Posted by Ancestry Team on October 22, 2007 in Family Tree Maker

We have removed patch number (Service Pack 2) to improve performance and eliminate reported issues. Although it was briefly available last week, it is now undergoing additional development until we can ensure that it resolves issues that are still affecting the product. We have increased our QA resources to allow more testing and development before releasing a completed version of the update. We will re-post the patch as soon as we can ensure the issues have been solved.

We appreciate your feedback through this process. I encourage you to use your real email address as you post to this blog. I have been contacting some users on a one-on-one basis in an effort to recreate what some of you are experiencing. Obviously I can’t talk with every person in this manner, but I am taking on specific cases where the development team may not be able to recreate what is reported.


  1. Jay

    Benjamin – Any times lines of when to expect SP2 and will it just be a bug fix patch or contain additional functionality?

  2. Gary Holdcroft

    Benjamin – I seem to be stuffing memory into my PC seemingly without end to try and get some decent response times. Have you any suggestions as to what hardware FTM2008 realistically requires?

  3. Michael Schuler

    Benjamin – Thank you for the information. I know it most likily has not been a fun week for you guys. As one of your more vocal customers, this is all I want timely infomation, ownership, and a plan to fix the problem. I am a FTM Customer but I also really want it to succeed and would do anything I can do to make it succeed, but have felt your companies lack of responsiveness and spin has been disappointing. As someone how know programming and developemnt processes the spin did not ring true. I am glad for the information and would welcome as much information as you can give. The truth will set you free and I know marketing may not think so, but we are educated comsummers and we need you and you need us so we are in it together.

    Keep the Info coming!

  4. Pat Blanchard

    Ben, I agree with Michael Schuler wholeheartedly. I really like FTM 2008 and can see the wonderful possibilities for the future. I just want honest answers, even if the answers aren’t especially pretty. We are indeed knowledgeable consumers and just want straight talk, so we can get on with our projects. Glitzy sales pitches just won’t get it with us. Thank you for your update.

  5. Jeff Jahn

    I had no problems with patching service patch 2. I have notice a issue afterward with sources in that service patch 2 seems to have undid something. If you look at a source and click on the box beside Citation text “Include in ref. notes”. It doesnt include in the notes anymore as it did before Service Patch 2. In fact checking the box does nothing now.

  6. Beryl Blickstein


    Why did it take you almost 5 days to tell us that Service pack 2 failed and was withdrawn? While we are your customers, you should also consider us as your partners in making this a better product. Just tell us truth in a timely manner, and maybe some of us can help.

    In the meantime, you should honestly advise everyone but the more highly adventurous to stick with FTM 2006 until you work the bugs out of FTM 2008. You should be running lots of system and acceptance tests in your shop, and asking key customers to do the same and report the resolts to your QA group (if you actually have one). Finally, please don’t release any more patches until they are rock-solid. That means that they have passed a stringent set of internal acceptance tests and are truly ready for prime time. You need to resist the entreaties of your marketing people to send out a product that simply besmirches your good name.

    You also need to keep your word to your customers. If a release is announced, you must deliver it when promised. If you need to withdraw the release for any reason, you need to unequivocally, forthrightly, and swiftly tell us so, without any weasel words.

  7. Elaine Kozakavich

    I was so excited when my 20008 disk arrived in the mail. But I have had nothing but problems – I am unable to import my file from 16, except using a GEDCOM. My images are, of course, left behind. And response time is sloooowwwww and seems to be getting worse! The SP2 patch caused 2008 to crash immediately upon opening. I have re-installed on both my drives with no improvement. And the report options disappointing. Oh, the program looks glitzy and has some cool features, but more and more it appears that the software is fluff – created by software people who have no knowledge of genealogy and the needs of genealogists. Not every person wants to create fancy books – some of us want a reliable program with useful features that will “assist” us in our research and collection for our own personal use. I love “new and improved” software – I hope 2008 will become that some day. In the meantime, I guess I will use 16 and explore my options.

  8. George

    I’ve been running with sp2 since it was available. As of tonight I can no longer add any source citations to my database!

    I need help asap.

  9. David

    Is anyone having problems with source data from FTM 16 to FTM 2008???

    The source data that was imported from FTM 16 to FTM 2008, such as Federal census is not telling FTM 2008 that it had been previously merged. The green leaf appears, you think that there is a new source, when in fact the data has been merged. Do they plan on adding the feature as in FTM 16 to look at you data and tell you if it has been merged? I do realize that if you go to the person tab you can see if the data. Do they plan on correcting this?

    Also the images from the census are not their from the import of FTM 16 to FTM 2008. What can be done to correct this?

