Monday, April 15, 2013

DNA Monday: GEDmatch and 23andMe

Found a really cool cousin through 23andMe and he and I have been working together to find our shared ancestor. Cousin Mark has been down this road before so he's leading the way, and directed me to GEDmatch. GedMatch is where you can take your DNA downloaded files and GEDCOM and see if anyone in their database is a match with you.

GEDmatch has been down a lot lately - first one feature, then another, and now the whole site - and I hear that they have been swamped with new users so there will be growing pains. That's OK with me because when they get it all worked out, this site will be a powerhouse for DNA testers across testing companies. The beauty part of their service is that it accepts raw data files from the big three and then they do the matching. Now, no worries that you tested with 23andMe and they tested with FTDNA, it all gets dumped into GEDmatch and they come up with the report. Cool.

Had to wait a day to upload my genome file for the 23andMe upload feature to be available, and another day for it to be processed. The upload feature was not available when I first tried but a day later it was back up again. Right today which is Sunday as I write, the entire site is down for maintenance... but the kind that sound ominous: We have been unable to answer all the emails, so please be understanding. We will post information as soon as we know more and have a time estimate. Uh-oh. Hope they get it worked out because I'm getting excited to do some analysis.

The site is straight-forward and if you just take a couple of minutes to read the entire first page, you'll know what to do. Hey, if I can do it so can you:) I did the DNA test with 23andMe so I clicked on the upload your 23andMe genome file and it outlined exactly what I needed to do and guided me through the steps. Be sure to read all the steps first. I didn't pay close enough attention to what I was doing and uploaded the unzipped file when what they want is the zipped, so got an error message pointing out the silliness of my ways. Went back and did it right the second time. Easy-peasy.

TIP: make a note in a safe place of your ID number. You'll need it later because everything here works off that ID number. So right here I'd like to show you that main page but the site is down. Maybe later. What I can show you is how my DNA matches looked. So here we go.

Here's how you get the party started. Just enter your ID number and leave the rest of the fields as they are... unless you know what you're doing, and that's not me!

Here are my two matches. I was disappointed that there were only two, but I'll keep checking back because I've got to believe that with all the new users (crashing the site) there will be more matches later:) I did click on one of my matched people to see who they matched with, and the list was extensive!

Here's the info on where we match. I don't know what I'm looking at but it appears that KMurray is a closer match to me and I'll try to contact that person first.

This is a matrix showing how many generations back KMurray and I can start to look for a shared ancestor, and it's way back there in the 7th to 8th generation.
I didn't get a chance to upload my GEDCOM yet (site down) but that will be the first thing I'll do when it's back online. And now I have the ID numbers for cousin Mark and his father so I can start to look at that too.
My To Do List:
1. Contact KMurray.
2. Upload GEDCOM.
3. Look at cousin Mark and his father's chromosomes. Can I tell: is it on the Thomas side or the Price side? Cousin Mark has a hunch, I think!
Yup, this is still fun! GEDmatch is out, 23andMe is running slow but I'm happy as a clam in mud. My kinda mud:)

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