Ancestry New Search Offers “Hot Keys” and Search Refining Shortcut

Ancestry____logo.gifForgive the tardiness of this post, but I missed it when Anne posted it on the Ancestry blog. They’ve added new “hot keys” to the new search interface. Now while you’re in the new search:

  • N will bring up a new search window over your browser.
  • R will bring up a new search window and also prefill in the fields from the previous search you conducted. (Great for refining searches!)
  • P will bring up the preview window for the first in a set of hits you’ve received from a search. Then just hit > (or J) to browse to the next preview, and < (or K) to browse back to the previous preview.

In addition to these hot keys, I noticed another improvement when I was searching today. After you do a search, at the bottom of the Refine Search box, there is a link to Start a new search. When you click on that, it offers you the choice of starting a new search of all Ancestry collections, starting a search of a particular collection (if you were doing a search within that particular collection), or searching the one database that you are in. 

I’ve been playing with these all day today and am finding them very helpful!

15 thoughts on “Ancestry New Search Offers “Hot Keys” and Search Refining Shortcut

  1. Yes the R is good because it overcomes the new search problem of having to click open each search box you want to change.

    The main problem with new search is fields available on old search are not there. In UK census the pull down county box is missing and the boxes for entering the census folio number etc.
    I’ve posted on Anne’s blog and I really hope is going to be fixed before it is the ONLY search.

    I have switched back to old search – please let us know when changes made to new search

  2. Oh please, do NOT make the new search the only search! Some of the data bases seem to be missing (or at least I can’t find them) and there are way too many hits on common names. When I try to be more specific, info does NOT come up that I know is there because I already found it with old search.

  3. PLEASE do NOT remove the Old Search. The UK records are hard to find with the new search programme. To omit a County is the same as omitting a State. Try searching for a village in the U.S. and not enter the State. Why do you insist on changing to a new system when the OLD is good? Spend the time on correcting the errors in transcription from the original records to the Index listings. That would be time and money well spent.


  4. Please do not remove the Old Search – I find both have their uses and so Ancestry is even more useful now!

  5. The New Search has some wonderful linking abilities, but the Old Search is absolutely essential. Please don’t abandon it or hide it “inside” the New Search! The previous comments are right on!

    While you’re working on Search, why not make it possible to access one particular database (the one you use most often, as in my case I use “Indiana Marriages 1800-1941”) without drilling down from the main search menu? I’d love a hotkey or a customized link for that!

  6. A report can’t be saved to Word Documents file or even copied and pasted to it. Sometimes my printer doesn’t like to print from FTM so this is a real problem. Told to save the report and put it on a CD or flash drive to print it from another computer. This is awkward, time consuming and not always possible.
    Still don’t like the opening image on FTM2009. The family sheet opening image on FTM2007 was much more useful and saved a lot of keystrokes in finding the field I want to work in.

  7. I have used Ancestry’s old search for at least 9 years.I find the new search hard to use and do not find what I want. The old search was fine. “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it”.

  8. Re: “Here’s how we’ve made searching Ancestry better than ever:” I am a senior citizen and my eyesight isn’t as good as it once was. I cannot make out the printing in green. The “black” print is gray. The instructions are small and difficult to read. How about making the instructions easier to read? I have been an member for many years. Every time I get comfortable with the current version, you change things. I don’t want to use the new version. I agree “If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!”

  9. PLEASE, I REPEAT, PLEASE DON’T DROP THE OLD SEARCH, The old search method is easier to understand, keeps the fields we need and is less confusing. Please and thank you.

  10. I use both searches, please don’t drop the old search…One is useful for certains searches and the other is also useful..thanks

  11. I depend on the old search for census and marriage records, but love the new search for newspaper articles. Please keep both.


  12. Please, Please, and Please do NOT remove the old search!

    I have to use too many mouse clicks in the new search compared to the old one. Also, I cannot quickly search by state for specific databases.

    “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it!”

    The only thing that could make the old search better, and is not available in the new search, is to be able to sort by a specific heading.


  13. Please don’t get rid of the old search, I have found many of my searches are not in the new one.

  14. To save a report, I chose Share and Export to RTF. This let me save it to my hard drive in Family Tree Maker Documents. When I opened it in Word, I did Save As a doc file. It’s cumbersome, but it works.
    I agree about the search – keep both!

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