Mega Database 2010 tutorial - Part 1

7/9/2010 – When it comes to commercial databases, Mega Database 2010, with its 4.5 million games, is really as good as it gets for both amateur and professional alike. However, if not set up properly you may miss out on key features, such as running opening statistics of any position, or the weekly automatic update that keeps your database up-to-date. Check out part 1 of our tutorial.

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There was a time when some players thought they could make do without those nasty computers, keeping chess in its "pure" form (i.e. books, paper and pens, etc.), but nowadays the penetration of database programs and databases is complete. In fact, the reversal is so extreme that when interviewed, the new number one, Magnus Carlsen stated that he wasn't sure he even had any chessboards at his home, though you can be certain he has a laptop packed with his working chess material. That said, even the greatest database programs are only as good as the information they have available to consult.

When it comes to commercial databases, Mega Database 2010 is really as good as it gets for both amateur and professional alike. The reason isn't just the size, even if 4.5 million games isn't too shabby. Consider that it has been meticulously worked and reworked over the years to clean it of mispelled names, to add missing games from historical and modern events, and it contains well over 65 thousand commented games with detailed commentary from all the best players in the world. We are talking about hundreds upon hundreds of games commented in detail and verbosely by Anand, Carlsen, Topalov, Kramnik, as well as past champions such as Kasparov, Karpov, Tal, and more.

Still, while the content is certainly enough for near endless reminiscing and enjoyment, the competing player knows that his biggest threat isn't in that missing game by Boleslavsky, but that novelty played last week in some obscure tournament, that his opponent may know and he not. The good news is that when one buys Mega Database 2010, or Big Database 2010, one gets the added assurance that the database will be kept up-to-date automatically on a weekly basis.

The following two-part tutorial will teach you what to do from installing the database for the first time, to setting up the update service so your database is always as complete as can be. These instructions are designed for the computer unsavvy, in other words those who still look at computers warily with a dose of suspicion to boot.

Installing the database for the first time

So you just got the DVD in the mail, and are just a tad unsure what to do next. Start up Chessbase, and once it has been loaded, insert the DVD in the player. Chessbase will immediately recognize it, and its contents will appear in the screen.

Next, right-click on the Mega Database icon, and select Install Database.

This may take a few minutes, while it copies all the files to your hard disk.

Configuring Mega Database

The next step is to set the Mega Database as the reference base. Remove the DVD from the drive, click on My Databases,

then right-click on the Mega Database 2010 icon and select Properties this time. A pane will open with a number of options.

Place a check at Reference-DB, and then click Ok.

This is important for two reasons:

1) You will be able to instantly search a position from it by right-clicking on the board,

and

2) The opening statistics in the Reference tab will now come from the Mega Database's 4.5 million games.

Your database is now configured, and ready for use. In part 2, you will learn how to set up the automatic update system to keep your database constantly abreast of the latest games and novelties.


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