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
Overall4701.72 out of 51.72 out of 51.72 out of 51.72 out of 51.72 out of 5 1.72
20151341.91 out of 51.91 out of 51.91 out of 51.91 out of 51.91 out of 5 1.91
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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470 Reviews of Family Tree Maker - Current Version     RSS 2.0 RSS     Showing 1 - 20                   Add Your Review

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

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

I am a long-time FTM user and the product has always been labeled as easy to use and great for beginners. Any product that is difficult to install and, as the reviewer “CC” suggested, needs the user to take a class, is not a product that is great for beginners. Installation and ongoing use have been problematic for even some tech-savvy users. The company had to issue special instructions on how to “completely” uninstall the product when you need to reinstall (an apparently frequent occurrence). This is nowhere near industry standard and is unacceptable from a software development standpoint.
Just because one person doesn’t have problems with the install and use of the 2014 version doesn’t mean that no one else will and that it is a user’s fault if they do. In recent years, the company has been trying to make FTM more full-featured by integrating it with It has not gone smoothly. These attempts have added a level of complexity without adding the intuitive online help that could resolve some of the navigation issues and other difficulties that users have had while adapting to the newer products. FTM 2012 had its share of issues with both new users and those upgrading and now 2014 seems to have even more problems, given the large volume of customer complaints. Even FTM Customer Support says they have had a large increase in call volume since the release.

Biggest Pro: See no improvements over earlier versions.
Biggest Con: No decent online help, incompatibility with Windows 10, clunky interface with

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Diana,  Oct 1, 2015

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

Purchased 2014 ftm on a disc 1 year ago - Over the last several months, my program closes and gives me an error message as I attempt to sync to my ancestry account.

Two days ago, I purchased the “downloadable” version, and have had no luck getting the program and its “updated” functions to install. I have contacted ancestry/ftm for help on the phone 4 times which only increased my frustration, anger, and disappointment. All they do is send me e-mail instructions which do not resolve the issue;
In addition, I learned that even if I had purchased the disc version, I’d still have to still jump through their many technical hoops to make the system work, as the ftm disc does not have the patch and updates,

Biggest Pro: none at present
Biggest Con: inability to download the program - thus nothing functions

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by CC,  Sep 29, 2015

5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5

Comments like ” putting in a second spouse and children is almost impossible” are simple statements made out of frustration. It is very easy to do if you take the time to learn the program. Seek a class on the software. I do not understand that complaint at all. I have numerous people with more than one spouse, blended families etc. and have no trouble.
I have used FTM in various versions since 2005. I have NEVER lost anything. You need to back up off of your hard drive on removable storage or in the cloud. Yes, you CAN export as a gedcom file…..very easy and there IS a family view. Also, no you do not have to copy paste census etc. to each person. Simply click on the person’s media tab and under the add new media part select Link to Existing media. Folks, use the help function and you can do all of these things you are complaining about. Go to your local library or genealogy center and see if they offer a class.
I totally agree with the person who posted that they have no trouble with FTM 2014 and that folks should not blame all their problems on the software when it is often the user’s problem. Also, mine works great on windows 10. I do believe that there was a “bad batch” of FTM 2014 disks that they are not fessing up to. I helped someone try to load their disk several times… I gave up and loaded mine with no trouble on her machine. I truly believe her disk was just bad. I recall reading someplace that the early versions of FTM 2014 (which I have) work with Windows 10 but that the later versions do not….i think that was the problem with the lady I helped. Also….ancestry trees (online) and Family Tree Maker are NOT the same. The online trees are very limited in what you can actually “produce” with them.
When a product is bad, negative comments are valid, but negative comments are not appropriate simply because the user doesn’t understand what to do.
No, I have nothing to do with the company but I have taught the software for years at our local genealogy center. FTM is a very powerful program if you take the time to learn it.

Biggest Pro: easy to use; many options,
Biggest Con: none…except I see the 2014 now costs over $60. Glad I got it when 2014 first came out.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Joyce Williams,  Sep 28, 2015

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

For some reason I keep losing my information i added. It is ok for a few months and then all of a sudden i lose a lot of information. I have had to imput stuff back 3 times now.. Also putting a 2nd spouse and children is almost impossible.

