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When regular trees won't do.

Gigatrees is a free web service that you can use to create your own downloadable family tree. Your Gigatree will include separate profile pages for each person, place, and source found in your database. Each profile page is organized by tabs and will include as much information as we can find in your database that is associated with that profile, including all claims, source references, external links, photos, notes, etc. We will also create and include on an appropriate tab, a census table report (CENtaR), a generation list, a family tree chart and visitor comments.

Your Gigatree will include a number of other separate pages and reports including a master timeline, a statistics page, a page showing the latest updates to your database, an must have population distribution heatmap and Bonkers, our popular data consistency and sanity report.

To build your Gigatree, you must first sign in using one of the social media authentication methods provided, or by creating a local account at Once signed in, buttons will appear on this page allowing your to upload your GEDCOM file and build your Gigatree. The build process takes just a few minutes and when done you will be provided with a download link.

If you would like more control over how your tree is built, there are some settings that you can modify to suit your needs. You will find all of the settings, separated into categories, listed below.

A sample tree is provided as an example. It was built using an exported GEDCOM file and the default configuration with the following exceptions: The "Deep Scanning" Property was enabled. The "Match Alternate Given Names For Duplicate Children" and "Ignore Non-overlapping Timelines For Duplicate Children" options were both enabled for the Database Analysis.

If you use Gigatrees to publish your tree online, please provide a link in the comments. It will help me in testing how various application specific data is displayed.

Sample Gigatree
Gigatree Title
Configuration Options

Some of the special report pages are optionally included in your Gigatree. Select which of these you would like included here. Enabling the Photographs page will likely require you to setup your External URLs in the Advanced Configuration Options below.

  • Photographs Page
  • Database Analysis Report (Bonkers)
  • Database Statistics Report
  • Hide Living Persons
  • Privatize Records Marked as Sensitive
  • Show Certainty Assessments on Profile Tabs
  • Deep Scanning (estimates birth dates)
  • Show Estimated Birth Years in Timelines
  • Show Qualified Dates in Timelines

Hide Living Persons Hides all living persons by obfuscating their names and stripping all their claims except parental associations. When enabled, Deep Scanning will also be used to automatically determine which persons in your database are likely to be living.

Privatize Records Marked as Sensitive Strips all records that have been marked as sensitive. Private data unmarked will not be touched.

Show Certainty Assessments on Profile Tabs Shows the derived certainty assessments alongside every claim. See the User Guide for more information on certainty assessments. Certainty Assessments are derived from the sources referenced for each claim and are important for your visitor to gauge the surety of your claims. Disabling this is discouraged.

Deep Scanning Will estimate birth years for any person found in your database missing one.

Show Estimated Birth Years in Timelines When calculated, estimated birth years will appear alongside other dates in your timelines.

Show Qualified Dates in Timelines Qualified dates, being approximate, data ranges or otherwise, will appear alongside other dates in your timelines.

  • Show Impossibilities Only (hides improbabilities)
  • Match Alternate Given Names For Duplicate Children
  • Ignore Non-overlapping Timelines For Duplicate Children

Show Impossibilities Only The Database Analysis Report categorizes claims as impossible, improbable, or otherwise. Impossible claims are those that could not possibly happen, such as a person who has a birth date after their baptism date. Improbable claims are those that are possible but unlikely, such as a person who had children before the age of 15. Enabling this option will limit the types of claims listed in the report to impossible claims only. This can be useful when you want to focus your research in just those areas that are most problematic.

Match Alternate Given Names For Duplicate Children The Datatbase Analysis Report lists, among other things, duplicate children, that is, families who have two children with the same name. maintains a database of common alternate names. Enabling this option will use this database to find children with matching alternate names. For instance, if a family has three children, William, Bill, and Guillaume, these would all be detected as duplicates.

Ignore Non-overlapping Timelines For Duplicate Children It is not uncommon to find families who have lost a child young and then to have given the same name to a sibling who was born after the first child died. When matching duplicate children, enabling this option will not consider those siblings duplicates as long as their timelines do not overlap.

Set the age thresholds for the following items to best match your GEDCOM data. By default, the most common ages are defined.

Maximum Child Baptism Age is the maximum age at which a person was baptized or christened as a child. Adult christenings are not considered in this context.

Minimum Marriage Age is the minimum age that a person could have been married. Betrothals and Contracts are not considered in this context.

Maximum Wife's Marriage Age is the maximum age at which a woman could have been married.

Maximum Age Between Spouses is the maximum number of years of age between spouses.

Minimum Child Bearing Age and Maximum Child Bearing Age are the range of ages within which a woman could bear children.

Minimum Flourishing Age and Maximum Flourishing Age are the range of ages that a person is considered to be an adult and would be found containing adult attributes and events such as nobility titles or occupations.

Maximum Age (Life Span) is the maximum age at death of a person.

Maximum Event Age Error is the maximum error expected between an event and a person's recorded age. A common phenomenon in genealogical records results in persons being listed at the time of an event with an age that is not accurate. Making this value too narrow may prevent birth years from being estimated accurately.

Set the date thresholds for the following items to best match your GEDCOM data.

Dead if Born Before Year is the earliest year a living person could have been born, before which is considered improbable.

Dead if Married Before Year is the earliest year a living person could have been married, before which is considered improbable.

Check this box if you want to include Census Table Reports as a tab on your individual's profiles.

  • Census Table Reports (CENtaRs)

Check this box if you want to us to automatically determine the census years when we scan your database. Otherwise, uncheck the box and manually enter just those years you are interested in. By default the years are set here for U.S. Federal Census years, but you can change these to any years you want and clear out the others.

