Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Getting Family Tree Maker 2012 Help

I presented a two-hour Family Tree Maker 2012 Workshop last Saturday to a fine group of Chula Vista Genealogical Society members and guests.  Part of my presentation was visiting all of the "Help" websites that I know about in the online world.

As users of genealogy software, we often forget that there are large communities of users for our software programs that may have experienced, and probably solved, the issues and problems that we experience in our daily use of the product.

These Help websites for Family Tree Maker genealogy software include:

*  Family Tree Maker Website –

*  FamilyTreeMaker Learning Center (Free) –

*  FamilyTreeMaker Online Knowledge Base (Free):

*  FamilyTreeMaker User Message Boards (Free) –

*  FamilyTreeMaker Help Mailing List (Free):

*  FamilyTreeMaker Technology Mailing List (Free):

*  FamilyTreeMaker User Blog (Free, by Russ Worthington):

*  Of course, the most immediate Help can be obtained by using the "Help" menu item in the software itself.  The "Help" button is our best friend when we have a question or a problem using the software.

The rest of my presentation dealt with the seven different workspaces in FTM 2012; how to enter names, dates, places, facts, notes, sources, media;  merging, attaching, unlinking, and deleting persons; navigation within FTM 2012; importing a GEDCOM, exporting a GEDCOM, and syncing with an Ancestry Member Tree; using the source templates; creating reports, books and charts; and so on. 

The one comment I heard loud and clear:  "Family Tree Maker has sure changed over the years!"

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver


Keith Riggle said...

You also call Ancestry's toll-free number 1-800-262-3787 or email They haven't always been able to help me, but they always try.

Cousin Russ said...


Thanks for the mention.

I recently added a Tab on my blog called Training Resources, for anyone interested. I watch for YouTube, Webinar, and other presentations on FTM2012.

The Help / Support for Family Tree Maker HAS greatly improved over the years.

For me, the BEST place to start is in the Help Menu of the program. The Help, within the program, is based on where you are in the program. So, use the Help first, then proceed to the Online Help Center, which will take you to the Knowledge Base website.

The keyword search on the KB website is great, but the trick is to use a one or two word keyword search. CRASH for example.

Would have liked being able to see your presentation. I am about to give one myself.

Great job !!!