Posted by Eric Shoup on May 20, 2010 in Site Issues

It’s been a long day, but I am happy to report the Ancestry Member Trees are now functioning again.

As I mentioned earlier, we were making some upgrades in the tree system last night and encountered bugs that took us many hours to work through. Our only solution was to take down the trees to fix the problem. The solution took much longer than we and many of you would have liked, but we believe the problems have been resolved.

If you have problems accessing your family tree on the site, try restarting your browser or clearing your cache. To clear your cache, please see the instructions in the Help page at

We truly value your patience as we worked through these issues. Now – happy tree climbing!


  1. Mike Bennett

    Have we learned the value of testing now? Don’t do your bug fixing in production in future. Spend some of our money on hiring a couple of top class release managers. Remeber the old adage: ‘When you pay peanuts, you’re likely to attract monkeys’

  2. Bart Breen

    Was there any data loss? Shouldn’t that be stated as to what was lost or that there was no loss?

    I appreciate that it’s back up and you all communicated well. Thanks for that. A little more information would be appropriate here I think so we know what we might be missing.


  3. Kathy Wilberding

    I am able to access my trees, however I can not attach a record to any individual in my tree. The box under the record says “Save This Record
    Attach this record to a person in your tree as a source record, or save for later evaluation.”
    When I click on the save button I am given one option: it is “Start a tree with this person”.
    I’ve cleared my cache, but it did not fix the problem.

  4. Lenise Smith-Walters

    Although users got a message that other areas of the site can be used as usual, several records that I saved to my shoebox are no longer available (were they ever saved during the time when the tree program was down?).

    Also, I’m no longer to directly save a record from the database to one of my ancestor’s records (a sister of my great-grandfather). Instead, I’m asked to start a new tree, which I do not want to do at this point – lest I end up with duplicate records. Is there any other way that I can directly save a record to a person in my family tree.

  5. Brian

    I just attached a record to my tree and it worked as expected. Hopefully the record attachment issue you experienced was temporary.

  6. Patricia

    I am not a happy customer. I have a brand new computer and it has been perfect until’s problems today. I followed the instructions removed cookies temp int files and history shut down my computer and knocks off internet explored everytime I try to log in. I HAVE BEEN DOING ALL THE DIAGNOSTICS EXACTLY AS YOUR INSTRUCTIONS SAY TO. I HAVE BEEN TRYING FOR HOURS. Every other internet site is fine. Only is messed up. Please look up my account and call me. I will be calling you. Patricia

  7. Josh

    Hey Eric Shoup. Are you directly related to James Shoup born abt 1828, Son of Henry and Mary Shoup?

    If so we’re related. Glad the sites working again.

  8. Sharon Forrest Petrie

    Mr Shoup,

    I appreciate all of your hard work. My husband is a senior software developer. Vicariously so, I know the rigors (and headaches) that accompany software production and updating. However, would it be possible, instead of upgrades, to concentrate on making things run more efficiently? Perhaps this is your goal but the site has had various lag issues for years. (Try googling ancestry and lag…)

    The thing I find the most frustrating is adding or looking at files. Usually after about five-seven minutes, I must quit ancestry, close down internet access, and then reaccess program to continue working. The program frequently stalls this way. If I am on for any length of time, this is extremely frustrating.

    For this reason I would recommend more testing pre-production as well. Your censii upgrades are attractive; however, the parameter boxes (like birth place or residence) do not work properly. I must click first on one box and then another and then go back to the box I clicked first before getting the tele-sensors to function. This should not have been put online functioning in this manner. This is a simple error that with better testing should have been caught.

    Your television spots are very attractive and bring in I am sure lots of new customers. I am also sure that you regard your customers’ comments highly. For the sake of all your end-users, please concentrate on fixing the errors that customers report over your scheduled maintenance.

    Thank you for your time.

    Sharon Forrest Petrie

  9. Annie

    I guess it’s still early in the U.S., but yesterday’s angry mob seems to have ( mostly ) taken their rotten tomatoes and gone home. I just went to my tree, connected someone for the heck of it and came to say thanks! Yesterday must have been a nightmare.Glad to have the site back!

    If the problem was the work of some random hacker, I say hunt the miscreant down, alert the bloodthirsty folks from yesterday and throw him to the proverbial dogs.

  10. Teri

    Excellent!! My trees appear to be intact…shoebox is still there. You all did an amazing job of putting it all together…considering all the negative comments and panic during the downtime. I’ve been a subscriber for 10 years and this has been the worst slowdown. I hope there was something learned by this, not by you but by the individuals who subscribe. Backup!!! I always attempt to backup my research on by downloading onto FTM on my computer at least twice a week…then upload onto Better to be safer than sorry…weeping…and mourning the loss of your hard work.

    Hope for no more downtime.

  11. OregonTrail1852

    I have been working for hours and have had no problems saving records or searching, found no missing files (although I was working steadily before the site went down – though maybe not just the hour before).

    So, sad for the users who are disappointed but I for myself I’m just glad it’s been fixed. Thanks Mike and your team for all the hours you put in to fix it – my husband just retired from forty plus years slaving over hot computer systems and we know hindsight is 20/20 vision, so no rotten apples, just thanks!

  12. Clare

    Thanks for the hard work. You all must have had a bird when it went down. I can imagine the scrambling, the overtime, the tiredness… so thank you. Technology is not magic after all. People have to work hard to make it happen & I appreciate that you did. I am sure any remaining glitches will be straightened out soon. People who continue to have problems might consider changing their browser, just a thought. I am now using Google Chrome which works better than my previous browser.

  13. OregonTrail1852

    and if it wasn’t 3 am here I might have thanked the right team – uh, thanks Eric!

  14. Linda B

    It’s 6:22 am in South Carolina. All is well. Records transferring with no problem. Thanks Eric to you and your team.

  15. Peg

    The sun is shining here in CT and all the trees are back. Great start to my day. Guess we all got a chance to see how important the site is to all of us. Thanks!

  16. Donna Lowrie

    When you began the tv commercials I knew that you would be overrun by amateurs who had not a clue about researching and verifying. The comments yesterday proved what we all know: our society has degenerated into one of instant gratification, gimme what I want and gimme now! I got a kick out of the stories about finding ancestors with marriages and children before they were born or after they died. That is why I always READ the data, and research the census and historical documents. Verification is the #1 rule of genealogy. The cost of membership is much less than having to travel all over, although I do that, too – sometimes the fun is digging through the old records, and discovering something personal about an ancestor. Although I use Ancestry as my primary database, I enjoy digging and finding obscure data out there on the web and it “is” there, one just must be patient and methodical and willing to (again that word) READ and check facts for accuracy. Thanks for all your hard work in making such a wealth of information available for us.

  17. jtfaasen

    I don’t know all that is missing, but I do know that a common image I use to mark immigrants is missing from 5 to 7 ancestors. These were placed all the night before the big crash on people I added that day. The additions I made I think are still there, but I may have a few extra children that might need to be weeded out.

    If anything, it’s nothing that can’t be fixed, so all in all, it’s good to have it up again

  18. Cindy

    QUESTION – Is this the forum to ask a question about research? I’ve come to a dead end with my husbands paternal grandfather. He imigrated from Czechoslovakia. I’ve found the passenger list. I know who he married. But how do I continue to go back? I, too, enjoy the research but don’t know where to go from here. Any help pointing me in the right direction would be appriciated. Thanks

  19. Doc

    When I opened Ancestry this morning it took me back to the record I was working on when Ancestry went south for the day.

    Oh, one other thing. How about a free day added to the end of my contract?

  20. Over 1500 comments yesterday during the down time on the thread regarding the issues. Many of us spent all our time trying to get back to work on our trees and making requests of I log in this morning and see that the site has been restored and come here to see these comments. I doubt that will compensate the members in any way at all for the inconvenience yesterday. I really don’t believe they have anyone actually reading these comments to get a feel for the thoughts and ideas of the customers.