  10. Ken

    Apostrophes are sometimes imported as either a symbol (skinny oblong rectangle) or as a question mark. This is problematic for someone with Irish ancestors or whose relatives were married in churches (St. John’s, St. George’s, etc.). Gedcom file though is OK and can be read correctly by Legacy! The failure to transfer records with apostrophes is further compounded by the lack of a “Find and Replace” feature in FTM 2008.

    When the system freezes and is shut down – something that should not be happening — entries up to that point are not saved. Re-opening FTM 2008, does not show the back-up file, you have to search for it. I understand that backing up large files is time-consuming but users should be given this option. In addition, there is possibly a middle ground – backing-up the family tree itself but not the media files which have been separated out of the FTM program itself.

    The much-tooted geographical feature assumes you want to change your original entry to current addresses. I prefer to keep them as originally entered but I want the capacity to modify the entry temporarily to take advantage of the mapping feature. This cannot be done.

    Further, the geographical feature is American-centric. I went to the trouble of being the UK version even though I live in North America but am still faced with suggestions for change such as “267 Hoxton Street, Hoxton Old Town, County of Middlesex” to “Middlesex, Connecticut, USA”. There is no option that permits you to modify your original entry to obtain more relevant suggestions. e.g., to add “England”. And again the lack of a “Find and Replace” feature prohibits one avenue for resolution of the problem.

    Even when the geographical feature gets the country right, its suggestions lose much information; e.g., suggestion replacing “419 Sherbourne Street, Toronto, Ontario” with just “Toronto, Ontario, Canada”.

    There is no way of editing out “Fact” categories that do not apply – e.g., American Social Service numbers – making the entry of new data more time-consuming. You now have to scroll down a long list rather than just enter the first digit or so of the category.

    Facts which were entered originally as “Place or Description” are treated as places despite being facts such as “occupation”. Further single entries for “Place or Description” which contain a semi-colon are now considered to be two distinct entries – one for place and one for description.

    I could not find a way for searching by married name – a feature that I found quite useful.

    All this is after having to search out the original patch as I could not connect to the Internet with the original program! And I still have two large family trees (2500, 4000 names) with very extensive Scrapbooks that failed to import even after being compressed.

  11. James Ferris

    I am running version and have found that the program will crash every time that I try to merge an entry that has dates prior to the year 1000. It works fine when I merge any other entries (with dates of 1000 or higher).

    My system is running Windows Vista.

  12. Scott Baldwin

    I had started reading blogs that discussed the negatives of this version as well as the positives. Unfortunately I am still seeing way too many negatives so I’m sticking with FTM 2006. Maybe I will consider switching over (it’s not an upgrade mind you) once they iron out the bugs in SP2. And if they ever put in the ability to read FTM data discs I would then be hooked.

  13. I would like to be able to disable the feature that calculates the relationship to a home person. In my large database of over 50,000 people, I don’t have a home person, although I was forced to choose one and I don’t need to know how anyone that I add is related to them. I think that is slowing down the addition of new people.

  14. Beryl Blickstein

    Barbara Kaye raises an excellent point. It has to take time and computer cycles to compute the relationship over and over. in the same vein, is there a way to toggle the map displays “off” to speed up program execution?

  15. Paul

    Ben, I installed 529 and have been using it for a while. If I didn’t see this blog, I wouldn’t have known there was a problem. What should I do??? Am I at risk of loosing data or corrupting files?? Should I back it out, or hang on for the next update?

  16. Beryl Blickstein

    Are you going to break your sphinx-like silence and actually let the rest of us know what’s going on?People use these blogs to raise questions and make suggestions, but most of them go unacknowledged and unanswered.
    Perhaps you could post a daily update?

  17. Terry

    I have not been able to register my version of FTM2008 due to receiving an error “Authentication with server failed.” Of course, none of the web features are available unless the program is registered. The technical support people had me do a variety of things and finally blamed the error on my McAfee software. I finally uninstalled the McAfee software and still had the problem. Eventually I received an email acknowledging the problem existed and was promised a patch would be available this week. I waited an entire week before reinstalling the software only to find out the promised patch is NOT available. I am very disappointed with FTM2008 and with your technical suppport staff.

    I have wasted my time trying to get your poorly designed product to work, and since I was told to wait for the patch before returning the CDs, I guess I’ve wasted my money, too.

    I would not recommend FTM2008 to anyone.

  18. Darrell

    Benjamin – I guess that I have some of the same complaints that others have. I have had FTM2008 for over 2 months and haven’t been able to really use it because of 7 individuals (who I can’t identify with either FTM2006 or 2008) that have a carriage return problem somewhere. I finally was given a phone number three weeks ago and when I called, he said a second patch would be available in a week. But I got no emails about it! I am registered. I only found this blog by additional searching. Shouldn’t people be told about these things? Please let me know when that patch is really ready! I really want to use the product!

