Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Ancestry and Family Tree Maker Synchronization Announcement

Ancestry Member Trees will synchronize with Family Tree Maker.Last week Ancestry announced that Ancestry editions of Family Tree Maker will cease to synchronize with Ancestry Member Trees as of 29 March 2017. Instead, synchronization will be available in Software MacKiev’s Family Tree Maker 2017 edition, which will be released on 31 March 2017. Said Ancestry:

In the new [Software MacKiev Family Tree Maker 2017] FamilySync, Ancestry’s search, merge, and Ancestry hints will all work as they do now for users who sync with their Ancestry trees and you can also look forward to more exciting new improvements.

You can upgrade to Software MacKiev’s Family Tree Maker 2017 edition for free if you purchased it since 1 March 2016. According to the Ancestry announcement:

Those with previous Ancestry editions, or who got a free copy of Family Tree Maker 2014.1 or Mac 3.1, are eligible for discounted upgrades. The pre-order upgrade is $29.95 for those who sign up for Software MacKiev’s mailing list before March 29 and the upgrade will continue to be a discounted price ($39.95) for a limited time after March 29.

You will recall that Ancestry discontinued Family Tree Maker back in December 2015. (See “Ancestry to Retire Family Tree Maker Software” on the Ancestry blog.) In a 9 December 2015 clarification, they said they would continue to support synchronization with Member Trees through at least the end of 2016. (See “More Information on Family Tree Maker Desktop Software” on the Ancestry blog.) At that point in time they planned to allow other tree software to synchronize with Member Trees, but had no plans to sell Family Tree Maker to another vendor.

Public response was intense and a month later, Ancestry announced the sell of Family Tree Maker to Software MacKiev. (See “Family Tree Maker to Live On” on my blog.) They also announced that RootsMagic would be able to synchronize with Member Trees by the end of 2016.

In March 2016, Software MacKiev published their first edition of Family Tree Maker 2014. They gave free updates to users of Ancestry Family Tree Maker 2014. (See “Family Tree Maker Is Updated and Shipping” on the Ancestry blog.)

The Ancestry announcement did not mention when RootsMagic will be able to sync with Ancestry Member Trees. Earlier this month, RootsMagic announced that they are still in development. (See “A Sneak Peek from the Underground Labs” on the RootsMagic blog.) They are calling their synchronization TreeShare. They did not give a release date but it was demonstrated at the RootsTech RootsMagic booth by Michael Booth.

For more information about the Ancestry announcement, see “Software MacKiev introduces FamilySync™” on the Ancestry blog.

Image credit: pixabay.com.


  1. Hello. I can't seem to find the link to the MacKiev mailing list to get the $29 offer. Can you attach - thank you!

    1. Nancy you have to sign-up for the FTM mailing list to get the email.

      But on the FTM 2017 FAQ page in the FTM Support area at mackiev there is a link that takes you to the pre-order upgrade pricing order area. Pre-Order price good till March 31.

      We've been explaining things for our members at
      http://mcgg-letstalkgenealogy.blogspot.com/ including links to specific pages like the upgrade pricing if you get lost at mackiev's site. Our last FTM post was March 27 so just scroll down to it.

      Gone Researching

  2. I'm still waiting for my download link for 2017. Today is April 2, 2017. I also paid for the disk. So far, nothing.

  3. Same here. Purchased it last Monday (27th) with the understanding of receiving a Friday (31st) email containing a link to download the new version. As you state, nothing yet...........

  4. New release date is Tuesday, April 4, 2017.
    What I want to know is will we get the disk that doesn't work and then an online update/patch for it or will they wait and send a "good" disk? Downloading from the internet is why I bought the disk!

  5. OH, and lest I forget, sync doesn't work and won't ever work again with 2014 so if/when I am ever able to relink my tree and sync it will probably take forever. I just hope nothing goes awry. My tree isn't huge but I'm closing in on 8,000 people who I need for DNA matching. If I match your 2nd cousin I need to be able to find it.

    1. Don't feel alone, I have a 21,000 person database

  6. Just finished "chatting" with Matt at Mackeiv. I purchased FTM 3.1 late last March. Am on their mailing list. Still managed to miss last December's note that synching would die in the near future. Never did receive notification of a drop dead date. Today, tried to obtain my free copy of FTM 2017 - & learned it's not available yet, no updated release date. Very crummy way to manage a business. Just thought you all might appreciate the update...

  7. I've been unimpressed with this company from the start. My software no longer works. The sync element now says I have to upgrade as it was replaced on 31st March ... not available yet of course. In addition they offered a 'free' update for FTM users last year which of course just gets you to stay with the software so they can force a paid update from more people. I don't need to colour code. I don't need my genealogy software to repair photos. I just want a decent genealogy programme that works. To date the upgraded FTM is continually crashing on my windows PC and their latest fix didn't fix it so I'm going to spend my money on something more reliable.

  8. Boo Hoo? Get over yourselves? Be appreciative of Ancestry.com?

    Seriously?? I've been an Ancestry user for 20 years, and compared to the state of genealogy research and methods yes, Ancestry has come a long way. But I'm far from appreciative. Don't ask about the tribulations and lost time & info Ancestry has caused it's users with broken PC software roll-outs, broken and intermittent web functionality, and promises of improvements that were just enough to keep us subscribed.

    Ancestry led us into state of the technology web/PC interoperability and reliance and then simply said "nah, we're not going to do that anymore". Instead of email spam pushing to sell DNA kits so you can find out that you're (not) Native American or Irish, I'd much rather have had one that said "A reminder that all of your tree content media will be unavailable on your PC after (whenever) so now's the time to do your last tree sync if you're not up to date." Ancestry's unique & flawed interpretation of Gedcom has been known for years and they never attempted to correct it despite feedback.

    There are alternatives online and on a PC now that certainly make it less costly and more efficient to end my addiction to the once best genealogy web site. Unless Ancestry starts bending over backwards to facilitate at least the functionality they left us at when they jettisoned PC support, by renewal time this summer I'm moving on.

    I truly hope MacKiev wasn't sold a lie that puts them out of business. It's not (wasn't anyway) hateful standalone software.

  9. I hsve been messing with that upgrade patch to 2014.1 all day. What's the point. Still can't sync and keep getting pop up saying I need 2017.
    FTM was the premier. Now gone? Dumb decision. GRRRr!!!
    ANCESRTY IS OK but so oooooooooooooòooo! Expensive now. I have been with them since the beginning. But what alternative !


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