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Transformation check when importing an mxd into ArcGIS Pro

05-15-2017 03:34 AM
Status: Open
New Contributor II

CRS and transformations can be set up for a project so that all new maps and scenes are created with the default CRS and the prompt activated so that all data being added to the project is checked for spatial reference consistency. However, if you import an mxd in a different CRS to the project, no transformation check prompt is provided. It would be useful to have some warning so that users know the incoming mxd contains data in different CRSs to the project. #ArcGISPro, #projectspatialreference, #ArcGISProtransformations


This is available in the ArcGIS Pro 1.4 release. It is turned off by default.

See the screenshot above.

Is this what you are looking for?


Thanks for the response. Unfortunately, even if this is switched on, no error message/ transformation prompt appears if you import an mxd which is in a different CRS


ecl_robson_d‌ The CRS is not relevant at the Project level per se.  You're correct that you can set in the Project Options a default CRS for a project, but that takes place in any new Map or Scene added to the Project.  So, it is in the Map or Scene that the transformation check is done.  If I have a Map in my Project that has GCS NAD 1983 set as the CRS, and I add data that has a CRS of WGS 1984, I should get a warning if I've checked the warning option that you and George_Thompson-esristaff‌ mention.  However, just because the default for my Project may be GCS NAD 1983, doesn't mean that I can't add a new Map altogether that has a CRS of CA State Plane Zone V...

So when an MXD is imported with a coordinate system that is different from the Project's default, that is fine.  There is no conflict between different Maps in the Project (remember that different Maps in a Project are like different data frames in ArcMap, and one very good use for them is exactly so that you can have different coordinate systems in the same map in ArcMap, and in the same Project in ArcGIS Pro).  The fact that you've checked to get a warning when transformations are necessary will still apply if you try to add data with a different datum to the map you've imported.  

Please let me know if this explanation helps. 


ecl_robson_d‌ Please let me know if my explanation above helped.  I don't think that this is an Idea that can be implemented due to what I explained above.  If I'm misunderstanding the request, please clarify so that the idea can be considered.  Otherwise, we will mark it as Not in Current Product Plan.


Hi Kory, thanks for the response. I understand what you are saying but unfortunately the clients we deal with in the petroleum industry are not so keen on a single project containing maps in different CRSs. I was delivering training on ArcGIS Pro to a client when the question came up. The GIS team create map documents for users in the coordinate reference system required for a particular geographic area. Spatial reference integrity is very important for their business. I was talking to them about using project templates in the same way they would use map templates and the question came up about making sure that users were aware of the CRSs  of the maps and data they were adding and they were happy with the transformation check. They were not happy that when an mxd is imported into ArcMap in a different CRS to the project that there is no warning given. There are not a lot of situations where users would need to have maps in different CRSs.


Devlyn, I understand what you're asking for now.  If the ArcGIS Pro Project has a default Spatial Reference set under Options > Map and Scene > Spatial Reference > Choose spatial reference, any new map or scene created within that project will get that spatial reference by default.  However, when an mxd is imported into the project, there is no check that might potentially warn the user that the mxd's spatial reference (actually the mxd could have multiple data frames, each with a different spatial reference, and each data frame would be imported as a separate Map into the Pro project; so it wouldn't check the mxd's spatial reference as there is no such thing, rather it would have to check all data frames and compare the SR against the Project's default SR) is different than the Project's default.

I think that I'm on track with you now.  Could you please update the title and description of the Idea to more accurately reflect the request?  This is not about doing a transformation check when importing an mxd into a Pro project.  You can refine the wording, but it would be something like "When importing an mxd to a Pro project, provide a warning if mxd data frame spatial reference is different from the Project default spatial reference"

Hope that helps, and thank you for the clarification!



Thank you!