    Yesterday was the time I had allotted to work on my tree. I have lost this time. I do understand that issues come up and need to be fixed. However, having an entire site of this magnitude off line for that that long should be preventable. And all that the users receive is “We’re sorry”. Well, I’m sorry too. By the time my contract has ended I will have moved all of my information to another site.

  21. Tom Spademan

    Do people from the company read these posts? Anyway, here is a suggestion:

    The tree data you put back up obviously is from some time before the problems started – I had made changes before it went down, which are not reflected in the tree you put back up. That’s OK, I keep backups, but it would be good customer service to tell us how far back you had to go to get a backup – this might give people a sense of how much data they lost, if any.

    You have my deepest sympathy for the long day’s work needed to get things back. 🙂

  22. Ginger

    Woke up in the middle of the night (2:30 PT), tiptoed to the computer, fingers crossed, and found all was working again. Now, two hours later, I am heading back to bed, feeling quite relieved that all my recent changes before the shutdown were still in place and that I was able to get a good two hours of work in.

    One suggestion that may or may not make a difference to folks working in MyCanvas. After problems a few months ago with the site, I decided to click “Save Work” after virtually every change I made to a page.

  23. karen

    something i just noticed: on the search, public member trees option, the topic titles on the right are in english, but most of the text is in german — thanx for getting everything up & running again!

  24. Heather Anne

    Great to have you back up and running. Too bad it’s not working properly! I cannot attach any records to anyone in any tree. Not by the ‘type in the name ‘method, not by the search and enter the name method. Recognizes no one at all. Fix it, or it’s uselessto us.

  25. Terri Clark

    I for one had fun yesterday , reading all the comments and seeing just how passionate we all are about our family histories!Some got a wee bit cranky but, many had a good time and there was M&M’s ,tea and other bevrages(not sure I spelled that correctly) offerd and we found out Eve’s maiden name might be “Rib ” … oh yea and in all that just one spelling cop and I mean that affectionatley ( not sure of that one either ) Well thanks for the fun day everyone and thank you for fixing the entire shabang ~! 🙂

  26. Like many others have stated, good to see everything appears to be working properly and does not look like I have lost anything. Also, as others have stated, how about adding a day or so FREE to the end of our subscriptions, small price to pay for our inconvenience!

  27. Maryjane Mazzarella

    As a veteran of over 30 years doing updates to database system. I find it hard to beleive that you did not do a test on a test machine first, Before putting a untried system up to production, what are they teaching now in schools. Maybe you should start to think about hiring old timers like me for your IT department. There are enought of us out here who are looking for jobs.

  28. Linda East

    All information on both my family trees are gone. I hope it comes back. I spent many, many hours building these trees.

  29. Adele Anderson

    Thank you very much for your time and effort! Just when I thought I might not survive the down-time, Lo and Behold! Checked and all appears fine. Saw a change that I liked in the shoe box (don’t go there daily). I haven’t had my coffee; therefore, once my eyes are really open, I’m looking forward to my daily fun and enjoyment. 🙂

  30. Kay Smith

    So far, So good..Thanks Ancestry guys and gals who worked through what must have been so much grief to get us back up. Only suggestion, quit with the new features for awhile. We can wait for that. Just get all those new people squared away. Maybe you took on too much at one time? Probably not telling you anything you don’t know.

  31. Pamela

    I am glad the trees are back but unlike all the whiny folks yesterday
    I managed to get lots of cleaning done!!
    P.s if you break down the cost to what I pay a day, you can keep
    the dollar!!!!

  32. Judy Buck-Glenn

    I have no idea why we are all having such different experiences.
    I have not lost a scintilla of data and am having no problem doing normal research this morning.

    I spent last night doing research using other means and found a virtual memorial and photos of the actual grave of my great uncle, Le Roy Maitland Buck, a Canadian soldier who died in World War 1. I also looked around in archives Canada and looked at all the photos of my Crawforth ancestors which have been put online courtesy of the town Library in Whitby Ontario.

    Ancestry is only one site. There is so much else that could usefully have been done–like read enough history to know that 1620 is almost certainly the earliest date for an ancestor with British parents to have been born in New England. So many people seem to have been out of school the day they taught about the Pilgrims landing on Plymouth Rock!(And yes, I know they didn’t really.)

  33. GT

    The core issue is yet unaddressed. What does a responsible company do when they cannot provide the services their customers have contracted with them to provide?

    A responsible company addresses all customer issues quickly, honestly, and with integrity. Since Ancestry has decided NOT to address the issue of customer compensation when they did not live up to their obligations, then that omission – by design or ignorance – has answered the question.

    It’s not the few cents – – the issue is how a customer is to be treated – or ignored. Ancestry’s silence on this topic speaks volumes.

    I am not a whiner. I am not a member of an angry mob. I simply expect the organizations I work with to be responsible and show proper respect to its customers. After all, we can choose not to be here. They need to do ALL that they can not to spin the issue, but own up to it and compensate its customers appropriately for loss of service.

    Call me — disappointed yet again.

  34. Jo

    #28 karen is right about the first two paragraphs on the right side column on the Public Member Trees search being non-English, except that it’s Swedish not German, according to Google translator.

  35. Denise

    All my information seems to be intact, even the folks I had just added when the system went down. However, I too am having trouble adding records to people in my tree. When I attempt to add them directly to the person I searched them from, no names appear in the box to select. If I click on the add-to-someone-else link and then select them from my list, I can attach them. I cleared my cache and restarted my computer, so I’m pretty sure this is a problem on your end linking records back to the search that generated them. Good luck.

  36. Anna

    I am completely surprised that you don’t have a UAT environment that will allow you to find these ‘bugs’ in your software before you put it into production. Putting software that is untested in production and expecting positive results will only lead to major problems. In addition, you keep adding things instead of tweaking/fixing what you already have. For example, I know a way around your security that allows me to see a live person’s information when the tree is public. It’s the reason why I leave my tree as private and moving forward I’m not going to maintain this private tree after yesterday’s fiasco. I always known better and although I have a lot of documents and photos attached to a tree with close to 5,000 documented family members, my plans are to maintain my tree on my computer moving forward and have it backed up as I do for the rest of my files on my computer.

    Yes nothing is perfect and breaks are expected but for the past six months I’ve noticed problems with your site, tree not being available; and no yesterday wasn’t the first time. For those who claim it was the first time, they obviously don’t spend as much time as I do on your site. So that being said, most of the records I need aren’t even on your site and I spend hours at the LDS reviewing files. I plan on closing my account as it seems to me that your company is looking at the bottom line and not what your customers are complaining about.

    Yes you have new customers you’ve captured with your ads but many will come and go when they realize that searching their ancestry isn’t as easy as you’ve portrayed it in your sponsored program “Who Do You Think You Are?”. It’s really sad that you’ve taken a good think and made it sour for many. Yes I agree it’s just a family tree but for many it’s more than that and that is why the emotions were running high yesterday. It really worried me that I could possibly loose data that I was able to put together without your records and to be able to loose it quickly. Rest assured that I’ve already downloaded my tree first thing this morning.

    For those of you who say “don’t get mad”, it’s easy for you to say as many on here that I’ve met over time were worried about loosing information they worked really hard on. They could have easily said this morning…”sorry we lost a lot of tree due to corruption in our systems”. I wonder if they had said that if you would have been so understanding of their systems being down. To provide customers with just two updates and provide the person’s biography didn’t put me at ease. I hope they learned a valuable lesson in this whole mess…get a UAT environment!

  37. Dottie Jo

    Thank you for your hard work! All my info is still there, and yesterday’s break was good for me – gave me a day off from my obsession! Like someone said above – when you divide my monthly fee by the number of hours I enjoy researching, the lost time was not work complaining about! Especially when you think about how many hours and how much money is saved by using the site!

