or two to download the database to your device. A message will pop up when the file is finished downloading to let you know you are ready to use the database
    6. The file should now show up under the "On Device" tab in the RootsMagic app. This means it has been copied to your device and doesn't need to be reloaded from Dropbox unless you change the file on your computer.
    7. If you edit the database on your computer (and put the modified RootsMagic file in the Dropbox/Apps/RootsMagic folder), the app will let you know that the files have been modified and need to be re-downloaded to your device. After a file has been downloaded you can then access the file from the "On Device" tab.
  • How do I copy my data to my device using iTunes (iOS only)?
    1. Make sure you are running the current version of iTunes
    2. Plug your device into your computer
    3. Select your device at the top of iTunes
    4. Select the Apps Tab at the top of iTunes
    5. Select the RootsMagic app in the list of apps under "File Sharing" (you may need to scroll down to see it)
    6. Click the "Add..." button and navigate to the file on your computer
    7. Hit the "Sync" button to sync your device
    8. The file should now show up under the "On Device" tab in the RootsMagic app
    9. Select the database from the "On Device" list (in the "Files" area of the app) and you are now ready to use the RootsMagic app.
  • Can I copy files to my device without installing Dropbox on my computer or device?
    Yes. You can create a Dropbox account online (in your browser) and then do the copying directly in your browser instead of installing Dropbox on your system.
    1. If you don't already have a Dropbox account, go to http://www.Dropbox.com and create a new account.
    2. Install the RootsMagic app on your device.
    3. Run the RootsMagic app
    4. If you haven't previously connected to Dropbox from the RootsMagic app:
      1. You will be directed to Dropbox to sign in
      2. Dropbox will ask you to authorize the RootsMagic app. Click the "Allow" button to authorize the RootsMagic app.
      3. A folder called "Apps" will be created in the root of your Dropbox Folder. Inside of the "Apps" folder will be created a "RootsMagic" directory.
    5. Login to Dropbox (on your desktop) and upload your database (the .RMGC file) into the Apps/RootsMagic folder
    6. After uploading your file select "File" then "Dropbox" again in the RootsMagic app. The app will display the list of RootsMagic files in the Apps/RootsMagic folder.
    7. Select the database from the list. Depending on the size of the file it may take a minute or two to download the database to your device. A message will pop up when the file is finished downloading to let you know you are ready to use the database
    8. The file should now show up under the "On Device" tab in the RootsMagic app. This means it has been copied to your device and doesn't need to be reloaded from Dropbox unless you change the file on your computer.
    9. If you edit the database on your computer (and upload the modified RootsMagic file to the Apps/RootsMagic folder on the Dropbox website), the app will let you know that the files have been modified and need to be re-downloaded to your device. After a file has been downloaded you can then access the file from the "On Device" tab.
  • Do I need to be connected to the internet to access my database?
    You only need to be connected to the internet to initially download your database (through Dropbox or iTunes). Once you have downloaded your data file, it remains on your device and you can access it without being connected to the internet.
  • Can I add or edit data in the app?
    Not at this time. The RootsMagic app is a "reader" which allows you to take and view your data.
  • Are my pictures available in the app?
    The app will display thumbnails of your images (which are stored in your RM database), but doesn't have access to the full resolution copies of your images.
  • What version of RootsMagic files does the app support?
    The app should work with files created by RootsMagic 4, 5, and 6. It will not work with files created by RootsMagic 3 or older.
  • Will the app open RootsMagic backup files or GEDCOM files?
    No. The app works directly with the RootsMagic data file (*.RMGC) without any conversion. Since it doesn't convert files it won't convert (open) RootsMagic backup files, GEDCOM files, or files from other genealogy programs. If you want to use any of those types of files, import them into the RootsMagic desktop program and then copy that RootsMagic *.RMGC file onto your device.
  • What should I do if I can't get my database uploaded to the app?
    1. Make sure you are using the .RMGC file and *not* a backup (.RMGB) or GEDCOM file
  • Will the Android app run on my Kindle?
    Yes, but for now you need to download and install it directly. Amazon for some reason is hiding the app from Kindle users. Here are the steps to install the RootsMagic app on your Kindle.
    1. First you need to tell your Kindle that it is ok to insatll programs that aren't from the Kindle store.
      1. Go into the Settings for your Kindle
      2. Then select "Applications", then enable "Apps from Unknown Sources" (this may be a little different on different devices).
    2. Open your browser on the Kindle and click this link: http://files.rootsmagic.com/RootsMagic.apk
    3. After the app has been downloaded from the link above, find the downloaded file and choose that file to install.