The most important links and features for Y-DNA Test Results

User Preference

Very Important--you will want to do this right away!
Choose whether you want to receive emails from your project administrator

Choose whether your matches will be compared against just the surname project or the entire database
Choose how many markers to use in displaying your matches: 12, 25, 37, or 67. (You can switch back and forth, if you wish.) Many researchers find that it is not helpful to see the matches at 12 markers, as there are so many of them and 12 markers is not enough to confirm a common ancestor.

Post your Most Distant Known Paternal and Maternal Ancestor and his/her place of origin. "Maternal Side"does not mean your Most Distant Known Paternal Ancestor's wife. It means your mother's mother's mother's ..........mother, as far back as you know this maternal line. Be sure you fill out this very important piece of information, which will be displayed with your test results and will be helpful to those you match

Click "Update" at the bottom of the page to make your selections.

DYS Values

Your results will look something like this:

PANEL 1 (1-12)

LOCUS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
DYS# 393 390 19 391 385a 385b 426 388 439 389-1 392 392-2
ALLELES 12 24 14 10 11 15 12 12 12 13 13 29

Understand the results table labels :

Locus--simply the sequence that FTDNA uses to report the markers.

DYS#--DNA Y-Chromosome Segment--the prefix for most marker addresses (The lab looks at a segment of your DNA strand to find these addresses. Each address has a certain pattern that repeats several times. The DYS# tells you where on the strand the address is, sort of like a street number tells you where on the street the house is.) Markers--the common name for the addresses on the chromosome segment where the testing is done. The number shown is the number of times that a specific pattern repeats at that address. It is by comparing these numbers that you are able to compare your test results with other results. The table uses the shorthand of just the number, i.e. 393, but we report an individual marker using the DYS prefix, i.e. DYS 393. Some markers are "multi-markers" meaning that multiple values are reported for this marker, for example 385a and 385b. (sort of like having a duplex or an apartment complex on a street--all have the same street number, but are designated a or b, etc.)

Alleles--the count reported at the marker (number of times that the pattern repeats)
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Matches
Here you will find those whose test results match yours.. What will be displayed here is determined by your choices on "User Preferences", so be sure that page is set the way you want.

If you match someone who has signed a release form, his name and email address will be shown. Click on it if you wish to send him an email.
Family Tree DNA will notify you by email anytime you have a new match.
You may be contacted by your Project Administer or another test participant to alert you to a match.
The number in parenthesis after a name tells you how many markers this person has tested. Look down the page to the highest number of markers you have both been tested to see if the match holds up at the highest resolution you both have.
Your "matches" will be grouped:
"Exact matches" would be 12/12, 25/25, 37/37, or 67/67
"Genetic Distance - 1" matches would be 11/12, 24/25, 36/37, or 66/67
"Genetic Distance - 2" matches would be 10/12. 23/25, 35/37, or 65/67
Clicking on the "horizontal y" symbol at the right of your matches' name will give you the FTDNATIP Report to give you the statistics on whether you share a common ancestor.
Clicking on the "FT" symbol will give you access to that person's gedcom. (Not everyone has provided this information.)

How to read your matches:

The number in parenthesis in your "Matches Found" listing is the number of markers tested by that individual. If it is more than yours, you will gain by upgrading to compare at the same number of markers the other individual has tested. \
Start with your largest marker comparisons, depending on the number of markers you had tested. (12, 25, 37, or 67)
Look first at your best match at the most markers you have been tested. For example, if you were tested at 37 markers, look under "37 Marker Matches" to see if you have a 37/37 match ("Exact Matches"), 36/37 match ("Genetic Distance-1") or 35/37 match ("Genetic Distance-2")
You will also want to see if any of your close matches have (Y67) beside the name. If so, this means that this person has been tested at 67 markers, so you may want to consider upgrading to 67 yourself to see if the match holds up.
Then go up to the "25 Marker Matches" category to see if you have close matches there. Look at each name of the matches to see if they have a parenthesis after the name with Y37 or Y67 in it. If they do, that means you have already found them as matches when you looked at the 37 marker matches, or the match did not hold up at higher resolution.
If the person you closely match at 25 markers does not have a parenthesis with Y37 or Y67 after his name, this means that he has only been tested to 25 markers, and you may want to encourage him to upgrade to 37 to see if your match holds up.
You can then look at the "12 Marker Matches" to see if there is a match there. However, 12 markers are not considered enough by most genetic genealogists to indicate a common ancestor.
If you find a match there who has not upgraded beyond 12 markers, you will want to encourage him to upgrade to see if the match holds up at a higher resolution.

