Category Archives: How To

Finding Rootstech 2021 Sessions

At the MoCoGenSo meeting in April we displayed some lists of the Rootstech 2021 sessions that are available for viewing.  These sessions are free and will be around for a full year! 
The PDF of ALL of the sessions can be found at the link below.  This 18 page document contains just the session title and speaker.  You can find the sessions you’re interested in by searching for the speaker at the Rootstech site.

To get the file, CLICK HERE.

If you loose track of this note, just search for “rootstech 2021 session list” and the link will appear at the top.
If you are interested in the list of just the DNA oriented sessions, you can find them here in our own web site.  This 7 page document contains not only the title and speaker, but it includes HOT LINKS to the Youtube version of the session.  Download the PDF and then just click the link to watch a show!

To get the file, CLICK HERE.

"Those who don't read have no advantage over those who can't.” – Mark Twain

SNP Tracker

I’m a member of a Y-DNA messaging group at the GROUPS.IO system powered by Google called Y-DNA-HAPLOGROUP-I .  It is usually a quiet group, most folks are old timer types who have long ago figured out where they came from.  (grin)  Once in a while a newcomer asks questions and someone always helps out.  (most haplogroup I folks are helpful, after all)

Today someone answered  a question from a searcher by recommending a website I had never seen before.  It is really quite slick, a tool that shows how your SNP traveled across the world, similar to the paths that the old Genographic site first implemented.  But this site show not only the path travelled by our SNP ancestors, but it includes a timeline.  There is an animated slider that shows anthropological time periods too.

Click here to try this SNP Tracker

This site does both Y-DNA and Mitochondrial DNA SNPs. Use your “terminal” SNP. Be sure to work thru the tabs at the top to see what is available.  If you know your haplogroup, give it a go…  Remember, you still have time before Rootstech starts!

“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.” – Vidal Sassoon

Some disconnected and unrelated hints 

  1. If you are in a Zoom meeting on a Windows 10 computer and want to save something showing on the screen, it isn’t obvious how to do it.  To Capture your entire screen and automatically save the screenshot, tap the Windows key + Print Screen key. Your screen will briefly go dim to indicate that you’ve just taken a screenshot, and the screenshot will be saved to the Pictures > Screenshots.
  1. is a great site for building your genealogy tree.  I spend lots of time now adding descendants down to DNA matches.  Sometimes I want to send my new ‘cousin’ a relationship chart. There is a relationship chart built into Ancestry that is hidden!  In fact, I just found it the other day when poking around.  Go into the Profile page of the person in question.  In the upper section under the name there is a line that shows the persons relationship to you.  Click on it. Bingo!  Print to a PDF and save it, upload to the persons Gallery, email it, or print and save in your documentation notebook.
  1. In AncestryDNA if you want to easily look for new matches that you haven’t reviewed before, go to your Match List. Then filter your list by Unviewed.  I do this scan using the app in my iPad daily when eating breakfast!  There is a way to do this in MyHeritage, but it isn’t easy enough for breakfast. Use Sort by, then Most recent.

Building a Relationship Report

Relationships! We are related to all our DNA matches, somehow. The question I had was how many of my different cousins have I already tested, how many are deceased, and how many of those remaining should I try to “guilt-trip” into taking a DNA test?

Easy question to ask…. All I gotta do is run a report…. Humm, what report? Who has this report? Ancestry and MyHeritage doesn’t have a report that I need, neither does Rootsmagic. My problem is that when they tell me I can’t do something, I am like the teenage boy who says he will do it just to prove he can!

The DNA part is easy. All the companies who do DNA testing for genealogical purposes sort your matches by relationship. What I need is a relationship report from my tree! Not a one-to-one relationship chart, but a list of all my blood relatives. RootsMagic has a report that lists Name and Relationship. But no dates! I need dates, especially death dates. It is hard to get DNA from a deceased cousin! I need something like this:

Warbis, Maude    1881-1928     3rd cousin twice removed

After a short session with Google, I discovered that the PC program Legacy has a report that does just what I need! The report it builds has the dates included as part of the name field, which is really weird. But a quick run in Excel using formulas to reformat the name into did the trick. I now have 3 columns, Name, Dates and Relationship. Sortable!

To run this report, load your current data. In the Family View, navigate to yourself. Then Click on Tools, then Click Set Relationships. Now go to Reports in the main toolbar. Find the Relationship button in the Other section and run your report to CSV file. Or preview it!

My mother and father were about the same age. But my mother was the youngest of her eleven siblings, and my father was the oldest in his family. So, 11 of my 12 maternal first cousins are deceased! The only living one isn’t talking to anyone any more. And of my 11 paternal cousins, they are all living, but only one has tested! I had better start sucking up to my paternal first cousins!

In looking at the rest of my people, I suddenly have lost interest in doing a comparison. I have so many 1st cousins xx removed and 2nd cousins of all relationships, that I give up. Thank heaven for Thrulines! But, I did prove that I can produce that report!

