Syncing File GDB

07-24-2018 08:52 AM
Occasional Contributor

I manage the parcel layers for my rural county. Our GIS program is pretty minimal for now, and I am in the process of trying to strengthen our organization and expand our capabilities. 

Currently, my project consists of making our file systems more efficient and robust. Our current workflow involves editing the live .gdb and I understand that can be risky. I am trying to create several versions of the same File Geodatabase, one of which is my editing .gdb, and the other is my published .gdb. I am doing this to create redundancy and prevent catastrophic editing mistakes. 

All of our data is edited using ArcMap 10.6, and I am dabling in ArcGIS Pro but have not made any sort of real migration to Pro. I do not have any sort of server or enterprise, and I am currently the sole user, editor, and publisher of this data so all data is stored on my desktop, with nightly backups through the Windows Backup and Restore utility to a remote drive. 

I have tried several tools and made several models in the model builder, but I have run into roadblocks each direction I try. I tried the Append Tool which just creates duplicate features in each feature class. I also tried a combination of Delete and then Feature Class to Geodatabase to re-add the data, but that didn't seem to work after the first run.

What I think I am trying to duplicate is the "Versioning" or "Replicating" utilities, except doing something similar without having a server or enterprise.

So I guess two questions.


1. Am I OK just leaving my workflow as it is and edit the live .gdb.


2. If it is highly recommended I change my current workflow, is there a process, tool, model, script etc. that will allow        me to do what I am trying to do without upgrading to enterprise or a server, both of which are over my head and        involve a large migration and infrastructure upgrade. I just don't think our organization is ready to do that upgrade        yet, as we do not have the need for multiple users and editors, although we may in the future as we grow.

This is all very new to me, so thank you for your patience and time.

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Occasional Contributor II

I created a .bat file that "replicates" my editing fGDB to the server and creates a timestamped backup.

XCOPY "C:\GIS\CountyGIS.gdb" "R:\CountyGIS.gdb" /D /E /C /R /I /K /Y /u
XCOPY "C:\GIS\GIS.gdb" "R:\Projects\ParcelFabric\BackUps\CountyGIS%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%%date:~10,4%.gdb" /D /E /C /R /I /K /Y
XCOPY "C:\GIS\CountyGIS.gdb" "C:\Users\*****\Dropbox\ParcelExchange\CountyGIS.gdb" /D /E /C /R /I /K /Y
XCOPY "C:\GIS\CountyGIS.gdb" "Z:\WebData\CountyGIS.gdb" /D /E /C /R /I /K /Y /u

Occasional Contributor


Thank you for the reply. I can understand some of that, but my knowledge of scripting is pretty minimal so I am unsure of what parts do what in that sequence, therefore I am unsure what I will need to tweak for it to work for me.

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Occasional Contributor III

If you are a small, one-man shop, then editing the gdb is just fine.  Just make sure you back up the gdb often.  You can use window's backup functions to do it or you might use a script like Justin provided.  I have window's backing up my work folder to an external hard drive automatically.

Another option for you might be to move your data into ArcGIS Online and have it hosted there.  Then you should be able to edit it from there instead of from your gdb.  It would also allow you to make web maps off your data without needing enterprise.  The skill level for this is pretty easy.

Occasional Contributor


Thank you for the reply. I think I will do just that. I will backup regularly and continue editing the gdb as is. I will also look into ArcGIS Online, and see if that is something I can utilize at this time. 

Fortunately, my organization is very open to growing, and this is a learning experience for all of us.

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Occasional Contributor III

I have a somewhat similar situation. If you really do have the same features and data in both files, then I would just copy the entire file geodb using ArcCatalog. Rename your publishing db to something like mynameOLD  or mynameOLDdate in ArcCatalog, copy and paste your editing db with the published db name. Periodically clean out some of the ..OLD files, which can serve as backups. I actually use the exact same dbname but within different Windows folders for my editing and publish copies so I don't have to rename the current publish database. Make sure any maps other people create in the future do not point to your editing file or you will have locks to deal with.

The empty and append workflow is what I have to use for some SDE to file geodatabase synching. That is because of the two completely different formats.