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I've been using Legacy Family Tree Deluxe V5 for many years and wondered whether to change to something different/better/more modern.  A bit of browsing for freeware has pointed me towards Gramps (open source) or Family Tree Builder (not to be confused with Ancestry's discontinued Family Tree Maker).  Any experience out there of either of these?


Feel free to suggest other free programmes though I hesitate to ask "which is best" as we are naturally biased towards something that we have/use/like.  

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I have Family Tree Maker so I am pleased that it will continue to be supported and the addition of RootsMagic

Ancestry comments below may be useful.


Since our Family Tree Maker announcement last December, we have continued to actively explore ways to develop and support Family Tree Maker and ensure you have choices to preserve your work in ways that matter to you.

Today, I am pleased to announce two options for desktop software that will work with Ancestry.

Software MacKiev

Software MacKiev, with whom we have a long-standing relationship, is acquiring the Family Tree Maker software line as publisher for both Mac and Windows versions. Software MacKiev has been the developer of Family Tree Maker for Mac for more than six years and is thrilled at the opportunity to publish future versions of Family Tree Maker for Mac and Windows.

This new agreement means you will receive software updates and new versions from Software MacKiev, and have the ability to purchase new versions of Family Tree Maker from Software MacKiev as they are released. You will have continued access to Ancestry Hints, Ancestry searches, and be able to save your tree on Ancestry with Family Tree Maker moving forward.


We have made an agreement with RootsMagic, a leading genealogy desktop software program publisher, to connect Ancestry with the RootsMagic software by the end of 2016. With this new relationship, RootsMagic can serve as your desktop family tree software, while having access to Ancestry hints, Ancestry searches, and the ability to save your tree on Ancestry.

These new agreements will make it possible to preserve your work on Ancestry and Family Tree Maker, and enable future features and benefits to help you discover your family history. Be assured that Ancestry, in cooperation with Software MacKiev and RootsMagic, will continue to support you as you discover your family history.

We ask for your patience as we work diligently through all the details to make these solutions available. Be sure to check back here on our blog as we share more information about Family Tree Maker in the next few months.

For more information on Software MacKiev and RootsMagic, click below:

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I have used Brothers Keeper for nigh on twenty years without problem.  It's well supported and  new features are added when necessary.  And it's FREE!  (Although it costs you if you want a manual and email support, but I've never needed either.)

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One feature/capability I sought was to be able to view my data on a tablet/phone (Android, I don't do that there iStuff).  I've found that the free GedStar Pro app works well for this, though you have to convert your data file via a companion programme (GedStar Pro for Windows; used to be sold but is now also free).  The converter accepts the data file from Legacy (or The Master Genealogist) without having to export to GEDCOM which is a bonus for me (less likelihood of losing data).  If you're not using Legacy or The Master Genealogist the converter needs the ubiquitous GEDCOM file as its input.


With data now on my mobile devices, it looks like I'll stick with what I know for now (Legacy 5).

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