Problem with Layer created from Selected Features

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01-09-2017 09:24 AM
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New Contributor

Hello,

I have a map where I've loaded the bulk data from the company database. I have data in an excel spreadsheet that I have imported and joined to one of the data sets in the corporate data. From this joined table I have created a bunch of layers using the "Create Layer from selected features" function. All was working OK (points were plotting, all layers were working fine) until one day last week the attribute tables of the layers I had created were blank and the points were no longer plotting on the map. Both the corporate database attribute table and the imported table are full of data and not blank, also the corporate data plots on the map no problem. However my created layers no longer plot on the map.

Does anyone have any solution or advice on this matter?

Alex

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Esteemed Contributor

Did any records get deleted from the corporate data which would change the OBJECTID values and thereby corrupt the selected features?

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New Contributor

I mean it is possible I guess. I have no control over that. Does the OBJECTID matter if I have joined based on some other attribute?

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New Contributor

Some initial things to try:

  • Do the "tried and true" reboot of your computer.  Then retry to see if the data appears.  This will help resolve whether it is a memory leak.
  • If you have access to another computer with GIS software, open your data and see if you get the same issue.  This will help determine if it is a user/profile or computer-specific issue.
  • If the data is in geodatabase, run the Compact (Data Management) tool.  This will clear any locks and generally clear up the geodatabase.  ArcGIS Help (10.2, 10.2.1, and 10.2.2)

Also, some questions to help provide background information for use in troubleshooting the issue:

  • Which software are you using and what license level is it? 
  • In what format is the spatial data stored?  Shapefiles?  Feature Classes in an Enterprise Geodatabase?  Feature classes in a Geodatabase (File or Personal)?
  • Is the Join still active or did you save off the data into a permanent form?
  • Any chance the Data Frames' Coordinate System got changed?

Chris Donohue, GISP

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New Contributor

Thank you for your suggestions Chris, I will try them.

The software is Arcmap 10.1, unsure of license level. 
The data is a feature class in an Enterprise Geodatabase I think.

The join is still active.
And, I do not believe so. 

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MVP Esteemed Contributor

You need to read the cautionary note at the bottom of this page...

Working with selected features—Help | ArcGIS Desktop 

the results are temporary and not permanent if the data source is changed

If you want something to remain permanent, you should use the 

Copy Tool

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New Contributor

Thank you, I was unaware it was temporary, I thought if the selection was made a layer, it would be more robust. 

If I use the Copy tool, will the data still be able to update from the excel dataset?

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MVP Esteemed Contributor

When joins are made, they are temporary and can be removed at any time... so by extension a layer made from a join would simply reference the join ... so if the join data is moved elsewhere (ie to a new folder or a network location change) then the join is broken.  The Copy tool, makes a new file containing all the attributes etc from both files.  The copy is permanent.  Joins are good for quick solutions when you don't want to clutter up a file with data you only need for one purpose... use it... remove it and both the originals are as they were.  Copy keep them together and it doesn't matter what happens to the originals.

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New Contributor

If the data is being updated in the excel spreadsheet, is it possible to use a join or a definition query to ensure the most up to date data is used?

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MVP Esteemed Contributor

you can join or keep joins all you want... they can be removed or made permanent.  As part of any workflow I would at least incorporate a Copy to disk to ensure that you have the last known good state at your disposal.  Disk space is cheap... time is not.  And on an aside, I wouldn't use a spreadsheet as your main data management/update system... many do quite successfully and without issue, but they aren't designed for that

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