Biggest Pro: easy to put info in and look at ancestry.
Biggest Con: Losing all my hard work

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by cwoodsmith6,  Sep 24, 2015

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

For two years FTM seem to be working well . Now I can’t get the program to open . I don’t know if some updates were down or what. I am getting frustrated with FTM, so I may see what Family Search can do and just put my tree on their site.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Virginia Lloyd,  Sep 24, 2015

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

This is one of the worst software programs, if not the worst, I have ever used. The programming is horrible. Takes literally MINUTES just to sort 30,000+ names into alphabetical order - what is going on??? I am so tired of seeing “not responding” almost every time I enter new information or change existing information. ought to be raising seven kinds of hell over this sloppy software and force the makers to fix it. The only reason I’m still trying to use it is because of the link to would do their customers a service if they offered the link to other software makers who know how to write software that does not bog down. 30,000+ people in a file should be handled in micro-seconds not minutes. FIX THIS SOFTWARE

Biggest Pro: link to
Biggest Con: everything else - incredibly slow

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by RMK,  Sep 22, 2015

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

My tree shuts down constantly. It was shut down for nearly three months. I just kept compacting it over and over and finally it opened. I worked in it about a week and my problems started over. My file is too big to upload to So frustrating! I’m not sure why they can’t get it fixed.

Biggest Pro: None
Biggest Con: crashes constantly

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Elaine Aube,  Sep 16, 2015

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

The new version is too busy. It is hard to follow and not user friendly. I am now unable to open the version that I have I would prefer to go back to the previous version

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Donna VanZandt,  Sep 15, 2015

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

I miss my genealogy so much. You took it away when you made FTW 2014 without a family view and so difficult and not compatible with any other or able to make a .ged.

Biggest Pro: none
Biggest Con: no family view to click on child and be there, no using ged, incredibly complicated I hate it-

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Louise M. Perkins,  Sep 6, 2015

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

Version 16 was great, why can’t you make a new version that is very similar to that one. It was easy to use, showed everything you needed at once, much better than anything you have put out since then.

Biggest Pro: There are none!
Biggest Con: Much harder to use

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Denise Moss-Fritch,  Sep 5, 2015

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

I am always amazed at the number of people who assume that any problem must be the software, not their computer or internet connection. I have been running FTM 2014 on Win 8 and Win 8.1 for a year without problems, and now the same with Win 10. I also sync several time a week (with sync reports of three to 10 pages) without problems.

My only concern is the major changes Ancestry is making to its on-line trees. I am beginning to suspect that Ancestry may be planning to discontinue the FTM software, replacing that software with on-line software only.

Biggest Pro: Fast and easy to use
Biggest Con: Cannot include multiple with an event (census, obituary), but must copy and past to others

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by martin,  Sep 5, 2015

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

Good in some areas makes up for some of the deficiencies in Ancestry but continually loses the link and has to be relinked which is a pain.

Biggest Pro: hints
Biggest Con: links

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Iatros,  Aug 28, 2015

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

Just returned Family Tree Maker 2014 to Amazon for refund. This version is NOT compatible with Windows 10. It will try to load, but stops with a strange error about the loaded cannot file a file on the C:/ drive. FTM support was pleasant but offered no real solutions. Removing all traces of FTM from the computer and the registry did not correct the problem. Support referred me to Nova stating that they were the seller to Amazon. Upon calling Nova, the support person rudely dismissed any claims and referred me back to Amazon. Luckily, it was within the 30 day limit for Amazon. I have been a long time user of FTM but now I am stymied.
I think possible solutions would be running FTM in 32-bit version, and setting compatibility to Win 7? Other possibilities include finding some other similar software.

Biggest Pro: Previous versions were reliable and easy to use for genealogy
Biggest Con: Incompability with Win 10. Terrible tech support (lack of knowledge, not lack of courtesy)

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Harold Way,  Aug 26, 2015

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

I H A D been giving this software rave reviews. NO LONGER ! ! ! ! ! ! I’ve just completed loging in my FOURTHEENTH hour with their customer service. They have no answer to my problem. I’ve submitted a “crash report.” Today I was told it will take from 10 to 14 days for anyone to respond to that “crash report.” THAT IS UNACCEPTABLE ! ! ! !

