This page collects info and queries about Source Templates. Use the Table of Contents to the right to jump to the item of interest.

A Trio of Templates

Framing Citations of the 1930 US Census with RootsMagic 5 Free Form, Standard and Custom Source Templates.
This is a 15 page study of the usage and results of three very different templates, coming to the conclusion that RootsMagic 5's Source Template feature is still buggy and incomplete and that a custom variant of the built-in Free Form has advantages over other templates.

For an argument against the conclusions of this study, see Rebuttal by Jeff La Marca.

User-Editable Copies of Master Source Templates

The RootsMagic user is blocked from editing the 'built-in' Source Templates. Within RootsMagic 4&5, you can copy individual templates; the copy is user-editable. Alternatively, you can import all 413 of the Master source templates as user-editable copies from this file.
Updated 6 Jan 2012 to the RM5 templates.

The templates have all been renamed with a leading asterisk and will precede the uneditable ones in the Source Templates List.

Convert Sources With Uneditable Templates to Editable

Revised 18 Feb 2010

The superseded procedure picked out only those built-in templates actually used in the database, copied them to user-editable templates and re-pointed the Sources accordingly. It was later discovered that future importing of user-defined templates could result in a collision of TemplateIDs preventing further imports so that procedure has been abandoned. This new procedure requires the importing of RootsMagicuser.rmst into the Source Templates List first, using RootsMagic itself. The SQLite procedure is then run to match those built-in templates, which are used by Sources in the database, with the corresponding editable one and generates a result set containing SQL UPDATE commands to revise the SourceTable. These commands are copied to a SQL editor and run against the database.

No further work is required such as copying Source data over to the new Source and likewise for each citation of that source. For a large source list using several built-in templates requiring modification and extensively cited, the savings in effort would be significant.

N.B. All these procedures modify tables in the RootsMagic database and require a SQLite manager that can provide a RMNOCASE collation or spoof thereof. SharpPlus SQLite Developer has been used successfully with these procedures. SQLiteSpy with a fake RMNOCASE extension loaded should also work as will SQLite Expert Personal.

Converts Sources from using built-in templates to the previously imported user editable copies of same. rev 2014-06-15 to match names of built-in templates with names of user-editable copies prepended by the asterisk used in the current RoostMagicSTuser.rmst file, rather than the underscore character of the initial file.
Reverts a database having been processed by the superseded procedure (SrcTmpltsConvert.sql) to its pre-conversion state.
Reverts a database having been processed by the new procedure (SrcTmpltsConvert2.sql) to its pre-conversion state. N.B. revise with asterisk instead of underscore as the prepended character for user-editable copies of built-in templates.

List of Source Templates used and by what

This query is on a page of its own.

Fix Extra Line Feeds in Footnote

Vital Records (state-level, online derivatives)

This problem was first reportedby David E. Cann on 1 Oct 2011 in the ROOTSMAGIC-USERS newsgroup. The sentence template for the long footnote for this source type contains two extraneous Carriage Return control codes which results in unwanted whitespace when it is printed in a report's footnotes and endnotes, as well as in the Source List report. It appears to be present in the file from 3 Feb 2010 and may even pre-date that file. Correcting it in using a no-wrap text editor appears to neither affect a pre-existing database nor, surprisingly, pass it on to new database files created post-correction. It's as though the Source Template specifications contained in are now embedded in the program file (ver 20 Sep 2011) but the program has not been stripped of all the vestiges of the old way templates were distributed.

Until the developers release an update of RM4 that corrects this template and previously created databases, the following SQLite query may be the only way to remove the extra lines from within the database. Of course, one can edit a report's RTF file but that would have to be done every time the report is generated. Better to fix the fault at source.
UPDATE SourceTemplateTable SET Footnote = '<[Jurisdiction] ><[Creator], ><?[ItemTitle]|"[ItemTitle]," <[ItemType:Lower:Abbrev], >><i>[WebsiteTitle]</i><?[ItemTitle]| |, <[ItemType:Lower:Abbrev] >>([URL] : <[AccessType]|accessed> [AccessDate]), [ItemOfInterest].'
 WHERE Footnote LIKE '<[Jurisdiction] ><[Creator], ><?[ItemTitle]|"[ItemTitle]," <[ItemType:Lower:Abbrev], >><i>[WebsiteTitle]</i><?[ItemTitle]| |, <[ItemType:Lower:Abbrev] >>([URL] : <[AccessType]|accessed> [AccessDate]), [ItemOfInterest].';

A Better Free Form Template

This section has been moved to a new page: Source Template, A Better Free Form