  19. Benjamin – I have been using Family Tree Maker since version 4, and I have to honestly say, FTM 2008 is perhaps the worst version ever released in regards to pc system performance, even with your latest patch.

    It is a memory hog and runs at 99% CPU utilization for extended periods of time.

    I have over 110,000 names in my database with over a thousand embedded media files. The database file size is nearly 800mb and I could not import it to FTM2008 regardless of what version I saved it as. I could only import it as a gedcom file.

    Needless to say, I’m not about to add back all of the media files to FTM2008.

    I do not have this problem with the version 16.

    I like the new layout of FTM2008, but I’m removing it from my workstation and it’s going to a shelf indefinitely.

    I have too many years of work invested in my data, so I’ll stick with version 16 until FTM2008 is fixed.

    I agree with most of the previous posts – this product was not ready for release to the public. The least your developers could have done was worked with actual large databases. They would have realized that this version is still a tentative ~Beta~ version.

  20. Warren Sanasac

    What happened to the Genealogy Report?
    I use that report frequently, and it is important to my project. I have 2008, but I am still using version 16 because of the differences in the reports. I have a very large tree, over 5000 names. pLEASE BRING THE gENEALOGY rEPOPRT BACK.

  21. When is the service patch going to be released? Although it is more important that the patch is fully tested and resolved the key issues an update on the expected time would be nice.

    Key items that I am expecting based on phone call to Family Tree Maker and prior Webinar related info:
    * Importing of all source images from version 16 (i.e., census images, draft registration card images)
    * Search and replace funcationality (Note: It would be fabulous if it could search & replace in specific fields versus everything)
    * Adding back the Report functionality

  22. Richard


    SP2 doesn’t need to fix EVERYTHING. Much better to release many patches frequently to kill the bugs as they’re solved, than to wait for a grand master patch. Surely some of the bugs are a quick one-line-of-code fix, which could be released ASAP.

    Why the long wait since SP2 was pulled?

  23. James Ralston

    Plain and simple talk. You folks are worse than Microsoft when it comes to software (FTM 2008) Any chance of telling us in plain and simple Englis the, truth of when you are going to fix (for real) this junk 2008 version. Believe us, the consumer can stand truth more than being BS’d. How you put out this piece of junk is beyond us, because the fact is that the program is very beautiful in design and a lot of it is simply great, but the programming management that went in to it is poor to say the least. If I were running a company and my people put out something like this, without proper testing, I would FIRE them. This has caused you more grief than you can imagine and we, the consumer, will always be leary of you in the future, when it comes to new products. I have owned every version since your beginning and never had a problem. Right now, a real boost to your health would be an apology and some forward truthful messages to us, as to exactly what you are doing and when we can expect some help.

  24. Bob Thompson

    I agree with so many of the comments made especially those of James Ralston. It is almost beyond belief that a reputable company with a loyal following could release a new version of its software which does not even have the funtionality of its predecesors. Many users around the world must feel tricked and conned by the people at Family Tree Maker and are your new company owners happy with their purchase? I hope they feel tricked as well as us.

  25. Hi
    I am unable to create a gedcom file from FTM 2008. The process always causes the program to close whether I try a full export or as little as 1 person.


    Norman Law

  26. Rolfe Bradbury

    Family Tree Maker has been badly damaged. When the outline descendant tree was removed the spine of the program was destroyed. How long the spine needs to be is determined by the number of generations one can find, not the size of the paper it is put on. Some can get by with 4-5 generations, but others require many more. So if you want to make the program useful to all, you must allow more than 30 generations. Each individual can then utilize whatever number required. I have two trees that have 30 plus generations.

  27. Holly_Meyers

    I have updated by computer with the new sp2 but if I work to fast for the program the program can’t keep up with what I am doing.

  28. I’m having a problem with freezing up. The page looks as if it is downloading and then never finishes. If I press the Back button, nothing happens. I usually have to wind up pressing the End Now button to make it stop. I’ve called and my ISP but they can’t seem to figure it out. Help!!

  29. Lianne Stevens

    PLEASE HELP!! My uncle installed the Family Tree Maker Version II SP2 on my computer. He passed away 2 years ago and I have continued inputting on the program. I have 5000 names and do not have the original disk. In fact I do not have a disk. My seventh and eighth generations do not show up when I print a report and I would like to know how to update my Program. How many generations does this program print off on a report and how can I purchase program to update or how can I purchase the orginial program with info and go from there. HELP HELP. I also have inputted family pictures, etc. I continually do a backup because my worst fear was losing the information. I have been trying to get the info on this but to date no response. Can you help.

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