DNA testing is among the many technological revolutions taking place in the genealogical community. With a little help from AncestryDNA, 23&Me, and Family Tree DNA, you can connect with other descendants of your ancestors to increasingly remote corners of the globe. By collaborating with them, many genealogists are tearing down long standing brick walls and making incredible discoveries.
However, there are limitations to genetic genealogical testing--and not just the 8 generation window the technology gives us at this present time. These limitations instead come from expense, and the boundaries between testing companies. If the descendants to whom you need to connect have tested with a different company than you have, you may not see that match until one or the other of you takes a second test with the right company.
But does it have to be that way? In our day and age of open source software and good digital citizenship, there are no necessary boundaries between testing companies anymore.
GEDmatch.com is a website which allows users from each of these testing companies to upload their DNA test results. No matter where you live or which of the testing companies has performed your test, GEDmatch.com is free for you to use. You are then placed into a database, which includes users from each of the major testing companies.
Learning to use GEDmatch requires a little more than the average sit-down to learn how to use it. Because of that, we've provided a beginners guide with our Genetic Genealogy video series. This final video in that series provides a beginners introduction to GEDmatch, and the three most essential tools on that site: the One-to-Many match list, the One-to-One analysis, and the Admixture utilities.
Have you taken a DNA test and are still waiting to make the right cousin match? Check out GEDmatch.com and see what you can discover today!
AUTHORS NOTE: This is not a compensated endorsement. I receive nothing from GEDmatch for writing this post.