Create Your Family Tree With Free Family.Show

Family.Show - Vertigo SoftwareThis one is for all you amateur and aspiring genealogists groovyReaders out there fascinated by dead people.  Granted I have to admit; I’m neither, yet the first time I loaded this Free Family Tree Mapping Application, 10 minutes turned into 3 hours!!!

What am I talking about you ask?  Well, a few years ago I stumbled across a free application called Family.Show by Vertigo Software.  Although a bit buggy with it’s first few releases, the latest version has proven to be just as addictive as the first release yet much more stable and includes many of the earlier missing features.  Again I repeat – Family.Show is a solid time vacuum.  You can easily sit down at your computer thinking to spend just a few minutes and before you know it, 3-4 hours have passed!  The fluid, simple, and elegant interface is a thing of beauty!

Installing Family.Show is very simple.  Just visit the download page and Click the Family.Show V3 Install Link.

Family.Show - Vertigo Software Download Link

I tested the One-Click-Install using Windows Vista and Windows 7.  If you have issues, you might need to install the Microsoft .Net Framework 3.5, found here – Download Link

Once the install completes, the launch window gives you simple options.  First-time users will want to start out with New which will let you start building a family tree from scratch.

Vertigo Family.Show - Create New File

Later, you can also share your saved Family.Show tree emailing it to family members to help finish it off, or use the Import/Export functions for use with GedCom compatible files (hardcore genealogists know what I’m talking about here I’m sure.)  The Export Function doesn’t appear on the launch page, but you’ll be able to access it later under GEDCOM from the menu.

Now back to Family.Show:  building a family tree starts with first creating your primary person, in most cases yourself.  From there you can add more relatives by using the drop menu under Create Relationship – Add Father, Add Mother, Brother, Sister, etc.  If you accidently enter the wrong information for a particular family member you can always come back later and adjust their details such as birth date, birth place, date of death, etc.  The program is VERY visual as you will notice from the very beginning.  It’s so intuitive you should be up and be running with little to no learning curve.

Vertigo Family.Show - Overview Review


For additional features, Click the Details Button to add even more data, or Click the Photos and Stories Vertigo Family.Show - Add PhotosButton to add Photos and Stories for each of your family members.  You can also Click the Expand button to get a complete list of all your Individual Family Members, Mass Edit their data, view the Name Cloud of Last Names and Click on them to filter, see Age Distributions,  and even birthdays!  All are clickable and act as a filter.

Vertigo Family.Show - Age Distributions

If anyone creates any unusual Family Trees, don’t hesitate to share them!  Would love to hear about and see the trees of you groovyReaders.  I’m sure you’re going to waste as much time have as much fun as I did creating my groovyFamily Tree!  ;)




  1. Masood

    December 14, 2009 at 12:04 am

    HI, nit very nice, however, I failed to notice in the software, print button and the export is not in any familiar extensions ie PDF, word or even JEPG. How the files can be exported to these formats and printed, please explain.

  2. MrGroove

    December 15, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    HI Masood,Yeah, that's one of the downsides of the application. There isn't a Print feature. That being said, on my Windows 7 box, I was able to Click Save -> Save to XPS.XPS is the new Microsoft PDF format. More info on that here: think XPS is built into Windows 7 and Vista so hopefully you can open it and print it.

  3. Rueben

    March 20, 2010 at 4:02 am

    Heredity: Everyone believes in it until their children act like fools!

  4. ann ashworth

    February 5, 2011 at 8:06 am

    groovy find, Mr Groove, groovy find :-)

  5. David Littlefair

    September 11, 2016 at 8:06 am

    Have you any tips on how to install this, I have downloaded and installed .net frameworkm but can`t find any set up things. I had this on another PC a few years ago and it was brilliant. Hope you can help.

  6. Fernando

    June 26, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Hi Steve I use Family Show to create my family tree but unfortunately when I upgrade my PC to WIN 10 I can’t open my .family files. Can you help me ? Thanks a lot. Best regards. Fernando

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