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Revision History

Version 2.9w Released 9 Jan 2018

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Version 2.9w adds the following new capability over version 2.9v:

  • Cosmetic changes and bug fixes.

This is a FREE upgrade to existing customers.


Previous Releases

(Download by clicking on revision. These versions are not maintained.)


2.9u (17 Mar 2016)

  • The download file has been 'signed' with a renewed software certificate. This should make the download more secure, and will avoid some of the alarming warnings issued by Internet Explorer, and other browsers.
  • Normally AA does not support the UTF-8 character encoding in GEDCOM files, even though the GEDCOM standard allows UTF-8 encodings. Instead, AA supports the ANSI (ISO-Latin-1) character encoding. GEDCOMs that contain foreign character sets (Chinese, Farsi, Thai, etc) must be encoded in UTF-8; but Western character sets (English, most European languages) do not require UTF-8; ANSI is sufficient.

    Some genealogy programs export UTF-8 encoded GEDCOM files anyway, even if ANSI would be sufficient. AA can usually handle these GEDCOM files, as long as the characters are standard ISO-Latin-1. Sometimes, though, non ISO-Latin-1 characters will sneak in. AA will now convert these to ISO-Latin-1 whenever there is an equivalent.

2.9t (8 Jan 2016)

  • Cosmetic updates and bug fixes.

2.9q (19 Feb 2015)

  • Added checks for unsupported GEDCOM character sets.

  • Increased the maximum number of GEDCOM errors that are tolerated before AA refuses to read the rest of the GEDCOM.

  • Fixed several bugs.

2.9o (5 Jan 2014)

  • A new GEDCOM option has been added to control the treatment of CONT text records. In previous versions of AA, the text in CONT records was placed on the same line as the text from a previous record (CONT, CONC, NOTE); it was wrapped to the new line only if the end of the current line had been reached.

    The new option forces the text from CONT records to be placed on a new line. This approach aligns with the GEDCOM 5.5 standard. 

    To choose the new option, press the OPTIONS button, select the GEDCOM tab, and check the "Check here to force newlines CONT." box.

  • Increased maximum number of images that can be embedded in the PDF document from 1000 to 5000.

  • Added support for the GEDCOM RESI tag. Residence information is now output for each individual in the report.

  • Added support for the GEDCOM ADDR tag. Residence, Census, and other GEDCOM attributes will now include address information.

  • A bug related to date formats has been fixed. Dates of the form
    "FROM date1 TO date2" were incorrectly reported as "FROM date1 ABOUT date2". This has been fixed.

  • Several additional bugs have been fixed.

Version 2.9d (3 Jan 2012)

  • Maximum number of hyperlinks has been increased from 1.5 million to 4.5 million. The page limit has increased from 24,000 to 72,000.

  • The GEDCOM reading speed is no much faster.

  • Ported to Windows 64-bit operating systems. The 64-bit version of AA is automatically installed on 64-bit versions of Windows, and will process much larger GEDCOM files than the standard 32-bit version of AA.

    To see if you are running the 64-bit version of AA, press the ABOUT button. You should see the following version string:

    Ancestral Author 2.9d - 64 bit

In addition, the following bugs have been fixed:

  • Fixed a crash that occurred if the root of the descendant report was not found.

2.9b (13 Feb 2011)

Version 2.9b fixes a bug with Descendant Report generation counting. The "Number of Generations" field was not being processed correctly.

Version 2.9a added the following new capability over version 2.8h:

  • Maximum number of hyperlinks has been increased from 150,000 to 1.5 million;  and the page limit has been increased  from 12,000 to 24,000

  • File names in AA scripts can now be stored in relative format, so all files can be moved to another folder, another drive, or another computer without having to change file names in the script. Press OPTIONS, then select the FILE PATHS tab.

2.8h (3 Jan 2010)

Version 2.8h adds the following new capability:

  • Page breaks can now be inserted before generation headers in ancestor reports.

