Posted by Ancestry Team on June 28, 2017 in Website

Last year, we announced we were working with RootsMagic, a leading desktop genealogy application, to allow Ancestry® subscribers to connect their Ancestry accounts to the RootsMagic software. Since that time, Ancestry has developed a new technology to integrate Ancestry Hints® and Ancestry’s records and online trees with RootsMagic products.

Today, RootsMagic launches a free update to RootsMagic 7 with TreeShare™ for Ancestry. From within RootsMagic 7, as an existing Ancestry subscriber, you have access to your Ancestry Hints and the ability to share and synchronize data with your Ancestry online trees.

“Integrating with Ancestry’s trees and records has been one of our most requested features,” said Bruce Buzbee, president of RootsMagic. “It’s exciting to work together with Ancestry to make this happen. The feedback that we’ve received from those who have tested TreeShare has been phenomenal.”

TreeShare for Ancestry

RootsMagic’s TreeShare lets you, as an Ancestry subscriber, synchronize data between your RootsMagic files on your computers and your personal Ancestry online trees. You can transfer people, events, notes, source citations, and even pictures between the two systems.

RootsMagic users also gain the ability to easily share and collaborate with others by giving family members access to their Ancestry online tree. Using the new TreeShare feature, family members can then synchronize the latest changes and additions to both the online tree and their desktop computers.

Ancestry Hints Integration

RootsMagic leverages the Ancestry Hints capability and as possible matches are found, users may conveniently review them from within the software. RootsMagic then lets you add new information and media from matching records into your file.

Free RootsMagic Essentials Software

For those that are just starting their journey into the world of genealogy, RootsMagic offers “RootsMagic Essentials”- a free version of their software with a limited set of features tailored towards beginners.

If you have an account with Ancestry, RootsMagic Essentials includes the ability to upload your file to Ancestry or download your existing online trees from Ancestry.  If you are a subscriber to Ancestry, RootsMagic Essentials also allows you to search and view all of the content in your subscription.  Those wishing to compare and transfer individual records between RootsMagic and Ancestry will want to use the full-featured RootsMagic software.

Special Offer for Ancestry Members

As a courtesy to Ancestry’s subscribers, RootsMagic is offering the full version of their software with a free eBook for only $20 (regularly $44.90). This offer is available to Ancestry subscribers through July 31, 2017.

To learn more about RootsMagic 7’s software, or to take advantage of the special offer, please go to RootsMagic’s website at


  1. Laura

    That hasn’t changed. Family tree maker from mackiev will soon be able to sync with ancestry. They is just now completing the beta testing for a full rollout. Check their website for detailed information.

  2. jnk

    Does anyone have an opinion on what program is better?FamilyTree or RootsMagic? I am on the fence. I do have some big media files, not sure if that is a factor. TIA!

    • Maruss

      I switched from FTM after 34 years to RootsMagic. My reasons are these: Had a problem with siding. FTM now has no phone support, so I emailed MacKiev with my problem. Never received a response. An update was offered so I updated my FTM. Then when I tried to sinc, a pop up said I had to buy the 2017 version in order to be able to sinc. There was no pre warning on the update website. No phone support! So I sent another email. No response again. I loved the old FTM but this is not the same company. I bought RootsMagic put my FTM on a flash drive, and downloaded everything I had onto RootsMagic. RootsMagic has phone support and communicate with their users. A little bit of a learning curve but I like it.

      • jnk

        @Maruss–Thank u for the information on Roots Magic. Was wondering if you had issues with the media files. I have a lot of Media. TIA!

  3. toni

    The video didn’t say whether you can do a total sync or if you have to do it person by person. Who knows? I’m willing to go to Roots Magic even though I paid for McKieve. McKieve test drive was a disaster on my computer and I don’t think I want to use it.

  4. Donald

    If you want a power house of a software that not only can Tree share with Ancestry and receive hints from Ancestry, but also receive hints from MyHeritage, Familysearch(Also can share info), and FindMyPast, and has loads of tools and addons, and are not afraid of a little bit of a learning curve, but also get great support and New features and updates regularly, go with RootsMagic. If you want Simple easy to use software that has less features and only links to Ancestry and Familysearch, go with Family Tree Maker.

