Please upload your ancestry DNA data to a site with a chromosome browser

Today I sent the following email to a newly found DNA cousin match at ancestry whose great-grandmother lived right next door to my family in Kristiansand, Norway in the late 1800s. She moved to the U.S.A just a year after they did (1884 and 1885) and lived a block away from where my grandad eventually lived on Ovington Ave in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Monsen Home KristiansandDear cousin,

OK now I REALLY want to see where our DNA matches, because I have a large database (spreadsheets) of where my Dad, my brother and I match various known Norwegian relatives so it is likely that I can figure out from the matching DNA segment(s) where we are related and if it is really the 7th cousin match shown at on the Eigeland line.

Pretty please either upload to GEDmatch or Family Tree DNA or both.

First you will need to get the raw data from – here is how:

UPDATE 15-Aug-2018: Roberta Estes has published a step by step on how to do this:

To download your raw dna data:
a web page step by step:
or a youtube video:

What the raw DNA data looks like

What the raw DNA data looks like

This raw data consists of thousands of lines of information and it is best to use special tools to look at it. You can of course look at it in a spreadsheet where you would see over 70,000 lines that look like the image on the left. The columns are the rsid number (a reference SNP cluster id), the chromosome, the location on that chromosome, and what the two base pairs there are. Note that when it says T it is actually a paired AT and when it says C it actually a CG pair. Since these are always paired the listing only shows one of them.


To upload that data to GEDmatch
(the same youtube video listed above shows how to do this)
or try this web page step by step:

Here is some more about how to use GEDmatch for ancestry folk

and the ancestry compostion tools there (called admix) are really terrific. I cover those starting with slide 5 in my GEDmatch presentation online at

and/or upload that data to Family Tree DNA:


18 thoughts on “Please upload your ancestry DNA data to a site with a chromosome browser

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  1. Hi, I have a somewhat similar message that I send although I also tell them how it will benefit them. I explain that testers from all 3 major testing agencies can also upload there and therefore they will get more matches, and their heritage reports are more detailed so you can also find more about that.

    • Thanks Christy, I added a bit more about the benefits of GEDmatch thanks to you. Now to sent the link to my ancestry DNA cousins

  2. Timely topic. I decided about a week ago to invite my top 200 Ancestry matches and all 68 common ancestor matches to GEDmatch. Results:
    ~200 invites so far
    6 have uploaded
    5 were on there and I didn’t know it
    1 uploaded his own kit but not the one that I match

    Worth it. I had also hoped to do something similar, in reverse. I hoped I could get my ‘A-kit’ GEDmatches, find those people on Ancestry, and use the new Shared Match tool to suggest some family links. I can find them, but none of them have Shared Matches. Many are MUCH further down in the rankings on Ancestry than on GEDmatch due to Ancestry’s algorithms. Which makes me wish Ancestry had a chromosome browser!!

    • Interesting idea Rich to do it in reverse. When I see a new match at GEDmatch that is an A kit I have occasionally tried to find them on ancestry. I will let you know how I do with sending the link to this post!

  3. I see that I shall have to polish up my invite quite a bit. Thank you Kitty for another excellent blog. And thank you Rick for sharing your Ancestry experience. I am not quite so disheartened any more – particularly where a match is of critical importance to me in breaking down a brick wall but not necessarily important to the match.

  4. Does anyone know of a quick way to check several checkboxes in Gedmatch (column 4) at once? I am trying to upload my information to Genome Mate and to go through and check 1000 boxes or more, one at a time, is very tiring. I have tried adding on Checkbox checker extensions in Chrome & Firefox but I can’t seem to get them to work on Gedmatch. Thank you.

  5. Hey
    Maury said you and I share genes. I have a kit here too, m416219 I think is the number. Have you heard of I have many ancestors profiles there. That site also has options to upload gene files for comparison to other members though I have not used that feature yet. I have been thinking that Maury and I (probably you too) are connected through the Lewis name but am not sure yet because I have been thus far unable to trace that name past Robert Lewis possibly born circa mid 1800s, really have no idea when though; husband of Bythie Moran probably born around the same time.

  6. The latest version, V4, of the ancestryDNA test is not currently accepted by FTDNA. They could not give me a timeframe.

  7. I received the results of my Ancestry DNA test and instead of clearing up a few things it confused me even more. About 1/4 of the matches are on my mom’s side, 1/4 on my dad’s. The remaining half (About 800 people, at this point) are more closely related than anyone on my mom’s or dad’s sides, but not one person in our family trees matches up. Some people have as many as 75,000 people in their trees! Could uploading my DNA info to GedMatch or FamilyTree possibly help me find out how I’m related to these people?

    • Kristi –
      Uploading might help but takes a bit of expertise (think learning curve) to use. Perhaps first look Michele’s tips to help determine whether one of your grandads was not your grandad. That many unrelated close relative is suggestive of that.
      So go figure out whether there are no matches along one grandparent’s line
      Then if you want to find out more, do some uploading.

  8. I recently signed up and uploaded my Ancestry DNA kit to MyHeritage, for tool access. I do not know about the robustness of its browser for your purposes, but it is another such provider.

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