Polygons not symbolized after using Apply Symbology From Layer tool

02-03-2021 03:48 PM
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by Anonymous User
Not applicable

I've had this issue for a number of years and have never figured out the cause. Right now I'm using Pro ver 2.7, but have had the issue with ArcMap 10.5 also.

I symbolize a layer with the graduated colors and the 5 classes I want and save it as a layer file. I then use that file in the 'Apply Symbology From Layer' tool to import the symbology to another layer. Sometimes a few polygons drop out of the map (are not given the correct color), even though the polygon's value is within the range of the symbology class.

For example, I have a polygon with a value of 0.7 that should show up in the <5.0 class. After I import the symbology that polygon disappears.

Settings for Symbology Fields in the tool are (I'm using "Maintain ranges"):

  • Type: Value field
  • Source Field: [the field from the symbology layer file]
  • Target Field: [the field in the layer where I'm importing the symbology]

Thanks in advance for help, this has puzzled me for a long time.

4 Replies
MVP Esteemed Contributor

Apply Symbology From Layer (Data Management)—ArcGIS Pro | Documentation

Do you want the ranges to change or not? I isn't clear from your description

The range values are updated to the values of the input layer. If you do not want the range output to be updated, choose manual classification.

And this as well

Setting the Update Symbology Ranges by Data parameter to Maintain ranges will copy the labels from the Symbology Layer to the Input Layer. If the parameter is set to Update ranges , the labels will be recomputed.

... sort of retired...
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by Anonymous User
Not applicable

I want the classes, graduated color scale, and labels to remain the same but to use the new data in the layer I am importing symbology to. This would mean that sometimes a class won't have any values in it (maybe all the new values are in just one or two classes), but all polygons should have some sort of color, not just disappear completely.

Is this not possible? Do I have to symbolize each of these hundreds of layers one by one? I was hoping to classify and symbolize just one of them and import this to the rest.


New Contributor II

Hi, I see this is an old thread, but I have been experiencing the exact same issue for a while!  Any chance you were ever able to diagnose the problem or find a good fix?

Just like you, I have a layer that is saved with some custom symbology I'd like to use.  I import some updated data into a new layer use "Apply Symbology From Layer" to transfer the customizations from the template to my new data layer.  But some of my polygons will just drop out of the new layer once the symbology is applied, even though there is data in the table for them and those data points fit into the ranges of the symbology template.  For example, I might have polygons with some integer attribute data as 12, 13, and 14, and a range in the symbology template of 10-15.  But once the symbology is applied, perhaps only the polygons with 13 and 14 will actually be symbolized— some of them just arbitrarily seem to get passed over.

This seems to happen most with data that's at the low end of the lowest range.  For example, the lowest range on my symbology template layer is set up to symbolize anything <40; in practice, it's only symbolizing data that is about 15-39 once the tool is run and the symbology rules are transferred to the new data layer.  There are ten or so polygons with values below 15, and these are the ones that just drop off.  But the new data layer still shows the correct rules on the symbology pane, e.g., the upper value for the lowest range continues to be <= 39.9999.  So why are the low figures not being taken into account?

I'm using the same parameters as @Anonymous User— and also want to maintain the ranges (and the labels of these ranges).

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by Anonymous User
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I never did find a solution. Ended up doing everything manually. This would sure save me a lot of work if it actually functioned as documented.