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Correct Settings When Importing Metadata Template

Question asked by bsmithmcrobie on Oct 17, 2019

Hello Everyone!


I am new to using metadata and I want to know the best workflow when it comes to importing a metadata template into a data set that I've created. 


Our office is starting to use metadata more frequently, and we have a template file with all of our company's contacts, use limitations, legal constraints, etc. Some metadata that I import our template into has fields already filled out, and I want to preserve those descriptions and fields. Right now when I use the 'Metadata Importer' tool, it changes the name of the dataset to the name of our template file, and I need to use 'Synchronize Metadata' to get the original name back. 


My current workflow is to use the 'Metadata Importer' conversion tool to import all of our contact/constraint information, and then 'Synchronize Metadata' and set the Synchronize Type to 'Overwrite' in order to get the dataset's name, field descriptions, etc. back into the metadata.


Is this the correct workflow?

What workflows do you use to ensure that original data attached/written for the original data set does not get lost? 

Can anyone better describe when to use each of the Synchronize Types? I find the descriptions ESRI provides are a little confusing. I have the current descriptions copied below.


  • ALWAYS—Properties of the source item are always added to or updated in its metadata. Metadata will be created if it doesn't already exist. This is the deault.
  • ACCESSED—Properties of the source item are added to or updated in its metadata when it is accessed. Metadata will be created if it doesn't already exist.
  • CREATED—Metadata will be created and properties of the source item will be added to it if the item doesn't already have metadata.
  • NOT_CREATED—Properties of the source item are added to or updated in existing metadata.
  • OVERWRITE—The same as "ALWAYS" except all information that can be recorded automatically in the metadata will be recorded. Any properties typed in by a person will be replaced with the item's actual properties.
  • SELECTIVE—The same as "OVERWRITE" except the title and the content type will not be overwritten with default values for the item. Used when metadata is upgraded to the ArcGIS 10.x metadata format.



Thank you in advance! 


- Benjamin