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Making a tree with Family Tree Maker vs. Ancestry

Making a tree with Family Tree Maker vs. Ancestry

Answer ID 5431
What are the advantages of making a tree with Family Tree Maker vs. Ancestry?

As you begin your genealogical research, you may be wondering where to start your family tree. With Ancestry, you have options! We offer an online tree builder at Ancestry, a software package called Family Tree Maker, and with the release of Family Tree Maker 2012-2014 you now can combine the strengths of each tree building interface with the exciting TreeSync feature.

You can choose any of these methods to document your family’s history. The following table lists the strengths of Online Ancestry Member Trees and Family Tree Maker Trees to help you differentiate between the two.


Strengths of Ancestry Member Trees Strengths of Family Tree Maker Trees
  1. Easy to share with others
  2. No extra software installation required
  3. Access your tree from any computer with an Internet connection
  4. Includes specific features
    • DNA results
    • Photo tags
    • Web links
  5. Comment on other trees, photos, and records
  6. Save records to a Shoebox for later review
  1. No Internet connection is required
  2. Tree & data interaction is much quicker (no need to wait for a webpage to load)
  3. Easy access to desktop devices (such as scanners and printers)
  4. Includes powerful features
    • Merge (duplicate people, files, etc.)
    • Find & replace throughout your entire family file
    • Spell checker
    • Many customizable charts,reports, books, as well as other printing options
    • Source Templates
    • Task & research management
    • Place name resolution
    • Media categories & organization
    • All data (including source record images) is saved on your computer
  5. Training Tutorials accessible through the Help menu

Because each system has its advantages, the best solution is one that gives you the features of both. Family Tree Maker with TreeSync allows you to have your tree on your desktop AND online. You can work on your tree through Ancestry on any computer with an internet connection, as well as work on your tree on your personal computer through Family Tree Maker, and any changes you make via one interface will be synchronized to your tree in the other. To learn more about the TreeSync feature of Family Tree Maker, please see the following articles:

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