How to use WikiTree

Categories: WikiTree Help

From our e-card collection.

WikiTree can be a little intimidating at first!

Our community and features have been growing for eight years so there's a lot here. And we're not like other genealogy websites.

The first thing to know: WikiTree is all about genealogy collaboration. We work together.

Collaboration can be hard but we're a friendly group. Hang out with us and you'll see. Introduce yourself in our "G2G" (genealogist-to-genealogist) forum and ask about anything.


An Introduction to WikiTree

WikiTree is a community of genealogists dedicated to growing The Free Family Tree — a single tree that connects us all and is accessible to us all.

Here's a video introduction on YouTube. There's also a recent interview with our founder, Chris Whitten, and a fun chat about the WikiTree community with Chris, Forest Elf Eowyn, and Greeter-Mentor Leader Mags.

Check out this YouTube video about what makes WikiTree special: the community.

See About WikiTree for more on the mission and organization.

Getting Started

If you're a "newg" — new to genealogy — see Getting Started With Genealogy.

If you're a "newt" — new to WikiTree — read on ...

Registering as a Guest Member

If you're a current member login here. If you've forgotten your password you can have it e-mailed to you from this page.

If you were invited by a family member or fellow genealogist follow the link in the e-mailed invitation.

If you're new start by registering as a Guest Member. See Community_Membership for more about membership and its benefits (all free!).

Do you have a GEDCOM?

If you have used other family tree websites or software it's likely that you can export a GEDCOM file and upload it here. This is the fastest way to see if any of your ancestors are already on WikiTree. You'll get a GEDCompare report with likely matches.

Volunteering and signing the Honor Code

After creating a Guest Membership — unless you are just participating in the Genealogist-to-Genealogist Forum, searching, or using GEDCompare — you'll want to read our Honor Code. This Honor Code is a promise that members make to each other, and it's the foundation of our community.

If you agree with the Honor Code, we would love to have your help growing The Free Family Tree as a Wiki Genealogist. The next step after registering as a Guest Member is to volunteer to help grow the tree.

Adding Information

This is a "wiki" site which means the pages are designed to be easily improved upon.

  • Adding biographies, personal memories, and comments.
    • Adding links to the body of pages and biographies.
    • Adding headlines, lists, and other formatting inside biographies.
    • Adding sources, citations, and references. (Please include sources! Primary documentation or information that would allow others to find it is best, but always provide at least some idea of where information came from.)
  • If you've taken a DNA test for genealogy, there is an excellent introduction to WikiTree for genetic genealogy on the DNAeXplained blog: WikiTree and DNA.

Editing and Deleting

Most info can be edited by clicking the "Edit" tab on a profile. Deletion is not so easy.

  • Merging when there are duplicate pages for the same person.

Inviting Family and Collaborating

Collaboration is what WikiTree is all about.

  • To enable someone to collaborate with you on an individual profile, click the Privacy tab and add their e-mail address to the Trusted List.


We're serious about it.

  • You control the Privacy Level on profiles you manage, unless they're over 200 years old or under 13.
  • By default, most information about living people and their nuclear relatives is protected so that you need to be on the Trusted List just to see it.


They happen. Start at Problems with Members.

More Help

See the complete Help Category or Help Index.

If you don't easily find what you're looking for, ask in our G2G (genealogist-to-genealogist) forum. It's the center of our friendly community.

You could also post on Twitter (@WikiTreers), Facebook, or Google+.

This page was last modified 09:44, 17 October 2016. This page has been accessed 410,070 times.