  38. Paula Watson

    #47 – Ancestry’s silence on this topic speaks volumes.

    I could not agree more, and I also agree that I’m not a whiner. I’m just an adult, fairly fluent in online work of various kinds, who wishes would consider its relationship with its clients (World Deluxe Member) more carefully.

    We deserve more clear communication, and that has been my greatest disappointment.

  39. j.d.

    Well, although the criticism is harsh at times I think it can only help to strengthen our community. I am thankful that I am able to do online what my Grandfather had to do painstakingly at the library. I only hope that you listen to the troubles that we are having and try to fix them. My main concern are all the repeats. It seems to me that when you get stuck there is not much that you can do but hire a professional genealogist. For me that is out of the question because I have already spent so much money here. Well, thank you for getting things back in working order and I look forward to some new improvements in the future!

  40. Julie

    This morning while checking emails, low and behold there is one from letting me know my subscription will be up soon and telling me they will be billing me. This is the first thing they send me after they were down for about a full day? Man, that takes nerve!

  41. Diane Taylor

    I’m at work so cannot really delve into my trees, but wanted to add my thanks and I appreciate what you all went through behind the scenes. So many people offering suggestions on how to solve your problems. I did enjoy reading most of the comments, and like I mentioned in an earlier posting, it was just like when the power goes in the neighborhood, all the neighbors come outside and actually talk to each other.
    I’m new here to, and I’ve learned alot from others yesterday reading the comments. Your whole site is full of information I learn something new every day. Oh, and don’t change the colors! There was one suggestion I saw that he hated the color scheme, but I love it.
    Now back to work!!!!!

  42. Sharon Fowler

    I would just like to echo those who’ve asked for more fixing of the existing features and less adding of new features. I still use the old search (replaced about a year ago), because of problems with the place names in the new search. They are too specific and many of the census records have place names that are mis-spelled or not as specific, etc., and therefore won’t show up in the results. After less than a day of comparing the results from both methods I went back to the old one, since the old search allows me to just type three letters and a star for every place. Sometimes fancier is not always better.

  43. Scott Denison

    Quote: “As I mentioned earlier, we were making some upgrades in the tree system last night and encountered bugs that took us many hours to work through.”

    Eric, if this is true then why did Ancestry originally post a statement that our trees were taken offline due to high traffic volume, instead of admitting to a problem?

    You’ll get less angry comments if, in the future, you don’t try to mislead us.

  44. J.J.

    Eric, we appreciate your hard work. I understand that things happen. Please don’t take the immature, impatient comments to heart. Some people have issues and need to grow up. One day away from a website shouldn’t make people act like the world is coming to an end.

    Keep your chin up, I’m sure there are more people like me who are understanding and reasonable that just didn’t say anything. We appreciate your hard work.


  45. Lydia Lynda Dent

    Great to have the site back up. As far as I can tell, I didn’t lose anything – except about 24 important hours. However, NOW, I can search and find and can’t save anything at all to my tree. Nothing. Did everything I was supposed to. Cleaned everything. HELP! And, yes, a day added to our account for compensation would be appropriate. And I’m not a whiner, just a customer.

  46. doc

    Having much experience in data base management it is very evident to me Ancestry is not telling us the truth about what hppened yesterday. It was not a bug in an update that cause this. I’m thinking more along the lines of a hacker or a virus.

  47. Joan G

    A recommendation to all you folks that maintain your family tree on Ancestry….Buy software and keep your tree on your home computer. That way if the website is down, you can keep on working via other websites. There is a lot of info out there that will help you with your research.

    I’ve been a member of Ancestry for around 15 years and would never keep all my info there. Download documents into your hard drive so you can work on items should the website be down. Also, BACK UP all your work and info especially after you have done a lot of work on it.

    #53 – If you get stuck, go to other websites. Try Cyndi’s list to find other sites. Some of my major finds were on other sites. Then Ancestry’s data base helped me fill in the blanks and details.

  48. Marian

    What can we do about the duplication of our family members in our tree. The people and files have been duplicated. Is there any way to merge these files together, without going thru each individual separately?

  49. Jassyca

    Happy to see the site is available again! I hope someone at reads these comments as I’ve seen some very valid points mentioned. Hopefully, you guys will do some sort of disaster recovery review (‘what did we do right, what did we do wrong’) and will include taking customer responses into account.

    For my part, I’m going to take what happened as a personal ‘wake up’ call and the first thing I’m going to do now that the trees data is available again is to make a back up of all my trees by downloading them to my computer. I’ll try to make a back up every week. That way, I’ll at least have my data.. just incase.

  50. Shirley Jackson


    Wonderful to have you back. I learned one thing yesterday, if I had any idea of cancelling, not to do it. I need my Ancestry fix daily

  51. Cindy

    I can relate to so many concerning duplicates.
    I spent 1 1/2 weeks worth of time deleting duplicates last week.
    I had over 18000 people in my tree.After deletig the dups I had 14500.
    I am retired and spend 6 to 8 hours a day on Ancestry.I signed up September 2009 and became addicted early on.
    I have the same problems with the site as others do,and hope Ancestry will work them out.
    The pleasure and satisfaction I receive from the challenge of the research is worth a little down time.
    I feel very blessed to have this site.
    By the way to the gentleman that blasted the Mormon Church..SHAME ON YOU!!!!!!!!

  52. Cathy Kremer

    Yeah! Ancestry. I know you had/have a big headache about yesterday. I work for a company that is totally webbed base and computer driven.

    Our IT guys go crazy when “stuff” happens..
    Ah, the technology world.

    I love Good lesson for me though..
    Do my backups!

  53. John Dockum

    Glad it’s up again. Making connections to local cousins that I do not know has become a fierce addiction. That being said, I have plenty going on in my life, so a day of no research is a day in the garden. I suggest the “nay-sayers” branch out a bit.

  54. anyways. so what were the big improvements to the trees? I don’t see anything new. and I agree with making what’s been implemented already work even smoother than continually adding new java applets everywhere on a single screen to make the place look ‘fancier’. Personally, I’d love an all text site, with only java applets while viewing the trees. all other areas of this site need only have information in text so people can read and copy and paste. Even the image viewer for records could be simplified. Seems there is too much being put in then areas being fine tuned with whats already programmed. =/

  55. L. Sue Keith

    I was not patient. I did not receive the service value for which I paid. I’m beginning a plan to remove my valuable information from your website.

  56. Catherine

    Congrats on getting the site working. After 5 years of searching I am truly amazed at how large this site is. I for one am looking forward to the new search which will save me a huge amount of time weeding through records that don’t pertain to the person I am searching. The names of my ancestors were spelled phonetically on censuses and that makes it tough to find them. With the new search I will be able to pinpoint the census and find them mis-spelled or not. Thanks for a wonderful site.

  57. Carrie

    I was frustrated yesterday that I could not log into my trees but it’s all good. My eyes are rested and I had a longer night’s sleep. Thanks!

  58. doc

    What gets to me is that I have a full paying membership and I still see all of those advertisements in the margins. Give me a break. If I am paying for service why hit me with all the junk stuff.

  59. Linda White

    I missed being able to indulge my ancestry obsession. So glad we are all back. I trust you to get everything handled.
    But, something good came out of it for me. I became a volunteer for getting records transcribed for use. I only managed one census page last night. My goodness, what an exercise in being precise! I enjoyed it and plan to continue. Thanks for your hard work.

  60. Sharon

    Thank God! I had yesterday off and wanted to work on my family tree. Ho hum. Thank you for the explanation of the trouble. I like to be informed.

  61. Doug McDaniel

    What a bunch of whiners. boo frickin’ hoo. you lost one whole day. Get over yourselves.

    I appreciate everything Ancestry does, including their disaster recovery efforts. A few hours without the site is no big deal.

    Thanks for everything you do, guys. Don’t listen to the rabble. Take their abuse for what it is worth. There is no site like this for historical and genealogical research.

