RootsWeb Has Problems Again

Many of the web pages on RootsWeb have stopped working. Today, the following message is displayed at http://home.rootsweb.ancestry.com:
As you know, RootsWeb is a collection of products that has grown organically over the last two decades. Many of these have not been updated or maintained in years. Ancestry is currently working on updating and revising World Connect, Mailing Lists, and hosted sites such as Free Pages over the next twelve months; however, all other products and functionality are under review. We will continue to notify you of updates here as decisions are made.

Many of the web pages on RootsWeb have stopped working. Today, the following message is displayed at http://home.rootsweb.ancestry.com:

As you know, RootsWeb is a collection of products that has grown organically over the last two decades. Many of these have not been updated or maintained in years. Ancestry is currently working on updating and revising World Connect, Mailing Lists, and hosted sites such as Free Pages over the next twelve months; however, all other products and functionality are under review. We will continue to notify you of updates here as decisions are made.

24 Comments

I hope Ancestry doesn’t disable the U. S. Town/County Database. I use that several times a month to find the county where the town currently resides. It is a big time saver for me.

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Thanks, Dick, for these links.

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RootsWeb was one of the earliest genealogy data sites on the internet. The information that has been posted on those sites is still very valuable and I refer to them often. I hope Ancestry does not change the format too much, or heaven forbid do away with the data!

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I’ve spent a great deal of time with RootsWeb almost since they came into being, when a man and a woman took care of *all* the business 24/7 (pretty much). It’s been a great place for me to share my tree (in WorldConnect) for most of that time. I’ve been amazed at how many people have commented on how helpful that tree has been to them; they’ve also been willing to share with me. I update it every month or so.

But there’s a quick, simple way to get current county names for current towns or cities: just Google the town or city with the name of the state. Almost invariably good information comes up, as well as a summary with a photo of the place, to the right side of the page. Quick, easy, and most often very useful.

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I wish they would contact Brian Leverich and Karen Isaacson who were the originators of Rootsweb and see if they could offer suggestions.

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I used “Gen Forum” and US Gen Web for years and now they are gone or almost useless. Also Family Search has gotten so complex I even have a problem using that site so Ancestry has become my default “go to” for genealogy searching. Rootsweb may just go the way of the USGen Web–there but just not the same site as intended.

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Freepages is probably on borrowed time. The ability to administer one’s files was eliminated about two months ago (without warning) so what’s there now is what will be there until they eliminate them.

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What about the disaster with FTM?
It has been about a year and their sync is still not functioning properly.

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I moved any sites that were on Rootsweb last year when the site was down for weeks, and when it returned, they were all messed up. There are many USGenWeb affiliated sites still there (were there?). Ancestry started gutting Rootsweb almost as soon as they acquired it. The only question in my mind now is when will it become permanently kaput.

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I update my Freepages all the time. Just use a free FTP.

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    Thanks Maureen. I’ll have to learn how to do that. The management console made it easier to know what I had. Does the free FTP tool help with that?

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    What is a free FTP please?

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    —> What is a free FTP please?

    FTP is an abbreviation for “File Transfer Protocol,” a method of sending files from one computer to another. Its most common use is for sending files from your personal computer to a server someplace or for going in the other direction: sending files from a server to your computer. Details may be found in many places, including in Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File_Transfer_Protocol

    There are many different FTP program available for Windows, Macintosh, Linux, Chromebooks, tablet computers, and even for handheld “smartphones.” Many of the FTP programs are available free of charge, hence the term “Free FTP.”

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Remember what happened to genealogy.com when Ancestry got hold of it?

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I edit Freepages and then upload them using FireFTP which is an Add-on to my Firefox browser. It’s easy and you can send a lot of files at once. You can also download them if you need to. Rootsweb recommended some free FTP programs which are probably similar. You see the target directory listing in alphabetical order as usual.

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I haven’t been able to get on WorldConnect for well over a year. I receive a computer message that tells me the site timed out. And the problem is with Ancestry’s site, not with my computer or WiFi.

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WorldConnect has been extremely valuable to my research for many years. Further, it has been easier to update my data there with monthly Gedcom updates. Once when my computer crashed, I was easily able to download my recent Gedcom vs. retrieving it from other backup sources I also use. I so hope Ancestry maintains it!

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WorldConnect has been an excellent source for genealogy and I,too, hope it is not scrapped. I personally have little confidence in Ancestry.com

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It’s a rare occurrence the past five years for me to use anything but Google in my genealogy searches. It’s saved me tons of money and time. I’ve been researching since 1990.

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