  5. Donald

    The initial upload/download is a complete transfer of information and files. After the initial upload/download, you would have to manually click a button for each thing you add. While this may seem tedious, it is actually a safeguard to ensure data is correct and to your liking, rather than letting a function decide for you.

  6. Travis

    This is great news. Mackiev has apparently taken a barely working program and broken it completely. None of the beta versions I tested ever worked well, the last one barely works at all and won’t sync even a small test tree. I’ve had rootsmagic for a while, and the new version downloaded and is syncing from ancestry right now without problems. If you don’t use it already I would stay away from mackiev they may never get ftm working…..

  7. Jerry

    Can you sync an tree with both Family Tree Maker and Roots Magic at the same time?

  8. J.

    I just successfully updated my RootsMagic 7 to However, I can find no way to sync my local family tree with my Ancestry Family Tree online. I searched under the HELP tab, but there is nothing on how to do it. HELP!!!

  9. Carl

    What assurance is there that RootsMagic isn’t having Beta testing problems like Mackiev? Have they done any Beta testing? What were the results?

  10. Carl

    Is RootsMagic 7.5 written specifically for the Mac, or are they still working on a native version? Regardless, is the current Mac version as fast as the Windows version?

  11. Me

    I have RootsMagic and tried the Sync feature, but it is NOT like the former Ancestry Family Tree Maker. One can only sync 1 person at a time, not the entire family tree. When I work in Ancestry and add lots of documentation, it sometimes involves several existing people and occasionally new people based on some documentation. Then I must go to RootsMagic, select all the people whose data has change, and update one at a time. Really? One individual at a time?

    Why doesn’t RootsMagic give us a check box for every individual where we can indicate a person is PRIVATE (do not include in the Sharing feature)? Then we could sync the entire tree like we used to, and those persons, so marked, would not be added to Ancestry or synced. This would save us from hours of additional work. I hope MacKiev does a better job, if they ever get it working. I am still lamenting the loss of Ancestry Family Tree Maker. It was the best. I didn’t know I lucky I was until now.

  12. Donald

    Yes RootsMagic was under going Beta the same time Mackiev has. I was a beta tester as a matter of fact. During the entire time they have not had the same issues FTM has, not to a great degree. Most of Family Tree Maker’s issues seem to come from the Automatic Sync function as far as I can tell from the Support section and Facebook posts. RootsMagic 7.5 can be downloaded for Windows AND Mac and runs native in both. I am not sure if the Mac version is just as fast as the Windows version, it is written in C+ which does make programs run quick, and I would assume it does run the same and have the same features. You can download RootsMagic Essentials for free to test is out. It doesn’t have all the features unlocked that buying the software has, but it is the same as the full version, just with certain features locked until you enter a code.

  13. Donald

    Better job? Mackiev is dropping the ball big time and no it’s not Ancestry’s fault either. The automatic Sync function is what is causing the bugs. If you want to Sync everything all at once, just Re-Download the entire tree from Ancestry. The initial Upload/Download does sync everything at once. Or you could just use Family Tree Maker and use it’s Sync and hope that it doesn’t delete your tree, get your data all out of whack or move people around in your tree.

  14. Bob

    @me … downloading again will not update changes made on FTM … and FTM offers functions that Ancestry does not … such as the ability to alter/update/merge locations. That is something that most (all?) desktop genealogy programs have offered for years. It’s a real failing in Ancestry.

  15. Dave

    Want to say a few words about MacKiev FTM 2017 but first, to set the record straight, I just bought the Roots Magic v7.5 /Ancestry special price and will be trying it out to compare.
    That said I have been test using FTM 2017 v1 and now v2 and have had NO problems with it syncing in both directions with Ancestry. My Ancestry/FTM tree has 6410 people, 13657 citations, 4846 places, 3801 media items and is 40.3 MB in size.

  16. Me

    @Donald @Bob . . . Thank you for your replies. My tree is entirely too large to download it every time I need to sync. Syncing was working beautifully with Ancestry’s FTM. Why don’t they just share the code with both MacKiev and RootsMagic? For that matter, why doesn’t Ancestry just give their former FTM software code to MacKiev and RootsMagic? All MacK and RootsM would have to do is change the headers and footers. Is Ancestry trying to encourage MacKiev and RootsMagic to fail? Software coding is not in the dark ages anymore. We are supposed to be on the cutting edge. Maybe they need a good, reformed hacker. They would make it work, and maybe even better. I continue to feel let down by all three companies. Note to Self: Do not depend on software.

