Family Tree Maker - Current Version

by Ancestry.com
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
http://www.familytreemaker.com/
Overall2851.56 out of 51.56 out of 51.56 out of 51.56 out of 51.56 out of 5 1.56
20141051.36 out of 51.36 out of 51.36 out of 51.36 out of 51.36 out of 5 1.36
2013481.97 out of 51.97 out of 51.97 out of 51.97 out of 51.97 out of 5 1.97
Earlier1322.26 out of 52.26 out of 52.26 out of 52.26 out of 52.26 out of 5 2.26

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

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Rose,  5 days ago

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

I got a new computer and couldn’t find my disks for my old

Family tree maker vs 10, so I bought the 2014 version. I hate it. It’s really hard to see what you have and where to find it. My pictures didnt all transfer over. I don’t like the reports that are available and there are not many options to make a custom report.

I’m thinking of switching to a different program, but am not sure what would be a good one.

Biggest Pro: none
Biggest Con: screen views and reports.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by RC,  5 days ago

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

It has now ruined my 40,000 person database built up over 20 years. I should have stayed away but the link with ancestry.com was too tempting. Stay away from this program. Competent support is apparently unavailable.

Biggest Pro: Easy access to ancestry.com.
Biggest Con: No useful search function. It is incredibly slow. Most importantly, it has more bugs than an anthill.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Daphne Gawne,  6 days ago

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

I have used Family Tree Maker ever since its first version. 2010 was a disappointment and 2014 is worse. It does not have a useful search feature. It is difficult to use. Now that he excellent search feature of Family Tree Maker 16 has been discontinued, I will start looking for new software.

Biggest Con: search feature

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Maggie,  Sep 7, 2014

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

FTM 2014 has taken the pleasure out of researching. It is too complicated and not easy to view progress.

Whoever designed this latest FTM obviously is not au fait with how genealogy works.

Please revert to the previous ‘user friendly’ system - BIG PLEASE

Biggest Pro: None
Biggest Con: Modus Operandi too complicated and not well structured. Please reconsider reverting back and make FTM enjoyable again.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Jan Connell,  Sep 6, 2014

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

Very unhappy with Family Tree Maker Deluxe 2014. I wasted money buying it. It does not update as required. Each time there is a key stroke, I receive “not responding” - which makes it impossible to use this software. I wish I had read the reviews before purchasing. Help desk was not able to help at all. This is a software issue and not an user issue. Computer works with all other software application.

Biggest Pro: None
Biggest Con: Does not work!

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Simon,  Sep 6, 2014

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

I work as a programmer, and am amazed that this software was ever released - the glitches and problems put it in ‘beta’ testing at best.
I’ve had to help my partner (who isn’t tech savvy) every night of the last 2 weeks. And the ‘fixes’ shouldn’t be anywhere near as involved as they are - certainly not for the average user, who won’t want to be bothered with clean boots, deleting folder contents etc etc.
If this software was free, then maybe you could forgive the constant crashes etc - but it isn’t and it’s awful. I certainly wouldn’t trust my family history on such a bug ridden piece of software.

Biggest Pro: The ability to sync with Ancestry
Biggest Con: Everything else about the software

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Ian,  Sep 5, 2014

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

Like the other users of here I have successfully used Family Tree Maker for many years without issue. Upgrading to FTM 2014 was the worst thing I have ever done and a total waste of money. No matter what you do it will not let you install the updates required to make it work. Their support desk is no help.

Biggest Con: Total rubbish - do not buy it.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Lisa T,  Sep 3, 2014

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

I purchased a new computer running Windows 8. When the new software came out I purchased it online (disks are not available in Canada). First two installs failed… I was told I had used up all of my software download rights and had to purchase it again. So, the idiot that I am, I bought it again because I had a deadline. First install worked for about a week, then it crashed. Then my computer had a problem and I had to return it, once again needed to install the software for Family Tree Maker 2014. I used up my second install again and it wouldn’t install on my computer. So, all out of luck. Help desk couldn’t help me, and wouldn’t even reply to my email about having another download for free.

I ended up installing Family Tree Maker 2012 from the software disk I still had. Installed without a problem!!! I will not even try spending more money on Family Tree Maker again. I use Legacy a bit more often now because it’s more stable and their charting is much better, the only thing I like about Family Tree Maker is that it’s linked to ancestry and saves me from having to type it all in manually.

