Which test will best answer your questions?

Father’s lineage: your father, his father, his father’s father & c.

If you are interested in your origins in the line of fathers, I recommend that you proceed initially with a Y-DNA test comprising at least 25 STR markers (Y-DNA25).

By experience, 25 markers provide a fairly valid starting basis for comparisons with other signatures. However, if you want to start with a test with only 12 markers, or with 37, 67 or 111 markers, go for it!

Regardless of the number of STR markers initially ordered, plan an additional test that will serve to determine your haplogroup and subclade by reviewing the SNPs for which it is derived.

Indeed, a STR test will only provide a superficial estimate of your haplogroup, a probable prediction. To more accurately determine the haplogroup of your Y-DNA it will need to be probed for the presence of specific SNP mutations in it. A *SPN Pack* test appropriate to the predicted haplogroup by FTDNA will convene here.

You are a woman? Ask your father, brother, uncle, or a cousin on your father’s side to provide the cells that will be used for the Y-DNA tests.

The determination of the Y-DNA haplogroup of your male lineage allows to know (a) the precise position of your Y-DNA in the taxonomy, (b) to know the phylogeny of your Y-DNA, (c) establish or, on the contrary, eliminate kinship ties with other signatures that agree at the STR level, and finally (d) know more about the ancient ancestral history of your lineage of men.

If you can afford it, order a Big-Y at FTDNA instead of a *SNP Pack* and have the results interpreted by the YFull.com service.

The ultimate test at this level is the FullGenome Y Elite 2.1 Sequencing Test [https://www.fullgenomes.com/]. Have the results interpreted by YFull as well.

If you order your tests from FTDNA (or from iGenea) your results will be automatically compared to those of other clients registered in their database. FTDNA will then indicate your matches with other lines of men in your home page. This Y-DNA results comparison service does not exist with other companies.

YSeq.net, for example, offers excellent Y-DNA testing, covering both STR marker signatures and haplogroup establishment through the review of SNPs. But if you do the tests at home, it will compare your results to those of other men tested developing your software or using public domain software. However, you will be able to enter your STR results in the YSearch database so that they can be compared to those of other companies.

Mothers’ line: your mother, mother, mother of mother, & c

If it is your line of mothers that interests you, then you need to order a DNA test on your mitochondria.

We strongly suggest that you immediately order a test that sequences all the bases of your mitochondria. This test is available from FTDNA and is called Full Sequence mt (FMS or MFS test).

At YSeq.net this test is called mtComplete.

Do not waste your time and that of other genealogists by first ordering only the hypervariable regions HVR1 and HVR2. You will eventually have to complete by ordering a test on the coding region. Order an FMS test right from the beginning.

If you order from FTDNA (or iGenea) your results will be automatically compared to those of other customers registered in their database.

This comparison service does not exist at YSeq. You will therefore have to make the comparisons manually and without knowing the mutations present in the coding regions of the signatures to be compared. There is also a database at mitoSearch.org to list our results and compare them with those of other people tested.

Looking for parents? Adoption Resolution?

If you are completely unaware of who your ancestors are, if you have been adopted, or if an entire family branch of your family remains unknown or uncertain, first order DNA-mt and Y-DNA tests (if you are a man). Your mother, your brothers and sisters have the same DNA-mt signature as you. The cousins ​​on the maternal side too. If you are a man, your father and your brothers and your paternal cousins ​​have the same DNA signature of the Y chromosome as you.

Once the results of these first known tests and concordances with other known tested persons, order a test on your autosomal DNA.

Several companies offer such autosomal tests. There are opportunities to transfer raw results to FTDNA or to independent third party interpretation services such as GEDmatch, DNA.LAND, and others. However, there is a loss of resolution during these transfers since it is not systematically the same loci (locations) that are tested.
The tests on autosomal DNA are:
-The FTDNA Family Finder
-The Ancestry-DNA test
-The 23andMe test
-The Geno2 NG
These tests will allow you to find relatives who share significant segments of autosomal DNA with you and to know your degree of kinship with them.
The Geno2 NG results must be transferred to FTDNA to participate in the segment sharing study, but this transfer will incur additional costs.
Advice for adopters: order the autosomal test from several companies to rake wide and thus increase your chances of finding relatives.
Autosomal tests also provide admixtures that indicates the proportions of our DNA from various origins such as European, Asian, Native American, &c.

Also remember to have your results phased in order to know which of your two parents you have inherited from one of the bases to a tested locus.
Once segments shared with others are known, it will be necessary to proceed by triangulation to identify in the genealogies of your matches the ancestors that should be part of your genealogy.

All a puzzle to assemble!