Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Got my Family Tree Maker 2009 Invitation

I received the email from Ancestry telling me that

Family Tree Maker® 2009 is all yours.

We’re pleased to provide you with a FREE upgrade to the newest version of Family Tree Maker. Thank you for your patience, helpful comments and suggestions. We've come a long way over the last year, and we want you to enjoy all the latest additions and improvements at no cost.

The email provided my 8-digit unique coupon code needed during checkout to obtain the software for free. It is valid until 9 October 2008.

New features in Family Tree Maker 2009 include:

New Reports
* Genealogy reports (Register and Ahnentafel, both full and simplified)
* Data errors report
* Enhancements to many reports
New Charts
* Hourglass
* Vertical pedigree chart
* Horizontal hourglass chart
* Bow tie chart
* 180–degree fan chart
* Family tree chart
New Functionality within Publishing
* Book layouts for main charts
* Saved settings in charts/reports
* Saved templates in charts
* Ability to show siblings within charts
* Single page PDF export from charts
* Enhancements to the RTF export
* Ability to add boxes in charts to “Marked Box” category and modify box settings
* Preparer information in chart footers
Improved Data–Manipulation Tools
* Change place name tool
* Find–and–replace dialog
* Edit person dialog, streamlining data entry from any workspace
* Spouse order setting in the person menu
* Ability to set the media order on a person
* Find Individual Dialog
* Find Duplicate Person Dialog
* Fact Data Options Dialog that allows for:
** Ability to change fact types
** Ability to move description to place or place to description
** Ability to make information private
* Symbols in text fields
Improvements within Research tools
* Ability to ignore hints
* Option to delete existing facts in individual and web merge
* Inclusion of married name, AKA and titles in index
* Automatic simple backup at shutdown
Import Improvements
* OLE objects (PDF, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, RTF) from previous FTM versions
* Improved name parsing
* Import previously ignored hints lists
Place Improvements
* Place map toolbar that allows free text place searches
* Pinpoint places such as libraries, churches and courthouses
* Track — and print — your ancestors’ migration paths on interactive maps with the new Places timeline
Source Improvements
* Ability to copy and paste source–citations

And there are even more great features in the works.

You’ll get the following updates and more automatically as they become available:

* Book building
* Better member tree integration
* Improved relationship calculator
* Source templates based on Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills
* And many others

Now I'm wondering if I can use the same code twice - once for my desktop computer and once for my laptop computer. I'm also wondering if I can keep my current FTM 2008 version on my computer and have a separate FTM 2009 program so that I can do some comparisons between the two programs.

The free upgrade to from FTM 2008 to FTM 2009, and the free upgrades to FTM 2009 over time, are a really smart marketing move by TGN, IMHO. There's bound to be a run on discounted versions of FTM 2008 at and, among other sites. The marketing maxim of "offer something in the future for free and they will buy now" seems to apply here, doesn't it?


Anonymous said...


Have you managed to download it yet?
I am still getting that "Due to the high popularity of our FTM 2009 free upgrade offer, we are unable to fulfill your order at this time. Please check back later. Thank you, The Generations Network, Inc." message.

"Now I'm wondering if I can use the same code twice - once for my desktop computer and once for my laptop computer "
If it is like FTM 2008 you don't need a code for installation and could install it on all your computers.
That's the technical aspect, check the license for the legal part.

" I'm also wondering if I can keep my current FTM 2008 version on my computer and have a separate FTM 2009 program so that I can do some comparisons between the two programs."
Yes. It is a Microsoft .NET program. Microsoft .NET allows running multiple different versions of the same program. Just use different directories.
I expect it to default installation to a directory named "Family Tree Maker 2009" in which case you can just accept :-)
I will certainly be doing my 100k INDI import test to compare speed and check whether the import dialog box is honest about the import time now.

- Tamura

Thomas MacEntee said...

Hey Randy

I went and purchased FTM 2008 on Amazon last week based on your great series of posts. Although I had quite a difficult time with the install (it took me, an IT professional, three hours to install), it is working quite well.

If I get an invite to download FTM 2009 I will let you know how my experience goes.

Melissa Barker said...

Randy, I am wondering all the same things you are. Right now a lot of us are in limbo because their store was overwhelmed with so many people requesting the free upgrade that they have sent out an email saying that they will send out another email with another code and we have to 10-15-08 to get our free upgrade. We will see how this goes!

Melissa Barker

dbird said...

Received my copy of FTM 2009 and installed it just today.

License allows install on 2 computers, no more.

Install is in new directory, leaving FTM 2008 in it's own separate directory. However, the default install picks up the same data directory that FTM 2008 uses. You can change that in the options though.