Home > Family Tree Maker 2017 FAQ

Family Tree Maker 2017 FAQ

Have questions about Family Tree Maker 2017?  Whether you have questions about purchasing or upgrading, product features and syncing, or the upcoming release, you've come to the right place!



Purchase Questions

Free Upgrade Information

USBs, Family Packs and Plugins

Product Details

TreeSync Retirement

Release Delay

Getting Further Information



Q: What will I pay for FTM 2017?

A: It depends.

FREE if you've bought a MacKiev edition. If you PAID for MacKiev FTM 2014.1 or Mac 3.1 the upgrade is free (click for more info).

At a discount if you've owned a previous edition. If you own an earlier edition you can pre-order a download for $29.95* from now until the release of FTM 2017, and for $39.95* after that.

Full price if you are newcomer. If you are buying Family Tree Maker for the first time, the download is $79.95*.

*All prices are in US dollars and for downloads. Copies on DVD and USB drives are also available.

Q: How do I get a link to the pre-order discount?

A: The offer is for those on the Family Tree Maker mailing list. So if you have not done so already, sign up for our mailing list at www.familytreemaker.com, and you will receive information on how to pre-order FTM 2017 right away.


Q: I'm new to Family Tree Maker. Can I still purchase FTM 2017 now?

A: Yes, you can order FTM 2014.1 or Mac 3.1 from our online store. (Go to www.familytreemaker.com and click the Store button at the top of the page). You will get the current FTM version right away and a free upgrade to FTM 2017 when it is released. And if you purchase the DVD or USB, we will wait to send you a copy with FTM 2017 on it, not the earlier editions.


Q: The product is not out, but my card has already been charged.  Why?

A: The main headline on the page you ordered from said this (see the picture below):

      Order the latest FTM download for $29.95 now, and get FTM 2017 for free when it’s released.

"Pre-ordering" literally means paying before the product is available. If you prefer not to have the pre-order discount price of $29.95, you may of course get a full refund immediately and pay the standard upgrade discount of $39.95 (vs. $79.95 full price) after the product is actually shipping.  If you want to do that, just go to Live Chat and they’d be happy to help you.


Q: My cost in the UK is £29.95 for the same download that costs $29.95 in the US.  Why does the UK one cost more?

A: It doesn't. The cost after adjusting for exchange rates and British VAT taxes is exactly the same. See the math below.



Q: How can I tell if I'm eligible for a free upgrade to FTM 2017?

A: It's simple. If you purchased a copy of MacKiev edition (FTM 2014.1 or Mac 3.1) for $29.95 or more then FTM 2017 is free. If you didn't, it's not. Note that buying the $10 CD, $14 USB or $20 Family Pack don't count. If you don't remember if you purchased a MacKiev edition, you can click here to go to our Verification Center (make sure that the email address you enter is the same one that you used when you purchased your MacKiev edition).


Q: Does paying for a backup CD qualify me to get a free upgrade?

A: No. By itself, buying a CD, DVD, USB drive or a Family Pack Upgrade does not qualify you for a free upgrade to FTM 2017. Only a purchase of a MacKiev edition (FTM 2014.1 or Mac 3.1) for $29.95 or more qualifies.


Q: Do I need to "pre-order" in some way if I am qualified for a free upgrade?

A: No. You do not need to do anything. You will get an email as soon as we release FTM 2017 with instructions for downloading your free copy of FTM 2017.



Q: What is in the optional FTM 2017 USB drive?

A: The natural wood USB drive contains a Mac installer and a Windows installer of FTM 2017. It also contains 2 GB of storage which is handy for moving trees from one computer to another. And a complete set of conversion tools that would allow you to open literally every Family Tree Maker tree file ever created, all the way back to version 1.0 that came on floppy discs in 1989.


Q: I bought one of those wooden FTM flash drives with FTM 2014.1. Can I convert that to FTM 2017 somehow?

A: Yes. Just order the FTM 2017 download and you will be able to swap the new installer for the old one on the USB drive (or keep them both if you like, there’s plenty of room). We will have a support article with step by step instructions on how to do that when FTM 2017 is released.


Q: If I've already purchased a Family Pack Upgrade for a MacKiev edition, do I need to buy it again?

A: No. Family Pack Upgrades purchased for earlier MacKiev editions of Family Tree Maker (FTM 2014.1 and Mac 3.1) are valid for FTM 2017 too. That is, when you obtain a single license for FTM 2017, you don’t need to purchase a Family Pack extension for multiple users and computers.


Q: How can I tell if I need to purchase a Family Pack Upgrade?

A: You need a Family Pack Upgrade only if a) there's more than one computer in your home, AND b) there's more than one FTM user there. So for example, if you are the only FTM user in your home, you can have FTM on your PC desktop computer and your Mac laptop and will not need a Family Pack license. Note that platform doesn't matter now that the Mac and Windows editions are equivalent, and both a Mac and a Windows installer are included with all versions (including downloads, discs and USB drives).


Q: Are Charting Companion and Family Book Creator being updated for FTM 2017?

A: Yes, both plugins have been updated by their publishers and they will each making free updates available when FTM 2017 is released. Please note that these plugins only work with the Windows version so far, though we have implemented the same plug-in architecture on Mac and are working with our plugin publishers to make Mac editions available in the future. Click here for Charting Companion and click here for Family Book Creator.



