Tips For People with Ashkenazi Ancestry

If you have Ashkenazi ancestry, you've probably already discovered that you have a LOT of matches! And not only is your Matches file very large, so are your Chromosome Browser and ICW files. In fact, Ashkenazi ICW files used to be upwards of 300 MB at times. Here are the steps you should follow for your best chance of using ADSA on your kit:

1. Download your files to the DNAgedcom Database: Download your files following the instructions in the ADSA manual. Just be prepared to wait two hours or more for the download to complete. Start it up and forget it for a while. Depending on how busy FamilyTreeDNA or 23andMe are at the time, it could take longer. You'll have to be patient.

2. Check to make sure your files have completely downloaded: Go to DNAgedcom and hover your cursor over the MEMBERS menu and select VIEW FILES. You should see a folder for each kit you have ever downloaded. The names will be of the form: FTDNA_242768 (except with your kit number instead of mine). If you don't see a folder with your kit number, then your files did not fully download. Contact for help. If the folder is there, click on it. You should see your three files: 262562_Family_Finder_Matches.csv, 262562_ChromsomeBrowser.csv, and 262562_ICW.csv. If you can't find those files in that folder or you find them in a folder called "Building", they didn't finish downloading. Contact for help.

3. Go to ADSA: Once your files are on the server, without logging off DNAgedcom, go to ADSA at:

4. Use the Segments report: Do not use the default Classic ADSA report. Use the dropdown menu to select the Segments report.

5. Select your kit: Select your kit/profile in the dropdown.

6. Uncheck Remote Relatives: You have the best chance of success if you eliminate remote matches. Alternatively, you can leave Remote Relatives checked and limit your report to one chromosome at a time by entering a chromosome number in the chromsome input box.

7. Click GET REPORT and wait: It may take a while (minute or two). If you get a blank screen or 500 Internal Server Error, try again and try unchecking Remote Relatives AND limiting to a single chromosome.. Other things to try include using the Expert Mode to remove display of the ALLSEGS and avoiding the use of HIGHLIGHTing.

Note that there are so many colored bricks in the ICW matrix for people with Ashkenazi ancestry that the ICW matrix becomes almost meaningless. How can you triangulate reliably if all your matches match each other (and your parents remotely match each other too)? If you wish, you can eliminate the ICW matrix from the report in Expert Mode. Generally, ADSA has no problem handling a lot of matches or segments. The problems come with the 3 million row Ashkenazi ICWs.

Here's hoping you can get ADSA to work for you!

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Don Worth