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Powered by Ancestral Quest

Have you ever wished your genealogy software would just do your research for you?

Introducing TreeTips, the research engine built into Ancestral Quest (AQ).

TreeTips takes advantage of technologies developed by four major web-based genealogy companies: FamilySearch, Findmypast, Ancestry.com and MyHeritage. As you enter the information you already know about your ancestors into Ancestral Quest, AQ will use the combined hinting services of FamilySearch and Findmypast, along with advanced searching of Ancestry.com and MyHeritage to search through over 30 billion records, and point you to a handful of records that most likely pertain to your ancestors. As you then enter what you learn from these records to extend and embellish your family tree, AQ will re-examine these 30 billion records for additional information, as you quickly and easily find new information to grow your family tree.

TreeTips won't completely do your research for you, but the reputation of these companies is stellar in showing mostly pertinent records, so you won't spend a lot of time examining non-related information. TreeTips will point you to ancestral records that beginners would be hard-pressed to find at all, and that even seasoned genealogists will be grateful for the help in locating.

TreeTips Features

  • Automatically locates research hints for you from FamilySearch and Findmypast!
  • Provides advanced searching of Ancestry.com and MyHeritage data records!
  • Checks over 30 billion records from 4 different databases!
  • Updates your screen for you when new hints are found!

It's Free!

TreeTips is one of the standard features in Ancestral Quest. You do not have to purchase an activation key for AQ to use most** of the features of TreeTips. If you don't already have a copy of Ancestral Quest, you can download the free Ancestral Quest Basics and build your family tree without charge from Incline Software. Learn more about Ancestral Quest Basics.

How it Works

As AQ finds records for you on one of the two hinting sites, it will show you an icon next to the name of the ancestor to whom the record relates. Simply hover your mouse over the icon to see how many records are available, and click on the icon to see actual records.

For Ancestry.com, simply click the Search link next to any name for which you'd like to find additional records, and for MyHeritage, simply select a name and activate the Internet Search for MyHeritage.

TreeTips is optional in AQ. You can activate or deactivate either or both of the hinting services, or the Ancestry.com search links. For MyHeritage, activate searches at will.

When active, AQ simply performs searches and displays hints for Findmypast. This is a fee-based service. It provide the hints for free, but you may have to pay a subscription to view the records.

The FamilySearch (FS) hinting is free*, but requires you to take a couple of steps yourself, as described below.

When asked, AQ provides an Ancestry.com search link next to each name. Simply click on the link to have Ancestry.com show you pertinent records, including those it supplies in its own hinting service. For MyHeritage, simply select a name and activate the MyHeritage search to have MyHeritage show you pertinent records from its vast collections.

Video iconWatch a video showing you how to get the most out of TreeTips!


More About the Hinting Services

FamilySearch (FS) is based in Utah, and has over 5 billion searchable records. FamilySearch hints are shared between all users of FS. To use the FS hints, you first need to take two actions:

  • You will need to have a free account with FamilySearch, and allow AQ to log into your account.
  • You will need to link your records to matching records on FS. If matching records already exists in FS, you simply link your records to the FS records. If matching records do not yet exist in FS, then you click a button to upload your records to FS, so that FS can begin scanning its billions of records for potential hints. (If you need to learn how to link your records, whether individually, as families or larger groups, please watch one of the tutorials.)

When you allow Ancestral Quest to log into your FS account, and you display your ancestral records that are linked to matching records on FS, AQ can retrieve hints for these records from FamilySearch.

Some older hints in FS have already been converted to sources and no longer show up as hints. So if you are trying to learn about an ancestor, you may want to also review the sources of that ancestor for links to additional research records.

Findmypast is based in England, and has nearly 3 billion searchable records, many of which are unique records of the British Isles. Findmypast hints will be especially useful if your ancestry reaches back into the British Isles.

More About Advanced Searching

Ancestry.com is based in Utah and has over 20 billion searchable records.

In 2001, a collaborative effort between Ancestry.com and Incline Software created an optional linkage in AQ wherein AQ would search for matching records on Ancestry.com, then display the number of compiled family trees, and the number of searchable records for each name on AQ's 'Pedigree' view. Over the years, this feature has evolved, so that now AQ will sometimes display these numbers, but other times simply provide a link to perform an advanced search for either the trees or searchable records. Simply turn on the Ancestry.com "links", then click the displayed links next to the name of an ancestor for whom you are researching, and AQ will generate an advanced search for that person in Ancestry.com. You'll be pleased with the quality of records that are made available to you.


MyHeritage is based in Israel and has over 6 billion searchable records, including historical records such as census records, birth, marriage and death records, and newspaper articles, along with online family trees which are hosted either on MyHeritage.com or on other websites that host family trees.

* FamilySearch provides hints, transcripts of records, and viewing of many records for free. However, we have observed that to view some records, you may have to pay a fee. Please visit the FamilySearch site for official information.

** The MyHeritage advanced searching is not available in the free Ancestral Quest Basics version.

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