  62. Elizabeth

    I’m not worried about member trees because I don’t have one nor ever submit data to you again, having removed all my data from your website years ago over critical issues you have failed to address. To wit, your refusal to remove my data on my specific instructions.

    I am pissed as everything that in this latest ‘maintenance’ mishap ya’ll lost the fact that my account had been paid up over a month ago for the full year. Now I can’t access anything save what’s available to non-members. I depend on my account for research: access to hard-to-find images, but am currently locked out of every ancestry database I depend on for my research.

    Not to mention that every “improvement” made since I first began my account back ‘way in the 1990’s has made accessing the information desired more time consuming, more difficult, more illogical, and far less effective.

    I am not a happy camper.

  63. Karis

    My core issue is whether or not has a commitment to the family trees. Since it is not part of what we pay for then apparently it is not a concern for them.

    If this is not a part of the service, then I have been expecting too much and I need to build my tree elsewhere. Really disappointed. This isn’t just about backing up material, it’s about where to work on it and where to place it. My goal was to 1) make a tree that my descendants could come back and find even, if I had already passed away 2) provide documents, sources or help on my tree so that others could meet the high standards some organizations to truly verify our trees. Having been through the process you cannot do that using only the items on ancestry. Ancestry is missing an area to indicate sources that “prove” relationshiops. They prove existence but often not relationship. Some of older people have sources such as Barbour for relationships such as birth and parentage, but for many descendants this often comes from material that ancestry does not provide such as Bible records, wills, etc. And by the way these are often considered the best type of sources since they are often first hand accounts, or signed by the actual people, etc.

    I value the family trees and will look for a site that supports that. If ancestry cares about the family trees please don’t tell me they are just a freebie. Show me a commitment to provide service for the family trees. Ancestry please make it plan what your vision is for the online trees. If you are not interested in maintaining this area I will look elsewhere.

  64. Pat

    Where are all the comments from March 19? I thoroughly enjoyed reading them and came back to copy some of the good information given in some of them. Is there a way to access them?

  65. Wayne

    Thanks for getting it back up and working but as I have stated many, many times before we are still having the error out on pages loading at times and the slow loading of your advertisement servers to your pages. It becomes a really bad problem when you have to refreash the screens half the night just to get the pages to load right so you can enter information. I hope you can address that problem soon being it has been there since you made your major changes over a year ago.

  66. Larry White

    Thanks for all the hard work and getting it running again. A day without is like a day without…

  67. Bill D. Adams

    Thanks Eric !

    I appreciate your putting your name on the blog and not using meaningless terms that tell us nothing.

    This type of thing is happening way too often though. Let’s hold someone accountable and get em off the team. By all means don’t give em a performance bonus.

  68. Michele

    I, for one, was very annoyed by all the people who went on a tirade about the site being down yesterday. Really, folks? Sometimes the unexpected happens and a little patience is required.

    Great to see everything is back up and running – and thanks for keeping us updated throughout the day. For me, this website is a great avenue for learning my family history, and I am truly grateful.

  69. Bobby Hunt

    I haven’t checked my tree yet…which I will do shortly. However, I do notice there is no longer a function to add family or download a gedcom, so I cannot back up my tree.

    COuld you fix that please?


  70. Greg Wickham

    To the folks who say we need to stop whining and just accept Ancestry’s incompetence and indifference: Maybe this kind of service outage would be understandable — if it were the slightest bit unusual! But NO-O-O-O, I see “We’re sorry, that feature is temporarily unavailable” several times EACH WEEK! Somehow eBay manages to keep their site running FAST 24 hours a day, EVERY DAY. Why? Because when their site goes down, the company loses money EACH MINUTE customers can’t use it. Ancestry doesn’t give a damn about usability or customer satisfaction, because it makes virtually no difference to their bottom line.

  71. busy bee

    Everyone who is complaining about the speed of the site, the site is just fine and running as quick as ever. You might want to check your internet service provider, your upload and download times, and anything else which might be clogging your computer. I saw complaints yesterday of waiting 5-7 minutes to attach a document to a family person. It takes me a matter of 2-3 seconds.

    Yesterday was a good example of the OCD negative behavior that comes out in many, but not all people, when they have to stop a hobby for one day.

    I am thankful ancestry has the means and power to scan and index a bazillion records to help all of us do our research. Without this site, we’d be slowed down to 1980’s research practices.

  72. I uploaded my tree to Family Treemaker pn the 17th.
    Everything is scrambled. Even mine. And it is shutting down on me too.
    Can I cancel my tree there and start agin?
    Bonnie Bergquist

  73. JoyceLong57

    Any information I had added to my tree, anything prior to 1800s is now missing, gone…. any idea as to what happened? Short of doing the research again is there anyway to get it back

  74. John W. O'Brien III

    Thanks for the update Eric, some of us appreciate the hard work it takes to keep a site like this running at all….

    luckily yesterday i was able to fire up my laptop and use FTM in place of the online tree….

    2 issues i hope you guys can address though:

    1: importing online trees into FTM with windows 7 64bit is impossible… it’s gotta be some sort of permissions thing i haven’t been able to hash out on my own (workaround: i use FTM on my win XP computer to DL the online tree, then transfer the files to my win 7 laptop and import as new tree)

    2: it would be GREAT to not have to manually transfer info from FTM back to the online tree, the online tree is great because i can access it anywhere from any web device, but as i stated above in (1) it can be a pain to sync the online tree with my laptop. but it is impossible to sync the laptop BACK to the online tree… we had a family get-together and i brought the laptop with me, got a lot of great info from some older relatives… now i have to go through FTM, try to remember what i updated and then transfer that info to my online tree… allowing the online tree to be able to merge with uploaded GEDCOMs would be a great feature…. i realize duplicates would be an issue, but if adding people to an existing tree, we have “add existing person from list” and name search, why not “upload person/family from GEDCOM?”

  75. Karis

    Eric must be really frustrated that he spent all day working on a “free”, byproduct, non-service. If this is not a part of our paid service than some stockholders or employers should be really mad at all the wasted time and money spent yesterday on a byproduct of ancestry that is not a part of the service. The people who use this for a search only service must be really mad that ancestry is spending so much time on this. Personally, I want to thank Eric and ancestry for the family trees and hope they can become a part of the actual paid service. Maybe this is an internal budget issue.

  76. Judy

    Thanks, it’s much faster now. I’m still having trouble when I go to search a record and begin typing a name-it used to populate the field with name, birth and death years, etc. It no longer does this. Is anybody else having this trouble?

  77. Judy Johnstone

    Probably this is the wrong venue, but I do have a request. Would you consider making it possible to highlight the names in our pedigrees who were the folks who emigrated to the U.S.? I’d like to be able to see them at a glance. Many thanks for a great website. Judy Johnstone

  78. Patricia Powers

    I cannot access any part of my tree past around 1825. It is actually showing that there is no one past that time frame. Yes, I have moved one ancestor from the generation after that to the primary position. Nothing beyond that time frame.

    Are you absolutely sure all information has been recovered??

  79. RickK

    Hey Eric and Ancestry folks,

    I’m glad things are back in working order.

    The outage of your FREE trees yesterday allowed me to sort and file a large pile of neglected paperwork and to go back and review some of my research plans. It was a productive sabbatical for me. I woke this morning with a fresh list of information to research and there were the trees to do it on.

    Thanks for all your hard work. Live happens.

    In the meanwhile I suggest that you move the trees to the paid area of the site.


