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I'm currently using Reunion 9, but it annoys me enough that I keep looking for alternatives, including online options. Unfortunately, Reunion seems to implement more of my "must haves" than any of the other options I've looked at.

I want to like MacFamilyTree. I actually started with it but found it too limiting. The new photo tagging stuff in 5.6 is nice though. My biggest gripe against it are that it won't import my Reunion gedcom file without throwing away data. All my custom formatted sources lose most of their data and any tags it doesn't understand are ignored. Throwing away data is an unforgivable act. At least put it into some note field so I can deal with it. Still, the program seems to be evolving quickly and I'd like for it to win me back.

I love Reunion's ability to customize events but the single window with modal dialog approach to editing is awfully cumbersome and since everything is driven from the family group window, adding the same source or photo to multiple people is tedious. But it works, it's been reliable. It just irritates me.

I'd love the ability to geocode events (and make use of geocoded photos) as well as face tagging but until an app gets the genealogy right and has robust gedcom handling, it doesn't matter.

I've tried demos of a couple of other programs including some windows apps, but nothing has encouraged me to switch.

What apps are the rest of you using?

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Replies to This Discussion

I moved over to Mac a year ago and continued to use Legacy 7 via Fusion until a few months ago when I just got tired of having to load up Vista via Fusion to run Legacy. I started to look at all the Mac options and found Reunion to be by far the best. We should keep in mind that Reunion 9 is a little "old" now and some features offered by windows programs (i.e. mapping) is not available yet in Reunion. However, I am sure that Reunion 10 is in the works and will be great when it appears.

I do have to say that Reunions ability to sync with the iPhone/iPod Touch is a fantastic and much under praised feature (sure you have to buy the iphone application in addition to Reunion but it is so worth it). It is also much better than Mac Family Tree's iPhone utility.
I use Reunion 9 and PAW II on my Mac. PAW II is a lot like the old PAF that we used on Mac.

If anyone has been using PAF for Macintosh and disappointed that the LDS is no longer supporting PAF, then check out Howard Metcalfe Personal Ancestry Writer II also known as PAWriter II. He has one version for Mac OS 8.6/9.x and one for Mac OS X. It combines most of the features of the LDS Personal Ancestral File program for the Macintosh (for which all development stopped a few years ago after release 2.3.1.) Please visit and then look on the left hand side and click *PAWriter II (Mac OS).
I use GEDitCOMII. It's a new release and worth a look. It gives you a month's free trial and reportedly is the software most rigourous in maintaining gedcom integrity in file transfers.
MacFamilyTree version 5.6 lets you look up locations for events and then integrates with Google Earth.
I've been using iFamily for the past two years. It's one downside, in my opinion, is its lack of report options. I also downloaded Personal Ancestry Writer II (a free download) which will print ahnentafel and register reports from iFamily gedcoms. The combination gives me everything I feel I need.

I tried the demos for iFamily, Reunion and MacFamilyTree, and while the report and chart options for Reunion were very eyecatching, I didn't feel it was enough to justify spending three times as much initially, and even more with each upgrade. While I found I liked iFamily's user interface the best, iFamily's inexpensive price, with promise of no future upgrade charges, was also a key feature. It might not be important to everyone.

Unfortunately, Keith Wilson, the developer behind iFamily, passed away last November. His son, Warwick, took over, but there have been no updates since then. Recent posts in the iFamily forum suggest there may be some updates soon, it's just taken some time for the son to learn and understand the whole code.

Hi John, Do you know of any resources linked to Paw? I started using it two days ago and find it a bit unwieldily. It is very useful because you can download GEDCOMs from Family Search and import them to PAW. But dealing with large amounts of data proves trying. Is this your experience too?

I switched to a Mac about 6-months ago, but still have not decided on a software application. I used Family Tree Maker v16 on my PC and do not want to run it on MacBook Pro (cost would be about $300 for Parallels/Windows/FTM). I am currently using the online service from and love its well documented databases and source data. I've not found a Mac software application that has a web integration capability like Family Tree Maker or Roots Magic with--a capability I really like since I'm not fond of retyping source citations.

- Are their any Mac applications that have a robust web integration with
- How does the GEDCOM download/upload capability work?
- Are their any known anomalies or incompatibilities with either Reunion or other Mac based software?
- Any recommendations for managing media between an online service and software?






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