Posted by Ancestry Team on September 25, 2012 in Family Tree Maker

If you use Family Tree Maker 2012, it’s your lucky day–another bonus update has been released. And this one has a lot of enhancements I’m excited about because they’ve been on my wish list for awhile. If you haven’t downloaded the update yet, it’s simple. Just open Family Tree Maker and choose Check for Update from the Help menu.

Here are a few of the new features you’ll find:

  • More improvements to TreeSync. Family Tree Maker continues to make TreeSync faster, more reliable, and more customizable. If you’re like me, you have personal media items like birth certificates and photos of living family members that you don’t always want to include in your online tree. Now you can keep media items private on an item-by-item basis when you sync (or export) your tree. It’s also easier to keep your online and desktop trees synced if you encounter an issue; previously, if you had to use a backup file, your tree wouldn’t sync anymore and you’d have to upload a new version. With this update, you can back up a synced tree and restore it if you have any problems. Other TreeSync enhancements let you print a list of your sync changes and include Web links for people and URLs in source citations.
  • Organizational tool for places. The larger your tree gets, the more locations you have to keep track of. On the Places workspace, locations are now grouped together by country, state, county, and city to make them easier to look at and sort through.

  • Better backups. You now have more control when you back up your tree. If you’ve spent a lot of time setting up your websites favorites or creating and editing historical events for timelines, you lost this info if you had to delete your current tree and use a backup; now you can include this information in your backup file. And, media files can also be included in a backup regardless of where they’re located on your hard drive.
  • Ability to copy and paste facts. Adding facts for a family just got easier. For example, if you have a residence fact for an entire family, instead of manually adding it to each person, you can add it to one person, then right-click to copy the fact and right-click again to paste the fact (on his or her Person tab). You’ll be prompted to select all the family members you want to add the fact to. (Make sure you don’t include the person whose fact you’re copying or you’ll have a duplicate.) Best of all, the copied fact will include any associated source citations, media items, and notes.


I hope you all enjoy the latest features as much as I do. And if you haven’t purchased or upgraded to Family Tree Maker 2012 yet, there’s never been a better time.

For those of you interested in our Mac product, be aware that Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 has been receiving similar bonus updates throughout the year and another will be coming soon.


  1. mdaddafmka;fm

    This have nothing to do with your post at all. But i am just putting this out there. I am leaving this thing it is horrible. You have to pay for some computer to research your family. How stupid!!

  2. John Whorton

    A month ago I would have recommended but not now. Everything was working great on my free trial but it seems as thought the minute my credit card was charged and I started paying for it, I have had NOTHING but TROUBLE. I have done all the trouble shooting and I am still on day two of not being able to sync my flippin’ tree, my “research only” trees will sync with no problem but not the Family one.

    • Trevor Thacker

      Sorry for the inconvenience, John. We are currently experiencing a high amount of traffic with the Tree Sync feature. While you may be able to sync after various attempts, we are working to resolve the issue and apologize for the inconvenience.

  3. Rick Womack

    These improvements are welcome. I was looking forward to the hierarchy view of places however I quickly found that resolving places crashes the program (Windows version on Win7) Not sure why but hold off using that feature until this bug is fixed and fix is announced.

  4. Rick Bisker

    Still waiting for fix to correct the birth order of siblings when you sync the ancestry tree to the FTM 2012 tree. The reports that one prints from FTM scrambles the order of birth of the children that are on the ancestry tree that are in the correct birth order.

  5. @4 Rick Bisker

    Rick, I’m afraid that you’ll wait a LONG time as the developers don’t consider this a bug but specifically re-designed the program to work this way.

    In the very distant past FTM did as most other programs and automatically placed children in birth order. Then, supposedly because of a large number of user requests, changed it so it no longer did that.

  6. Rick Bisker

    @5 Andy and Trevor

    Andy, My FTM tree was created by using my family tree with all of the children in the correct birth order since I had been using the ancestry tree more than my FTM tree and so I down loaded the tree and have been syncing the two together since they got the sync issues pretty much resolve, at least for me and now the FTM reports are a mess because of the random placement of siblings birth date order. What good are the reports if you can’t get them in the proper order. I have over 17,000 people in my tree and I don’t want to have to review every decendant chart I make to make sure the birth order is correct. Also I have the problem when I make a GEDCOM file for other applications and postings. How hard would it be to get this corrected? Just have a setting or option that can be set to allow or not allow random placement of siblings. Why would any one what them all mixed up? There is an option to put them where ever they want them, but to just mix them up does not make any sense.

  7. James Givens

    I downloaded the neww update and cannot backup files. Click on media icon and program stops. am having some problems wiyh it. I reloaded thge earlyere version 580 and works fine. running win7 64bit. Thanks

  8. Linda

    What is going on with tree sync I haven’t been able to sync for 3 days and neither has the lady I work with. We get message that Sync is unavailable at this time. I us FTM fo Mac 2 and she has FTM 2012.

