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Family Tree Maker: Viewing Changes in Your Tree

Posted by Tana L. Pedersen on April 4, 2011 in Family Tree Maker

If you have ever stepped away from your family history for a few days or weeks, you know how hard it can be to come back and remember exactly what you were doing. So one feature I love in Family Tree Maker is the ability to review the people you’ve recently added or edited. To view your changes, go to the People workspace and click the History button under the Index. The last 200 individuals you’ve added to your tree or edited appear in the Index.

You can also see a summary of the changes you’ve made to each person. Simply hover the pointer over the individual you’re interested in and a pop-up shows what you’ve changed for the individual—and when.

24 comments

Comments
1 Joyce AdamsApril 4, 2011 at 11:56 am

This could be a very useful feature of FTM 2011. I was working yesterday so checked out my history. I have about 1500 people in my tree but my history list only shows 45. When I hovered to get what was changed for these people, it showed changes from 2009 although I know I made changes to some of these people yesterday. Any idea what may be going wrong?

2 Caroline GurneyApril 4, 2011 at 12:01 pm

I am using FTM 2011. After reading your article I checked out the History feature. My list only shows 51 people, not 200, and all the changes to them date back to November and December 2010. My tree contains nearly 5,000 people and I make changes to it almost every day. I’ve edited over 200 people in the last month alone. Do you have any idea why the History feature isn’t working as you describe?

3 Gord HinesApril 4, 2011 at 4:30 pm

I use FTM 2010. My complaint about the history list is that it cannot be sorted in (reverse) chronological order.

Yes, I know there are small back/forward button on the Person or Family tree edit pages. But they seem to hold only 4 or 5 of the most recent screens worked on. If you exit to do other functions (reports etc) and return, the chronological history (back/forward) seems to be reset to zero… as if you did not work on anyone. Clearly a simple (?) software fix to NOT reset the counter to zero would solve that.

Having a history list of the last 200 people you entered or worked on in alphabetic order or by date (i.e., birth/ death/ marr) is NOT helpful.

4 BeirneApril 4, 2011 at 9:24 pm

I’m having the same problem as Joyce, I just have a smaller list of history with items I changed in 2009.

5 Larry CzarnikApril 5, 2011 at 12:44 am

Now this is a good thing to be reminded of. Reason is that while you may accuse me of seniors moments from time to time, I’m sure that given enough hints I’d remember that FTM did this (or some of it). BUT, like I said, nice that it was brought up and even pictures of screen shots shown

However, you need to read it literally. Here’s what I mean. Just lost a cousin, Ralph. Ralph is in the database but just added his death date entry. BUT he’s NOT on the history list. I’ll presume because I didn’t just add him (or he’s not one of the last 200).

If I go back to index and hover over his name his B,M,D shows up. But there is NO indication that he was the last change made to the file.

Would love a reply to my and others who seem to have read same as I had.

Regards,
Larry
2011AP05 16:40

6 Tony KnightApril 5, 2011 at 8:36 am

I had a look at my history list in FTM for Mac.
112 entries all relating to 31 March although I do work virtually every day.

7 Rick BiskerApril 5, 2011 at 9:13 am

I have FTM 2010 on a PC and my history shows 112 people and the latest dates for change was 5/18/2010. I do something almost every week on my file so I am wondering what do I need to do to get this to work.

8 John McGrewApril 5, 2011 at 9:50 am

Well, my history list only shows 4 entries from March 19 plus 2 entries that are shaded and bold with no dates (no hover info). The total at the top list History:4. However, I have made many hundreds of edits in the last few months. The shaded entries appear to be deleted data.

Playing around with the “show additional data” (in the upper right corner) eventually crashed the program. After restarting it, it looked like the same data however, selecting a marriage sort added more shaded entries.

Also the initial highlighted line contains a arifact on the line – a green square at far right. It remains there until you slect a different sort.

Quite unusable

9 John McGrewApril 5, 2011 at 10:31 am

I does not appear to save the history. Making edits will add to the history list (correctly) however, closing and restarting the program, the history reverts to the previous short list. The edits were saved, but not the history.

