Using the Match/Merge

  1. The Match/Merge function is used when there are duplicate individuals in the file. This often happens after a GEDCOM is imported, but it can happen at other times, as well.
  2. To open Match/Merge, go to Tools > Match/Merge.
  3. First, you will be prompted to make a backup. This is important because once you merge duplicate individuals, it is impossible to unmerge them. It can sometimes be difficult to fix problems created if the wrong individuals are merged, so it is easier to revert to your backup file.
  4. If you do not have a current backup, click Yes. Otherwise, click No.
  5. If you are making a backup, select the location to save the file and give the backup a name. Click Backup.
  6. In the Match/Merge Options field, the first section is for matching.
  7. You can match using Soundex, Exact Spelling, Ancestral File Numbers, or Other numbers.
  8. Click Advanced to see more matching options.
  9. You can specify the Years between birthdates with a number.
  10. When matching you can consider: Individuals with no surname, Individuals with no birth date, Ancestral File Numbers, Middle Names, and Parents.
  11. Click OK to exit the Advanced options.
  12. The Merge section includes the option to combine Notes, Source citations, Multimedia objects, and to Confirm when Merge button pressed. The Automatically merge. option is only available when you have selected to match using Ancestral File Numbers.
  13. Click OK on the Match/Merge Options field.
  14. The Merge Individuals field is comprised of two halves. The first half will show one individual, and the second half will show the possible duplicate individual.
  15. To select the duplicate individuals yourself, use the Find buttons. First click Find on the left side.
  16. Type the RIN of the individual if you know it and click OK. If not, click Individual List.
  17. Highlight the individual and click OK.
  18. Do the same thing on the right side. Click Find.
  19. Type the RIN of the individual or use the Individual List to locate him/her.
  20. Click OK.
  21. The person with the lower RIN should be on the left side. If this is not the case, click Switch. This is just so that the "empty" RIN will be the higher number.
  22. Now compare the information on the two sides of the screen. If there are discrepancies, decide which information you want to keep.
  23. Use the Marriage tab and the Family tab to decide if the individuals are duplicates. You cannot merge families; these options are only there for comparison.
  24. All of the information that is on the left side will be kept unless you indicate otherwise. If you find information on the right that you want to keep, put a checkmark in the field next to that piece of information.
  25. This will delete the information on the left. There is no way, when you are merging, to keep information from both sides. If there is information in both that you want to keep, make note of what is going to be deleted and add it to your file later.
  26. After you have checked over everything in the 2 records, click Merge.
  27. If the field is selected in the Advanced options, a confirmation field will appear. Click OK.
  28. If you want to change the preferences in the Advanced options, click Options.
  29. Then click Advanced.
  30. To have PAF look for possible duplicates, use the Next Match button. Each time you click this, a new match will come up.
  31. If you want to merge the possible duplicates, click Merge.
  32. If you do not want to merge the possible duplicates, click Next Match.
  33. If you want to go to a previous match that you did not merge, click Previous (you cannot go back to a match that has already been merged).
  34. When you are done merging, click Close.
  35. Click OK to verify the number of individuals that were merged.