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geonetadmin is now live!

Posted by geonetadmin Nov 24, 2009

Our mission is to ensure your success. Whether you’re an expert with GIS software or have just recently joined the GIS community, we deeply appreciate the opportunity to serve you. We continuously strive to provide new Internet-based tools to help foster the GIS community and help it to grow. Many of our users have requested that we set up a knowledge-sharing platform for the GIS community. This will not only be useful to all of us to enhance our knowledge of GIS, but it will also help new geographers to better understand GIS and quickly improve upon their GIS skills to be more productive. is a community-generated, GIS-centric encyclopedia that serves as a repository for factual, unbiased GIS content. will seek to involve the GIS community in an ongoing process of creation and collaboration of conceptual GIS information. will use the passion and knowledge each one of you has, in order to offer another resource for users to help others. All content ownership will be shared by the GIS community.

The success of depends on the contributions of GIS professionals, students, and the GIS community-at-large. We invite all the people who have a common interest in sharing GIS knowledge and ideas to create a login account on and then begin editing existing pages or adding their own GIS-related content to the wiki. We have a list of requested pages on the wiki for which we are seeking content, but please feel free to add more topics/content as you deem fit. All unbiased GIS-related content is welcome.

If you are unfamiliar with how a wiki works, a good place to start may be our Help page. There you will find information about how to get started and how to edit a page as well as a brief manual of style to help guide you.

At some point in time, we will also need help with moderation and operation of this wiki. Moderators will be selected from a group of active users.

So, to begin with, create your account, start contributing to this community resource, and if you have any feedback or suggestions for improvement, please send these to

-Sanjay L., Program Manager - Online Support Reources, ESRI Support Services

Hi, my name is Jeff, and I am a member of the Geodata Raster team at the Eastern ESRI Support Services located in Charlotte, NC. I posed the question above because whether to mosaic or not is one of the most common workflow questions when dealing with rasters. There are many raster formats and depending on the format and the ultimate data product, the answer may change. Some immediate questions to ask are:

    1. Am I looking to create a backdrop for a map or provide imagery capable of being analyzed?

    1. Are the rasters highly compressed, for example .sid or .ecw?

  1. Is file storage a concern for the mosaic? How much room do I have for the mosaic?

There are many more specific questions to consider, but these general questions can prevent future headaches when determining if creating a mosaic is the best course of action.

The mosaic process can create one file that contains several other rasters, but the creation of it can be time consuming and problematic. Plus, there are plenty of other situations where an unmanaged raster catalog may provide the functionality you desire without changing the format or creating a new file.

If you are looking for the ease of adding one file to a map document rather than multiple files or are looking to maintain the format of your compressed raster data, then an unmanaged raster catalog may be the answer. The unmanaged raster catalog resides in a geodatabase and will maintain the extents of all of the rasters added to it, but will not import the rasters. They will maintain the format and then can be added all at once to a map document by simply adding the raster catalog. The unmanaged raster catalog will maintain the location of the original file. This workflow can be particularly handy if you have a large number of SID files that have a file size of 1 gig but an uncompressed size of 20 gigs. A mosaic of several SID files would be considerably large, but the unmanaged raster catalog can utilize the files as they are and load them together at once.

The creation of an unmanaged raster catalog is much quicker than creating a mosaic and can be a great way to display a large number of rasters.

While unmanaged raster catalogs cannot be used for analysis in many of the geoprocessing tools, they can be used for digitizing and backdrops for many different maps.

Below are a few Web Help documents that pertain to this discussion:

 Creating a Raster CatalogMosaicking Raster DatasetsExploring Geodatabase Raster Catalogs


- Jeff S., Support Analyst, Geodata Raster team, ESRI Support Services
Bringing back the Classic (view)

Hi, my name is Phillip, and I am a Server Support Analyst with ESRI’s Eastern Support Services. Windows 7 has arrived…and with it comes many dandy new features and advancements. One of our challenges at ESRI Support Services is to be able to provide support options for our customers who are using our software with new operating systems, such as Windows 7.


Recently, we received feedback that it can be difficult to work within ArcMap while using Windows 7’s Basic Desktop theme. The default theme color makes it difficult to read the file names within ArcMap (see below):

To change the Desktop theme setting:

    1. Right-click on the Desktop and select Personalize.

    1. Select Windows Classic from the Basic and High Contrast Themes or another theme of your choice (We here at ESRI Support Services find the Classic view to be the easiest to see and read.):
  1. Close the Window.

Now when you reopen ArcMap, it is easier to read the file names and everything else. Enjoy using the ArcGIS Desktop products with the latest Microsoft offering of Windows 7. Thanks!!!

-Phillip W., Server Support Analyst, ESRI Support Services


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