Toggle visibility for individual Categories on Symbology tab

06-22-2011 12:13 PM
Status: Under Consideration
Labels (1)
Esri Contributor
Please include an on/off visibility checkbox in the Layer Properties Symbology tab which will allow you to control which values in a single layer are drawn.  This is currently only possible with multiple occurences of the same feature class added to the TOC, which quickly becomes overwhelming.  Thank you!

Hi All,

One of my favorite features about QGIS over ArcGIS Pro or Desktop is the quick filter on any and all classified layers. I have been using ArcGIS for a very long time and can't believe Esri has not added this simple feature, unless I am just missing it. Please let me know if it needs to be enabled somewhere outside the app.







For non-GIS professionals, using ArcGIS Pro can be difficult. The two separate concepts of the layer legend/symbology vs. definition queries can be confusing.

I think novices would find it easier if they could simply toggle attributes on/off directly in the legend in the table of contents:


That would make basic data exploration easier for beginners. 

In this case, everything else was easy for the user. The user downloaded & opened pre-symbolized .lyr files from OGSEarth. (The other option was to download the KML and open it in Google Earth. But the layer's attributes don't seem to be filterable in Google Earth, so GIS software was the only other option.)
So, getting the data was easy, especially with the pre-symbolized .lyr file. But doing basic filtering in ArcGIS Pro was cumbersome for the user. They wanted to just check legend attributes on/off when exploring the data. But I don't think that's possible in ArcGIS Pro.

Could Esri consider adding optional checkbox functionality in the table of contents? Maybe the underlying mechanism would be: the toggled checkboxes would automatically generate a definition query behind the scenes. Related: Progressive Disclosure of Complexity (YouTube 22:57).



ArcGIS Pro 3.0.2


Yes, that is exactly what we are looking for!


I don’t think this functionality would be overly difficult to implement. And I bet the vast majority of users would benefit from it.

I wonder what’s keeping Esri from acting. We’ve been waiting for 11 years.



We waited over 20 years for multiple layouts in 1 project file. So, 11 years doesn't seem so bad to me. I believe AutoCAD has had mulitple layouts since the late '90s, maybe sooner.



The best option I came up with is the filter option in symbology.  I do like QGIS style better but this does have some benefits as well.

you can also use SQL  

FEATURE_CLASS IN ('Populated Place', 'Rapids', 'Ridge', 'Summit')





This is such a good idea and I think it would be a really useful improvement to ArcGIS Pro (especially as you've been able to do this in QGIS for ages).  This idea gets my full support, and hopefully it'll be implemented at some point soon.


Hello @AmeliaBradshaw ,

do you have any time plan for implementing this functionality?

Best Regards