Family Tree Maker - Current Version

The current version of Family Tree Maker is followed by its release year, e.g. 2012. It was completely rewritten in 2008 and is very different than its previous incarnation. There is also a Mac version. They have a Family Tree Maker category in their blog. Use this entry to review the current version, and use the FTM Up To Version 16 entry to review the versions prior to the rewrite.

Purchase • Windows • Full Featured • Builds Website
Overall3641.51 out of 51.51 out of 51.51 out of 51.51 out of 51.51 out of 5 1.51
2015281.57 out of 51.57 out of 51.57 out of 51.57 out of 51.57 out of 5 1.57
20141561.36 out of 51.36 out of 51.36 out of 51.36 out of 51.36 out of 5 1.36
Earlier1802.06 out of 52.06 out of 52.06 out of 52.06 out of 52.06 out of 5 2.06

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364 Reviews of Family Tree Maker - Current Version     RSS 2.0 RSS     Showing 1 - 20                   Add Your Review

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Andrew Fox,  6 hrs ago

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

The 2014 system will not open, it also refuses to let the older versions open. Years of work lost.

Biggest Pro: Absolutely none.
Biggest Con: Not fit for purpose - avoid at all costs.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Sheila Down,  3 days ago

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

Have struggled with this on and off for a year. It now tells me I need a mandatory update, which when you click on tells you you can’t do this and switches off! Now the software will not download at all! Just nothing. What rubbish!

Biggest Pro: Nothing
Biggest Con: As above

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Eugene Nuth,  3 days ago

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

There a lot of scams on the net, but many are transparent in their offering and only a dummy would bit. Ancestry however, is relying on Ancestry’s trade name to entice the unknowing or unwary into purchasing something that is not fit for its intended purpose. (”fitness for purpose” is the issue)
I’ve had problems in getting in, and once in the program there flashes a message: “Ancestry has stopped working” And all along I thought the problem was me!
At this point I would appreciate a reimbursement-but I think they would declare “no harm-no fou9kl” and offer another version “free” but I would be afraid to take up the offer.

Biggest Pro: Its cover looks good
Biggest Con: nothing can be relied on to work

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by les,  4 days ago

Not Rated

Cannot open f t maker 2014, what a con. not even a year all my tree info for nothing.

Biggest Pro: Cannot Open

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Mike Warren,  Jan 22, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

The version 2014 is impossible to keep running. You can open it several times and then the next time you will get a message that windows has encountered a problem and needs to close. If you get on FTMs web site they tell you to get in and make numerous changes to files stored on your machine and it MAY start working again. If it does it will not stay working. If it does not start working they tell you to delete and reinstall. When you try and do that you may get a message that you have exceeded the number of times you can install the software. If you have this software back it up to a Gedcom file and find another family tree software because FTM will quit you at some point. This has happened to me on two different computers running two different operating systems

Biggest Pro: fairly easy to us if it works
Biggest Con: Continues crashes and inability to open

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by PEM,  Jan 22, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

Family Tree Maker 2014 Absolute Garbage - if there was a spot for less than ‘1 worst’ I’d be marking that - it absolutely Will Not Open and won’t work with Supposed repair patch - when a paid out of pocket ‘Puter Tech’ worked thru the crud and finally got it to open, this frustrated, angry customer MUST NOT ever close the FTM program nor ever turn off the computer for any reason or it’s back to head banging square one again …
Oops, dumb senior citizen, I shut off my computer last night …

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Ray Lee,  Jan 18, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

Was running FTM 2012 on windows vista was great then had to upgrade laptop to windows 8 then again to 8.1 took a while but finally got 2012 working after 12 months hard drive crashed had to replace now FTM 2012 will install but opens to start a new tree page when try to either open tree or import tree nothing happens have deleted and reinstalled at least 4 times still no result I decided to buy 2014 disk however after reading other blogs it sounds as if I will still have problems - I have been researching for over 20 years that’s a lot of information collected - YES I have backed up copied files etc (I have at least 4 back up files and more copies of files but still cannot open them) I hindsight should have made a gedcom copy If I lose this information I will be absolutely disgusted with FTM and Ancestry for that matter - they are quick to take your money but but no existent in solving issues.

Biggest Pro: Good layout allows many items to be added
Biggest Con: No tech support (inadequate) Worst programming I have come across they are so far behind computer technology they should be at the forefront when Operating Systems are upgraded, Tech Support treats people like morons when it comes to providing advice (they are suppose to be the EXPERTS!!

