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February 27, 2012, Sharing Your Genealogy Data

There are multiple ways to share your data with other people, ranging from online family trees, CDs or DVDs, web pages, your own data driven website or print documents. These are some of the ways to share online.


Many genealogy data websites provide a way for you to upload or enter your data online, including both free sites and paid.


Genealogy software programs for PC and Macs provide alternate ways to share data, ranging from generating print documents, web pages or Gedcom files. Many have a free demo copy so you have a chance to try them out before you make a purchase. (However, not all functionality may be available).

They all provide web page publishing options, as well. Most of the vendors listed below provide links to examples of websites created using their programs.

Database Driven Website Software

There is only one commercial program that allows you to create a website using your data. It is different from publishing web pages in that if you change the data, the program updates the display of the data automatically. With web pages generated by the other software, if you update the data, you have to regenerate and upload all the pages that might have the changed data.

TNG, The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding displays your genealogy data online by using GEDCOMs created with the above programs that you upload to the web software. http://lythgoes.net/genealogy/software.php


Other Free Sites for Publishing Your Own Pages

  • Rootsweb: http://rootsweb.ancestry.com (allows you to put up your own pages.)
  • Weebly: http://weebly.com (you use their tools to build your pages)
  • Others include your internet service provider, Google, Yahoo and others provide space for putting up your own web pages.

Publishing considerations

If you are going to create your own website, you need to answer some questions.

  • Do I need my own website?
  • Do I need my own domain name?
  • How much does a website cost?
  • Determine the layout of your site.
  • Explore multi-media options – photos, movies, audio.
  • How do you want to share your data?
  • open to anyone
  • by invitation only
  • gated, requiring registration and a password
  • Can I determine who sees what data or makes changes?

Alternatives to viewing online

  • CD or DVD
  • printed book

Apps for your mobile device

Carrying your genealogy around with you on a portable device isn't really the same as online publishing, but it's still a handy way to show off your work instantly to anyone. Some of the main contenders for smartphone and mobile apps (go to the appropriate app store to download/purchase the software:

PDF Version

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