Is it possible to convert to a network aware shapefile?

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11-18-2010 12:05 PM
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New Contributor II
I have line data that I want to start using as a network.  I know when you first create a shapefile, you can make it so that your linework will have M values which allow you to store route data. 

Does anyone know if there's a way to convert a line shapefile that didn't start out with M values, into one that does have M values?
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Occasional Contributor II
I wonder if you could use the Feature Class to Feature Class tool, and in the environment settings enable the Output has M Values parameter.

Let me know if that works.
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Esri Regular Contributor
If your goal is to use the lines for network analysis such as shortest path finding, etc, then you do not need to have M values on your line data. For network analysis, you need to make a network dataset from the lines for further analysis with the Network Analyst extension. If your goal is to do utility type work such as upstream/downstream tracing, then you need to create a geometric network and use the Utility Network Analysis toolbar.

The M values are needed for linear referencing/dynamic segmentation type work. You can use the GP tools such as Create Routes or Calibrate Routes to convert lines without M into lines with M.

Regards,
Jay Sandhu
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New Contributor II
My thanks to both of you for your help/suggestions.  The ESRI forums have not disappointed me so far, I've always gotten an answer within a day or two!
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