  80. Maura Donnelly

    I absolutely LOVE this site! I am a part time student majoring in history and this website allows me to enrich my education while also indulging my (somewhat obsessive)research into my own family history. It is one my favorite daily activities. The importance of studying history is sorely underestimated as is the value of the knowledge gained from such an endeavor.
    That being said, I have a pretty firm grasp on reality and am able to put this part of my life into perspective. When I joined and purchased my membership, I gave them my money in exchange for access to tools and records I would not otherwise have been able to get so easily. The cost of which I consider to be more than fair in return for the pleasure I get from choosing to participate in this leisure time activity. I entered into this agreement consciously and with full understanding of the implications of doing business with an internet based company.
    Was I slightly disappointed when I couldn’t access my family tree last night? Yes, for a moment. I then and without any trouble, moved on to other tasks, concerns and pleasures which play a part in my life. I went to bed, slept a few hours, woke up this morning and lo and behold, the world is still functioning as usual. My husband and children were all fine, I am still in good health, my apartment building is still standing……the folks at Fox News are still ignorant…… Yesterday’s issues with accessing my family tree did not have any additional negative effect whatsoever.

    Thank you,, for all of your hard work and effort put forth in order for me to indulge in such a luxury as this.

    Maura Donnelly

  81. Andy Hatchett

    Now that the dust is settling from yesterday I have three questions.

    1). Exactly what time did the trees go down?

    2). Exactly what time was the message posted on the Blog about the trees going down?

    3) Exactly what time was the blue banner announcing that the trees were down activated?

    Now- two suggestions:

    1). Use an ORANGE banner for technical/system troubles as It is much more noticeable that the blue. Reserve the blue banner for non trouble announcements like the Tour thing.

    2). There is no reason on earth that a notice of techinical/systems trouble can’t be posted within 10 minutes of the trouble starting. We know there are monitors running and at least one person on each shift should have the ability to post such a notice.

    All in all, yesterday was a great learning experience for almost everybody. It showed Ancestry which holes need plugging, it showed users why using online trees as the main repository for their research is really not a good idea at all – even if it is the lazy way out, it showed that research without trees *is* possible, it showed everyone the absolute need to have a very current backup handy, …

    and most of all it proved that life does go on without Ancestry. 😉

  82. Nancy

    Judy #97, the auto-fill, “type-ahead” issue has been going on for some time. Anne Mitchell started a blog on it on 11 May, calling it “intermittent problems.” From my end, it has been a continuous problem, and no further updates have been posted. It is a problem with both auto-fill of place, which affects the ability to use the default/restrict to settings on searches; and with auto-fill of names, which, as you said, could be used to choose from a list of people in your tree.

    The blog is here

  83. Cathy Jordan

    As of May 20th, 11:20 am Pacific time, my tree is not functioning properly. When I search for a record and try to attach it, it attaches to various persons, not just the one I want. I now have spouses belonging to two different people, children belonging to two different people, etc. It is crazy and I don’t know how to fix it because when I look at the list of people, I see one name but there are multiple links. Hard to explain, but things are GOOFY. Thanks in advance for your help.

  84. richard

    it was rather a quite time over on the uk blog during the down time yesterday. it was either that my fellow islanders where being typical british and not complaing or ancestry failing to comunicate again and only a few happened to stumble over the blog while tring to find help. as i think it was the latter her is the link

  85. Kevin H

    Incredibly enough I sent the Help Desk a posting saying that I was appalled by the outage – and they had the unmitigated gall and nerve to say that the outage was less than a day – I mean hello – were the slow responses from the apps just not to be counted? Then they said they didn’t give any outage credits – and then asked what the FTC has to do with anything whatsoever? I mean are these people stupid or what?

  86. Karis

    The more I think about this, the more I realize that yesterday was really about budget issues. Since the family trees are “free” then I assume that our monthly payments go toward purchasing materials and maintaining site access to them-the searches. So which parts of ancestry generate profit. Not a rhetorical question. If the family trees make money that in turn buys more source material than even the “non-family tree people should be happy. How do the computer “servers” get paid for, or upgrades for that service. Are the family trees a strain on the site or a money maker? If these become separate services who benefits and who loses. Where are the business people? Is there a future for the family trees or not I do see where this is headed-eventually I will have to buy back my own material. If we are headed toward paying separately for the family trees what will I be getting for my money, an operating site, regular updates, etc. I really value the family trees but where are we headed.

  87. Sarah Kendrick

    Since the unplanned maintenance session of yesterday, I now have multiple listings for the same people that I did not have before! Is there any way to fix this problem without having to delete each (same person) one one at a time? This is not fun.

  88. Nancy

    OK, my two cents on the trees-being-free issue: I believe that the people who raised the issue yesterday were simply saying that it is free to build a tree on Ancestry. Anyone can build a tree, but they cannot view most of the databases.

    At the same time, these people were pointing out that the databases were still searchable, just not from member trees. Therefore, they were saying that members with paid subscriptions were not losing anything, because they could still search the databases.

    From Ancestry’s marketing program, everyone should understand just how important the trees are. They are a big money-maker for Ancestry–haven’t we all seen the man in the Civil War ad saying that he went on Ancestry, followed the leaf and found member trees tracing his family all the way back to the Civil War (and make sure to notice all of the photos that were on the tree!)? The trees are not going anywhere. Regardless of the fact that some members would like to make the trees less noticeable, and at least have it pointed out that it is not research to copy from them, the trees–and the leaves–are a large part of Ancestry’s vision of the future of their company.

    That being said, only paying subscribers can see others’ trees (unless they are invited to them), and thus the information in the trees *is* part of what we are paying for. That information was not available during the outage yesterday so it is not correct to say that members did not lose anything during that time. The ability to search the trees for information was unavailable.

    Anyway, Karis, I don’t think you need to worry about the importance of the trees to Ancestry. They are definitely a money maker.

  89. Karis

    Nancy, again, you are the best! I always learn something from you rather than just getting attitude.
    I do feel I am alone out here in saying that the family trees have true value, not just commercial value. Obviously, some trees are better than others and obviously we all have to work through ancestry’s growing pains with odd merges, duplicates, etc. I would really like to see some work done on alternate information. There is one person who has over 85 trees attached to her. They have to make a choice about her family but instead they have blended her from two people. There will always be human error but the structure can help or hurt the process. I have been very upset with the errors but “Facts are stubborn things” whether they come from a family tree or elsewhere. I hope eventually the the best information will survive.

  90. Tim

    Asked for a credit of the one down day and they shoved a Liability Waiver at me. Oh well. So, I guess another company has now entered the hallowed realm of congress, the airlines, and big oil. I never built a tree, but was an editor for another one that includes part of my family. And I have a short subscription. I won’t renew come hell or high water now that I see how they treat their customers.

  91. Jane

    Having been caught yesterday with no back-up, I decided to generate a GEDCOM file. I have followed the instructions, but, after waiting for over 10 minutes, it still says it’s generating a file but that it is 0% complete. I am using Windows 7. is this the problem?

  92. Jane

    Ok, I have finally been able to download the GEDCOM, but I find all sorts of messages about “Import errors” relating to citations. I think that this means that the citations are still on ancestry and I just have a link to them. How do I actually copy them to my computer (FTM 2010)?

  93. Bill

    re: 114

    “Having been caught yesterday with no back-up, I decided to generate a GEDCOM file. I have followed the instructions, but, after waiting for over 10 minutes, it still says it’s generating a file but that it is 0% complete. I am using Windows 7. is this the problem?”

    Depending on the size of your file it can take a very long time to download it.

    With a lot of pictures, etc, with FTW10 it can take a couple hours!

    But as always a good idea to backup 😉

  94. Bill

    Re: 115

    Errors are usually things like “born 18??”, or other things FTW10 can’t recongnize.

    16 Dec 1920 is not the same as December 1921ish (etc).

    The Error log will tell what they are, then go back to ancestry and correct them, REM: the correct way to do a date is 12 Dec 1921

    Not December 12 ’21 (etc).

    Then you have to re-download ;-(

  95. Jane

    Bill 117,
    Thanks. I think I get it! But what I don’t understand is whether these citations reside on or in my FTM 2010.

  96. Bobby

    Looks like everything is back to where it should be on my own tree…and have downloaded the gedcom to my personal copy of FTM. Actually, just updated what I had on my computer anyway with the download, but the file is sitting there “just in case”.

