Combine Catalog View and Catalog Pane

08-16-2018 09:00 AM
Status: Open
Labels (1)
Occasional Contributor III

I'm sure there are excellent reason why there is Catalog View and Catalog Pane but I think combining them into a single entity like.... "Catalog"  might be more simple.  

It doesn't have to run independently like ArcCatalog did but I think a simplified and combined "Catalog" that acts in much the same way File Explorer does in Windows would be more user friendly.


Interesting idea.  I'm curious how you envision it working.  Like with Catalog View I have Preview so that I can look at metadata, preview datasets (and even preview entire maps from the project), manage styles, import, export, edit metadata, etc. etc.

So when you need to do all of the above, you want full view with preview, all the capabilities, but then you might want to dock the "unified Catalog" as a pane?  What happens then?  If you select something when in "pane mode" do you expect all the stuff as seen above?  Where would you expect to see things like preview?  Or edit metadata if you are working in a map with "unified Catalog pane mode"?  Or the vision is for something totally new that doesn't use a view or a pane?  


Good example Kory,

How about being able to toggle or set up how you want your Catalog to work?  I never preview anything but I'm sure others do.  I think Metadata could be it's own window (and I never create metadata and RARELY look at it).  Maybe if you want to access Metadata you click on it in the ribbon and that opens a pane/window to work with it?  Same with managing styles. (Personally I sort of miss the Style Manager but it was also clunky. I think styles would almost be better handled in an explorer-like interface and like metadata - a pane/window would open when you activate the ribbon for Styles. BTW this might make it easier to add already requested features like adding styles to PRO universally and not just at the project level....) 

I'm by no means a UI expert  but I do use PRO in the way I use it and right now for me, it feels clunky to have a View and a Pane and then have each of them sort of doing some of the things that were all accomplished in Catalog.   I love the idea that Catalog is integrated - but Catalog did a lot of things! 

Some of it is just a matter of learning the new ropes but one specific example I can give you that feels clunky to me is when I want to add a map to a new and empty layout I have to view the Catalog Pane and drag it over.  I feel like that should be possible in catalog view as well (Dragging and dropping).  

If both entities cannot be combined because of the examples you gave or even more examples that folks who are experts in UI design provide - maybe allowing users to do things in BOTH Pane and View (where possible), would be a better UI? 

Ultimately this idea stemmed from a desire to make this migration into PRO workflows feel more natural to all of the users entrenched in ArcMap and ArcCatalog.  Having an integrated Catalog is great, but having Pane and View, each doing some of what Catalog did almost feels like a step side-ways and backwards. (Speaking as a lone user that has sort of jumped into the deep end with Pro  )  


Hi Kory,

"Idea" you say? 🙂

A scenario I encounter often is wanting to see a preview of a layer before you add the data to the project. There is no preview unless you have crossed a line and committed the data to the project. 
Yes - you can always just remove the source again after you had your preview or you can open another Pro instance with a project set up to be a Catalog or Data Viewer.

Another "Idea" is to be able to have breadcrumbs in the Pane?

An even more drastic "Idea" is to call them different things. Don't use Catalog. That sets an expectation.

As Esri is bent on removing Catalog as we know & love it call them Discovery & Library. I'll leave it up to Esri to decide which is which between Pane & View.

I hope this comment comes across as a bit silly. It then reflects well on why we even need to have these conversations at all.

Sean - you are not alone.


Seems to me that if the Catalog Window showed folders, maps, etc. in a tree, that would solve a lot of the problems.  I prefer the window to the pane because of the preview, but it's frustrating and a big time waster to have to climb up and down the ladder, so to speak, to find anything.  Another possibility would be to give users the option to sync the window and pane - if I click on a folder in the pane, the window goes there, too.

by Anonymous User

Agree @SeanHlousek  and others. Honestly, where the software (ArcMap) wasn't broken, why 'fix' it? I'm using Pro now with ArcCatalog open on my other screen!! LOL, but true.


Same here @Anonymous User ....  closing ArcPro and jumping into ArcCatalog 10.x all the time.

I simply can't find where to edit or manage my GDB within ArcPro.   I simply want to open the GDB and delete a featureclass and that functionality is hidden --- what was a simple operation previously has turned into a game of "find the tool."

Maybe I'll find the solution eventually, but right now I have to get actual work done, which seems to be a foreign concept.


"I simply want to open the GDB and delete a featureclass and that functionality is hidden..."

Catalog View:


Catalog Pane:




Another perfectly functioning tool ruined in Pro. When will it end, why did it ever start? Who thought it up? The 'Geography' tab doesn't even work properly, its just says "Metadata is unavailable for this item" even if its looking at say a FC or a JPG (not selected in this screen shot). Its click after unnecessary click, just to get to something was worked perfectly well and intuitively before.

ArcGIS_Pro_Catalog = abysmalArcGIS_Pro_Catalog = abysmalArcGIS_Desktop_ArcCatalog = goodArcGIS_Desktop_ArcCatalog = good


ArcGIS Pro Catalog can't even see its own APRX files...or see PDF etc. Its a terrible backwards step.


@Anonymous User Exactly. I use Pro 3.1.2 on one screen and AC 10.8.2 on another screen, everyday, all day, and will probably continue to unless they make vast improvements to the Pro version of Catalog. I have submitted numerous cases regarding issues with Pro Catalog vs. AC and have basically given up as the analysts assigned state you will need to adjust to the fails of Pro Catalog or the extra steps needed in Pro Catalog vs. what is available, and easier, within AC. Or, since AC is on the way out, we are finding issues using it now with SDE FDS and FC's that AC will fail, and we are forced to revert back to AGP to run the FC updates. AC, it seems, is much quicker and easier for our Admin side than Pro Cat.