Pedigree Resource File

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PRF Cover Image used for CDs and DVDs.

Pedigree Resource File (PRF) is a collection of user submitted genealogies. It shows individuals’ names; family relationships; and dates and places of birth, marriage, and death. No merges, corrections, or additions are made to genealogies submitted to Pedigree Resource File. The most current version of the Pedigree Resource File (PRF) is available for free on the Internet as part of FamilySearch Genealogies.

What is the Pedigree Resource File (PRF)?[edit | edit source]

  • Contains all submissions made by users
  • Has about 220 million records
  • You can click to view a person in the FamilySearch Family Tree.
  • You cannot download the information as a GEDCOM file
  • The data is shown as individual submissions
  • Submissions by the same contributor are not combined
  • Sources and notes are displayed
  • Multimedia links are not displayed[1]

Benefits of the PRF[edit | edit source]

There are many reasons why the Pedigree Resource File is helpful to a researcher. Here are a few:

  • It is a safe place to archive your family tree.
  • Each submission is stored in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints's Granite Mountain Vault
  • PRF contains hundreds of millions of searchable names
  • Contributors often provided source notes and sources [2]

When to Use It[edit | edit source]

Use Pedigree Resource File to discover what genealogical research has already been done. Use it to guide you towards original records. As with all compiled genealogies, Pedigree Resource File has significant limitations (see below) and more accurate information should be sought from the original records.

Limitations[edit | edit source]

  • Submitters are responsible for the accuracy of the information. FamilySearch does not check the accuracy of any contributed genealogy.
  • Information in Pedigree Resource File is second-hand. Like any genealogy found online, verify the information before accepting it. In general the better the documentation and sources, the more accurate the data is.
  • Submitter information, previously available, is now hidden for privacy reasons. Submitters can put basic contact information in the note fields, but they do so at their own risk.
  • Pedigree Resource File contains many errors and unlike the FamilySearch Family Tree, corrections are not accepted. Submitters are advised to make another submission that includes corrections. However, both old and new submissions are left in Pedigree Resource File unless the previous one is deleted. The previous one can only be deleted if it was submitted by you and you retain proof of such. See FAQ below.
  • Unlike the old CDs & DVDs, you can not download GEDCOMs from the online version.
  • Information submitted to the PRF has been added to Family Search Family Tree and can be edited, corrected or modified in that format. However, sources, documentation and other notes were not added to FamilySearch Family Tree.

Submitting Your Genealogy[edit | edit source]

Sharing your genealogy allowed you to preserve your family history in the Pedigree Resource File and share it with others around the world. A copy of the genealogy files (GEDCOM format) that you submit were preserved in the Granite Mountain Records Vault located near Salt Lake City, Utah. In addition, your genealogy may be made conveniently available to others on the Internet. [3]

You can submit your genealogy to the PRF by:

  • First, obtain permission from any living persons mentioned in your genealogy to submit their information to FamilySearch. Remember, notes and sources attached to an entry for a deceased person may also include information about a living person. For privacy reasons, you must remove any information about living persons if you do not have their permission to submit it.

Note: You can use your genealogy program to remove those living when creating a GEDCOM file. Please see your genealogy program help file or instructions on how to do this.

  • Second, review your notes and sources to make sure they don't contain any offensive or inappropriate statements about another person. If found, remove such information.
  • Third, save your genealogy in a GEDCOM file format on your personal computer. Many genealogy software programs provide the capability to save your records in a GEDCOM file format (where the file is named with a .ged extension -- for example: eastleyhistory.ged). Please see the instructions provided with your software for more information.
  • Fourth, submit the GEDCOM file that you have created to FamilySearch. You will need to agree to the conditions for submitting your genealogy before submitting the file. For instructions, see the FAQ section below.

Frequently Asked Questions[edit | edit source]

What is the difference between Ancestral File and Pedigree Resource File?

Both files are the results of user submitted genealogies. Submissions to Ancestral File were merged into one common pedigree. Submissions to Pedigree Resource File are kept separate from other submissions. Notes and sources submitted are preserved in Pedigree Resource File submissions but were discarded from Ancestral File submissions.

How do I contribute to Pedigree Resource File?

Use the steps below to submit your GEDCOM file to the Pedigree Resource File:

1. Sign in at

2. Click Search in the top Header

3. Click Genealogies.

4. At the bottom of the page, click Submit Tree.

5. Click Add GEDCOM

6. In the Upload Your Gedcom box:

    a. In the Choose File box type the full path and file name of the GEDCOM file you want to submit, or click Browse to locate the GEDCOM file on your computer.

    b. In the Tree Name box, name your tree to make it easy to identify.

    c. In the Description box, tell others where the tree information came from and how information was found.

    d. Click Upload.

    e. Under My Uploaded Files, click Compare.


  • Some corrections to the Pedigree Resource File are possible. If you find errors in data you submitted, you can sometimes delete the entire submission and make a new submission containing the correct information. See FAQ Deleting a GEDCOM file below - that you submitted to the pedigree resource file (71922)
  • If you find errors in the data that someone else submitted, you cannot make changes or corrections to the data or to the submitter information. You can make a new submission that reflects the correct data. Additional submissions do not replace or change any prior submissions.

How do I correct errors in Pedigree Resource File?

Corrections are not accepted for Pedigree Resource File. Corrections can be made in the new FamilySearch Tree. Submitters are invited to resubmit genealogies that incorporate desired corrections. However, the submission does not replace the old submission. Both old and new, incorrect and correct, are in the file.