Q: Is there a Mac edition?

A: Yes, FTM 2017 is for both Mac and Windows. We have caught the Mac edition up to the Windows one in features so we can use just one name for both platforms from now on.


Q: When I pre-order FTM 2017, where do I choose whether I'm getting the Mac or Windows version? If I use both Mac and Windows, do I need to choose one version or buy both?

A: No need to choose! When FTM 2017 is released, downloads will come with separate Mac and Windows links so you will only download the edition appropriate for your operating system. DVDs and USB drives will come with both -- an installer for Mac and an installer for Windows.


Q: Will FTM 2017 work on the same operating systems as FTM 2014?

A: We have updated system requirements for both PC and Mac. For PC, Windows 7 and later are fully supported, including Windows 10. FTM 2017 will not launch on Windows Vista or Windows XP. For Mac users, macOS 10.9 and later, including 10.12 Sierra are supported. FTM 2017 will no longer launch on mac OS 10.8 or earlier.


Q: Do I need to have a previous version installed in order to upgrade to FTM 2017?

A: No. Each user will be getting a personalized installer link, installer and application that identifies them so having a previous edition installed will not be required.


Q: If I buy FTM 2017 do I need to download and install it right away when it's released?

A: You can download and install FTM 2017 any time you like.  So it's fine to purchase now to take advantage of the pre-order prices, and download only when you are ready to install it, whenever that is, even if it's quite some time from now. If you wait so long that the link has expired, we will be happy to reset it for you.


Q: Will there be country editions of FTM 2017?

A: Yes, though they are all built into the same product. You will choose your country edition during installation: US, UK, Canadian or Australian, which should be the country that you would like to be first in the search order


Q: Should I do anything with my trees to prepare for FTM 2017?

A: We only recommend that you make a full back up (File>Backup) of your tree, which can be copied to an external disc drive or to a cloud storage provider like Dropbox. For detailed instructions on making a full backup, please click here for Windows or click here for Mac.



Q: Why did MacKiev shut off our syncing?

A: We didn’t.  That would be Ancestry’s TreeSync, which was retired on March 29th.  Actually it was supposed to be retired much sooner, at the end of December 2016, but they agreed to keep it on longer so there would not be a huge gap of many months in syncing availability.


Q: Why didn’t you test your software before syncing was shut off?

A: We did.  Extensively.  But the final testing could only be done once our new FamilySync technology was deployed on March 30th, right after TreeSync was retired.  We had very much hoped that everything would “just work”, but obviously it didn’t work out that way and we are working as quickly as we can to make the transition safe and smooth.


Q: Why didn’t we get notice about this in advance?

A: You should have.  Ancestry announced that TreeSync would be retired in December 2016, and it has been written about extensively since then.  Ancestry made a final blog post about it on March 20th, and we did a mailing to everyone on our mailing lists on March 25th.  We have also posted about it in Facebook groups.


Q: It was announced that all connections to Ancestry would be shut off on March 29th but hints, search, merge and other functions are still on.  Why?

A: In our final meeting before TreeSync was turned off, we discussed the topic with Ancestry and they agreed to leave on as many services as possible until we shipped, so that FTM users could continue their research while waiting for the new edition.  As it turned out, only syncing was interrupted and all other systems are still on.  They will be turned off only when our new edition ships.



Q: Why have you not been keeping us up to date on the release delay?

A: We have.  Perhaps you have missed them?  We posted on Facebook and on our support site just after midnight on March 31st that we had found issues that we wanted to check out before releasing.  We then emailed on April 2nd to everyone who had pre-ordered the product to let them know about the delay.  We have since made further updates, and you can find them on our support site here: https://support.mackiev.com/498640-RELEASE-OF-FTM-2017


Q: So what’s the reason for the current delay?

A: In testing conducted with Ancestry this past Monday using computer-generated trees, the results caused concern about the ability of the new system to handle a rush of users on release.  Both Ancestry and our company are working actively to address those concerns so that we can have a safe and secure launch.


Q: Can’t Ancestry just turn syncing back on while we are waiting?

A: No.  We couldn’t test the FamilySync system while TreeSync was still running and we still couldn’t. So TreeSync has to remain off while we prepare FamilySync for release.


Q: Does Ancestry just not have enough capacity?

A: Ancestry has plenty of capacity. The constriction is in the gateway between Family Tree Maker and Ancestry’s servers.  That’s what keeps the data of Ancestry trees safe.  Ancestry has now modified the architecture to make sure that there are no issues on release.



Q: How can I stay up to date on news about Family Tree Maker 2017?

A: Sign up for the Family Tree Maker mailing list at www.familytreemaker.com to make sure you are notified about everything regarding the transition to FTM 2017.


Q: What’s the best way to get answers to my questions about Family Tree Maker?

A:  Go to support.familytreemaker.com.  There is an extensive set of support articles - enter “FTM 2017" in the search field.


Q: What if I need to talk to someone and ask questions?

A: We have a live chat service available seven days a week. Just go to support.familytreemaker.com and enter "Live Chat" in the search field.  The article that appears has a direct link to start a chat, and a table showing the hours that live chat is available where you live.


Q: I sent an email and it’s been a week and I haven’t heard back. What should I do?

A: Start a live chat and get an answer right away.

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