Feature request: Initial TreeSync option - disable media download

I would like to have the option, for initial TreeSync download, to disable media downloads, so that I can (a) avoid the duplication of media I already store and (b) avoid having to manually delete the media download after-the-fact.

Acceptance criteria:

  1. Boolean toggle is provided to enable / disable media download on the initial TreeSync login / setup screen.
  2. If disabled, the application will download all person ‘facts’, etc but will not download media such as image gallery content, source images etc. The RootsMagic media gallery will be empty.
  3. Option to download enabled by default, since my ‘disabled’ case is probably the minority. I don’t mind one extra click to turn it off.


I already have all the media downloaded for my tree, stored on my Google drive and arranged with category subfolders (see screencap). I also create my RootsMagic tree file in a Google drive location. This accomplishes a couple of important things for me: (1) Media is stored in an orderly manner, easy to use and manage, (2) everything is automatically backed up through Google Drive sync, protecting my efforts.

The current RM TreeSync is disruptive, for me, for the following reasons: (1) The media download causes a duplicate set to be stored on Google Drive, which is both unnecessary and consumes bandwith and storage, (2) The media download dumps the entire set into an unstructured single directory, which lacks order and complicates access & usage outside of RM.

A media-less TreeSync would let me download the structure and details of the tree, and then establish my own links to my pre-existing media store in an ad-hoc manner.

Side note: Removing the downloaded media after-the-fact is un-fun, especially since there is no multi-select available in the RM media gallery.

My primary purpose for RM will be factual offline backup and some textual reporting, so a media-heavy tree isn’t a particular need in my case.

Thank you for considering my request.


We basically get what Ancestry sends us. Right now the Ancestry API doesn’t have a way to restrict media download. Ancestry will restrict them if the user no longer has a subscription.

Thanks for the quick insight :+1:. Would appreciate if you could keep it on the backlog, in case the Ancestry API gets revised to permit a media on / off switch.

Meanwhile, I’ll keep plugging away at deleting the media bit by bit.

Can’t RM filter out what is received? If a user toggled the NO MEDIA flag, Ancestry can send it to RM, but RM could just ignore it.
I have to think that it would be a lot more complicated than that, but it’s sort of like me listening to my wife and sometimes that flag get toggled.:grin:


This is pretty much exactly what I do. The downloads from ancestry via treeshare are pretty useless. Maybe were are both the minority.

I’ve been doing genealogy for a LONG time - well before the internet and ‘treesharing’. My main database is large (my info, current hubby’s info and deceased first hubby’s info) and I’ve never physically used the media function when it came about. AND I STILL don’t have everything scanned to my computer - have tons of notebooks with the physical media. I have a few smaller databases from doing genealogy research for cousins etc so I am playing with one of them. I’ve decided that I will continue to not use treeshare for my main large database.

Can you not only sync up to ancestry and not down to your master tree? FTM does this and I only sync up . New records/media are added manually to my FTM computer database.