Requirements before you start

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What do you need to get started?

All you need to use DNA Painter is for you or someone close to you to have taken an autosomal DNA test (such as the ones sold by 23andme, Ancestry, FamilytreeDNA, Living DNA and MyHeritage).

Of these leading testing companies, Ancestry and LivingDNA do not currently provide the segment data that you need in order to paint your matches. So if you've tested with one of these companies, you'll need to:

  • Download your DNA from the website of the company you tested with
  • Upload your DNA to a site that provides segment data, and accepts transfers (currently FamilyTreeDNA, Gedmatch and MyHeritage)

Please note: you do not upload your raw DNA to DNA Painter; the only data you need is the segment data that you can get from 23andme, FamilytreeDNA, Gedmatch and MyHeritage.

Even if your testing company does provide segment data, you might like to take advantage of additional matches and different tools available on FamilytreeDNA, Gedmatch and MyHeritage.

In terms of costs:

  • Gedmatch is free (an additional set of tools is available for Tier one members)
  • Autosomal transfers to MyHeritage are free, but in order to access segment data you'll need to be a MyHeritage subscriber or pay a one-off $29 fee
  • You will have to pay a one-time fee of $19 per DNA kit to access the chromosome browser at Family Tree DNA
  • DNA Painter is free, with additional profiles and import functionality available to paid members.

Downloading your raw DNA

Uploading your DNA

Next: How do you use DNA Painter?