  • Autodetect Census Years

Advanced Configuration Options

Unless there is need to, page extensions should be included in all links, and the html extension should be used.

Select whether or not to include the file extension in all hyperkinks.

  • Page Links Include Extension

Select which extension to use for your files.

One of the reasons Gigatrees run so fast is because they make efficient use a various time-tested and efficient jQuery libraries and CSS3 stylesheets. These extensions are required for dispalying the pages correctly. Users who plan on embedding their offline Gigatrees into other websites or blogs might find it necessary to disable the automatic loading of these extensions and instead to manually include them in the header and footer sections shown below. The necessary files change often as new features become available, but users can always find a complete list by building an offline tree, and then viewing the page source for any page of their tree.

Another reason why you might want to disable loading these extensions automatically is if you are including your family tree within another website, such as a blog (See "Integrating Your Family Tree Into Wordpress"), and you find some of the files have already been loaded by that site's header. In that case, you can add just the files needed in the header area below. A third reason might be if you want to load your extensions from another server or a different content delivery network.

  • Include Default Stylesheets and Libraries

When adding the Header and Footer site wrappers below, we embed them within the Gigatrees generated headers and footers by default. This is done so that Gigatree's metadata is used for each page instead of the metadata for the site the tree is being embedded into. So users have found however, that their offline Gigatree will not display correctly when the Header and Footer site wrappers are embedded. If this is the case, or you just would rather use your site's metadata, you can turn off embedding the site wrappers below.

  • Embed Site Wrappers

The following wrapper areas are left blank by default. The <html>, <head>, and <body> tags are already being loaded, so they should not appear in these wrappers. If you are integrating your family tree into another website that already includes headers and footers, see "Integrating Your Family Tree Into Wordpress" for information on how to setup these fields.

Several template substitution tags can be used within the wrapper fields. %Title% will be replaced with the Tree Title when processing, and %PageTitle% will be replaced on each page with the actual title of that page.

You can enable a navigation bar that is fixed to the top of your browser window or one that floats below it. You can also choose to disable it entirely if, for instance, you are including your tree into another site such as a WordPress blog that may already have a navigation bar that you are using.

  • Fixed
  • Floating
  • Disabled

Gigatress now supports the popular, full-featured and free Disqus ( commenting system. In order to use it, you will need to create a Disqus profile, if you don't have one already, and select "Add Disqus to Site" from your the Settings (gear icon) dropdown menu on your Disqus profile page. This will take you to their publishers page where you can select the "Engage" app that will take you to your Site Profile setup page ... or you can just click here to shortcut it: On the Site Profile page you will setup your title and Disqus shortname. When you click Finish Registration you will be redirected to your Disqus admin page where you should go to the Settings tab and setup the features you want. Add your Disqus Shortname and URL here and we will take care of the rest.

Disqus Identifier You can find this on your website's Disqus admin Settings page under "Site Identity".

Your Gigatree URL This is the full URL path to your Gigatree. This is only used whenever Disqus creates links back to your comment pages.

GEDCOM files use multimedia link records (OBJE.FILE) to link to photos and images. Some servers, like Dropbox, Facebook, and Flickr as well as most website hosting services, allow hotlinking to publically shared images and photos. If your GEDCOM file's multimedia link records are already setup using external links to one of these services (i.e. or if your database includes relative paths in the form of /folder/photo.jpg, folder/photo.jpg or simply photo.jpg, then Gigatrees can link to these images and embed them on profile pages. Local photos (i.e. c:/folder/photo.jpg) cannot be linked to when your tree is hosted online, but can be when viewed offline. Relative paths will require setting up separate external URLs for photos, photo thumbnails and source images below. Source images are defined as any image found or referenced in your database not directly under an individual, i.e. sources, notes, claims, etc. and their thumbnails are expected to use the same path as do they.

  • Link Photos (Local Paths)
  • Link Photos (Relative Paths)
  • Treat Relative Paths As Local
  • Force Thumbnails

Link Photos (Local Paths) Source images are linked to by default using the multimedia link record path and external URLs as defined below. Photo images, however are not. Enabling this option will link local photos for use offline. If you plan to upload this tree to an online server you should disable this option because the photos cannot be accessed.

Link Photos (Relative Paths) Enabling this option will link photos with relative paths for both online and offline use.

Treat Relative Paths as Local You must let us know whether you want your relative paths to be considered relative to your local tree (for use offline) or not.

Force Thumbnails By default, default generic images are used for all thumbnails. When forcing thumbnails is checked, mutimedia link records that have image extensions (i.e. jpg, png, and gif) will use the original image as its own thumbnail instead. This is done by loading the image, scaling it down proportionally so that it is not distorted and then cropping the bottom, if necessary, to fit within a fixed-sized, square bounding box. When a large number of photos are being loaded like this, especially if they are high resolution images, it can take a long time for your page to load. Disabling this option eliminates that problem, but then you don't have representative thumbnails. To get around this problem Gigatrees supports an additional GEDCOM extension. The OBJE._PIC field can be used to set external or relative paths for your thumbnail images.

The following diagram shows how this new field might be used with relative paths.

  2 FILE c:/folder/pics/walt.png
  2 _PIC walt-thumb.png

If your multimedia link records use relative paths you must configure these external URLs in order for Gigatrees to link to and embed them. When configured these URLs will be prepended to any records found using relative paths.

The Widgets URL should point to the location of the images that were downloaded as part of this build. It only needs to be set if the images are moved to a folder other than where your Gigatree resides.

The chart below shows the various ways you might configure your External URLs.

External URL                FILE                               _PIC
N/A                         photos/walt.jpg                    thumbs/walt-thumb.png   walt.jpg                                                        walt-thumb.png  src.jpg                            src-thumb.png
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