SuperSized Gedcoms fail import; small ones ok

I tried several times to import my Gedcom from Ancestry/FTM 2014. It’s a big one about 10,000 people.
I had FTM export to the Gedcom 5.5? format. I made several attempts to import the file. The last one made some progress:
RootsCity did appear to be trying to read the file. Took a lot more than 30 min, but there was a line racing along the border between the Blue border and the gray body of the screen.
The Name of the tree did appear on my dropdown list of trees after a long while. (something like L Beta1)
I could select the tree, but never did see any people. I decided to give it a lot more time to process.
Now today the tree in gone from my list.
I assume it choked on the large file. Do you have an intended limit for file size?
If you are hoping to attract experienced genealogists they will likely have big files.

On the bright side I went back and created a gedcom with about 550 people. It seems to have imported and I will be working with this as well as a manually created file.

Environment: Windows 10, Firefox (latest updates auto install)
Note: Ancestry gedcoms did not work well with WeRelate (imports were ugly) so I purchased RootsMagic yesterday and will do more experiments.

I also tried importing a moderaltely large gedcom that I exported from Family Tree maker. It did not run for a real long time, but I got an error message that it failed - “We weren’t able to import your GEDCOM: ERROR” but no other information was provided.

Thanks for these details, @jlanoux and @Don_LeClair. We’re working on the GEDCOM upload bug right this minute. We’ll let you know as soon as we have updates. Thanks!

As Heather says, we’ve been experiencing a number of issues with the GEDCOM importer today. Hopefully they’ll be fixed tomorrow. We’ll let you know, and a huge thank-you for helping us identify the bugs and your patience while we get them fixed.

Regarding the limit, we don’t have a limit right now, but in the future we’ll probably need to have something. 25,000? Or is that too small?

25,000 is a pretty big number. My largest file is just under 16,000 - so I am not even close.

25,000 sounds like a very reasonable number. I’m sure someone will try to
top it.
Is it possible to merge two trees in RootsCity? That would ease the pain if
one wanted to or was required to split and load smaller gedcoms.

Let us know when you are ready for another import test.

Another gedcom question:
I have another tree where a person has a LOT of events. The last import
into WeRelate caused that person and others to get mangled. I did not
realize it at the time. It was a gedcom created by Ancestry - I had
forgotten that they don’t import well.

I can test this one too when you are ready. But is there a limit on the
number of gedcom tags for a person?
The Indian Census have one every year! Very useful in finding transient


Merging trees or adding a gedcom to an existing tree are both possibilities. As we get further along we’ll have to see how important this is to people vs other things.

A large number of events shouldn’t be an issue. (If it is, I’d like to know about it.)

We’ve been working out GEDCOM bugs all week. Coincidentally, we’re working on issues with Ancestry GEDCOMs right now. I’m hoping we’ll be ready for another Ancestry test on Tuesday or Wednesday. I’d really appreciate your importing an Ancestry GEDCOM when we’ve got all the known bugs worked out. I’ll let you know as soon as we do. Thanks!

Also, it currently takes upwards of 30 minutes to import a large-ish (5,000+) gedcom. This will improve when we get on more powerful servers after the beta. And it takes about a minute when you open a large gedcom. I’ll try to improve the open times during the beta:

At WeRelate, I very often add a new GEDCOM of 60-80 people to an existing tree. It’s an expansion of a continuing project based on additional research and it’s easier to work offline in TMG. I definitely would not want to have to add those folks online one person at a time. Nor would I want to have to overwrite an existing (nicely formatted) tree with a newer, larger one.

Here’s a card for adding GEDCOMs to an existing tree: Currently it’s in the post-launch column on the roadmap, but I could move it to the pre-launch column if people wanted it more than some of the other features.

The main complication is doing a good job requires matching people in the new GEDCOM to existing people in the tree so we don’t create duplicates.

Large gedcoms (5,000 - 10,000 people) now load in 2-4 minutes, and large trees now open in 5-15 seconds.