How accurate is Pedigree Resource File?

The information in Pedigree Resource File is submitted by users of the FamilySearch website. Some people may have contributed incorrect or incomplete information. FamilySearch does not verify the accuracy of information in Pedigree Resource File.

Some genealogies include notes and sources, which can help surmise the accuracy of a particular genealogy.

Are living people included in Pedigree Resource File?

Pedigree Resource File does not display information about living people. People born less than 95 years ago who do not have a death date in the file are considered living.

How do I contact submitters to Pedigree Resource File?

For privacy reasons, the online Pedigree Resource File does not display personal information about submitters. Instead, it displays identifiers composed of parts of submitters' names followed by 7-digit numbers. The old Pedigree Resource File Discs displayed submitter names and contact information but the discs are no longer available.

Why are there duplicate records in the Pedigree Resource File?

No merges are made to genealogies submitted to the Pedigree Resource File, even updated files from the same submitter. You may therefore see duplicate records in the file.

How do I export a GEDCOM of a Pedigree Resource File submission?

It is not possible to export GEDCOMs from the online Pedigree Resource File.

Deleting a GEDCOM file that you submitted to PRF

You can delete a GEDCOM file that you submitted for inclusion in the Pedigree Resource File. For example, you might want to delete a GEDCOM file if you:
• Upload the wrong one.
• Uploaded an update and want to remove the previous version.
• Decide that you no longer want your GEDCOM file to be part of the Pedigree Resource File. [4]

To delete a GEDCOM file, you must be signed in to use
1. From the FamilySearch home page, hover your mouse on Search, and click Genealogies.
2. Scroll to the bottom of the page.
3. Click Submit Tree.
4. If you are not already signed in, click Sign In or Register Here. If you are a registered user of, sign in. If you are not yet a registered user, please register for an account.
5. In the list of your contributed files, find the file that you want to delete.
6. Click the garbage can icon () of the file that you want to delete.
7. When the system asks if you want to delete the file, click OK. The GEDCOM file disappears from your list of submitted files. As soon as the processing is finished, the information that was in the file is no longer available for searching on

The Pedigree Resource File has existed for many years, and the data has been published in several ways. If you submitted this GEDCOM file several years ago, you should be aware of the following:

• The Pedigree Resource File has been published on compact discs for more than a decade. If this file is on one of these compact discs, and it is deleted from the online version of the Pedigree Resource File. It remains on the compact discs.

• Some information from the Pedigree Resource File was used to create the database that is currently used by the old (which is Read Only) and FamilySearch Family Tree websites. This data is stored separately from the official Pedigree Resource File, which people can search from the Family Tree section of If you delete a GEDCOM file, it is deleted from the online Pedigree Resource File. It is not deleted from the Family Search Family Tree.

Lost GEDCOM submission to Pedigree Resource File

• Lost GEDCOM submission to Pedigree Resource File.
• My PAF or computer crashed. Can I get a copy of my Pedigree Resource File submission?

If You submitted the GEDCOM from the updated FamilySearch site under the Genealogies section, you can download the GEDCOM by clicking the download icon.

If you submitted the GEDCOM through the old classic FamilySearch website (during the CD/DVD time period) and not the current FamilySearch website, please contact Support, and include as much identifying information about the submission as possible.

Items that would be helpful in locating your file are:
• A few of the names that were a part of the submission.
• Any other information that can help us locate your file.

Please include the following information:
• Your submission number.
• Your name.
• Date of submission.
• Your birth date.
• Your place of birth.
• Your spouse's name, if applicable.

Lastly, provide the e-mail address where you want the GEDCOM file to be sent.

Pedigree Resource File on Disk[edit | edit source]

Formerly, Pedigree Resource File was available for individual purchase on 147 disks (CD and DVD). Because FamilySearch has discontinued distribution of PRF CD/DVD collections, Pedigree Resource File is no longer sold on disk. Copies of the 147 disks are available for use in many family history centers, including the Family History Library.  WARNING:  most family history centers have modern computers, e.g., those which use MS Windows 7.  These computers cannot run PRF software.  Please call before visiting a FHC to confirm that PRF is available on an older computer.

New submissions to Pedigree Resource File will be available only online.

History[edit | edit source]

May 1999   Ability to submit genealogies on the new Submissions occurred at the rate of about 1.2 million names per month.
1999   Released CDs 1-8.
February 2000   Ability to search the master index of all Pedigree Resource File CD-ROM discs.
July 2000   First nine discs are available.
2000   Released CDs 9-22.
4 January 2003   Submissions to the Ancestral File are no longer accepted. Contributors told to submit to the Pedigree Resource File (PRF) instead.
2001   Released CDs 23-36.
2002   Released CDs 37-54.
2003   Released CDs 55-75.
2004   Released CDs 76-100.
2005   Released CDs 101-125.
2006   Released DVDs 126-130.
12 Mar 2007   Total names exceeds 150 million. File has been growing by about 19 million names a year. Added the ability to view pedigrees online.
2007   Released DVDs 131-137.
2008   Released DVDs 138-143.
2009   Released DVDs 144-147.
2010   Released DVDs 148-150.
2012   Discontinued all CDs and DVDs of PRF. Final items sold.

Note: PRF CD & DVDs are no longer available.

Links[edit | edit source]

Videos and Online lessons[edit | edit source]

Articles[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]