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Troubleshooting Picture Problems in Legacy

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The first thing to do when troubleshooting Legacy picture problems is to make sure that you have the latest build (update file) downloaded and installed to the program.  Some picture problems and related error messages have been fixed in recent builds. You can download the latest build from

Also, fix potential problems in your family file by clicking on File > File Maintenance > Check/Repair and follow the prompts.  If there are errors in your family file, they may result in picture problems.

Pictures Won't Display  

Legacy 3.0 and 4.0 can't open some picture formats (Legacy 8.0 will open these formats with no problem):

  • GIF (*.GIF - Graphics Interchange Format)
    The GIF format was not supported in the initial release of Legacy 3.0 and 4.0 because of licensing issues.
  • TIFF (*.TIF - Tagged Image File Format)

Please use an image editing program to save your pictures in a different format and reload them. (See Image Format Basics for further details.)

[Picture or media filename] was not found within the picture/sound subdirectories

Pictures, sound or video files are missing. When you import information from a GEDCOM, PAF or Legacy file from a different computer containing references to picture, sound, and video files, Legacy needs to know where they are located on the new computer. Most of the time, when you receive a GEDCOM from another person, the multimedia files do not accompany it.

To reconcile picture, sound and video links, you should have Legacy search for them. To do this:

1. Select Options from the menu bar, choose Customize from the options menu and click the Locations tab on the Customize screen.
2. Click on the Test All Media Paths button and at the next screen click the Proceed button.
3. In the Find File screen, click the Have Legacy Search for the File button.
4. See Managing Picture, Sound and Video Locations for further details.

You can also get this warning message when picture, sound or video files have been moved, deleted or renamed.  If the files have been moved then:

1. Select View from the menu bar, choose Master Lists / Picture Location... from the view menu.
2. You can add, edit or import picture locations from the Master Picture/Sound List window. (See Managing Picture, Sound and Video Locations for further details.)
3. Alternately, you can reload the picture(s) manually.

If the picture, sound or video file has been deleted or renamed reload the file or remove the reference to it.

Pictures Didn't Transfer with GEDCOM File

When you import information from a GEDCOM file containing references to picture, sound, and video files, Legacy needs to know where they are located on the new computer. Ask the individual who gave you the GEDCOM file to provide the pictures also so that you can access them.

Pictures Didn't Get Included in Backup

Family File back up does not include multimedia (picture, sound and video) files.  These must be backed up by clicking File on the menu bar and selecting Backup Multimedia Files from the file menu. To restore backed up multimedia files, you must use a utility like WinZip. (Go to )

In addition, it is not enough that pictures just be in the C:\Legacy\Pictures folder, they must also be added to someone in your family file before the can be included in the multimedia backup.

Picture Takes a Long Time to Load

On slower computers, the time needed to display individuals in Family and Pedigree View can be speeded up by turning off pictures.  If you would like to turn off pictures, click Options on the menu bar, select Customize... on the options menu and click the View tab on the Customize screen. Next in the lower right area of the screen, uncheck the Show Main Picture on Family Pedigree View box and click the Save button.

Occasionally an extremely large picture file can take a very long time to load.  Likewise, pictures being loaded from a floppy, tape, Zip drive or CD drive can take a long time to load.  There are two possible solutions: 

1. Check the file size of the picture. If it is extremely large, save it to a compressible format, and/or reduce its resolution and dimensions to decrease the file size. (See Image Format Basics for further details.)
2. Move the picture to your hard drive for faster access. (See Managing Picture, Sound and Video Locations for further details.)

Picture Appears Pixilated (Mosaic-like)

Very small images when scanned to sizes larger than the original can appear grainy and indistinct. Small graphic image files, when stretched to a bigger size can look pixilated (like a mosaic). Try rescanning at a higher resolution and/or scaling factor.

Can't Fill a Blank Frame in the Picture Gallery

If you can't fill or move a picture into a blank frame in the Picture Gallery it probably because the program is referencing a picture that cannot be found or is seeing a format that cannot be recognized.  To load another picture in its location, you must first remove the existing reference by clicking in the caption box for the blank and then clicking the Remove button. (See Adding and Scanning Pictures for further details.)

Printed Pictures Are Dark or Washed Out

Color pictures sent to a black and white printer often come out either looking dark and muddy.  Color pictures can be converted to gray scale (black and white) by opening the Picture Gallery, clicking the Edit button and then clicking To Gray Scale.  This is often necessary if you are printing reports with pictures on a non-color printer such as a laser printer.  (See Displaying and Editing Pictures in Legacy for further details.)

Pictures Won't Print on Reports

Recheck your report picture options (click the Report Options button and see both the Pictures tab and Include tab for selections) and also make sure that the pictures you want printed are tagged and/or set to preferred in the Picture Gallery.  Also make certain that you have the most recent build (update file) installed to the program.

Pictures Won't Print (Printer Problem)

Rarely an extremely large picture file can take a very long time to load or will exceed the capacity of the printer buffer to hold them. Check the file size of the picture. (See Image Format Basics for further details.)

Pictures Not Included in RTF File

Reports saved in as Rich Text Files (RTF) do not include pictures. They do, however, show where pictures can be manually inserted by indicating the picture path and filename.

Pictures Not Included in HTML File Attached to E-Mail, Etc.

When creating reports as HTML files that include pictures, you must attach and/or include the picture files that go with it. For example, if an e-mail attachment Smith.htm has a picture called JohnSmith.jpg, both must be attached to the e-mail message, otherwise the recipient won't be able to see the image. (When opened the HTML attachment will show be a box with a small red x for the missing picture.)

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