Saturday, May 17, 2014

Getting Started with Genome Mate using 23andMe Data

Genome Mate is a desktop tool used to organize in one place the data collected while researching DNA comparisons.  Besides data storage it has many features to aid in identifying common ancestors.  It can be downloaded at

The following guide was originally put together by George Cunningham and published with his permission.  It has been edited to reflect changes in the application.

23andMe Getting Started Guide

There are three steps required to load 23andMe data:  Setting up a profile, load DNA segments and loading associated Relative data.  Under step 2, loading DNA segments, there are multiple options for obtaining that data.  Please read each carefully before proceeding.

Step 1:  Create a Profile

  • First create a profile in Genome Mate for each kit that you manage
    • Profiles > Add new profile
  • Put in a name, any name will do, but
    • You are a good choice for the profile person.  
    • If your going to use data from 23andMe for the profile person, the profile name MUST match the 23andMe name.
  • Load a gedcom file for each profile if you have one.  If not just continue.
    • The gedcom file can be all of your relatives and more
    • Genome Mate will ask you for the name to associate with the profile person, and will strip out all but the profile person's direct ancestors.
    • The gedcom file format must be 5.5 in UTF8 format

Step 2:  Load 23andMe DNA Segments

Import Data Page

There are several methods for loading the DNA segment data for 23andMe profiles that can be mixed as needed.
529andYou:  The recommended method of importing 23andMe segment data is to use Neanderling's Chrome Plugin, 529andYou as it not only provides DNA segment data but triangulation and in common with (ICW) information as well. The Chrome browser is required.
  • Get Chrome Browser here
  • Get 529andYou here and be sure to click yes when asked to create a Chrome database.
  • Read about 529andYou here 
  • On 23andMe > My Results > Ancestry Tools > Family Inheritance: Advanced > Select any Compare profile > Compare > View in a Table > Click on 529 icon in upper right corner to open new tab 
  • On the 529andYou tab > Create 'To Do' Table > Highlight list of names > Copy & Paste into Notepad to use later
  • Click the button next to each Match name
  • Close the tabs that were open when they finish processing 
  • On the 23andMe tab  > Switch Profiles if there are more than one and repeat this step for each. 
  • Refresh the 529andYou tab or close then reopen through 23andMe
  • For each person in the Notepad list:  On the 529andYou tab > Display mode:  Profile and Overlapping Segment Links > Show matches of {name from Notepad list} > Create Match Table  [Note:  That the very first time it is faster to do this for each of your profile names rather than the Notepad list.]
  • Click on button next to a Profile person match
  • If available, Ctrl click on each link saying compare {name1} and {name2} to open FIA tabs for the comparison
  • Close new FIA tabs when finished processing
  • On the 529andYou tab > Create Match Table and repeat for next profile person on list
  • On the 529andYou tab >  Show matches of All > Download CSV 
  • In Genome Mate > Import Data > Select Data Source 23andMe > Load FIA Matches and ICW from 529andYou CSV file > Import Data from CSV File > Select file named 529andYou_{date}.csv
DNAGedcom:  This is the second preferred method of loading bulk DNA segments from 23andMe into Genome Mate.  It is the best method for loading Country of Ancestry DNA segments and also updates ICW data.
  • On> 23andMe > Download 23andMe > Enter Email address > Enter 23andMe Password > Enter 23andMe Profile Name > Check Run FIA > Check Run AC > Check Run AF > Get Data and wait for it to finish processing 
  • This loads the shared matches:  In Genome Mate > Import Data > Select Match Data Source 23andMe > Load FIA Matches from DNAGedcom CSV file > Select file named {email name}_{profile name}_23andMe_FIA.csv 
  • This loads the Country of Ancestry (CoA) data:  In Genome Mate > Import Data > Select Data Source 23andMe > Load CoA Matches and ICWs from DNAGedcom > Select file named {email name}_23andMe_AF.csv
23andMe:  This is the least preferred method for loading DNA segments as it requires the data to be manually copied and pasted from the Family Inheritance: Advanced page into Genome Mate for up to 5 comparisons at a time.
  • On 23andMe > My Results > Ancestry Tools > Family Inheritance: Advanced > Select any Compare profile > Select up to 5 With Family Members > Compare > View in a Table > Select all (Ctrl A) > Copy (Ctrl C) 
  • In Genome Mate > Import Data > Select Data Source 23andMe> Copy/Paste Family Inheritance Advanced (FIA) > Follow directions
The following loads the 23andMe CoA file:
  • For each profile:  On 23andMe > My Results > Ancestry Tools > Countries of Ancestry > Show Results for:  {profile name} > At bottom of page Download {name} Countries of Ancestries Matches (CSV) 
  • For each profile:  In Genome Mate > Import Data > Select Data Source 23andMe > Load CoA Matches from 23andMe CSV file > Select profile name > Import Data from CSV File > Select file named ancestry_finder_{name}_{date}.csv

Step 3:  Load 23andMe Relative's Surnames

This step loads the Surnames for existing Relative records into Genome Mate.
  • For each 23andMe Profile:  In Genome Mate > Import Data > Select Data Source 23andMe> Load Relative Finder CSV file from 23andMe > Follow directions

Hints and Tips

  • There are two small arrows going in a circle to the left of your profile name. 
  • Left click to show overlapping segments.  Escape to return to the original screen.
  • Right click to bring up an overlapping segment dialog
  • Choose a Relative Name in the list of matches. 
  1. Choose a relative who matches you on more than one chromosome.
  2. Right click on it to show all matches
  3. Escape to return to the original screen.
  • Some Relatives will have a small symbol (Mark ICW segments) to the left of their name.   Hover (do not click) your mouse over the symbol. 
  • A series of colored bars will show you the relatives who are in common with the one you are hovering over. 
  • These people are related but not necessarily on the currently selected segment. 
  • Some ICW group symbols are in orange. 
  • The orange color means that the segment crosses a centromere, so the meaningful length is much shorter than the displayed length.   
  • If you hover over the symbol, it will show the length of the centromere. 

Backups & Restores 

The words of wisdom on creating backup files cannot be overemphasized.   Experimentation is encouraged, but make sure you have a safe harbor.


Genome Mate's continued development, support and enhancements on the internet are funded by your donations.  If you use the application, please consider making a donation through Paypal.

Copyright © Beckins LLC 2013-2014


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