Have you preserved or saved your raw DNA data for future use? It’s time to make that part of your family history plan and here’s how to do it.
I am the historian of the family. I am the archivist of all the family photos. I keep the dates, the names, and the stories of the family. And now, I keep the DNA results. My extended family has entrusted me with keeping up-to-date on latest DNA practices, tests, matches, and correspondence. I have learned that one important step to being the keeper of many persons DNA is to download the raw DNA data and store it in a safe place.
What is Raw DNA Data?
When you do a DNA test, the sample is tested and evaluated and the result is called ‘raw data‘. It is your genotype—the particular A’s, C’s, T’s, and G’s of your DNA that was extracted from the sample you provided. This raw DNA data is unique to you.
Regardless of what company you or your family have tested with, your raw DNA data is stored on the company’s website. You can generally access it whenever you want via your computer by logging into the testing company’s site.
Should I Download My Raw DNA Test Data?
Yes! That raw DNA data is part of your genealogical records. It should be kept like any other valuable genealogical record.
Why? Because you never know when you may lose the ability to download your results due to a company buy-out, canceled subscription, or if you may need to move your results to another website all together.
How to Download Raw DNA Data from Ancestry
Once you have logged in to Ancestry, click on the DNA tab at the top and choose “Your DNA Results Summary” from the drop-down options. This will bring you to your DNA results dashboard.
Now, click on the settings button to the far right.
At the next screen, you will need to scroll all the way down to the very bottom where you will see “Download Raw DNA Data.” Click on the download button to the right.
You will next need to login with your password and agree to the terms and conditions and click “Confirm.”
You’ll receive a confirmation email and download instructions at the email address associated with your Ancestry account. It may take a few minutes for you to receive the email. Also, be sure to check your junk or spam folders in case it got sent there.
When you open your email, it will look something like the image below. Click on “Confirm Data Download.”
You will be directed to a new screen at Ancestry that looks like this:
Click the “Download DNA Raw Data” button and a window will pop-up in which you can save your file to your computer. Be sure to save it with the name of the person whose DNA it is and remember WHERE YOU SAVED IT! I made a folder especially for Raw DNA Reports.
You may have noticed that the file is a compressed zipped folder file.
How to Download Your Raw DNA Data From Other Websites
Download Raw DNA Data from MyHeritage – Read here.
Download Raw DNA Data from 23andMe – Read here.
Download Raw DNA Data from Family Tree DNA – Read here.
Download Raw DNA Data from Living DNA – Read here.
You can upload your raw DNA data to another DNA testing site, share it with your family members, or keep it on your hard drive and backup places for safe keeping.
Been looking to take a DNA test? Here are the top two I recommend. Click on the images below to purchase your test or learn more! [MyHeritage DNA test is on sale now through 30 April 2020 for $39!. Prices below reflect U.S. prices only, tax and shipping not included.]