”Success is where preparation met opportunity.” – Neil Armstrong

Google Capping Storage – June 2021

Heads up. Google has announced that free online storage for files, photos and videos will be capped at 15GB starting next summer.

From 1 June 2021, any new files created in Drive, as well as photos and videos uploaded to Google Photos, will count towards the 15GB of free storage included with every Google Account. Customers who go over that limit risk having excess content stored in Gmail, Drive, Docs and Photos deleted. 15 gigs seems like lots for just email, but combined with photos, videos and docs and 15 gigs is just too small.

Those who wish to extend their storage beyond 15GB can pick up a Google One account, which starts at $1.99 per month for 100GB storage. Or start cleaning, moving, deleting!

Many folks have become accustomed to using Gmail as a giant storage box for their research. I have created labels for different subjects and stored emails, including those with pictures and even big MP4 files, there. The searching methods Google provides made my email storage spot better than Evernote or DropBox!  And many people I know, my grandkids included, have chosen to skip Microsoft Office and are using Google Docs instead, using the free storage area too. And how many of us are using Google Photos for vacation pics, genealogy pics, kids pics…. you get the picture!

Congress told Google and Facebook that they are too big. So, Google said “Yup, our free stuff is too big. The party is over, folks.” Thanks a lot, Congress. You just don’t know how to negotiate!

Well, we have 6 months to figure out how to fit into 15 gigs or get a Google One account. When “the system” decides to delete data from your stored files, they won’t do it “judiciously”. Files or emails will just disappear. So, start now — look for offline storage for those treasured items in your Photo albums; delete those stupid jokes you trade back and forth and never delete. Clean your email by searching for mail with attachments first.

I fear I will be looking seriously at the Google One account. But I must also remember that if Congress pushes hard at breaking up Google, I had better be simultaneously copying files to offline storage. The pandemic has shown us that we should be prepared, just in case.

There is also Microsoft or Adobe or Apple cloud storage that can be used instead of Google’s plan. But, we gotta decide within 6 months.  Don’t delay.

Updated: to find out how much space you are using – First sign in to your Gmail account. Then open a 2nd tab in your browser and go to Your data will be there.

Regarding These Sales

Personal views follow…

We advocate doing DNA tests for genealogical purposes.  DNA testing is not required to do excellent genealogical work, but it can help break some roadblocks or just help discover new cousins that have those long lost pictures!

But testing at just one company is like only fishing in just one pond.  Some of your relatives might pick a different sale this month, for example.  So I always recommend that you test at each of the “big 4”:  AncestryDNA, 23andMe, MyHeritage and Family Tree DNA.

That can get expensive!  That is why we always mention sales around here.

Picking which place to test is a subject best suited for our DNA Discussion Group.  But it is important that you remember that AncestryDNA and 23andMe do NOT accept data file uploads while MyHeritage and Family Tree DNA DO accept DNA data uploads at a considerable discount in price.  Perhaps testing at AncestryDNA or 23andMe first might be a good idea for some.

” L.O.C.K.S.S. ===> Lots of copies keep stuff safe.

More free genealogical classes and webinars

Speaking of FREE classes and webinars about genealogical research, did you realize that has lots of them and they are all free!

The webinars are broadcast using Zoom. There are many classes available, look for the October and November schedules by clicking on the link below.

Train yourself, then train others. If you help someone in your family learn to do genealogy, their fresh eyes can help you flesh out your shared tree!

“Would you go to someone’s funeral who didn’t go to yours?”

Handouts for Free Learning

Dayna Jacobs had a busy week. She was the presenter at the MoCoGenSo monthly Zoom meeting last Thursday evening.  She also ran her weekly Granny Story Time with her grandkids by Zoom!  She just reads them a story and then lets them be silly with each other.

Dayna sent some pages Thursday evening to those who received the invitation to our video meeting in PDF form that had various pointers, web sites, etc.. The document includes addresses for FREE Webinars and Classes – live and archived; State Genealogy Society Webinars; Online Guides, Wikis, and Tutorials; and YouTube Channels. She has graciously agreed to let us post the document here for all of us to download. The links in the PDF file are live.

To download that file, CLICK HERE.

A new Heatmap for your Y-DNA

If you know your Y-DNA haplogroup, you can go to this new site to get a “heatmap”.  That is, you can see where your Y-DNA is located in the world according to the data in YFULL.  Just enter your haplogroup into the little box on the left and click submit.

The above map is for my personal Y-DNA haplogroup I-A13289. There are only 2 of us in YFULL, and we both trace our paternal selves to Scotland!

Just for fun…

Downloading a GEDCOM from Ancestry and using it elsewhere

Roberta Estes has written a useful post on her blog DNAeXplained about how to download a GEDCOM from your tree and then uploading it to other sites; includes uploading to FTDNA, MyHeritage and GedMatch.

This is a very good how-to if you have never done this. See the post here:

Download Your Ancestry Tree and Upload It Elsewhere for Added Benefit