Tools – Preferences – FamilySearch

How to – Preferences – FamilySearch

Preferences… are reached through the Tools tab on the Menu bar.

01 MenuBar

Clicking on Tools > Preferences… will present the Preferences screen. If it is not already showing, click on the FamilySearch tab.

02 FamilySearch

If you intend to sync your family information with the FamilySearch Family Tree database maintained by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, you must check the Enable FamilySearch features check box. If this box is left unchecked, the Familysearch tab on the Menu bar will not be presented.

03 MenuBar

This is the Menu bar with the Enable FamilySearch features box checked.

04 MenuBar

This is the Menu bar with the Enable FamilySearch features box unchecked. This check box also controls the presentation of the FamilySearch icons and the Temple icons.

05 Pedigree

This is the Pedigree view with the Enable FamilySearch features box checked.

06 Pedigree

This is the Pedigree view with the Enable FamilySearch features box unchecked.

The next check box is View LDS Ordinances when matching. This is unchecked by default, because ordinance dates are not useful in determining whether a match exists between your record and a FamilySearch Family Tree record. You may want to check this box if it is your intent to update ordinance information in your database while linking/syncing records.

The next check box is labeled Return to Review after syncing families and checking duplicates. If this box is not checked, you will be returned to the Pedigree view or the Family view, depending on where you began these functions, when they are completed. If this box is checked, you will return to the Review screen.

The next check box is labeled Show Options when Linking/Syncing individuals. If this box is checked, you will see the following screen after choosing to link your record to a FamilySearch Family Tree record.

07 LinkOnly

From this screen you can choose to link only or to manually review and selectively sync information. You can also choose to always use one of these options, and not see this screen again. If you should choose to always use one of these options, the only way to cause this screen to appear again is by checking the Show Options when Linking/Syncing individuals box.

The next check box controls automatic ordinance updating options.

08 Options

If you have checked Use LDS Data on the General preferences tab, there are two main reasons for tracking ordinance data in your local records. The first is to cause Ancestral Quest to accurately select which temple icon to show for each individual record. The icon with the blue check mark or the icon with the green arrow will be chosen based upon completeness of ordinances in your local record, not by completeness of ordinances on the temple records. The second reason is for historical accuracy. The historically accurate date for an ordinance is the date when it was originally performed, either as a live ordinance or vicariously, not when that ordinance is repeated by a family member.

09 Cache

Since caching is no longer used, there is no reason to maintain obsolete cache files on your hard drive. If Ancestral Quest indicates that they are present, click the Delete Cache button.

10 Tech

The next check box should be used as advised by technical support. It will help them to correct problems with your file or with Ancestral Quest.

The last box can be useful if  Tools > Database Check/Repair… shows excessive warnings.

Suggestions/Questions about AQ Will Do or Subjects discussed here? Leave a Comment.


  1. Dale, what a great idea for a blog–not only for AQ users now, but as your posts are accessed from your archives in future online searches.

    I found your blog today, thanks to GeneaBloggers. Best wishes as you continue your blogging.

    • Hi Jacqi
      This really is a blog for a small minority of blog readers. I appreciate your taking the time to look at it, and to comment favorably. Thanx.

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