  9. Long time user

    I don’t find the excuse “We are currently experiencing a high amount of traffic..” to be a good one for any of your problems with your site or software. What the heck are you doing do much advertising for if you didn’t want more customers? That excuse is very lame.

    If you want more customers (read MONEY), then get your act together! Find out what hardware and software people are using and make sure your site works for all.

  10. Robert Keenan needs to upgrade their infrastructure – more servers, routers, and storage area networks. It is riduclous to hype syncing between and Family Tree Maker 2012 only to be told repeatedly that too many people are trying to use this feature!

  11. Wayne Vaughn

    I have a question. I have a online tree and just started to do audio recordings for the first time. I can record the audio and test play it back but when I go to save it it gives this message “Your recording was not completed. Sorry, you are no longer connected to the recording service. Please try again.” Is there a fix for this and has anyone else had this problem????? I am running XP Pro.

  12. bromaelor

    Other sites have suggested that this ‘update’ is a replacement for FTM2013. Is this the case? Will there be an FTM 2013?

  13. Sonia Roberts

    I think I may just stop paying (I have been a paying member 5+ years) till you all fix your issues you keep trying to make it “better” but each time is keeps getting worse. I have been using FTM since it practically came out and I have to say I prefer 2005 to 2012. I have lost most my notes. The ones that didn’t get lost have lost all the formatting where it is all in one continuious line. every time I add a picture I have to exit out of program and get back in because of a font issue i presume. · When it ask if some one is the same as someone else i have to keep saying no at least 3x..I may just transfer all my stuff to a new family tree program. I WOULD NOT RECOMMEND FTM TO ANYONE. There are a LOT of site out there that offer free census and stuff it was just more convient to us Ancestry and FTM.. signed… A VERY dissapointed customer!!

  14. @13 Bromaelor

    No- Ancestry will not issue a 2013 version of Family Tree Maker. They have finally seen the wisdom of what many of us have been recommending for quite some time.

    They are taking a year off and will be attempting to correct the bugs and flaws in the present program.

    There may or may not be a version 2014 but no decision on that has been announced yet.

    Such a decision may well be dependent on how successful they are in fixing the bugs and flaws in the present program.

  15. Donna Goodwin

    Thank you all for your comments. Glad I have not tried to sync or add the new update yet. Think I will not either. I have finally had no problems for the past 3 months, dont want to start now. The update sounded so good, hummmmm. Like a lot of you maybe Ancestry is only good for a research tool. Nothing else.

  16. Larry Hibbs

    Flustration is high with this new update. I can’t
    get it to load on my computer. Using win7 and ie9.
    When I cancel the update at the start of ftm and I try to print reports the program crashes.
    What is the secret to loading the update to us
    non techies.


  17. Kathleen Mitchell

    I love the new updates, especially the copy/paste new facts onto multiple family members and also the merging of duplicate facts!!! AWESOME!!

  18. Kelly Harrell

    I have FTM Mac 2. I’m having to leave this application alone until it’s fixed. I’ve had the sync problems above and now am finding that it is syncing and crashing and erasing some information on my online tree. How much damage? IDK but am still finding it. Let me know if you fix it. So far, it’s been money poorly spent

  19. Peggy Hendrick

    I have had a terrible time trying to merge two almost identical trees…when I finally succeded I ended up with duplicate names, odd relationship facts (brother to your 2nd cousin 2x removed’s sister-in-law}. I even called customer service to get assistance. I wish she would have told me what kind of problems I might encounter..we spend a lot of time trying to weed out the correct relationships and facts…if I had known this I may have just left it alone…and from what I can see there is no way to filter out the duplicates without going person by person. Also, I would like to see a filter so that I can check ancestry hints by family or group instead of having them all displayed at once and trying to remember who’s who. Thank you.

  20. Lena Truster

    I have long been experiencing problems with the permission part of my private I add new people by permission and their names come up as someone else on invitees list.

    I am told that I ahve been invited to other folks private sites but never receive the invitation. is permitted on my filtering program.

  21. Donna Goodwin

    Okay when did this update take place? I have not had any problems so far….. Thank you very much and knocking on wood at the moment.

    I have done nothing with FTM except sync my trees and that has been fine, to afraid with all the comments above to try anything else.

  22. Wayne Morgan

    I cannot take any more updates. Every time that you make a release update, my FTM2 for MAC performance gets worse, I cannot complete a duplicate person search without a crash. I now cannot perform a sync with without a crash. Just write the program off to one of the worst events in the company’s history, refund everyone’s money that bought the crap.

    Then spend your time on adding a duplicate person search feature, that really works.

