Add ability to set default geodatabase in Output view and Catalog/Folders view

08-03-2021 01:55 AM
Status: Open
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New Contributor III

I like to subdivide data up into different geodatabases. Being able to create a new FGDB in the output dialog for a tool is a great help, but if you could toggle that new FGDB, or any other you have to be the default geodatabase for your project, that would make it even easier to quickly put data where you want it to go. I'd suggest just adding an extra option to the context menu for the FGDBs, the current one is shown in the screenshot below for reference.


I note @CarlMorrison's comment pointing out that you can do this, if you view the Databases section of the Catalog View\Pane, as shown in the screenshot below, but my failure to find that may support my request, or just say something about my abilities ;-). Being able to do this in the output dialog would, to my mind, be consistent and useful.




In Catalog View in ArcGIS Pro you should be able to right click on the GDB and there is an option at the top of the context menu to "Make Default".


@CarlMorrison - thanks for the pointer, I was in the Folders section, not in the Databases section of the Catalog View/Pane, if I go via the Databases section, I can see that option.  I also now note that the Manage\Databases tab in the ribbon that becomes active in Catalog View if you have selected a GDB, there's a Make Default button. I'll edit the title of my idea, as I still think it would be useful to just have that option 'everywhere' - as if it was, we'd not be having this conversation :-). Anyway, thanks again!


In addition to this idea to Catalog, any new options should be reiterated in the 'Add Data' window.

Current options within 'Add Data' window include what's depicted in your screenshot; a) Rename and b) Copy Path.

I'd also like to have these options:

c) Add as Folder Connection

d) Set as Home Folder

...when right clicking on a folder within 'Add Data'.


Allow to change the home .gdb from the browse box. This would be a very convenient quality-of-life improvement that would save the user from having to go navigate to the new .gdb from the catalog.




Completely agree with this addition from @rburke to the initial enhancement idea submitted from @RossSmail.

What is the threshold for this type of UI enhancement request to reach a UI/UX design team for a prototype of the UI concept? I may be able to put something together.

I may need more clarification from my ESRI team on the exact purpose and expectations of using these forums to request improvements to the main application used by ALL professionals in this industry. I'm just unsure when and where these supported ideas get conveyed to actual tangible solutions.


@ConnerSchaak  based on my experience and observations, elementary quality of life "why was this not there in the first place" requests like this can range between a year to over a decade to never implemented at all. It's really unfortunate for users.


@ConnerSchaak For your request for clarification about how ArcGIS Ideas works, read through 

And the Statuses section from the document below might help in understanding status meanings and updates. 

For ArcGIS Pro ideas, we do a wrap up at every release to communicate to community members what user ideas were included. Here are a couple of recent examples:

As for this specific idea, I think there is a fundamental difference in thinking about how much project management should be done in browser dialogs vs. doing that type of management in the Catalog view or Catalog pane. We always appreciate user feedback and we are consistently monitoring movement and trends of which ideas are most active in terms of kudos and comments every month to help inform future release planning. 

Hopefully this gives you some context in which to consider what is happening to a single idea in the ocean of user feedback. 

Thank you


Thank you Kory.

I appreciate the thoughtful approach from you and your team on these community driven ideas and I do think this is a logical way to direct the path forward and interpret the variety of important but specific requests which may not have pressing need amongst the entire industry you develop the application for.

I greatly appreciated what I saw at the ArcGIS Pro Road Map Ahead session at UC 2023.



Another thing I'll add is that this lack of functionality has been tripping up many of my students. When you create a project, it creates a new geodatabase, but if a student already has a geodatabase with their assignment data, it's a bunch more steps than it needs to be. They have add the geodatabase to the project, and then navigate to an entirely separate area of the application with an entirely different organizational structure to make that database that they just added the default (and then delete the auto-created one). It could just be R click > 'Make default project geodatabase' to both add it to the project and make it the default. Instead it just shows 'add to project,' even if it's already in the project and already the default.

Even better, which would help in this but not every case, given you might create a project .gdb elsewhere after creating the project, would to be able to select a pre-existing geodatabase as the default when creating a project. The application-level settings for either new database for every project or same for all projects are two extremes that make working with existing project-specific data difficult.