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Tuesday's Tip - Customize Legacy (Beginner)

TT - Customize Legacy

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Customize Legacy (Beginner)

One of the reasons I love Legacy is because of how customizable it is. I can make Legacy look and behave the way that makes the most sense to me when I am doing my research. This article is an introduction to a series that will be going through the Customize Legacy menus. These options are the general settings for your file. There are many more things you can customize (reports and charts, for example) but for right now we are going to focus on how to customize your entire file as a whole.

To see these menus to go Options > Customize.

Options > Customize
(click image to enlarge)


However, before we get started there are some general things to know.

On the left side of the above screenshot you will see there are 12 sections of Options. All of the Options within each section have a number, 8.2, 4.4, 1.6 etc. The first number tells you the section and the second number simply tells you which option in that section. This is handy when you are talking with others (or us) on the Legacy User Group Email List, the Legacy User Group on Facebook, the Legacy Support system, or the Legacy Enhancements system. You can use this as a bit of a shortcut so that you don't have to type everything out. You can just say Option 2.3 when you are talking about what age you want Legacy to automatically mark someone as deceased.

Option numbers
(click image to enlarge)


Each option is designated with an (ff) or a (gbl). (ff) stands for Family File and it means the option you are looking at only applies to the file that is currently open. If you have more than one file and you want this option to apply to all of them, you have to open them up one at a time and set the option. If you start a new file all of the (ff) options will be set to the defaults until you change them. (gbl) stands for Global and it will apply to all of your files. You don't have to open your files one at a time to set these. If you start a new file these will remain set for that file.

(ff) vs. (gbl)
(click image to enlarge)


At the bottom of each screen you will see Options for Default Settings. Click the button and you will see 5 options.

Options for Default Settings
(click image to enlarge)


For some reason Legacy users seem to overlook this button and there are some very powerful tools here. We are going to look at each one but not in the order you see on the screen.

Reset to Legacy-Defaults
This simply puts everything back to how it was when you first installed Legacy. If you want to wipe out your settings and start over from scratch this is how you do it.

Save current GLOBAL settings as User-Defaults
Remember the (ff) vs. (gbl) settings? This will only save the (gbl) ones.

Save current Family File settings as User-Defaults
This will save all of the (ff) settings.

Save ALL current settings as User-Defaults
This is the one I use. This saves both the (ff) and the (gbl) settings. I have all my options exactly how I like them and they all saved.

Reset to User-Defaults
Remember how I said that if you start a new file only the (gbl) settings will be carried over and all of the (ff) settings will go back to the defaults? When I start a new file I can immediately go to this screen and get it set up just like my old file. When we issue an update sometimes one or more of the settings will go back to the defaults. This can't be helped when the programming code for the things those settings control has been changed. When this happens you can reset back to your personal defaults. You can also experiment with different settings. When you are done experimenting you can reset back to your saved user settings.

Don't forget to click the Save button when you are finished customizing your settings. If you Cancel or simply exit using either the Esc key or the Windows X button in the upper right corner any changes you have made will not be saved.

Now that you have the basics under your belt we will go over all 12 sections of the Customize Legacy menu in future posts.


Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.


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i have several families all in one. How can I separate the 4 families?


Here is your answer:

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