10 BEEApril 5, 2011 at 10:32 am

Nothing I’ve read on these blogs has made me want to open the FTM 2009 and FTM 2010 I had on my old computer and try to work with them.
I see the folders in “Documents”, but that’s it. I tried to work with them when I first got my new computer three months ago, but got a message that I can’t remember, so I’ve just abandoned it all!
I have no desire to purchase a “new” version after “investing” in something that I consider a waste of money.

11 John McGrewApril 5, 2011 at 10:51 am

On the “Additional Index Data” list, why is the selected item greyed out?

Also why cant all three items (columns) be selected?

12 Tony KnightApril 5, 2011 at 11:57 am

I have the same results with Source and Media History. I supposedly have done nothing since 31 March.

Today changes are recorded but disappear once I exit and restart.

13 JamesApril 5, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Same issue here, this feature has not worked consistently in 2010 or 2011. How does one “enable” the logging feature?

Regards,

14 Tana L. PedersenApril 6, 2011 at 9:55 am

I am interested that you all seem to be having the problem and that the history doesn’t seem to be consistent. I will check into this and get back to you all. Thanks.

15 Barry O'DonnellApril 6, 2011 at 5:45 pm

I must be doing something wrong with FTM2011. I don’t have a history button under Index in people workspace?

16 Becky ReppertApril 6, 2011 at 9:16 pm

I still use FTM 2006 and haven’t had major problems to make me want to up grade. Heard to many pros and cons of FTM 2011.

17 Orange BucketApril 7, 2011 at 7:21 am

I’d never thought to use the History feature. It would be more useful if
a) it could show the results in time last modified order, and
b) it worked.
I have 54 entries in mine and the latest was in January :-)

Oh and by the way, why hasn’t the minor upgrade to 2.0.0.379 appeared using ‘check for updates’, and failing that why couldn’t it have been publicised more? E-mail would have been good but the Family Tree Maker Blog would be a reasonable place to hear about it too.

18 Kathy MarieApril 8, 2011 at 8:35 am

TANA

I HAVE A BUG REPORT I AM TRYING TO SEND TO THE PROGRAMMING GROUP. THE REPORT IS A MS WORD DOCUMENT WITH A JPEG INSERTED/EMBEDDED AS ONE OF THE PAGES

I HAVE TRIED EVERYTHING I KNOW TO SEND THIS FEEDBACK AS ONE REPORT, BUT NONE OF THEM ACCEPT AN EMBEDDED JPEG

COULD YOU PLEASE HAVE SOMEONE E-MAIL ME SO I CAN SEND THIS TO THEM AS AN ATTACHMENT TO AN E-MAIL

THE FEEDBACK CONSISTS OF AN ERROR IN THE REGISTER REPORT FOR FTM 2011

THANK YOU

19 shelley maitaApril 10, 2011 at 11:13 am

i am unfamiliar with family tree maker. i have only used ancestry.com. would someone be willing to take the time to explain if i’d be better off using family tree maker? how is it different? also, how does roots.web differ from ancestry.com? now, i see footnote! do i need that, too?

20 shelley maitaApril 10, 2011 at 11:14 am

maybe there is a site that compares the different websites and programs?

21 JamesApril 11, 2011 at 5:02 pm

Shelley,

Do you have a local historical society in your area? They can probably give you a good comparison between web trees and those made in your computer with a program like Family Tree Maker. I use Family Tree Maker as my prime program for researching my family tree.

Regards,

22 Fred O. BlackburnApril 11, 2011 at 11:36 pm

I have ftm10 will the options that you have discussed apply.

Thank You

F.O.B.

23 VirginiaApril 12, 2011 at 12:33 am

#20 Shelley
Shelley you may want to read the Ancestry Message Boards: Genealogy Software…”General” Thread. There are many inquiries regarding “which program” to use.

Many of the genealogy programs offer a free version for you to try…there are a lot of good programs out there but the bottom line is to purchase the one YOU are comfortable with.

24 Rick BiskerApril 16, 2011 at 8:27 am

Hi Tana,

Ten days since you posted that you would check on this history index problem. Any luck in your search?

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