DrupalWomenQ-#7459

Recommendation for a basic family tree program online to get started. Is FamilyTreeMaker a decent one?

29 Answers

  1. cafamily wrote on :

    Family Tree Maker is excellent. You can usually find a good recent version on sale somewhere. The features and ease of use continue to amaze me and I love the interface with ancestry.com.

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  2. clcrss wrote on :

    I personally use Legacy Family Tree Program and find it to be terrific. Here is a link for a free download. http://www.legacyfamilytree.com/

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  3. susaneking wrote on :

    Software, no matter what the discipline, is a personal preference. As a professional who has used genealogy software for over 30 years, have probably tried them all. Have been using Family Tree Maker since 2005 and having just switched to the Mac platform have switched to the Mac version last November. Since Ancestry.com is the leading site for genealogy research, albeit not the only source, the ability to add source documentation with one click does make it a time saver for clients. The ability to share your file on Ancestry to connect with others is also a simple process and will include all the attached documents. We use it all the time to share our work product with our clients during various phases of a project.

    On the Mac, I do have several other programs as well, but keep coming back to FTM as the software of choice for the work we do.

    While you do not need to have a subscription to Ancestry, it is very handy. The ability to download data from other online trees is one of those love/hate relationships. While they can be used as guides, many users seem to propagate very bad information over and over again. This is no substitute for doing due diligence and your own research.

    Susan

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  4. Vals Roots Pro Genealogy Svcs wrote on :

    Family Tree Maker is a very good program and easy to learn. The cost depends upon the length of subscription you want for ancestry.com. A very powerful program is PAF (Personal Ancestral File) by the LDS and free to download at http://www.familysearch.org.

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  5. Ultimate-Genealogy wrote on :

    I would say Family Tree Makers is good especially if you plan on using ancestry.com’s search. The Master Genealogist is pretty good as well http://www.whollygenes.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?screen=TMG
    Another popular one is Legacy http://www.legacyfamilytree.com/
    Otherwise there is a good free version called PAF http://www.familysearch.org/eng/paf/pafonline.asp
    Enjoy!
    http://www.ultimate-genealogy.com/

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  6. jwagn wrote on :

    I now use Master Genealogist. I came from Family Tree Maker. I liked Family Tree Maker but they came out with updates every year and I wanted more details in tree. The Master Genealogist Program allows for details. I have not spent the time I need to learn it. They too are coming out with another update. The other programs mentioned, Legacy Family Tree and Rootsmagic, I have heard good things. They have advanced since I purchased Master Genealogy. Try the free samples . Enjoy!

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  7. karenrobert wrote on :

    I’m a professional genealogist and I do not recommend Family Tree Maker. One of the best is PAF (Personal Ancestral File) at familysearch.org. It is free and is easy to use. Another one is Ancestral Quest which costs about $50 and is much like PAF. With both of these you can work on a jump drive and not have your genealogy on your hard drive which I prefer.

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  8. redpak wrote on :

    I use Family Tree Maker and find it easy to use

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  9. FromAAA wrote on :

    I have used FamilyTreeMaker for a few years now. I like it and the connection with Ancestry.com has been very helpful.

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  10. Genteacher wrote on :

    I have sed Family Tree Maker, PAF, Legacy and Roots Magic and really like Family Tree Maker best. It is important to get some organization in all of your records, and I depend on Family Tree Maker to do that for me. I have recently begun a tree on Ancestry.com, but I like the access I have on FTM for hanging things if I need to. Good luck.
    Marilyn Giese http://www.askgnealogis.com

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  11. ceirrageorgia wrote on :

    Check out my blogspot at ceirrageorgia.blogspot.com. It is daily and helps the new researcher. Ancestry.com is my choice.

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  12. Carol Robertson wrote on :

    Family TreeMaker 2011 is an excellent program.

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  13. llawson3 wrote on :

    I am also a professional genealogist and I use RootsMagic. They have a free download called Essentials available at their website: http://www.rootsmagic.com. The beauty of the program is the easy way it helps you to cite your sources (or more simply put, it helps you remember where you found stuff). Good luck.

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  14. dspurlock01 wrote on :

    I’ve not used FamilyTreeMaker, but would recommend Legacy Family Tree. A free version is available and upgrading to the deluxe version is very affordable.

