Family Tree Website Generator Software

GedTree is a little utility I wrote to generate family tree websites. It reads GEDCOM files (the standard genealogy file format, output by most family tree database programs), builds a hierarchical tree from them, and then allows you to generate the website files automatically.

The Otway Family Tree shows an example kind of site that GedTree can create.

Having seen many other genealogy websites, I found the quantity and presentation of the data overwhelming, with pages of 'blocks' of surnames, and no overall way of visualising the hierarchy of the generations within the family, or the bloodlines within the tree. So, I decided to develop my own website. However, it was immediately obvious that it would have to be done programmatically, as my own family tree has more than 2,500 individuals in it - far too many to handle 'by hand'.

The site generated by GedTree can be viewed by most browsers - in particular Internet Explorer 4 (and later) and Netscape 4 (and later). The tree is generated on the fly by a small JavaScript routine, and the trees/nodes are displayed within frames. Javascript is also used to synchronise the tree/entries, so that navigation can be done either directly on the tree or using the links on a particular individual's entry. As part of the site generation, a complete index of both surnames and individuals' names is created too.

How much does GedTree cost?

GedTree is free - there is no restrictions on its use. It is also unwarranted - I don't promise to fix any problems/incompatibilities with the software, nor do I take any responsibility for any problems or data loss that might be caused directly or indirectly as a result of it's use. However, if you find a bug, or can suggest an enhancement, I'll try my best to fix/add it.

How Do I Use GedTree?

GedTree is simple to use. Basically, run the app, open a GEDCOM file, and then choose File-Generate HTML to build the website. You'll be prompted to select the output directory, the contact email address and the tree's title, and then the site will be generated. You can also select a starting page and a stylesheet - if none is selected they will be generated for you. The styles within the site are user-definable (just edit the family.css file that's generated) as is the image for the 'dot' separator, and the 'plus'/'minus' images within the tree.

You don't need to include the entire tree in the website - you can select any node in the tree before Generating the HTML, and that node will be used as the root for the website's tree. However, all individual's pages will still be created.

You can even have pictures automatically included in the individuals' pages. To set this up you need to create a sub-directory called 'pics' in the destination folder where the website pages will be built. Then, copy your pictures into the directory, using the naming convention 'XX - Name.jpg', where XX is the individual's unique ID number taken from the GedCom file (the same numbers as for the html files. So, for example, my entry in our tree is 4.html, so the picture file would be '4 - Mark Lawrence Otway.jpg'. As GedTree builds the pages for the site, it will scan this directory and link the pictures into the pages.

Where can I download GedTree?

GedTree is a single 190k executable.

You can download it from here

If you like GedTree, and find it useful, please consider donating some money towards the cost of hosting this website and the development. Donations are purely voluntary, but if I get a few I'll consider doing some more work on improving the program.

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