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Ancestral Quest for Mac

Frequently Asked Questions


Install and Uninstall Ancestral Quest for Mac

Q: How do I install AQ on my Mac?
A: Here is a quick video and written instructions that show you the installation process for your Mac.
Q: How do I uninstall AQ from my Mac?
A: View the written instructions for removing Ancestral Quest from your Mac.

Printing/Report Questions

Q: How do I save reports as a PDF file with AQ for Mac?
A: There are three parts to this:
  1. First, you need to download and install PDFwriter for Mac. This procedure needs to be done only once on your Mac. View the steps to do this.
  2. Then you will generate the PDF using the PDFwriter printer. This you would do for each report you want to save as a PDF file. See these steps.
  3. Finally, you will need to locate the generated PDF report each time you generate a report as a PDF file. Read the steps on how to do this.

Program Compatibility Questions

Q: Can AQ for Mac work with the files created by AQ for Windows?
A: Yes, because the inner workings of the program are the same on both operating systems, the files used by the program are identical and interchangeable between platforms.
  • Database files: Both AQ for Windows and AQ for Mac can open, edit, and save .aq and .paf database files.
  • Collaboration Working Files: If you are using AQ's Collaboration feature, you can share and collaborate your database with other AQ collaborators, regardless of their operating system.
  • Backup files: You can backup and restore native .aqz and PAF .zip backup files between copies of AQ on either operating system.
  • GEDCOM files: You can export and import .ged files to and from AQ for Windows and Mac as well as between other genealogy programs and services that support the GEDCOM standard.
Q: Are there any features in the Windows version of Ancestral Quest that are not available in Ancestral Quest for Mac?
A: There are three features that are unavailable in AQ for Mac:
  1. The AQ2Go! feature which allows you to run Ancestral Quest off a flash drive or other removable device is not supported on Macintosh systems.
  2. Recently edited database files will not appear under the File menu.
  3. “Line Upon Line - A Beginner's Guide to Genealogy” by Margery Bell, an e-book to get you up and running with your genealogy, is not included in the installation package of AQ for Mac. It is, however, available by sending an email request to support@ancquest.com.
Q: When I install or run AQ for Mac on my MacOS, I receive a message stating that AQ is not optimized for my Mac.
screen shot of error message
What is going on and what do I need to do to address this?
A: Your Macintosh can run 32-bit and 64-bit applications, but the version of Ancestral Quest that you are running is not a 64-bit app. The official information from Apple about this states:

“Starting with macOS High Sierra 10.13.4, apps that have not been updated to use 64-bit processes produce this one-time alert when opened. This gives users advance notice that they are running 32-bit software, which will not be compatible with macOS in the future.”

“You may continue to use 32-bit apps with your Mac today. Using 32-bit software has no adverse effects on your data or your computer.”

Ancestral Quest 16 has now been released with a 64-bit variation that can run on these Mac systems. Older versions of AQ for Mac (14, 15) will not be updated to run on a 64-bit system, so if you want to use a 64-bit capable version of AQ, you would need to use AQ 16. It is available in a free version, or to access all the bells and whistles, you would need to purchase version 16. If you have purchased a prior version of AQ, you would qualify to purchase the Upgrade at a discounted price.
Q: Will Ancestral Quest work with macOS 10.15 Catalina?
A: Yes. MacOS Catalina will only work with 64-bit apps. Ancestral Quest version 16 is now available as a 64-bit app.

If you have already purchased Ancestral Quest version 16 license, you can download the 64-bit version without further charge.

If you have not already purchased Ancestral Quest version 16 license, you can download the 64-bit version of the scaled back Ancestral Quest Basics for free, or purchase a license: If you have never purchsed AQ in the past, you would purchase the full program. If you have purchased any version of AQ in the past, you would qualify to purchase an Upgrade to AQ 16, at a discounted price.


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