Version 2.8f fixes a bug whereby dates with the GEDCOM BEF and AFT qualifiers were not sorted correctly. For example, AA would not have put the following two dates in correct order: after 1936, before 1924.

Version 2.8e adds the additional new capabilities:

  • Vital dates, notes, and other information about children are now optionally included in Ancestor reports. In previous revisions, only the optional birth and death dates were recorded for children. Select "Children" in the "Ancestor Report" dialog, then select "Include Selected Items". The items selected for the report will be included for children, as well as ancestors in the direct line. 
  • Alias names sometimes had forward slash characters around the last name (e.g. /Johnson/). The slashes have been removed.

Version 2.8a adds the following new capabilities:

  • Support has been added for the GEDCOM INDI.ALIA tag. Alias names are now displayed in descendant and ancestor reports. Note that a new keywords.txt file entry has been added for alias.
  • Children and spouses are now chronologically sorted. Press the OPTIONS button on the opening dialog, then select the "Sorting Dates" tab.
  • Support for the GEDCOM INDI.DEAT.CAUS tag has been added. Cause of death is now displayed in descendant and ancestor reports. Note that a new keywords.txt file entry has been added for cause of death.
  • The starting page number, which had previously been 1, can now be changed. This is especially handy if the PDF file produced by AA is to be appended or inserted into the middle of another document. Press the OPTIONS button on the opening dialog, then select the "Start Page" tab.
  • Support has been added for the processing of unmarried couples. Press the OPTIONS button on the opening dialog, then select the GEDCOM tab. Help for the "MARR Tag Processing" box will explain how to use the new feature.
  • Note that the keywords.txt file has changed with this release. If you have modified the keywords.txt file, you'll need to add to it the new entries in <install dir>/samples/keywords/keywords.txt
  • Several bugs have been fixed, including a bug related to drag and drop on files that have parenthesis in their names.

2.7a (11 Nov 2006)

Version 2.7 added support for the Windows Vista operating system.

2.6m (11 Nov 2006)

Version 2.6 added the following new capabilities:
  • Added support for "Blended Families", i.e. showing children from previous or subsequent marriages. This is handy for showing step children in families whose parents have been married more than once. Press the OPTIONS button on the Ancestor or Descendant Report dialog boxes, and select the "Blended Families" tab.
  • Drag and Drop GEDCOM browsing has been improved. All individuals are now output to the PDF file, and are fully hyperlinked. In previous releases, only direct descendants of the person with the largest number of descendants (i.e. the "greatest ancestor") were output to the PDF file. As a result, many individuals in the GEDCOM were left out of the PDF report, including spouses and collateral lines. AA 2.6 rectifies  this situation, resulting in a PDF file that shows ALL the individuals in the GEDCOM.
  • Full size page images (e.g. 8.5 x 11 inches) are now supported. AA will not shrink the image to fit the margins. This is very handy for images that occupy an entire page, and are meant to replace the page. For example, scanned images of formatted text - tables, lists, etc - can be directly imported onto a page. On the import text and images dialog, choose the "Full Page" image location.
  • Added the capability to suppress the borders on the title page. This is not yet part of the Ancestral Author Wizard; you'll have to manually add the SUPPRESS: BORDERS option to the title page script statement. For example:

    (TITLE "Test of Suppressed Borders" SUPPRESS: BORDERS)

2.5i (18 Jan 2006)

Version 2.5 added the following new capabilities:
  • Ability to choose alternate page sizes (LEGAL, LETTER, A4, A5, A6, B4, B5).
  • Support for single column name index as an alternative to the double column name index that is currently supported.
  • Support for divorce records (GEDCOM DIV tag).
  • Added "FILE SAVE" operations. To access the "FILE SAVE" pop-up menu, right click on the AA starting dialog.
  • Added support for Title, Byline, and Header wrapping. It is no longer necessary to use forward slashes (/) to force multiline headings. If no forward slashes are present, AA will automatically wrap the headings to fit on the page.