  17. Joyce

    Ugh I have been waiting to get a new program to see the reviews re FTM vs Rootsmagic. I had loads of problems when FTM belonged to ancestry–but above comments have me scared to death. I guess I’ll avoid a new program a while longer and let them all work out the bugs. With 1 tree over 11,000 and another about 6,000 and tons of media, I am not taking chances

  18. Michelle Mallette

    I’ve been using FTM for several years and I was very happy with it. Since the upgrade it has been a total headache. At the moment the sync from Ancestry to FTM is supposed to be working. My small trees sync but my larger tree which is only 4,000 odd people won’t sync at all! I’m wondering if moving to Rootsmagic might be better than FTM?

  19. Donald

    Their former code is obsolete and they are getting rid of it totally. They are going with a newer updated API which is supposed to streamline everything and make it more Cloud Like, bringing it to the 21st century. It’s the same code they use for their Google Apps.

  20. Me

    @Donald . . . Thank you for your reply. As I see it, the key in your message is “supposed to” streamline. In my seven decades, I have often found that some old ways of doing things are far superior to new ways. Oh well, cae sur a sur a!

  21. alan

    I was a former FTM user (2012 & 2014). I continued with Mackiev, but waited to participate with their version until the last few weeks… knowing that they had been having problems. I have not been able to sync correctly (several different trees, largest is 15,000 individuals). I had previously purchase Rootsmagic with the intention of trying it side by side with Mackiev and going forward with whichever one best meets my needs. Rootsmagic performed a trouble free download of my data and appears to be working fine. At this point, Rootsmagic is winning the face-off by default. However, I do most of my work in and use the desktop softward primarily as a safety backup of my data. (The idea of syncing newly added or changed data with Rootsmagic is a dealkiller… if they don’t have plans to streamline the process.) I have also been using the desktop software as a cumbersome tool to get my data into my family website on TNG (The Next Generation). I am uncertain if that will be possible any longer with either Mackiev or Rootsmagic. If not, I’ll let the TNG website die rather than double enter everything. I will be continuing to monitor developments at Mackiev and Rootsmagic in hopes of making a decision this summer on which one to use. I have thought about using both, but that is probably a recipe for disaster unless I wanted to create separate trees for desktop software program.

  22. John

    @me – 100% agree with you about rootsmagic sync method. It is a complete joke to have to select one person at a time. Rootsmagic is the elite program that suppose to have all the bells and whistles. Well I hope they add the whistle that allows me to sync automatically. Psst… you know… like FTM 2014.

    • Cheryl

      So, are you saying that if I had Roots Magic and made changes to several persons on Ancestry I would then have to go through each of those persons in Roots Magic to “accept” the changes from Ancestry ????? AND what if I merge two people on Ancestry, how does Roots Magic handle that ?????

  23. Me

    @John . . . Your story parallels mine with the exception of trying TNG. I purchased Legacy 8.0 to see how it works and knowing it would NOT sync with Ancestry. It is very involved and difficult to use without a great deal of study – not clean or intuitive at all. Sometimes more is less. Like you, I am in a holding pattern. I pre-ordered and paid for MacKiev FTM 2017 last March, so feel I must continue to keep MacKiev on the plate. In the meantime, I need to print charts and reports for family members and paper backup. To accomplish this, I must create a GEDCOM from my rather large Ancestry Family Trees online and import them into Ancestry FTM 2014.1, which has decent charts and reports, and controls thereof. It will be interesting to see how all this plays out, and hopefully soon.

  24. Me

    @alan . . . Ooops! Sorry, I addressed my message dated “July 2, 2017 at 6:50 am” to John instead of you. My reply was to your message dated “July 1, 2017 at 1:01 pm”. Have a joyful day.

  25. Joey

    hmmm. I really don’t understand the need to sync with ancestry. Perhaps it even leaves you vulnerable for internet attack? I use Reunion for Macs. Its easy. Download/ or upload a gedcom from/to ancestry and open it in reunion or ancestry. It makes charts , etc.. You can add photos linked from your own computer, look at lines in different tree arrangments or one family at a time. Easy to use. I watched the roots video and it takes longer and more steps to add or correct an individual’s record than doing it by hand on Reunion and ancestry. Don’t understand the need to “sync” when Roots may just be syncing more than your family tree. I mean for those of us who really want privacy….buy Reunion .