    And since I still have every photo that I’ve posted on my tree residing on my computer….

    Thanks, Eric. Appreciate all the efforts of you and your team.

    Time to get busy.

  97. Bill

    118 JaneMay 20, 2010 at 3:27 pm
    Bill 117,
    Thanks. I think I get it! But what I don’t understand is whether these citations reside on or in my FTM 2010.

    They are on both! But only show up when you dlo’d it.

    Poke through the problems, then correct them on ancestry. Then re-dlo.

    (or you can upload the “new” file, but that can drop somethings).


  98. Karis

    Groups who Value Family Trees
    Found with DAR, Mayflower, LDS, and Historical Societies, etc.

    Goal: to obtain documents to source death-1 item

    Gas to drive to town $70
    copy of cemetery record $1
    donation for membership with Historical Society $30
    donation made that day $30 for use of microfiche
    3 hours of searching and photographing cemetery-my time at minimum $30
    photographs developed $10
    time scanning and loading document onto computer $20
    membership on ancestry $200-300
    Benefit to ancestry $391
    Cost to ancestry 0-?

    Okay leave out the ancestry part since I use it multiple times $191.

    Value to ancestry-source no one else has online is found in my tree. Bonus, I photographed other tombstones and took the time to add them.

  99. Sherry

    Although I agree that folks should do their own research, there is no question that trees posted to the internet are extremely helpful. Some folks have information that others do not and it is a great way to share and connect the dots when you reach a dead end.

    Personally, I do not copy trees but I certainly rely on them for hints. They are invaluable in this regard. That cannot be said enough.

    If you have a tree posted, you are a paying member. Your research is payment……PERIOD. I am certainly sure the advertising revenue that ancestry gleans by hosting your tree can also be considered payment.

    I get so tired of the attitude that you have pay a sub in order to have a right to complain. You spent hours gathering the info and ancestry is more or less profiting from it.

    I am a “paying member” but do not have my tree posted to ancestry for two reasons. Number one is that I freely share my research and personally do not feel a person should have to pay a sub or go through an invitation process in order to access same. Secondly, the little advertisements drive me nuts.

    My tree is posted on tribalpages and for $36 / year do not have advertisements and can upload up to 1,000 photos. For $48/year, you have the same benefit but can upload up to 5,000 photos.

    It is a happy medium for me. Ancestry has far more coverage with regard to trees but that is not my concern (and I certainly do not fault those who rely on this medium).

    Personally, I rely on ancestry for their databases and have found that the Familysearch pilot site covers areas that ancestry has not – a great research team but I do not have to pay a sub for the records on the pilot site at familysearch, many of which include images.

    I thank all of you who share your information, whether you pay for a sub or not.

    I thank ancestry for their databases (but not the new search :-).

    Good luck to all with your families.

  100. Kathleen

    glad it seem to be fixed for the present A day was lost, do you care? Will there be any remuneration to your customers? #47 and #90, I appreciated your statements!!!

  101. I am sooo upset about this. I have lost over 200 years of family information.
    Countless hours of research. This the second time this has happened to me
    with Ancestry.

  102. Judy

    I am still having a problem viewing my tree but I see no point in being so cranky folks. As for a reimbursement for the time?? You are being so shortsighted. Ancestry provides so much info in digital format – if they hadn’t digitized all of this info, where would you be??? Believe me there are worse computer nightmares – like bank mergers….. recently my bank merged two bank systems on the last weekend of the month and they were ‘down’ for 5 days …. that causes stress. This outage was a small inconvenience – Take a pill and relax.

  103. Patricia


  104. Sherry

    Judy 126 – Have you considered that it may be more important to others than it is to you?

  105. kathy

    To those having a problem with Windows 7, consider using a different internet browser like FireFox. I regret “upgrading ” to Internet Explorer 8 since many sites that used to function not longer do. However they work fine with Fire Fox.

  106. william

    Wow! I think the chest thumping certainly is premature. There are still alot of folks out there that is having post “big fix” ancestry problems , me being one of them. I no longer have access to the lineage feature of quicklink,, “find famous relatives”. I did not care for the previous change’s but now, you folks have completely blown it, I tried clearing temp. files, cookies, etc to no avail, fix it or I will end my subscription!

  107. Sandy

    I have had to switch to firefox to be able to add people to my tree. Internet explorer lets me fill in the form but not submit it and that is just FRUSTRATING. I have cleared my cache and changed settings so many times I can do it in my sleep. Obviously things are not IE friendly anymore. For those having problems give firefox a try it seems to handle the site much much better.

  108. User since 1998

    Looks like to me if many of you who say you lost everything should be learning how to save your tree in a gedcom file and put it on an external drive just in case something like this were to happen again and it will mark my word.
    Dont ever be to proud to ask for help the smartest people in the world have to ask sometimes.
    so if you don`t know how to do a gedcom just ask and someone even I will help you.

    If the above url is not live copy and paste it and you 2 can make a gedcom.

  109. I would like to make a statement and i hope you read it. Went on today there is a new page you have to keep backtracking to get to where you want to be. It doesn’t help that it says tell us what you think of this page when you click on it it says sorry but but it is over. Well. I do not like this page stop changing these things may be the system would not go down as much

  110. Emmalee Tarry

    I can no longer find my shoebox. It seems I once saw a link to the shoebox, but not now.

  111. Sonya Bonner

    I’m extremely frustrated!!I can no longer access records even though my membership is in effect. When I try to access records and documents saved to my tree (and there are many!!) it just keeps looping back to the opening page! This is certainly not the type of service one expects to get from a subscription website!

  112. Tim

    As a follow-up to my message #113: I just received an email saying I will get a full day credit added to my subscription. I understand occasional minor interruptions in service. A full down day is not routine. And shoving Liability Disclaimers at folks just enrages me for something like this. The credit is the least they can do to keep loyal customers. Thanks for coming to your senses.

  113. Judy

    Sherry 128 – how much I care is not the issue… acting like two year olds, stomping your feet and demanding attention is ridiculous… Do you imagine that the people at Ancestry are just sitting around with their feet up? Things happen. Life is too short to get in a tizzy. The problems will be resolved. I have been a member since 2001 – I have a great deal of work invested in my research. I guess the difference is that I don’t take this so personally. You really all need to calm down.

  114. Michele

    Judy 140 – I totally agree with you. I was surprised by how many people flew off the handle about this.

    I certainly understand how important this is to people, as I too have devoted a large amount of time to researching my family tree. That being said, it was obvious that Ancestry was working as fast as they could to fix the problem. One day is not the end of the world.

    My advice? Always backup to a GEDCOM file. Then you’ll have no worries if the site goes down.

    Have a good day everyone and happy researching!

  115. Karis

    #Tim, I will not be asking for an extra day or money back but I am very impressed that ancestry is making this effort. Shows a commitment to quality and customer satisfaction.

    I always think it is interesting that people think because they haven’t had a problem, that, that means no one has. Personally, everything seems to be working for me but I certainly believe all of you. I have been down that road. For the new people, it gets better. Whether they admit it or not most of these people have learned things the hard way and lost materials they thought were secure. There are some very considerate and helpful people on this blog-with Nancy being one of those.

  116. I just want to let you know that I’m so glad your service is here for me to try and touch my roots with my family’s past! You did not need to give me an extra day, but do appreciate the jesture. Your site rock’s as my grandchildren would say!

  117. ken

    I truly hope you can get the programming errors fixed. I LOVED the new screens even tho they might have had a bug or two. I could tell you must have been using a new query engine on the databases. The results using the new query engine were far SUPERIOR to the old query engine. I am glad to see you got the databases back up and running. As a retired database programmer, I FULLY understand how this could happen. I test all my changes over and over again, but a user does things differently than a programmer. Again, I hope you can fix the bugs and put the new query engine back.