    Wayne Morgan

  23. Monika

    I had placed a blog in that section which “mysteriously” disappeared after being on here for two or three days! I know because I visited the site on various occasions. My blog dealt with the fact that when FTM users take photos or stories from other people’s trees, they end up showing as the “original contributors” of these photos and stories through no fault of their own. I started noticing that when the “sync” version of FTM was created. When I questioned on that they told me that FTM does not allow for giving credit to the original contributor. That is something that was not included in its program. So, here is advising its members that it is proper etiquette to give credit to the original contributor of a picture or a story, but then makes it impossible for the person who saves such data from another tree to do so! And, apparently, they do not want to make a big issue out of it or my blog would not have disappeared. The value in giving credit to the original contributor is twofold: (1) it gives credit where credit is due; and (2) it sources the data you copy(picture or story)! E.g., do YOU really know whether that is truly a picture of grandma Smith that you just saved from somebody else’s tree?? What if it is not?

  24. Don Knupp

    I’m happy that the update restored some lost functionality from going to FTM 2012 from 2010.

    Will there ever be a fix for the issue of long (wide) tree charts being cut off when you try to export to a single page PDF. This issue has existed since at least FTM 2009 (when I first encountered it).

    Currently, I have to print out MANY regular size pages, scotch tape them together, and pay a printer to scan the taped-together tree to a file. Also, printing this scanned file gives a “less-than-pristine” chart showing some of the overlap seams as well as shadows from some of the scotch tape on the original.

  25. John Donaldson

    # 28 Don

    The PDF issue is well-known to the developers. The issue is that the Share module is supplied to by DevX, a third party developer. Unfortunately they use a version 1.3 PDF that has a 5 metre (200 inches) limit.

    Adobe upgraded this limitation in about Acrobat 1.5 (they are now at Acrobat 11) .

    But for reasons that have never been clearly explained, DevX continues to supply the Share module with this very old spec PDF generator.

    You can workaround the problem several ways by installing an up to date PDF generator like Acrobat, Nitro, Nuance, etc or better still, use either Charting Companion or Family Tree factory if you want to seriously make big charts.

    Both these applications will produce charts only limited by the roll of paper you (or your printing service) can buy. Both programs are available via download

    John D

  26. Michel

    I have been using FTM and Ancestry for many years and will continue. It would seem that since the upgrade I can no longer sync on my tablet or my computer what I have done on the web. Could the upgrade be undone ?


  27. Karen

    HELP – I upgraded to windows 8 and it removed my family tree maker program. I cannot find my disc to re-install it. I thought there might be a link on the web site where I could download it. I cannot find any thing online. HELP – any one else ever have this problem??. I am still looking all over for my disc & I have found old, old, old versions of ftm – but cannot find the most current version. What to do??

  28. Mitch

    Amazing the amount of off-topic requests that occur under this post. People, you kill a butterfly everytime you ask something dumb, so go find the tech support lines, not the blog section for your problems.

    Onto the new update. Nice work! I was one of those unhappy people when the FTM was first rewritten from the old style to the new application a few years back, because so many functions were missing. They’re back now, and this is a far better application foundation then we ever had before. In particular, the media capabilities have made my trees come to life.

    Okay, enhancement question time. When you look at the People section, and pick an indivuidal in the Family View, over on the right side of the screen (I’m on FTM Mac 2), you have the options of Facts, Media, Notes, and Tasks. How about adding a 5th option called “Sources” with a list of all sources tied to this person, and a 6th option called “Source Media” which shows all media related to all sources that relate to this person? Why? Because with the advanced Sourcing capabilities, I’m adding all kinds of interesting pictures of books, boats, census documents, newspaper articles…everything but it becomes nearly impossible to try and find it all as it relates back to a person.

    Thoughts Ancestry development?

  29. D Lansing

    When will these great features be added to the Family Tree Maker for MAC? I’d like to have the copy/paste fact option.

  30. Sean

    I’ve seen the new enhancements in FTM2012 and specifically the Places organization improvements are GREAT! I hope that there are plans to bring these enhancements to FTM Mac 2 soon?

  31. It’s over. I quit. I give up. I am abandoning Family Tree Maker for Mac 2. It has completely messed up my tree with it’s constant crashing during syncs and merges. I’ve uninstalled and reinstall, compacted files, uploaded and downloaded COUNTLESS times.

    It keeps doing the same thing. Works for a few syncs and then messes everything up again. I’m switching to MacFamilyTree; hopefully it will be more “Mac friendly”.

  32. Becky

    I can no longer copy photos from another tree to my tree is this a problem for everyone or just me. When I click on add this to your tree, the tree name and the name of the person to copy the photo to, the program starts a new search and nothing happens. Is this a copyright problem or just my tree?

Comments are closed.