Biggest Pro: linked to Ancestry.com
Biggest Con: You only get two downloads from the software, help desk doesn’t help.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Barbara,  Sep 2, 2014

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

I agree with everything that has been written. Family Tree 2014 is the worse ever. I have used Family Tree Maker for years!! I have had nothing but problems this time.. Started with installing — took days to install because I would say yes to the update when you install it and then it would not open. If you call them, they just send you an email with links to hopefully fix the problem. I think everyone that works there is good at sending emails but do not know a thing about how to actually fix a problem. This is one time to believe all of these reviews. So I finally got it installed and did not accept the update. After working for about a week, I thought lets do the update—guess what the problems started again!!!! So now I had to reinstall it and I did it without accepting the update. So far so good. Thank goodness, I still have the 2012. Probably will go back to that one.

Biggest Pro: NOTHING
Biggest Con: Installation —DO NOT INSTALL THE UPDATE.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Diane Areklet,  Aug 31, 2014

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

I have a new Dell computer and Family Tree Maker would not update during the install process. Since the required update would not work I am totally frozen out of my family tree maker program FTM 14. I kept thinking a new software would come out that I could use but I haven’t seen anything. So upset I have a large tree and I hate to loose it or not be able to use the software. Ancestry.com doesn’t seem to admit there is a major problem with this. I bought the disk and it isn’t a downloaded software that I am using.

Biggest Con: I cannot use the program. Totally shut out of it.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Larry,  Aug 30, 2014

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

Thanks for all the input on FTM 2014…you all saved me much time and heart burn. I was going to update from FTM 16 on Win 7 32bit to FTM 2014 so I could update Win 7 64bit and use more of my computers RAM…I see Ancestry like always is pushing software thats got issues!…I have been using their software from the start and found much of their update useless…it appears they hired software designers from MS and do a yearly update just for the sake of generating $$…so you all know FTM 16 will fine on Win 7 32bit and FTM 2005 will also run on Win 7 32bit with a free patch you get find online….also i found FTM 2011 works fine also…you can find these programs for sale on line (Ebay, etc)….just stay way from the 64bit Win OS systems…and no you do not have to use Win 8…

Biggest Pro: none
Biggest Con: most of it

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Ellen,  Aug 30, 2014

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

Have been user of FTM for past 13 years. Have purchased every version since. With 2014, the merge between FTM and Ancestry works 3-4 times, then freezes. Have to End Task or Control Alt Delete to get out. Often the entire system crashes. Has been getting progressively worse in the past 3 or so months. Have spoken with numerous help desk people. They send me antiquated ‘fixes’. I’ve done them all. I’ve reinstalled. I’ve even had my computer rebuilt just to make sure it wasn’t a problem on my end. First 2 documents merged OK although were slow to do so. 3rd document froze. 4th document froze. 5th document crashed the entire system.

Biggest Pro: the unique feature - the potential of pulling directly from ancestry into FTM
Biggest Con: Products that don’t work and aren’t supported; with company not acknowledging their problems

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Freddy duCat,  Aug 26, 2014

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

Unable to even install this on my pc. Keep getting a .net error. Called MY tech support and still not able to install. Am asking for a refund. We will see if I even get that.

Biggest Pro: If it works, it would sync with Ancestry.ca
Biggest Con: Can’t get it to even install :(

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by JAY,  Aug 24, 2014

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

My advice is to try any other program than FTM 2014.

I have used Ancestry and their FTM since inception. In my 15+ years of research, I have massed over 20,000 individual person entries into this program, including all notes and documentation. No problem with earlier versions.

Recently had to update computer to Windows 8. Program installed and worked for a couple days. Program no longer links to Ancestry, via the “leaves” feature. Despite countless contacts with Ancestry, they offer no help whatsoever and constantly say there has to be a problem with virus protection (wrong as that was disabled and still doesn’t work). Unfortunately, the help number does not get you to a tech person who might have some idea as to a problem. Instead, there’s a customer service person who literally knows nothing and his/her idea of help is to send troubleshooting answers. Unfortunately these “helps” are ridiculous and have nothing to do with the problem. For the expensive membership and cost to buy these program, there should be some actual help when their product does not work. The last person I talked with told me that I had to go into the main frame of the computer. That is not going to happen.

Despite the frustration with the contact between home computer and Ancestry records, I have still used and hand-transferred records from my own FTM to the family tree saved on Ancestry. This is cumbersome and would be unnecessary if Ancestry actually backed their product with helpful advice and solution.

