From Wiki

Revision as of 23:14, 14 July 2009 by Noah (talk | contribs)
Jump to: navigation, search

This guide is intended for new or novice Geni users interested in finding their connection to the "Big Tree" so they can meet new cousins, explore their family history, and help us all discover how everyone's related.

Step 1: Create Your Account

If you have never used Geni before, the first thing you need to do is to sign up for an account. Just go to and enter your first name, last name, email address, and gender. When you click the Start My Tree! button we'll create your account and send you an email with your temporary password. We suggest that you use the link in the email to set your own password.

Step 2: Add Your Family

When you create your account the first thing you'll see is your tree with your node already filled out. Use the yellow arrows to add on to any node:

  • Up for parents
  • Side for siblings and spouses
  • Down for children

Start by adding all of the family members you know, including nieces and nephews, cousins, and in-laws. The more people you add to the tree the better chance that you'll find a connection to an existing tree. Adding birth and death dates is also highly recommended. And make sure that you add email addresses to living relatives so they can join Geni and fill in parts of the tree for you.

If you add a profile that matches a profile on another tree you'll see the hot matches icon on the tree node:


This means that another Geni user may have already added that branch to their tree. Click the icon to view the list of matches. If there is a match, you can merge the profiles and that branch will be added to your tree. This will save you the time of adding a duplicate branch to your tree.

Step 3: Share Your Profiles

You are the Manager of all of the profiles you add to your tree. This means that you control the privacy of these profiles. You can choose to Share any profiles that you think may be of interest to other Geni users outside of your close family. Sharing a profile means that anyone can search for and view the entire profile. We suggest that you share any profile beyond your close relatives. At a minimum, you should share any significant profile such as a historical figure. This will help others users related to this person find them and share research with you.

Use the Share this profile link on profiles or profile lists to share individual profiles.


Step 4: View Hot Matches

Once you have added all of the information that you have, invited your living relatives, and shared your profiles, you can view your Hot Matches list to see if any of your relatives are already on another Geni tree. If you don't have any matches yet you can check back after your relatives join your tree and start adding more people. If you do have matches, you can sign up for a 14 day free trial of Geni Pro to view your matches. As a Pro user you can view Hot Matches, use Advanced Search, and Collaborate with other Geni users.

If you find a match that looks correct, use the Confirm Match link to view the two profile side by side and confirm the match.


Requesting the merge will send a request to the manager of the duplicate profile to merge them. You can add a short message to the request if you'd like. Once the approve the merge your tree will include any additional information that was on their tree. This may include new Hot Matches, so make sure you keep checking your Hot Matches list.

Personal tools