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What next after Ancestry?

Discussion in 'DNA Questions and Answers' started by palfamily, Oct 13, 2018.

  1. palfamily

    palfamily LostCousins Member

    I've followed Peter's advice and chosen Ancestry as the best place to analyse my DNA but which sites are now the best to export my results to?
     
  2. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

  3. palfamily

    palfamily LostCousins Member

    What is it like for English & Welsh matches? One of the problems I have with Ancestry is that most matches seem to be from USA or Canada and these people have very little knowledge of their UK ancestry.
     
  4. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    There isn't any data that says where the user is based.
     
  5. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    As long as you follow the strategies in my Masterclass this shouldn't be a problem - I'm not aware of anyone who has been disappointed after following my advice (which is, of course, why I write the Masterclasses in the first place). GEDmatch has its uses, but it isn't a patch on Ancestry.
    True, but sometimes you can work it out from the email addresses. There was an analysis in the newsletter 2 or 3 years ago.
     
  6. palfamily

    palfamily LostCousins Member

    I do follow your Masterclass Peter. I’m relatively happy with Ancestry but wonder what else is out there. I’ve read about GEDmatch and would like to know of other people’s experiences. How about transferring to other places such as My Heritage or FimdMyPast.
    One point about you your Masterclass Peter. I have only had my DNA results for a week but I assume people are being added all the time to my match list. How often do you do you re-search your ancestral names?
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
  7. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Star

    GEDmatch offers a few tools that are not available at Ancestry such as a chromosome browser, which enables you to see on which chromosome(s) you and your match share DNA. But you may not find that many matches which you don't already have via Ancestry.

    I have also uploaded my DNA to FamilyTree DNA as I have joined a project there, but again, most of matches there are also at Ancestry.

    On both these sites the basic matching and so on is free but you have to pay for some features.

    I'm not sure if you can upload your DNA to FMP as yet, can you?
     
  8. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    The main advantage in uploading your results to other sides is to find new cousins - and hope to figure out how you're connected to them.

    Unfortunately when you're used to Ancestry other sites can seem a bit primitive by comparison, and whilst I do occasionally visit GEDmatch and FTDNA it's more out of fear of missing something than in the expectation of making any useful discoveries. You can spend any amount of time at GEDmatch without necessarily getting anywhere - most people haven't uploaded GEDCOMs. The site is most useful if you have control of multiple tests (as I do).

    Findmypast's tie-in with LivingDNA is in its very early stages - you can forget about them for the time being. I've recently been trying out MyHeritage as they have greatly improved their privacy policy following GDPR, but many of the cousins I've been matched with seem to be people I've previously found at other sites, usually Ancestry. Only one of the 4 people I've tried to contact so far has responded (after more than a week). MyHeritage is most likely to be useful for those who have recent ancestors from continental Europe.

    Based on my experience so far the best strategy for someone who has thoroughly analysed their Ancestry matches is to go back to conventional research and/or persuade known cousins to test (preferably both). Trying to squeeze more useful information out of a single DNA test is unlikely to be worth the effort.
     
  9. Pauline

    Pauline LostCousins Star

    I did my Ancestry DNA test a while ago now and then had only about half the number of "4th cousins and closer" that I have now. I investigated each of these individually, and now check back regularly to see if I have new matches in this category, and investigate each of them out as they appear. I also check out all new matches who appear as a "Shared Ancestor Hint".

    It isn't easy to see when new matches get added in the "Distant cousin" category, but my total number of matches has gone up quite considerably. I periodically repeat surname (or place) searches in all my matches according to which particular family line I am following up on at the time. There is no magic formula to this, only that if I am doing conventional research into a particular line it reminds me to check out my DNA results as well.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    Pauline's strategy is a good one. The only thing I would add is to carry out a surname search whenever you knock a 'brick wall' that leads to a new surname (or a new spelling of an existing surname).
     
  11. hibnit

    hibnit LostCousins Member

    It is very little effort to download your DNA from ancestry and submit it to FTDNA, MyHeritage and Gedmatch. I sat on the fence for a while myself but very glad I eventually uploaded to the other sites. Every little bit of information helps. If you push your tree even one generation back or confirm a line that you have not been 100% sure about then it is worth it. (in my case I managed to do both thanks to uploading to FTDNA and MyHeritage and would not have found the same information via Ancestry alone).

    Personally I value some of the advanced features even if they do require a little time to fully understand. But even if you don't use those the potential extra matches alone are worth checking in my opinion.
     
  12. PhoebeW

    PhoebeW LostCousins Member

    I found useful additional matches on MyHeritage despite its flaws. I found the functionalty useful. Ancestry's cut-off of 20cM for shared matches is rather high and I have no shared matches for some of my closest matches so I couldn't tell how they were related. I have found some of these matches on MyHeritage and asked some others to upload. We found shared matches there and some relationships fell into place. Worth a try.
     
  13. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    For me it was different because I started with FTDNA and GEDmatch, only testing with Ancestry five disappointing years later.

    Nowadays transferring Ancestry results to FTDNA only shows up the closest matches - about 200 in my case - because FTDNA can't cope properly with the new Ancestry chip. This applies even if you pay the upgrade fee (which I did, just as an experiment).

    But it's worth transferring your results to FTDNA and GEDmatch just so long as you don't spend too much time analysing the matches you get. I wasted hundreds of hours - and with the benefit of hindsight I'd recommend no more than an hour at each.
     
  14. canadianbeth

    canadianbeth LostCousins Member

    How long should I wait before I upload to GEDmatch?
     
  15. Tim

    Tim Moderator Staff Member

    You don't need to wait. Just do it :)
     
  16. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    As Tim says, no need to wait. But don't spend more than an hour at GEDmatch - your time is much better spent analysing your Ancestry matches, and only turning to GEDmatch when there is a specific issue to resolve.
     
  17. canadianbeth

    canadianbeth LostCousins Member

    Ok, I am just trying to figure out how. :)
     
  18. hibnit

    hibnit LostCousins Member

    First step - Log into Ancestry, Click the "DNA" menu bar and "Your DNA results Summary"
    Then on the far right you should see a gear/cogwheel icon and "Settings"
    This will take you to a page where you can choose "Download RAW DNA"
    You should get a link emailed to the account you register with and that link will allow you to save your RAW DNA file

    If you need assistance uploading to any of the sites we mentioned please feel free to reach out but its mostly straight forward from that point. It will usually take a day or two for them to process the results. Good luck in your search.
     
  19. Bob Spiers

    Bob Spiers LostCousins Star

    And boy is that an understatement
    I never thought I would see in this Forum a recommendation to use MyHeritage (MH), even hiding under their new 'DNA' label... and by Peter no less. I noted elsewhere he mentioned they had improved their 'privacy settings' since the advent of the GDPR regs. Well I certainly hope so since it was not that long ago since they were held responsible for a security leak of 92 million (yes million) user accounts. If their DNA venture is run on anything like the lines of their MH main database site, then some people are going to be greatly disappointed.
     
  20. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    As I'm 6% German - and Ancestry don't sell their DNA test in Germany - uploading my results to MyHeritage offers the potential to find out more about my German ancestry. No great discoveries so far, but it's early days.

    Obviously the fact that the email addresses of tens of millions their users were stolen is a matter of concern, but there are plenty of hackers who already have some of my email addresses and some of my passwords - and I suspect the same is true for everyone else on this forum (see this August newsletter article). And there are loads of people who still use Yahoo even though the details of ALL of their users - billions of them - were stolen a couple of years ago.
     
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