I’m REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY fed up with their inability to solve my problem of not being able to load the software. I keep getting a message that the system was shut down improperly the last time. I’ve done cold boots, I’ve done manual loads, I’ve attempted to load fictitious trees, NOTHING WORKS and I won’t find out any information from their (ALLEGED) technical support for at least a week.

Biggest Pro: I used to have several
Biggest Con: Lack of responsive technical support. I can’t talk to Tech Support…only Customer Service. THAT’S GARBAGE!

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Pete,  Aug 25, 2015

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

Have upgraded from Win 8.1 to Win 10 and FTM 2014 would not load my files. After wrestling with this or few days I uninstalled the 64 bit version and replaced it with the 32 bit. This has allowed me to open any file and seems to be reliable with an occasional crash which has seemed to improve in the last few weeks. I do not use the reports features since they really are pitiful compared to what existed in the FTM version 16. Instead I purchased a FTM plugin called Family Book Creator that outputs your tree with images to a MS Word document that is heads above anything FTM has to offer. My main tree has nearly 30,000 individuals and this plugin can produce an ancestor or descendant report with index in about a minute. If you decide to install this download the 64 bit version and it will work fine. On another note; I do not sync my tree to the ancestry site because of the data mining leeches that profit from others hard work. I have a tree on ancestry that is private but was last synched in 2012. I realize this sounds like an advertisement for Family Book Creator but everyone I have showed it to has raved about the final report. They have a free trial if you’re interested.

Biggest Pro: Best option if you started with earlier FTM versions
Biggest Con: Always had unresolved bugs and the user interface is poor compared to previous.

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Harold Way,  Aug 24, 2015

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

I was (NOTE PAST TENSE) very satisfied with FTM until this past Thursday. I tried to open the program and got a message that the software was closed improperly. There were terse instructions on what to do. I followed them. That was Thursday this past week. Now it’s late Monday afternoon. I have spent approximately 12 hours with various “customer service” personnel (NOT ! ! ! Technical Support ! ! ! ). They cannot seem to solve the problem. Most of the “fixes” suggested I’ve tried numerous times. NOTHING WORKS. It’s extremely frustrating. Customer Service won’t stay on the phone to walk a person through the problems. I just sent the “crash log” to their “support” system. We’ll see ???????? FRUSTRATED and just about ready to begin looking for another software package

Biggest Pro: Links to Ancestry databases
Biggest Con: They can’t get my FTM up and running

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Sandra Mason,  Aug 20, 2015

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

Just bought Family Tree Maker Platinum 2014 and cannot load it on to my pc that runs Windows 8. No help from ancestry so far. Very disappointed and annoyed at what it has cost me

Biggest Con: Won’t load

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Bob,  Aug 19, 2015

Not Rated

Just loaded up Windows 10 after using 7 and have the following problems

1) Cannot open the HELP window. Have a laptop with Windows 7 and had to access a Microsoft site to get the fix. There is no fix listed for Windows 10. I talked to Microsoft and they say there will not be a fix coming for Windows 10. They consider it a developer problem.

2) When I was running Windows 7 I could NOT print trees or export any reports. I called and they stated that they have heard of the problem but offered NO solution.

3) It appears that they want you to upgrade to Version 2014 but offer no guarantee it will resolve the problems I am having.

Biggest Con: Have 20 years of records using FTM 11 and can’t export any files. DON’T BUY THIS SOFTWARE!!!!!!

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Chuck Hjortness,  Aug 18, 2015

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

Latest august 2015 was a requirement to continue. It has crashed every time I find a duplicate prior entry and merge the two to get one person in the file instead of two of the same. It happened 7 of 8 times this morning,

It also won’t let me merge parents from the same tree like it used to.

Biggest Pro: Right now I don’t think there is any
Biggest Con: Always seem to crash

Family Tree Maker - Current Version Review by Luke Bender,  Aug 16, 2015

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

Tried to install Family Tree Maker 2014 from my CD disk on my new Windows 10 laptop and will not install

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