What’s New in Autosomal DNA Transfers

UPDATES: Please see the list of updates to this post, which are listed at the bottom.

Because of recent changes at some of the testing companies that affect the ability to transfer raw DNA data between databases, I have updated my earlier post summarizing which test results can be uploaded to which other sites.  In the table below, find the company who performed your autosomal DNA test in the top row, then follow that column down to see which sites will accept transfers of your DNA data. The superscript numbers refer to notes below the table. As always, be sure to read the Terms of Service for each company/database before you transfer. (Note: I earn a small commission if you purchase through the links in this post. The cost is the same for you. Click here for more information.)

If you tested at:1 Ancestry

v1, v2
23&Me v1, v2 23&Me v3, v4 23&Me v5 Family Tree DNA My
Living DNA
You can transfer to: AncestryDNA2 NO NO NO NO NO NO NO
Family Tree DNA4 Yes but NO YES Not yet YES NO NO
MyHeritage5 YES YES YES Not yet YES NO NO
WeGene6 YES YES YES Yes but NO NO NO

If you cannot see the full width of the table, scroll to the bottom of this post for an image version.

(1) Note: I earn a small commission if you purchase through the links in this post. The cost is the same for you. Click here for more information.

(2) AncestryDNA does not accept transfers of DNA data, but their results can be transferred to most other sites. They are like Type O blood for genetic genealogy—the (almost) universal donors. As of this writing, AncestryDNA’s databases contains more than 5 million people.

(3) 23andMe recently introduced version 5 (v5) of their test. V3 and v4 are almost universally accepted as transfers, while v5 (introduced August 2017) is different enough from previous versions so as to cause potential problems with matching. Their database currently contains more than 2 million people.

(4) Transfers to Family Tree DNA can see and contact their DNA matches for free. For a $19 fee, they can access additional tools, like ethnicity estimates and a chromosome browser. Testers who used the newer versions of AncestryDNA (v2) and 23andMe (v4) will not receive distant, speculative matches at FTDNA. If they want distant matches, they can purchase a new Family Finder test. Most AncestryDNA transfers to Family Tree DNA work, although a few will fail to upload; Family Tree DNA expects to have a fix in place within weeks. They are working to make 23andMe v5 tests compatible but do not have a timeframe for that. Their database is estimated at over 500,000 people.

(5) MyHeritage transfers are free and receive a list of DNA matches and ethnicity estimates. They plan to accept 23andMe v5 transfers soon. They did not immediately reply to a question about whether they would also accept Living DNA results. The size of their database is not known.

(6) WeGene serves primarily an Asian market. They do not currently have relative matching but plan to add it in the future. WeGene accepts 23andMe v5 transfers, but they warn that some of their features may not work properly; they are working to resolve the issue. The size of their database is not known.

(7) Living DNA currently advertises the most detailed ethnicity estimates available. They began accepting DNA transfers as part of their One Family One World research project on 26 October 2017. Transfers will get access to relative matching when it goes live in summer 2018 and will be able to contact their matches, but they will not receive an ethnicity breakdown. The upload page is here. The size of their database is not known.

(8) DNA.Land is a non-profit research site run by academics. They accept transfers but do not offer DNA tests themselves. They provide relative matching, ethnicity estimates, and reports on wellness and physical traits. Their database contains over 60,000 people.

(9) If AncestryDNA and 23andMe are the universal donors of autosomal DNA testing, GEDmatch is the universal acceptor. Transfers and most tools are free, including relative matching, ethnicity (admixture) estimates, phasing, and archaic matches. Additional “Tier 1” tools available for a donation of $10 per month. Their database contains more than 650,000 uploads.

(10) GEDmatch Genesis is a beta (test) version of GEDmatch that allows DNA uploads of almost all autosomal test versions, including ones that are not compatible with the regular GEDmatch database. Genesis is a still in the experimental stage, and I don’t recommend it at this time for beginners or for work where precision is required.

If you can’t see the full width of the table on your browser, this screenshot may help.



NOTE: This post was updated 19 Sep 2017 to show that FTDNA had begun taking transfers from MyHeritage and on 29 Sep 2017 to indicate that most transfers from AncestryDNA to FTDNA were working.

NOTE: This post was updated 26 Oct 2016 to indicate that Living DNA had begun accepting transfers from 23andMe, AncestryDNA, Family Tree DNA, and MyHeritageDNA.

18 thoughts on “What’s New in Autosomal DNA Transfers”

  1. Hi Leah,

    This is a fabulous post, however I’m having problems reading all of the table, as the columns after MyHeritage appear to be cut off. I get the same result using the Chrome, Firefox and MS Edge browsers. Am I doing something wrong ?

    PS. Your affiliate link to ancestry takes me to the Danish version of the website – no idea why !

    1. Try adjusting the width of your browser window. There’s a point at which the right sidebar disappears/reappears, and you should be able to read the whole table then. If that doesn’t work, I’m going to have to get fancy and see if I can adjust the column widths. Please let me know.

      As for the affiliate link, I’m not sure what’s going on. It works for me, even when I log out of my Ancestry account. I’ll look into it. Thanks for letting me know.

    1. Thank you for letting me know. I tried to adjust the column widths, and I also added a screenshot of the table at the bottom of the post.

  2. Note that My Heritage does not test Israelis and does not accept transfers from people they identify as Israelis even if they are abroad.

    Among other things, it means that if you test with them, you will nt get matches with people in Israel.

    1. Thanks for posting. For now, I’m limiting my transfer table to sites that provide matching (or have promised it soon). Will gencove have that feature?

      1. Hi, we are working on one. We want to understand what are the problems with these services now. We also have an open API for other developers and researchers to build on top of us, so with your Gencove account you will be able to connect directly (with no uploads/downloads) to other third party services and research. But you decide. Now we have a few integrations but there are more to come.

  3. I tested through Ancestry in August. Unfortunately when I have attempted to upload my results into FTDNA, I get an error message that the file was corrupted. I have tried multiple times. I know of other people who have had this same issue. some people say that Ancestry has changed to a different chip. I don’t know if this is true.

    1. Apparently, Ancestry made some changes to their file format, and FTDNA has not yet updated their system to be able to accept the change. Some Ancestry users have had luck by opening the raw data file, changing the text in the header material that says version number from 1 to 2, and uploading the edited file. However, it doesn’t seem to work for everyone. I’ve been told FTDNA will fix it soon so they can accept all transfers again. In the meantime, you can transfer to any of the other sites that accept AncestryDNA result.

    1. No, no ETA for that. My guess is a year or more, if ever.

      Given the sale prices right now, I’d recommend testing at Ancestry and transferring those results to FTDNA. AncestryDNA is only $79 right now and will probably drop even more for the Black Friday weekend.


  4. I tried to transfer from ancestryDNA (that i just received on 16 November 2017) to Family Tree DNA and received an error. I emailed and they responded to say Ancestry changed their format recently and they hope to be able to accept it.

  5. Look up a tool called mapmy23, it will accept the V5 data file downloaded from ancestry and convert to acceptable form for upload to ftdna and provide a downloadable zipped file to use instead of the one downloaded from Ancestry.com.

    1. Yes, mapmy23 has been getting good reviews for cases when FTDNA is not able to accept the v2 results from AncestryDNA. (Note that AncestryDNA is on v2; 23andMe is on v5. FTDNA is not accepting v5 from 23andMe, even if it’s been run through mapmy23.)

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