How to Open GED File Extensions

By Chappy Sinclair

Updated September 28, 2017

A GED, short for GEDCOM Genealogy Data, is a file that tracks family history and other genealogical information. Unlike a TXT or DOC file, a GED file cannot be opened using a standard word processor. Instead, you must use a dedicated GEDCOM file viewer to open GED files. These programs allow you to organize multiple GED files, edit the contents of the GED files and eliminate duplicate content.

Download and install the GED file viewer of your choice. Refer to the "Resources" section below for a list of free-to-try GED viewing programs.

Start the program. Navigate to the program's file management menu (generally in the form of a "Start" or "Open" button at the top of the program).

Select the GED file you want to open and wait for it to load in the program.