  118. Mary Beth Marchant

    For those who do not understand our frustration, the problem is that this has been on a weekly basis for a number of weeks. We are given a message that trees will be down for a few hours and then back up. The next thing that happens in the next few days is that they discover that while fixing one thing, they messed up something else. How would you feel about your phone, electricity, or internet being down once a week while the powers that be fixed it!!!

    And by the way, I am still seeing the same messed up page that popped up yesterday when I opened my trees. I cleared my cache yesterday, changed browsers, etc, and did what was suggested. Did not work. What I did yesterday and then again just a few minutes ago is to completely log out of Ancestry, then log back in, change to another of my trees, log out of that and back in the original tree. This ought not to be happening. Ancestry has not fixed things properly. I would also like at least a days credit for the outages that keep on happening. I betcha by next Wednesday or Thursday morning we will be treated to more downtime.

  119. Cat

    You guys are great for giving an extra day on the subscription. As a new subscriber, Thank you. I also give thanks for the tutorials I just discovered. My Nana and I look forward to further searching. P.S. I also just confirmed the family story of my Nana’s Grand being a Victorian era London bobby. My years of wonder are over. Can’t wait until more 20th century UK census’ become available. So cool!

  120. Virginia

    Ancestry, thank you for the extra day extention to my subscription.

    I fully realize that according to the terms & conditions I signed when joining, you were not liable for interuptions of service, but you have stepped up to the plate and given me this extra day.

    Most appreciated.


    PS…but I still do not like your “new search”…any compensation being offered for that??? 🙂

  121. Adele Anderson

    I, too, appreciate the extra day extension to my subscription. A nice way to reimbuse for frustration.

    Thank you all.

  122. Don

    Well…. now the entire system is down. At least we wouldn’t have to read defenders like Andy tell us that if the trees are down use something else.

  123. Sarah-Jayne Sheen

    Oh dear

    I’m writing from Uk as a fully paid up memeber, and have just unravelled a mystery from way back-
    2 days ago the site went down ok things happen
    but to do it again now at 21.40 BST is not on!

    I’m going to complain- thinking of joining find my past its cheaper btw and you can get 1911 census records
    A very p***** off customer called Sarah

  124. Anne Huffman

    What happened? Search features are down, when will it come back up and will Tech Support remain open until it is functioning again?

  125. Loraine Ertelt

    It is May 21 at 3:30 in Texas and once again we are receiving messages that maintenance is taking place and we are unable to use the search feature. This is starting to get a little irritating.

  126. Patricia

    Wow………..I sure hope someone at ancestry makes the time to read this blog. Yes, the more intricate the site, the more potential for problems but ancestry only exists as long as we customers pay for it to stay alive. If they dump on us, ignore us, don’t give us a free month for their screwups. They, ancestry is going to cut their own throat because we don’t need this site. As someone above stated there is an entire web of information out there and ancestry is not the end all site. Quite the contrary.

  127. stidham

    Now that I can get to my tree, the search seems to be down. What next? This is going to be a slow going weekend.

  128. Carol

    not again! Guessing that the volume of traffic ancestry has now is too much for their system–too much advertising it would seem to get another million or so to sign up! This happened with a ISP that couldn’t handle an increase in customers and flopped. Hopefully, these interruptions are efforts to increase volume capability and not trying to patch work it on temp basis.

  129. Kristina

    “We’re sorry but is temporarily unavailable. We are undergoing routine maintenance or we may be experiencing unexpected technical problems. We apologize for the inconvenience and ask for your patience as we work to correct the situation. Check back with us shortly.”

    They just did maintenance!

  130. Haydn

    O Great

    Happily adding records to my tree and all of a sudden it all stops. Just getting the following now:

    Due to exceedingly high traffic on, your customized home page is temporarily unavailable. Your data is still secure and will be available shortly.
    Thank you for your patience.

    The site is starting to be down more than it is up these days. 🙁

  131. Patricia

    To Lincoln Lowrey thank you, yes I did. I finally went to old help questions for windows 7 and a different address line was suggested. That worked but low and behold 2:30pm MST Ancestry is down again. I called them because my private tree kept coming up in the search as Public. There reply ‘democrat’ all the way. It’s not us it must be you or something you did. You know I can’t get too mad at my employees when they come to me and tell me they totally messed something up. They were honest and I so respect that. The biggest trouble with our society today is no one wants to accept responsibility for anything. It is always someone elses’ fault. Cop out! Chicken…….
    Baloney! Etc, etc.etc……….I won’t be renewing my subscription. Unless some great big customer apoligizing takes place and some compensation for this unnecessary agrivation. If they would just say we messed up, we will be giving all our customers a month of service for agrivation apeasement. We’ll see

  132. I am so disappointed. I was unavailable to work on my tree yesterday and looked forward to logging on and working on my tree today. I was able to access my tree, but it was sooooo slow. Because it was so slow, I was frustrated and left for the site up and running to work on another project for a few minutes. Five minutes later I came back to find that because of “high traffic on the site” my tree was no longer accessible. This problem needs to be addressed. I pay a monthly fee for this service and expect to be able to use the site at my convenience. If you are not able to provide the service in a manner acceptable to your customers, you will lose business. I would be interested in knowing how and when you are going to address this issue.

  133. Paula Watson

    Friday, 5:00 PM East Coast DST


    What to do? Where are those of you who are leaving going? I wanna come with you!

  134. D McGinley

    I have followed your suggestions to speed up the site and now it appears it is NOT working again – three days in a row. If it is slow and unable to to be accessed on a Friday, obviously the weekend is a wash out! Seems like there were less problems when it was more a work horse website, rather than a bells & whistle website. Suggest you stop the free trials for a while and support paying customers.

  135. Niki

    can’t even get to the homepage now. i was making some great strides with m tree and adding alot of great information and photos gotten from a family member that would fill in the blanks on multiple peoples trees… now not only can i reach my tree, i can barely reach the homepage.

  136. Paula Watson

    Serious Request:

    Please post addresses for other sites or for geneology software we can use so we may CANCEL our subscription here.

    This lack of service been going on all week, and what I pay monthly for my “World Deluxe” membership is too much!

  137. Jim Brown

    I guess we’re still having problems, tried doing some research. Site indicated we are doing maintenance come back later.

  138. kittyfluffs

    Yup, its down again. Was running like a slug and then the old we’re havig a problem page popped up. Sigh.

  139. Sharon Warman

    Hey, I haven’t received notice that I’m going to receive a free day, or two, or three. I’ve noticed some bloggers have received such a notification. Surely we should all get the same treatment?

  140. Nancy

    Well, Andy, at least they followed your suggestion about the orange/red banner for technical difficulties!

  141. Mom

    Time to bump down the “Ancestry Member Trees Up and Running” article and replace it with the “We Suck” one.

  142. Claudia Gaertner

    I, too, appreciate the extra day – but now we’re down again – twice in one week. I realize all websites have issues, but I went almost a full 2 weeks on the free trial with no issues and seems like the minute I paid for it now there’s problems.

  143. Lorie M.

    Now I can’t do a search! They need to stop wasting money advertising for new members and use that money instead to improve the service. And while they’re at it, it would be nice if they fixed the 1910 Census for Berks County, Pennsylvania. I don’t know who transcribed those records but they have people listed in the wrong households.

  144. Kathryn Pearce

    It is 4:18 cdt on May 21 and I can no longer log into my Ancestry account. What should I do? I was able to login earlier today.

  145. Mike I.

    It looks like you need to go back and take another look at the problems. Down twice in three days is just not good enough.

  146. Carol

    Unbelievable. I refrained from complaining when the trees were down for a full day, but now this? The site is useless. Meanwhile, did any of you get the e-mail advertising a 20% discount off the yearly membership for former customers who have QUIT and come back? What about the loyal customers who have stuck with you through this BS.

    Hey Eric – if I quit today and come back when/if you get your site back to normal, will you give me the discount? I’m seriously considering it.

