Difference between in_memory feature class and a FeatureSet?

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10-08-2014 04:51 PM
BlakeTerhune
MVP Regular Contributor

It looks like FeatureSet is a more specific type of an in_memory feature class that is used to communicate with a server geoprocessor. Can someone clear this up?

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XanderBakker
Esri Esteemed Contributor

Hi Blake,

If you work with Geoprocessing services, an input featureclass will be send as FeatureSet to the service (in json). The IN_MEMORY workspace is, as the name suggests, a workspace that is available in memory to write (intermediate) results to. Since a FeatureSet is a lightweight abstract of a featureclass, it does not support all the methods a (in_memory) featureclass does. Both are used in different ways for different purposes.

Maybe you can explain in what type of process you would like to use them to be able to give some suggestions on what type to use...

Kind regards, Xander

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XanderBakker
Esri Esteemed Contributor

Hi Blake,

If you work with Geoprocessing services, an input featureclass will be send as FeatureSet to the service (in json). The IN_MEMORY workspace is, as the name suggests, a workspace that is available in memory to write (intermediate) results to. Since a FeatureSet is a lightweight abstract of a featureclass, it does not support all the methods a (in_memory) featureclass does. Both are used in different ways for different purposes.

Maybe you can explain in what type of process you would like to use them to be able to give some suggestions on what type to use...

Kind regards, Xander

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BlakeTerhune
MVP Regular Contributor

I think that clears it up pretty well. thanks Xander.

While reading documentation about using in_memory for working space for local geoprocessing tasks, I also stumbled across the Feature Set and thought they seemed similar. Especially since they are both used in the example they have on the Feature Set page. I think I will be using in_memory for everything unless I'm dealing with a geprocessing service.

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