What these matches mean:
A 12-marker match is generally inadequate for genealogy purposes. Most researchers will not respond to a contact about a 12-marker match, and many researchers don't even allow comparison of their 12-marker results.
A 25-marker match should be at least 23/25. Many researchers consider this match to be sufficient if you share a surname.
A 37-marker match should be at least 33/37. We consider this to be the lowest matching level for those of different surnames (unless they have connecting paper trails.)
A 67-marker match should be at least 61/67. FTDNA recommends this test when comparing to others with a different surname. This test is particularly useful in trying to better understand a large genetic family.

Analyzing your matches

For those who tested at 12 markers:
Matches of less than 9/12 – the two participants do not share a common ancestor* (The author is aware of only one case where a 8/12 become an accepted genetic match after upgrading sufficiently to have a valid comparison. The paper trails confirm the match)
Matches of 9/12 - there is a tiny chance that the participants share a common ancestor. You'll need to test at 37 markers to find a true shared genetic match that starts with such a low match. (The author has not yet personally seen a 9/12 become an accepted genetic match - but has heard of an occurance)
Matches of 10/12 – there is a small chance that the participants share a common ancestor. Increase to 25 markers and re-evaluate
Matches of 11/12 and 12/12 – there is an improved chance that the participants share a common ancestor. Increase to 25 markers and re-evaluate
CAUTION: a 12/12 match - even with the same surname - can be a random match. If a solid paper trail supports the 12/12 match, you can be reasonably certain of shared ancestry, but without the connecting paper trail - you can only be sure by upgrading to at least 25 markers
For those who tested at 25 markers:
Matches of less than 21/25 – the two participants do not share a common ancestor*
Matches of 21/25 & 22/25 – there is a small chance that the participants share a common ancestor. Consider all of the traditional genealogy insights and try to obtain more participants to represent the affected families. Upgrade to 37 markers
Matches of 23/25, 24/25 & 25/25 – there is a high probability that participants who share a surname share a common ancestor. If there is no shared paper trail, a comparison at 37 or 67 markers can be useful.
You may also refer to the chart prepared by Family Tree DNA: Click Here
For those who tested at 37 markers:
Matches of less than 31/37 – the two participants do not share a common ancestor*
Matches of 31/37 and 32/37 - the two participants have a small possibility that may share a common ancestor from the early days of surnames. This is an area with little clear insight. An upgrade to 67 markers is encouraged
Matches of 33/37 - some researchers consider this to be a match and some don't. If there is a shared common ancestor - it will be more than a few 100s of years ago. Upgrade to 67 markers for additional clarity.
Matches of 34/37, 35/37, 36/37 & 37/37 - the participants share a recent common ancestor
You may also refer to the chart prepared by Family Tree DNA: Click Here
For those who tested at 67 markers:
Matches of less than 60/67 – the two participants probably do not share a common ancestor*. This is still being studied - but unless your match is nearly 60/67 and you have some reason to believe there is a shared ancestor since the advent of surnames - you should consider your near miss as "no match"
Matches of 60/67 and 61/67 - the two participants may share a common ancestor from the early days of surnames. This is still being studied
Matches of 62/67 and better - researchers consider these to be a match - indicating a shared common ancestor
You may also refer to the chart prepared by Family Tree DNA: Click Here