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Don Barber,  Jan 18, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

This 2014 version will not launch and someone should be held responsible
What happens to the purchasers who can no longer access their family tree
I think this stinks and ancestry .com should honour their obligations and yet they can go ahead advertising
Someone needs to put them thru the courts
What annoys me is that they know what is happening but dont do anything about it
Why would one not think they are not cons
Half the family trees due to them are linked to false information and does not refer to the particular family being researched –Do mindscape also have a hand in this !! Just who is to blame its a sham!

Biggest Con: sure is the biggest con ever and butter would not melt in their mouthes

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Debbie,  Jan 18, 2015

Not Rated

I was using FTM 2012 on Windows 7 quite successfully although with some sync issues, but overall was happy with it. I wasted money buying the upgrade disk FTM 2014 when I upgraded to Windows 8. The CD would not run because of a pile of errors. I have a new laptop that worked perfectly before putting this CD in. I noticed my file system had become corrupted after trying to run the CD, Word and Picture Manager would not load correctly and my users temp folder was corrupted and there were saving issues with many files.

To fix this on Windows 8 desktop press the windows key plus x and choose to run in command prompt of admin and then enter this command - DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth
Please also read this before doing so -

I tried to return my CD last week, but was told to ring Ancestry’s tech support to correct their known issues, but after reading all these reviews going back to October 2013 all about the known issues and no support or fix from Ancestry then I will be insisting I return my CD quoting consumer law as I did not buy the CD knowing that it did not work and their were “known issues”, therefore the product is sold on false pretenses.

On returning to my Windows 7 to download the gedcoms from FTM 2012 I find that now I can’t sync at all and no matter how many times I try to log in to my online tree from the local software it just won’t let me.

Wow, so I pay Ancestry a big subscription fee per year for access, I get sold crappy software and all the while Ancestry is stealing my research and locking me out of it all.

Looking for different software now, very disappointed with this time waster

Biggest Pro: Supposed to sync with Ancestry
Biggest Con: It is a con - how much money have they made knowing about this for over 14 months now?

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Eddie Deese,  Jan 17, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

I’ve used FTM from versions 9 to 16. Been off for a few years because I’d chased my lines as far as I could. Bought the new version because my youngest son got interested, and I couldn’t find my 16 disc. THIS SUCKS!! It is SO much more difficult to use. Difficult to navigate. Difficult to put in sources and pictures, etc. where you used to be able to just add. I am SO frustrated, it make me not want to mess with it. I am afraid I’ve lost my notes and sources because they aren’t easily available like in the older versions. I HATE THIS SOFTWARE. Software copanies need to learn you don’t have to update something just because. You don’t have to revamp something that already works!!! I am looking for an alternative!!

Biggest Pro: None
Biggest Con: Everything!! It SUCKS!!!

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Kevin Delaney,  Jan 17, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

I used the 2010 version with no problem.

Then I tried to load the 2012 update. Despite many calls and emails to customer support, it would not work. I finally gave up.

I purchased a new laptop at Christmas, and decided to start from scratch. I purchased the full version 2014. This has installed OK, but will not register which among other things means that I cannot run searches from within the software.

I’ve spent 40 minutes on the telephone to “customer” support”, who have told me that this is a “known issue”, but apparently there is no “known solution” to the “known issue” because they have given me one inappropriate “solution”.

I have since emailed with screen grabs of the error message, and of the problem it seems to cause. I also sent details of my laptop operating system, system resources etc. That was three days ago, and to date I have not had the courtesy of a reply.

Biggest Pro: Should integrate with the best genealogy resource on the internet.
Biggest Con: Customer Service do not understand their own software. Call centre staff working from a script.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Mike,  Jan 16, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

Both 2014 update and complete 2014 version corrupted my tree and then wiped both main tree from pc and also back-up on external hard drive. Contacted Family Tree Maker for assistance but they were unable to help recover tree. Luckily had older copy on pc thus was able to use these.

2014 version is now gathering dust as had to revert to 2013 version.

Thus proved to be a complete waste of money.

Biggest Pro: Unable to judge as 2014 version failed!
Biggest Con: Neither the 2014 update or the 2014 full version worked.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by John,  Jan 14, 2015

2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5

Been using FTM 2012 for some time, far from perfect but it works…..until suddenly it stopped displaying files ie, census returns, etc etc! I just get the black box which normally is filled with the page you want.
I phoned Ancestry and they said it’s a incompatibility problem with Internet Explorer and the fault of Microsoft ! They told me to get my info on and add it to FTM ! OR BUY an update to the latest version.
Any decent company will update fixes free, or do they build it them in to get more money??

