trees-1In the previous article, we looked at backing up your TNG data files.  Now, how do we restore those files?  And is there anything else we can do to better use our backup system?

Let’s go back to the utilities area; log in as Administrator, then click on the Utilities tile.



utilities-12-2-restore-1If you did a backup previously, your Utilities >> Tables screen should look something like this.


To restore any file (or table data), click on the Select box for that file.  If you want to restore all of the files, click on the Select All button.  If the file was never backed up, the Restore icon will be missing for that file and the “Last Backup” and “File Size” box will be blank.  Now click on the pull-down list and pick Restore, and click on the Go button.

You will see in the Message column either a success or failure message for each file you are restoring, hopefully all will be successful.  If you do get a failure, it could mean that the data table structure no longer matches the restore file column structure.  That could happen if your backups are from an older TNG version, or perhaps a mod has altered (“enhanced”?) one of your data tables.

Backup Reminder

It sure would be nice if TNG could remind me to do a backup from time to time.  Well yes, it can.  There is a backup reminder feature on your Administration page, at the top (for TNG version 11 onwards).  Along with other useful messages, it will remind you of pending backup schedules.  You can set the intervals of backup reminders in the Administration area. From the Administration page, go to Setup, then General Settings, and then Miscellaneous.  The last box is: “Alert if no backup in this many days”.  The default is 30 days but you can overwrite that.

If you were also planning to import a GEDCOM file, it is strongly recommended that you do this backup procedure first, on all of your data tables.  The GEDCOM is going to overwrite your existing files, and if that produces undesirable results, at least you can restore back to the original values. (My thanks to Jim Culbert, member #4096, for this tip).


One selection in the pull-down list is to “Optimize”.  If you have deleted a large part of any table, say cemetery records, TNG still retains storage space in the database for those records, even though you have deleted them.  That is now wasted space and can drag down your speed in record searches.  Doing an Optimize will reclaim that space and will likely improve TNG performance.  Now, there is a bit of risk when you optimize large tables, so it is prudent to do another backup before optimizing.

Note: on this page, the three menu tabs are: Tables, Table Structure and Resequence ID’s.  We have been spending time in the first tab.  You can have a look at the other two, but they are not needed if you are part of the Guild Members’ Websites Project (MWP) or the Family Genes site.  These are useful for stand-alone TNG sites only.

Back up Table Structure

If you have a stand-alone TNG site, you might want to do a table structure backup.  This would only be of use if your server at your internet host provider suffered a catastrophic failure.  If you are part of MWP or Family Genes, your TNG team looks after that for you.  Please note, that should you do a restore of the table structure, all of your existing data WILL be blown away.

Resequence IDs

This feature has been disabled for the MWP and Family Genes participants.  Otherwise, doing a resequencing of ID’s should only be undertaken if you never want to synchronize the family trees with your home computer application.  Resequencing can also lead to broken internet links or bookmarks pointing to your site, and it could corrupt search engine indexing.