Open Source & Online tool for managing family trees?



I tried the online but I do not like that you need pay for Premium features such as

  • connecting two pieces of information about one person made by two people:

Many people can make Heritage trees. So there are duplicates often. There duplicates cannot be merged without paying in which is awful. This is the reason why I do not continue to use the service.

The basic idea of collaborative filling of heritage trees is that people can merge different edits of different people and agree to one as the major one.

So I started to think that there can be an open-source solution for this problem.

Which Open Source & Online tool for managing family trees can meet the requirement of connecting two pieces of information about one person made by two people?

Léo Léopold Hertz 준영

Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 171

Welcome to G&FH.SE! Your question is broad and seems to be asking for recommendations rather than trying to solve a problem. Our FAQ: What types of questions should I avoid asking? says don't ask questions where your answer is provided along with the question, and you expect more answers: “I use ______ for ______, what do you use?” So don't be alarmed if we edit or close your question until you can improve it. Were you using an online tree at MyHeritage, their desktop software FamilyTreeBuilder, or both?

– Jan Murphy – 2014-09-27T16:32:13.163

Online one. Any basic family trees. Open-source is important. – Léo Léopold Hertz 준영 – 2014-09-27T16:51:44.017

I hope you do not mind that I have edited your question to focus it down to the three requirements that you have specified. Also, there is some commonality between this and an earlier Q&A that you may like to review - I think the only distinction may be that you are specifying Open Source as a requirement.

– PolyGeo – 2014-09-27T23:20:15.730

1Can you clarify what you mean by "connecting two pieces of information about one person made by two people"? Are you talking about collaboration? – Jan Murphy – 2014-09-28T00:35:51.327

2@JanMurphy Explained what the merging two items in the two people's family trees mean. Yes, I am talking about collaboration and filing those trees together online. – Léo Léopold Hertz 준영 – 2014-09-28T11:34:34.693

1If you don't like to pay, a free site and free software should be enough. Why do you ask for open source? What do you really want? Run your own site? Run free software on your PC too? Please explain, because right now, you don't leave much room for a good answer. – Enno Borgsteede – 2014-10-01T06:33:16.953

@EnnoBorgsteede, I agree. The question seems to use "open source" as an equivalent to "freeware". – Jan Murphy – 2014-10-01T16:30:47.660

Right, and at the moment, I can't even distinguish whether it's about software or a site, or software for a site. In other words, we have THREE possibilities to answer on. – Enno Borgsteede – 2014-10-01T22:39:08.333


5 is an open source, open content, collaborative family tree. It sounds like it might be what you are looking for.


Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 592

1The only thing I'd worry about with WeRelate is the fact that the software hasn't been updated in years, and is not looking likely to be any time soon. :( – Sam Wilson – 2014-11-13T05:14:09.393


If it's an open source genealogy program you want, you might consider gramps. See It's written in python, has an active community, and has a reasonable set of features. But if it's online collaboration you want, I agree with the answer.


Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 3 685


webtrees is open source software. If you have your own website, you can add webtrees to it for free, or there are companies that will provide a site for you (at a cost).

It's not like myheritage or ancestry where all users are on the same site; you would have your own family tree website, but all the users of your site can access and contribute to the same tree. It's ideal for an extended family that wants to work together on a single project.

Randy Orrison

Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 173


If you want to set up a site where you can invite others to work on shared persons, I support Randy's suggestion for webtrees.

If you look for a site where you can work on a world wide tree that is open and free, I think that FamilySearch is the best choice. There are no fees, and it is open in the sense that once logged-in, any-one can edit any person in the shared Family Tree. There is also no restriction on merging duplicates, meaning that you don't need anyone's permission for that either. Moreover, if you're interested, you can use free versions of programs like Ancestral Quest or RootsMagic to synchronize persons and sources in your own database with the Family Tree.

Geni is not free, nor open. Merging persons requires a paid membership, and you can't edit any person that you want. You may need permission from an 'owner', and the same is true for WikiTree, which is free, but not open.

If you really want free, open (access), and open source, WeRelate is best. It's the smallest of all, with less than 3 Million persons, where WikiTree has 8 Million, and Geni more than 80 Million persons connected in a single tree, and a few Million more that are not connected yet. I don't know the numbers for FamilySearch, but I bet they're quite similar to Geni.

Enno Borgsteede

Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 1 385

There's a summary of the sizes etc. of existing collaborative sites here:

– Sam Wilson – 2014-11-13T05:13:27.913


Wikitree is my suggestion. Its genealogy 2.0. You have support for DNA genealogy. You use sources and include pictures or links to pictures

  1. More people work together on the same tree (there is just one tree ;-)
  2. Right now more than 8 million people documented
  3. Excellent support for DNA research using genealogy
  4. You can upload pictures and include them in the documentation using a simple html like syntax
  5. As more people works on the same tree/profiles its important to use sources and conclusions ==> this is the way to do genealogy

Sample profile I am updating after a trip to Serbia

My DNA view

Videos Introduction


Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 181

2 is like a lot of the online tree setups that are great until differing members load up trees and it finds matches... then it wants to charge you to consolidate the information or even to contact the cousin or inlaw that has the more information or a slightly differing spelling of the name... I even have one where three of the 5 children are the same in 4 separate trees but the other two are wrong... and we cannot get together to find out why without getting premium access...

Perhaps Gramps has some help site for such things but we have been using facebook, in a private page, for some of our collaborations.

Adam Albanowicz

Posted 2014-09-27T10:40:52.807

Reputation: 185