Biggest Pro: Works with Ancestry
Biggest Con: Having to buy their software fixes.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Teresa M. Herrmann,  Jan 13, 2015

2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5

I’ve lost TONS of data from previous years! This is very frustrating and has caused me to now look for something else for my tree.

Biggest Pro: NOTHING is pro after you lose data and pictures.
Biggest Con: Losing Data and all Pictures.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Dennis Aron,  Jan 12, 2015

3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5

I am very pleased with FTM 2014 (as of 1/12/2015) now that they have the bugs that were preventing me from using it. Sync with is working quite well and they have cleaned up a number of the irritating parts of prior editions and generally sped the whole thing up. The one area preventing a higher rating is report generation. Particularly annoying is the inability to generate custom formatted reports and to include pictures in all the standard reports. I’m not a fan of the use of the “compact file” function multiple times to address some problems. Why in the world wouldn’t they build this function into a regular maintenance cycle, perhaps on shutdown?

No software product is bug free and customer service while generally available with not too long a wait is variable in quality. As a result I have had to call multiple times in a couple of instances. They need to bring up the level of the people on the phones. Some are truly impressive, but it’s hard to get them for followup calls.

Biggest Pro: Sync with Ancestry
Biggest Con: complexity of problem solving.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Elaine Nagel,  Jan 12, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

I loved the 2008 version, New computer and had to put the newer version on. It sucks. I am now looking for new software. They ruined Family Tree Maker.

Biggest Pro: There is non
Biggest Con: Major change for the worst.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Mike,  Jan 11, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

We have used FTM for years. When we upgraded our computer and installed our program disk, we could not use the program until the program was registered and FTM - now owned by ,would not accept the reregistration. We purchased the new version and have been totally disappointed. The sole purpose of the new program seems to be to get you to down load your file to and every action seems to include an option to approve the download. In addition, the nice interactive screens in the previous versions we have owned are cluttered, poorly interactive and covered with ads. I will not continue to try to use the program and am searching for a replacement.

Biggest Pro: The name
Biggest Con: Simply a marketing tool to get you to share your genealogy to so that they can sell it.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by D. Brodie,  Jan 11, 2015

4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5

Caveat - i just started using FTM 2014 10 days ago, along with registering for, and using the Ancestry application on the iPad.

After starting with the iPad version and the web interface, the Windows app felt clumsy in comparison. Specific examples:

1) The reviewing of “Hints” is very slick on the iPad - a nice tile based interface, where as on the Windows app opens the hints in a web browser and clumsy. Ultimately it does get the job done though.

2) The charts it produces could use some sprucing up. There are quite a few different choices to choose from. Options like choosing the font, more control over what vital details to include, embellishments to the design would be nice.

3) It would be nice if they offered some stats about your family tree: most popular birth date, % males vs. females, # multiple births.

4) It would be nice if the application allowed for customization of the user interface, or even made use of multiple monitors.

On the plus side, syncing between the web, iPad, and the windows app works pretty well. Exporting to other sites can be done via the GEDCOM export too.

The application is well written - I haven’t had any crashes, and everything is quite snappy on my machine.

Biggest Pro: integration into ancestry website and the large user base of other people’s trees.
Biggest Con: UI could use a polish, and some customization

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Janna D,  Jan 10, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

I was so happy to receive this software as a gift. I was looking forward to building my family tree.

So much for looking a gift horse in the mouth.

This is the worst software that I have ever used. It is slow, confusing and horrible.
I would not recommend this software to anyone. SO DISAPPOINTED!


Biggest Pro: information is good
Biggest Con: the user interface is impossible

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by June Vickers,  Jan 9, 2015

1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5

My rating would be -1 if possible. I totally agree with all the cons. I have been using TFM since Ver 1 in 1989 and was very satisfied with Ver 16, 2006. I write books and the trees were perfect. Had to update to FTM 2014 when Windows 8 was installed and that’s when I got depressed. Not only has Word changed, FTM has changed dramatically. No more copy and paste. No nice trees and charts. Who the heck has designed this programme? Computer nerds obviously, not dedicated family tree researchers and genealogists. I am looking for a new programme that makes nice trees and doesn’t steal your information to display on the Web, then want to charge a subscription fee if you want to see it. Bah Humbug! Ancestry is a mean and greedy conglomerate.

Biggest Pro: None for 2014
Biggest Con: The entire programme.

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