2.4t (8 Aug 2005)

Version 2.4 added the following new capabilities:
  • Simplified "quick start" tutorial to help new users get started quickly.
  • Support for lowercase Dutch surname prefixes (van, van der, etc).
  • Ancestor (Ahnentafel) Reports.
  • Support has been added for family census records.
  • The page limit has been increased from 5000 to 12000.
  • The maximum number of generations has been increased from 128 to 512.
  • On Windows/XP, images are visible in the browse dialog. This is particularly handy when you're browsing for title page graphics, or when you're importing pictures.
  • "< Begin" and "End >" buttons have been added to jump quickly to the beginning or end of a long script.
  • Education records (GEDCOM EDUC tag) are now output to the PDF file.
  • Christening records (GEDCOM CHR tag) are now output to the PDF file.
  • Reference numbers (GEDCOM REFN tag) can now be output to the PDF file. Press the OPTIONS button, then choose the Reference Number tab.
  • Added support for Family Tree Maker v11.0 style source citations.
  • Added support for GEDCOM 'date phrases'; i.e.dates that don't strictly match the GEDCOM spec, and are enclosed in parenthesis. These are output by FamilyHistorian.
  • The default keywords for 'born', 'buried', and 'died' have been changed from 'b.', 'bur.', and 'd.' to 'born', 'buried', and 'died'. If you prefer the old abbreviations, you can send an email to support@ancestralauthor.com, and we will help you revert back to the old forms.

2.3k (5 Nov 2004)

Version 2.3 added support for more GEDCOM tags, resulting in more information from the GEDCOM being transferred to the PDF file. Specifically 2.3 adds the following new features to Ancestral Author:

  • Occupation, Religion, and Census records are now output to the PDF file.
  • Up to 10 sources per event (such as birth, marriage, death dates, etc) are now output to the PDF file. Previous versions output only a single source per event, even if the GEDCOM had multiple sources.
  • Notes associated with events in the GEDCOM file are output to the "Sources and Endnotes" section of the PDF file. In earlier versions of AA, these notes were ignored.
  • Additional source information is output to the PDF file. Sources attached to a GEDCOM individual (INDI) record are now processed and output, as are sources attached to a GEDCOM name record.
  • Family/Marriage notes are now output to the PDF file. In previous versions of AA, they have been ignored.
  • Spousal notes for children are now output. In previous versions of AA, the spouse notes for a child would not be output if the couple had no children.
  • Comment lines can now be added to script files, making hand editted script files easier to read. Comment lines must start with a vertical bar '|' followed by a space.
  • The hyperlink limit has been increased from 60,000 to 150,000.
  • Fixed a number of small bugs and usability issues.
  • This release is a free upgrade to existing customers. Just download the new version, and install. No need to reenter the registration code.

2.2d (2 May 2004)

Version 2.2 added the following new features to Ancestral Author:
  • Improved support for Table of Contents, including automatic wrapping of long TOC entries, and preservation of zoom level when following a TOC entry link.
  • The ability to select fonts, and to control the size of the fonts. By making the font smaller, you can reduce the number of pages in your document. By making them larger, you can increase the readability. Times Roman, Courier, and Helvetica fonts are supported in this release. Bold, Italic, and/or underlined fonts can be used on the title page.
  • The ability to independently control the right and left margin sizes. With this feature, you can increase the left margin to make room for binding your book. Alternating margins are supported for double sided documents.
  • Added a RESTART button. It is no longer necessary to exit Ancestral Author to rerun the wizard. This makes it easier to experiment with different fonts, margins, and settings.
  • Added support for top of page images after a Level 2 header. If a page begins with a Level 1 and/or Level 2 header, you can place an image in the upper right, upper center, or upper left of the page without forcing a page eject.
  • Fixed a number of small bugs and usability issues.
  • This release is a free upgrade to existing customers. Just download the new version, and install. No need to reenter the registration code.