That is I have used the program etc since inception and never had problems until this 2014 version. It is horrible and there is no solution. Now, last night, the sync stopped working completely. So the info I have on my FTM on my computer no longer, for some reason, has the same info as the version help by Ancestry.

Ancestry’s solution? Send me yet another troubleshooter worthless piece of paper stating there must be a problem with my anti-virus program. Turned anti-virus off, and the sync does not work.

It would be advisable, to avoid frustration, to try and find another program which allows one to actually use a purchased program and a company which actually offers valid troubleshooting from actual IT people instead of customer service people who are clueless.

Charts have also changed and the one I have used for many years is no longer available

I have over 20 years of research experience and this latest version of FTM is poor and unacceptable

Biggest Pro: Records could be maintained at home and on Ancestry if they worked
Biggest Con: Does not work properly, in that does not connect to Ancestry and does not sync.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Bob Bryan,  Aug 18, 2014

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

Very slow with large database. It takes a long time to load and generate charts and reports. I used many versions of FTM and was very happy through version 16. The new re-write with 2008 was where the problems began.

It does make nice charts and the sync feature is good.

Biggest Pro: sync with ancestry.com family tree
Biggest Con: unacceptably slow especially with large database

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Maggie,  Aug 17, 2014

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

Do not like FTM 2014 - it is more difficult to use and harder to view. Why when upgrades are made would you make the upgrade so difficult to work on.

I am a Family Historian with some 25yrs’ experience, so I think I can comment.

Biggest Pro: None
Biggest Con: Too much effort entering data & collating!

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Jan Barron,  Aug 11, 2014

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

I had to buy a new computer in March 2014 so now run a 64bit HP Envy with McAfee security and use windows 8.1. I’ve been told that my FTM 2009 wont run on this machine, so bought a 2014 version. Have been doing the tree since 1978 so have a fair amount of info, having had to input the info again a couple of times over the years as computers change. First tree was done on a Commodore 64 (anyone remember that?) I did manage once in April this year to get the latest version to install but had to do my own version of getting around the “install update” to get the program to run. That lasted for a month, then twice I got a message that my ” compact file” wouldn’t work and the program closed saying the program closed unexpectedly (I’ll say!!). Next time I tried to open, the message said was closed unexpectedly, need to compact the file (which was what I had tried to do anyway). Now I can’t get anything to work; my computer tells me that it doesn’t recognise me. I’m not prepared to accept changes to my computer home page and have ticked that box. I have a few options. Change to some other computer program, or wait until FTM issues a disc that does not need a patch and will install without problems (costly, the 2014 should have been released without the need for a patch) or pay up and get a computer whiz with much more patience than I have to install it for me, also costly. NOT HAPPY,JAN. In all fairness I have been in contact with Ancestry.com since April when I first bought this version, and they have sent me many emails of how to fix my problem. I have used a tree printing out all these hints. I am no computer whiz and am disappointed that I have to put aside 35 years of research. Might just be the straw that broke the camel’s back. My thanks to ancestry.com for trying to help, Jan,

Biggest Pro: My thanks to ancestry.com for trying to help
Biggest Con: The patch, should never have been released needing one.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Ed Thomas,  Aug 10, 2014

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

It won’t open in windows 8.1

Biggest Con: Doesn’t open, seems to be no help on line or via phone

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Shirley,  Aug 10, 2014

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

It is so difficult to enter information. You have to switch back and forth. Children are listed all together even if they have different mothers (confusing). Can’t view and enter family group sheet as before. You have made it so much more difficult. Not user friendly.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Janealogy,  Jul 22, 2014

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

I’ve been using FTM for many years, I have upgraded many times. Each time have reverted back to 2005.
My problems were, lack of ease using the newer programs, my embeded scrapbook files were not transfered over in gedcom, many names would not transfered over. I’m using Vista, which I’m hanging on to for as long as possible!
I did find a way to transfer all my embeded media and all the names some 16,000. Did not lose one! purchased a tablet for going overseas and needed a genealogy program to access all my material on the tablet. I downloaded the free version of The Master Genealogist. You will have to read up when transfering your files, what program you are using eg FTM 2012 etc. I saved them to gedcom and making sure I clicked transfer media files or what ever they list. The full gedcom was transfered over, ready for me to put on my app program. The Master genealogist will be a way not to lose any of your data to transfer to what ever program you are using. If other programs can do this why can FTM? some may like the Master Genealogist, I found it to be an updated version of the old PAF program. No bells and Whistles, simple.

Biggest Pro: None
Biggest Con: Fix the issues with earlier programs before releasing another with more problems

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