2011 Year in Review

2011 Year in Review

Is it December 31 already?  As has become an annual tradition here at RootsMagic, we’d like to take a few of the last remaining minutes of the year 2011 to review some of our accomplishments from the last 12 months with you, our users.  If you’re not one to dwell on the past, check back Monday as we present our 2012 New Years’ Resolutions with a peek at our plans for the coming year.  But until then, crowd on into the time machine (don’t worry, there’s plenty of room) as we journey back to January 2011.

Free Online Classes (Webinars)

RootsMagic Webinars

Beginning in January 2011, we pioneered the use of “webinars“, or free online classes, to help our users get the most out of our software.  Over the last 12 months, we’ve offered nearly 30 classes spanning over 30 hours of instruction to answer your questions and to teach you all the ins-and-outs of our software.  And the response has been phenomenal!  Our webinars have been viewed and downloaded hundreds of thousands of times from users in nearly every country on the globe.

And best of all?  All of our webinars are archived and still available, free of charge.  If you haven’t already taken advantage of this resource, don’t wait, pick a webinar on a topic that you’ve been curious about and watch it today!  No other genealogy software comes close to providing the level of support and training that we do.


This year brought the usual conference travel, but this time we wanted to give back a little to the genealogy community that has given us so much.

At the Southern California Jamboree in June we brought the experience of the Jamboree directly to you.  We sponsored free live streaming of some of the best known speakers in the industry right into your home, including Lisa Louise Cooke, Curt Witcher, David Lambert, Kory Meyerink, and Kerry Bartels.

RootsMagic Cyber Cafe at FGS 2011

And at the Federation of Genealogical Societies conference in Springfield, Illinois we sponsored the RootsMagic Cyber Cafe, the place to hang out, go online, charge a device, or print those syllabus pages you needed.

Personal Historian 2 and Personal Historian Essentials

This year saw not one, not two, but 3 new releases.  September brought the long-awaited release of Personal Historian 2, the latest version of our ground-breaking computer software which helps you write the story of your life and of other individuals.  Personal Historian 2 built upon its predecessor and added easier filtering and searching, an even better word processor, improved book publishing, and much more.  We also released a free “Essentials” version of the software to help people start recording their life stories.

RootsMagic 5

RootsMagic 5

We released regular free updates to our RootsMagic 4 software throughout the year.  And in November we released RootsMagic 5, the latest version of our award winning genealogy software.  RootsMagic 5 added a Timeline View, CountyCheck, Research Manager, “On This Day” List, Media Tagging, and much more.  In the short time since it’s release, RootsMagic 5 has already proven itself to be our best, most popular version of RootsMagic yet.  And the best is yet to come!


And for the 3rd straight year, we received the GeneAwards Best Genealogy Product of the Year.  “Several competing products saw major upgrades this year, but there is no better all-round desktop genealogy application“.

Thank You!

We say this every year, and we know this always sounds clichéd, but none of this would have been possible without you and your support.  2011 has been a huge year for us and, rest assured, we’re working hard to make 2012 even better!

RootsMagic 5 Updates

One of the new features we added in RootsMagic 5 is an on-screen indicator when a new update is available.  RootsMagic 5 will still notify you in the News screen which pops up when the program starts, but we discovered that a number of people turn that screen off so they don’t see when a new update is available (and end up contacting tech support about bugs that have long since been fixed).

But now RootsMagic will be able to notify you anytime there is an update available.  RM5 will display this indicator in the status bar at the bottom right of the program screen if there is a new update available.

Just click that indicator and RootsMagic will download and install that free update for you.  If you want to know what is fixed in the update, read on.

Where is the list of fixes?

We also used to post a blog article any time a minor update was released (along with a list of the items fixed).  The problem with that is that those fixes became scattered all over our blog and you weren’t able to easily find all the fixes in one place.  We have addressed this by putting a pinned topic up on our RootsMagic Forums (you *did* know we had forums, right)?  You will always be able to visit that topic to find out the latest version of the program, as well as what was fixed in each update.  Go to:


open the Announcements section (at the top) and you will find the “RootsMagic 5 Update History” right there at the top.