  26. Dana

    This is a great deal for newcomers like myself. I’ve tried the free RootsMagic and it worked nicely for me except for the missing connection. My Windows and Android devices love it.

  27. alan

    @Joey Each person has their own approach on how to gather, store, manage, and output genealogy information. For me, I prefer to use as my basic tool for gathering and inputting of data. But, I insist on having a local backup of all of this data… hence the decision to use Rootsmagic or MacKiev. I also have a separate private website for my relatives through TNG. Getting my data into TNG is not an easy process due to the shortcomings of relying on transfer of gedcoms (which requires separate copying over of media- media is not part of the gedcom). My approach is not for everyone, but it meets the needs of my situation (or at least it will once I decide between Rootsmagic and Mackiev).

  28. Ivan

    Since the question or organizing media repeatedly comes up I had been planning a video to show what has worked for me. Essentially digital files should be organized outside RM although I would also agree that RM Media Gallery should have the ability to read basic metadata with the option to import/sync.

    Ivan from

  29. Edward S Bumgarner

    Years ago, a cousin and I were involved with a free website,, which eventually disappeared. This site was loaded with family trees, and now I see my family and messages on various query forums that came from my work that I put on that website, and am wondering if our information ended up on, which they expect us to pay for. Seems to me that we should be drawing residual income from that information. Just thinking out loud…..

  30. Edward S Bumgarner

    I own RootsMagic 7, and I see where our information could be going on Ancestry. Sounds like they are getting family data for nothing, and us that can’t afford Ancestry, well we are just out of luck, but bet they will take our family data.

  31. Mary Richard

    I just downloaded my new 2017 FTM this morning. A week or two ago I downloaded RootsMagic 7. Although both are nice programs, I like FTM2017 better. One of the big major differences for me are the reports. You can generate a report on just about anything you want without having to try to define fields. One of my favorites it the Source report. I can choose and entire tree, branch or family and generate a report listing all the sources on that person or family or branch. This is important because un-sourced data is essentially worthless. By generating the report I can quickly see where I am missing data to document my research. And there are so many other reports that to someone who is really interested in genealogy research, you will wonder how you got along without them. They make research so much easier.

  32. Jon Smith

    I have bought both MacKiev 2017 and RootsMagic 7 and while both work with my tree, they both are terrible for different reasons. Pathetic, embarrassly bad.

    1) no support
    2) enormous sync times – I have 100,000 names in the file – it takes 4-5 hours to sync 10 changes.
    3) only one person can sync at a time- which you find out after 4-5 hours

    1) Downloads nicknames from the AKA field, but you can’t upload them back because “FTM does not have a nickname field” – from their support
    2) downloads the / around names for particles, does not let you upload new ones – you cannot alphabetize names correctly. A surname such as de Claire belongs in the “C’s”, not the “D’s”
    3) Forces you to check the box on every single change – a sync will take you hours since you much check thousands of time

    Ancestry deserves part of the blame. Your on-line program does not display hundreds of fields that exist in the FTM program we bought from you, so we can’t change it there.

    We have no reliable solution for linking our tree with Ancestry and moving information back and forth between our subscription and our local copy. We have lost our ability to have multiple user update a common database, all because was greedy and discontinued a working product. I understand the support costs were growing and you could make more money just providing content than investing in the costs to support a complicated product, but you as a company deserve our utmost contempt for screwing your loyal user base. Both of these products do not work and you offer no solution, just “not our problem”

    Shame, Shame, Shame

  33. Maureen

    I recently bought Roots Magic 7 because it said it syncs with Ancestry. Didn’t realize until too late it is one person at a time! Ridiculous. I was an FTM user who also got screwed by Ancestry decision to discontinue support. Mackiev obviously not very good since they didn’t properly test the new FTM version before cutting off old program. Certainly not going to take my chance with them. All i wanted was a program on my computer where I could keep a synced version of my Ancestry tree. Can only hope I will come to like Roots Magic once I get used to it but at this point not sure I’d recommend it either. Not intuitive, not easy to find help and really don’t like the look of it.

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