What if you have NO matches?
This means that you do not share a common ancestor with any of the other men tested so far in the project. If you believe that your pedigree is completely accurate and that there have been no "non-paternity" events in your line, it also means that your ancestral line does not share a common ancestor with any of the men tested so far in the project However, you'll need a confirming result from a second man to be certain on this point. (If you find and test a man descended from a different son of your earliest ancestor, and if the two of you match - you'll know the DNA of your most recent common ancestor. You'll also know the DNA of every ancestor between you and that common ancestor.) So here are the steps you can take:
Upgrade, if needed, to at least 37 markers (Most of the mutations may be in the first markers.)
Test your most distant known cousin (Confirms your most recent common ancestor, reassures you of your results, or identifies a "Surname Discontinuity")
Test a known descendant of a family you think you match or of a family living in the area where yours lived who was closely associated with your family (possible unrecorded adoption).
Join your Geographic and Haplogroup Projects
Be Patient. The person who will match you and help unlock your genealogy may decide to be tested at some point in the future. When he does, your results and pedigree will already be available and ready to help you make the connection you desire!
At this point, you may decide you need to upgrade. Learn more about upgrades.
Understanding Results FAQ
Reading and Comparing Results
*We mean a common direct paternal ancestor within the historical period of surnames."
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Haplotree

This link gives you your haplogroup. Haplogroups pertain to your deep ancestral origins dating back thousands of years. Because a haplogroup consists of similar haplotypes, this is what makes it possible to predict a haplogroup. FTDNA makes every effort to estimate your haplogroup by comparing your results to their database. They also give you an opportunity to order a SNP test, which will confirm your haplogroup. Haplogroups are assigned letters of the alphabet, and refinements consist of additional number and letter combinations, Example: R1b1. Y-chromosome and mitochondrial DNA haplogroups have different haplogroup designations. FTDNA makes every effort to estimate your haplogroup by comparing your results to their database. They also give you an opportunity to order a SNP test, which will confirm your haplogroup.
Most participants have a haplogroup estimate that was derived by comparing their results with others who have the same result and who have been SNP tested. (Estimated haplogroups are shown in red on the project's results page.)
Haplogroups are reported in varying degrees of detail. Each level of specificity is defined by an additional letter or number. The longer the reported haplogroup designation, the more specific it is. When haplogroups are reported with different levels of specificity, it can be confusing. Here are examples of haplogroups where the men can or cannot share a recent common ancestor.
These men can share a recent common ancestor: R1b, R1b1, R1b1c - as the differences are levels of specificity. Another example: I, I1b, I1b2
These men cannot share a recent common ancestor: R1b1c, R1b1d . Anytime the specificity is the same and the last character is not matching, these men do not share a recent common ancestor.
"My Haplotree"-- to learn your haplogroup, as predicted by FTDNA's estimation based on their database, or as proven by the actual SNP tested, if you have ordered it.
"My Matches" -- to see your haplogroup matches. Your matches are grouped: "Exact", "One-Step Mutations", "Two-Step Mutations", "Three-Step Mutations" (The same as "Genetic Distance 1", "Genetic Distance 2", above)
"Frequency Map"-- to see where in the world your haplogroup appears most frequently.
"Migration Map"-- to see the route taken by your ancient ancestors.

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Ancestral Origins
Tells you where the persons your test results match have reported as their earliest ancestor's origins

This is one reason it is important to provide the place of origin for your most distant paternal and maternal ancestor on the Contact Information page
Your matches are grouped: "Exact", "One-Step Mutations", "Two-Step Mutations", "Three-Step Mutations" (The same as "Genetic Distance 1", "Genetic Distance 2", above)
It's important to note both the number of matches you have for a country and how many people in the database have reported that country of origin. (For example, if you have 6 matches from England and 3 from France, you may want to focus more on France, as the number of people from France who have been tested is so much smaller - this means that the proportion from France who match you is much higher.) This information is given to you in the Percentage column on the right. Percentages above 2% are considered significant, and percentages above 4% are considered highly significant.
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YSearch.org
To compare your results on Ysearch.org (against others who have been tested outside of the FTDNA database), click here for an automatic upload to YSearch
Provides a way to compare your results to those men tested at any company who have chosen to upload their results.
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GEDCOM

Join
Now that you know your haplogroup, you may want to join your yDNA haplogroup project, to work with others who share your haplogroup.
You may also decide to join a Geographic Project, as a way of targeting a certain area for research with others who share that geographic history with you.
If you feel there is evidence that you may belong in a different surname project, you are allowed to join a second surname project.

Understanding Results FAQ
Reading and Comparing Results