Biggest Hurdle Migrating to ArcPro - Labels

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07-31-2019 10:00 AM
JillPlescher
New Contributor III

My biggest hurdle to moving to ArcPro from ArcMap is labels. I've created hundreds of maps in ArcMap, so my transition to ArcPro is importing the layouts and maps from ArcMap to ArcPro however the labels do not import and I have not found a way to do it.  Is there a way to do bring in the labels.  Labels were created by "converting labels to annotation" and saved in the map document.  For me, labeling maps is the most time consuming aspect of my work, labels need to be moved, added, or changed depending on the scale.  So it's never automatic or one size fits all.  I'd love to hear from anyone that has found a way to get labels from an MXD to Arcpro or time-saving work flows.  Thanks

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6 Replies
Robert_LeClair
Esri Frequent Contributor

Jill - so when you say labels in the ArcMap sense, are they really graphic text created using the Draw toolbar?  If so, then those graphic text items (in ArcMap) could be moved/adjusted/changed as you described.  Just to confirm, you were not using the Labeling Toolbar or the Layer Properties->Label with the Standard Label Engine or the Maplex Label Engine.

Graphic elements from ArcMap are not supported in ArcGIS Pro so that may be why you're not seeing it when you import *.mxd's as Map Views in the *.aprx.  In ArcGIS Pro, you can label features and convert labels to geodatabase annotation.  If you want to have singular control over descriptive text in a Map View, then Map Notes may be the way to go.

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George_Thompson
Esri Frequent Contributor

If you can convert or move the map annotation to file geodatabase based annotation, you can then upgrade it in ArcGIS Pro and the annotation will be present in your ArcGIS Pro project. But know that once you upgrade it to work within ArcGIS Pro it will NOT be available to view, edit, etc. within ArcMap; https://pro.arcgis.com/en/pro-app/tool-reference/data-management/upgrade-dataset.htm

Essential annotation and graphic text concepts - https://desktop.arcgis.com/en/arcmap/latest/map/working-with-text/essential-annotation-concepts.htm

A comparison of annotation groups vs. geodatabase annotation - https://desktop.arcgis.com/en/arcmap/latest/map/working-with-text/a-comparison-of-annotation-groups-...

--- George T.
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JillPlescher
New Contributor III

Yes I'm familiar with working in text and annotation.  I apply the label, 99% of the time the labels need editing, so then I "convert labels to annotation" and "store in the map".  The other option "store in a database" was too cumbersome, very slow and much harder to apply edits. I've also tried using ESRI basemaps, but the labels are very rarely legible in the printed products.   I map different areas, different scales and mainly printed products.   And everyone wants to be able to read the road labels.  Often when asked to make a new map, I have a old MXD, which has some of the needed layers and labels and I go from there. Or sometimes I can do a copy and paste between MXDs.  I tried this with ArcPro, copy/paste from MXD, didn't work.  So this transition will be cumbersome, more time for every project, remaking old projects. Thanks for the suggestions, I was just hoping someone had a work around.        

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Robert_LeClair
Esri Frequent Contributor

Ah I see "store in the map" is map annotation - and it's sadly not supported in ArcGIS Pro as you've seen.  Best to convert it to geodatabase annotation for AGP.  When you say slow, hard to apply edits - I have not seen this in my AGP projects or ArcMap *.mxd's.  Could be worth a call to Esri Support Services to troubleshoot the issue.

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WendyHarrison
Esri Contributor

Hi Jill,

As everyone has commented above, your map annotation is not supported in Pro.  The recommended workflow is to convert those map annotation features into an annotation feature class stored in a geodatabase. That annotation feature class can then be used in Pro.

Here's a link on how to do that conversion in ArcMap:

Understanding converting between graphics and features—Help | ArcGIS Desktop 

Please let us know if you have any difficulty

Wendy

FareedAbou-Haidar1
New Contributor

This was a huge hurdle for me too. And converting all kinds of graphics to geodatabase annotation and features for each map was incredibly cumbersome, as I found out. So I simply stuck with ArcMap. (My previous computer was too slow for Pro anyway!) I tried again more recently with ArcGIS Pro 2.8.0 and, lo and behold, everything was there! It is all under "Graphics Layer" in the Contents pane. It took me a while to figure out how to handle the text. You go to the Graphics, ribbon, click Select and choose an item, and the Format Text pane appears. In the pane, click Text Symbol, and you'll see all the text symbol editing options we're so used to working with in ArcMap. Unfortunately, a lot of the rotated and splined text is slightly shifted from where it was in ArcMap, so I have to move each item manually; a real pain! (Any ideas why?)

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