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  15. dhooper wrote on :

    As a professional genealogist, I don’t usually use family tree software. Most of my work is done in Word and Excel. However, when a client requests a pedigree chart, I usually use either Legacy or Roots Magic. I believe both have a free version–not a trial version, but a limited function version that is free. It is normally enough for any family historian. There are other programs that have a lot of bells and whistles. You MAY grow into something like that one day, but to get started I would get a freebie. Let me know if you need more info. Good luck with your family tree!

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  16. sandra18100 wrote on :

    Hi. When I very first started out, I downloaded this free from….
    http://www.familysearch.org/eng/paf/
    You can also save the info as a ged.com and upload to Ancestry/My Heritage, etc

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  17. Heritage Detectives wrote on :

    I am a professional genealogist and I use Family Tree Maker and Legacy software for both my clients and personal research.

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  18. aaevansdc wrote on :

    My vote goes to Legacy Family Tree. You can download the basic version for free; upgrade to deluxe if you want more. Has more options than Family TreeMaker.

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  19. Melin_Swango711 wrote on :

    I use Family Treemaker and have been satisfied with it. I understand from the Ancestry.com people I spoke with at the recent NGS conference in Charleston, SC, that Family Treemaker 2012 will have a link to Ancestry.com as well.

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  20. nanjones wrote on :

    That is the one I used. It has hints and lots of flexible but this is a personal perference. I do teach how to use it in my genealogy classes. You can also buy CDs thru them and use it with FTM area specific records: church records of Berks Co., Pa. in the 1700’s

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  21. sshayward wrote on :

    Family Tree Maker is a software program that you purchase and install on your computer. I believe there is an on-line program that can be used for free called PAF – maybe phasing it out. I have also used Legacy and Roots Magic.
    I started with the original Family Tree Maker and it has since gone through some major overhauls. Family Tree Maker is also associated with Ancestry.com and if you have a subscription you can search Ancestry automatically. Both Legacy and Family Tree Maker have options for LDS members. None of the programs are overly expensive, but some can be more complex.
    I would recommend you go online and read the reviews for all of the genealogy programs and decide which one is right for you and take into consideration your computer skill level and what hardware and operating system you have on your computer. It also depends on what you want to accomplish with your research.

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  22. MaryDouglass wrote on :

    I’m a professional genealogist and use FTM both for my clients and my own family. However, I never trust the FTM connections without verification from original sources.

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    • sjulia wrote on :

      Hello Mary, I believe I “talked” with you months ago while hunting for info on the Holliday side,, I know several folks were helping, just to let you know I found my 4th great grandfather, he died while in service and buried at Camp Moore in La. Thanks so much

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  23. relativelycurious wrote on :

    Personally, I like to use a program on my computer and not just build my tree online alone. I will add or upload information to online sites too, but I don’t always want the world to be able to read some of my research notes. I like Legacy Family Tree and RootsMagic – both have free downloadable versions, with a small price for the deluxe versions with more bells and whistles. Family Tree Maker is good too, just not one I’ve used much. I think the absolute simplest is Personal Ancestral File – PAF, which is also a free download from FamilySearch.org. Good luck!

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  24. tinarozelle wrote on :

    Yes family tree maker is a good program especially for new researchers

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  25. wrote on :

    I use Family Tree Maker myself and I find it very good and easy to use. You can use it in connection with Ancestry which makes it even more useful. I believe Ancestry have a special price for it at the moment. Gill

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  26. VMAH wrote on :

    If you have a Macintosh I highly recommend Reunion.

    Valerie Metzler Archivist/Historian

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  27. rrjwj wrote on :

    I like FamilyTreeMaker software. It does some nice things to help you clean up your tree. For instance getting rid of duplicates. I use FamilyTreeMaker all the time. You can send your tree to ancestry.com by means of a gedcom if you wish. I do that when I want my family to see what I have done. Rachel

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    • sjulia wrote on :

      rrjwj, I have used ancestry.com and family tree maker for yrs. my personal choice is the 2005 set,, since then they have updated it and a little more complicated,, I use the 2005 an 08 thinking of purchasing the 2012.. You can download a form to use by just typing in family tree form,, Good luck, I have been doing this for 30 yrs and wil continue

      Reply
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