  147. Carol

    By the way, I just called customer service and they told me the problem has nothing to do with high traffic. I guess we should just expect lies and lame excuses from now.

  148. Karen

    I am a charter member (since its inception)and I cannot login. It does not recognize my email. It does not send an email to my addy. The phone line at 1-800-Ancestry is not working…. ARGH

  149. Peggy

    I cannot log in to my account! When I try, I get this message: “No matching user name and password was found. Please check the user name and password and try again.” I even tried the “recover login information” and got this message: “No users were found with email address *********** (purposely blanked out).

    I have been a member for over a year and have never changed any of my login information. What is going on???

  150. Haydn
    + many others…….

    Anybody know what these sites are like? What are their record collections like? How easy is it to build a tree on them? How often are their site down? Can not be any worse than Ancestry. Maybe time to swap my subscription. Hmmmmm 🙁

  151. Peggy

    I think Ancestry owes all of us paid members a discount for the the days we haven’t been able to access our accounts!!

  152. Mike

    It’s 2:26 pm west coast time. The website just crashed again and I’m not able to even log in now. I was right in the middle of adding some very important sources to the tree…


  153. OK Ancestry- What the devil is it this time??? !!!!

    btw- don’t hand us that generic message crap about high volume, or “We are undergoing routine maintenance or we may be experiencing unexpected technical problems.”

    And where is the banner announcing the problem?
    Or the Blog entry?

    Is someone there running for idiot of the Year and this is their audition??

  154. Paula Watson

    This is cruel!

    I have tried to cancel my account, but “the e-mail address was not found!”

    How interesting – I just got an ad from to that e-mail address!

    Now I’m on the phone; enough IS enough.

    BTW – no extra days for me; how’d y’all get them???

  155. Gerald

    Yes, down again. What is the deal here? Surly they can get it fixed quicker than 20 hrs this time. Hate to lose another day. Money down the drain.

  156. Annie

    To Paula (currently 187)
    The email said “we noticed you logged in on May 19” – so if you didn’t try to access during the day of the crash/unplanned maintenance, you likely will not get the email.
    I purposely did not mention the email in any blog posts or message board conversation because I did not want to open that can of worms.

  157. Annie

    I was already logged in, so have not had that problem, but even posting on the message boards is so slow, I’m likely to forget what I want to say by the time the dialog box opens. The blog at least is moving normally for me.

  158. worshacf

    Oh wow, here we go again….

    Whenever I read “high volume of traffic” I jump to the conclusion that a hacker is at work.

    You guys know you are not undergoing routine maintenace, but you could be experiencing unexpected technical problems so maybe I should give you some slack. However, this is becoming a daily thing for us to have to put up with. Sure hope it gets fixed soon.

  159. Sandy

    I personally think the membership fees are a little extreme…especially with all the problems they seem to have. At just the basic rate, can you imagine the amount of money Ancestry takes in every month!!

  160. Lara

    Can not access any of our tree information. Can not search the site. Same old message! Getting old, quick! Glad I did not upgrade , as I was going too! Hello!!! Anyone there????

  161. Paula Watson

    190 Annie, thanks.
    I just finished talking to someone at My renewal was for June 4 – got it pushed back to June 5. Right now, it’s set to cancel on that date. Not sure it’s worth renewing.

    ALL – If you call (long wait on phone) you can get one extra day for May 19th!

  162. Frank

    My husband loves me this week. I’ve been able to clean the house. Guess thinks my marriage is more important than my research.

  163. Ellen

    Three days in a row now! I’ve been a member since you first started and have never had as many problems as I have had in the last 6 months. I may have to rethink how I spend my genie $. Thank goodness for Footnote and pilot. You guys better get your act together and fast or my $’s are going elsewhere.

  164. Melanie Pennock

    It is 2:51 in California. I have been trying to search historical records on and off for hours. I have no message on my screen about any maintenance, scheduled or otherwise. I cannot find a blog from ancestry that explains it , either. After the entire day of no service ealrier this week, I am getting frustrated, Even when the site came back online, it was “Slower Than Molasses in January”! What gives? And some people report getting extensions of their subscription? What does that mean to the auto-payers like me? Hire a company to fix your service. I can find names for you.

  165. Harold

    I haven’t been able to do anything for over an hour. With the problems the other day, Ancestry is rapidly becoming a do not renew resource.

  166. Annie

    Any bets staff have already taken off for the weekend, in compensation for the overtime they had to work on the 19th?

  167. Carol

    And here’s the latest excuse posted in the blog. There’s a new section for comments to go with this one as well: As many of you may have noticed, we are experiencing some search issues on our site. Though you may have experienced some login issues recently, this problem has been fixed and our development and web operations teams are now working hard on the search problem, which we hope to have resolved as quickly as possible.
    We apologize for any inconvenience this might cause and will keep you posted as we have more details. As always, thank you for your patience.

  168. Vervaen

    How about extending our memberships everytime you screw up??
    Seriously dudes, with the money some of us are paying, I would ‘expect’ you’d hire techies who actually know what they’re doing AND would’ve tested these ‘new changes’ inside & out before launching them onto those of us who pay your salaries!!

    I’m NOT getting my money’s worth when-for the past hour- I have NOT been able to search ANY records due to some ‘problem’ created from a fix that really never needed to be done in the first place.

  169. Paula Watson

    I respectfully suggest members pick up their hand-held devices and push one eight hundred, two six two, three seven eight seven.

    Saturday would be good, between ten and three.

    I have noted that not all posts to this moderated site get through – which makes sense in that manages this blog.

  170. Patricia Post

    Thanks for everything you’re doing to repair things…I have no reason to think you’re not doing your darndest, and are as concerned for your members as we are for ourselves. I trust that my family tree will emerge unscathed.

  171. 2padogs


    No trees to clime and no searches to do. And I have effectivly been denied services I paid for ahead of time. This is an Equity suit just waiting to be filed. So I would expect to get 2 days refund at this point. I was on the site the day the trees were down, and I did not receive any email from Ancestory. I am thinking of writing a letter to the editor at some major newspaper venues…..

  172. I had all kinds of problem’s yesterday and last night. everytime I would try to post or look up I would see this screen from Ancestry saying ‘Having tech. difficulties’, then I would loose what I had and have to try to remember that part. person I was on, date etc and try again. Was still trying at midnight with no success. So then today it was soooo slow and some of the same things I encountered yesterday were still a problem. I love Ancestry, but it has been a bit frustating for what you are paying for. Do you reimburse your member’s for time lost??

  173. Rina

    Many thanks for the extra day’s subscription – much appreciated as a gesture of goodwill.

  174. Anna

    Well I’m glad that I downloaded my tree when it became available and haven’t done any research on Ancestry since. Instead I’ve used the labs of family search where I can view records to the region of the world I researching for FREE. If it were not for distant cousins who were on here, I would have deleted my tree and closed my account. However if you close your account, you loose the capability to communicate with people who want to speak to you via private messages. I found this out when I sent a note to someone who wasn’t a paying subscriber, so please don’t think they are ignoring you but simply don’t want to pay a monthly fee for a note.

  175. Sherry

    Judy (140) How much you care is exactly the issue. It was not important to you and I was merely pointing out that not everyone shares your view.

    This is important to some folks and to belittle them for being passionate about their family research is wrong.

  176. Emmlee

    I’m on and had no major problems at all today barring the site telling me i had family tree connections and them disappearing when i went to look at them.
    Which ancestry site(s) are people having problems with? Are all the people will missing/corrupted trees on the same Ancestry site? All this kind of information could help sort out the problems…
    Are you still having problems now?
    And thanks for the extra day’s sub – it is appreciated :o)

  177. Luann

    It seems that many of the records I had attached to various family members have disappeared. These were not records attached recently but several years ago. They were there before the “unplanned site maintenance” and now they are not. Has anyone else encountered this problem?

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