Locked Multiple Layouts in ArcGIS Pro

04-03-2017 11:22 AM
Status: Open
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New Contributor II

In ArcView 3 (AV 3) users often created multiple layouts and disconnected the live link to each one.  The AV 3 help text below briefly explains what we could do in the program.

Add a view


To create a map for output containing geographic data you must first add a view to your layout. When you add the view you can choose to make it live linked. This causes any changes in the view to be reflected in the layout. If you decide not to live link your view, it will not change in the layout even if you make changes to the view.

Layouts were not especially powerful in AV 3, but users could create multiple static objects and print them as displayed. 

In ArcGIS Pro, multiple layouts are available for within a single Pro project and multiple layouts are associated with a specific Pro map within the Project.  In each layout, the user specifies the extent, layers displayed, cartographic elements, and more.  In each individual Pro layout, the user now refines/updates the associated map, before printing or exporting the layout.  If the map is modified later, the layout changes, too.

It would be very helpful to lock individual layouts to preserve user settings and parameters, without modifying the underlying map.

I strongly recommend that this feature should be submitted as a near term enhancement.  I, and others, once used this AV 3 feature often.


One of the main uses I have for Pro instead of ArcMap is its multiple layouts ability, often referencing the same map. This feature is pretty vital to that functionality.

Also, it could use the existing framework for "lock" buttons that already exist in Pro. Easier on the devs, easier on the users. 


I've adopted a workflow where I first copy the Layout I want to change into the new edited one thereby "locking" the original. It works, but a simple lock functionality would be better.  


Hi Sean,

Thank you, I have not heard back directly from Esri regarding this request/issue.  I'm still hopeful that a simple lock will be developed.  ArcView 3 was able to address the issue nicely.

Mike Mike Price

Entrada/San Juan, Inc.

7938 West Golf Course Drive

Blaine, WA 98230

435-260-8243 Cell

mike_price@frontiernet.net Email 1

mikeprice1@aol.com Email 2

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From: Sean Hlousek <geonet@esri.com>

To: Mike Price <mike_price@frontiernet.net>

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Subject: Re: - Locked Multiple Layouts in ArcGIS Pro

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Locked Multiple Layouts in ArcGIS Pro

new comment by Sean Hlousek View all comments on this ideaI've adopted a workflow where I first copy the Layout I want to change into the new edited one thereby "locking" the original. It works, but a simple lock functionality would be better.  Reply to this email to respond to Sean Hlousek's comment. Following Locked Multiple Layouts in ArcGIS Pro in these streams: Inbox This email was sent by GeoNet because you are a registered user.

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Yeah it would be nice.

Like I say what I’ve started doing in my workflows is: 1 – copy the layout I want to manipulate, 2 – rename the layout to something new. 3 – open the new layout, make changes, export/print etc

Then repeat the process for each “edit” or new layout.

The locking functionality would be better because my workflow is going to create a lot of layouts over time but with some creative and careful file naming conventions, it’s workable for us.

Good luck continuing to work out the idiosyncrasies of ArcGIS Pro!

Sean Hlousek

GIS Manager

1001 17th Street Suite 1250

Denver CO 80203



303-226-9516 (O)

303-565-0224 (M)


at the moment it's a real pain in the ass!

no use for multiple layouts if this doesn't work....


My issue was that I have the need for multiple printing scales such as Letter, Legal, or ARCH D. I wanted a layout with symbology different for each, because symbology for a scale as large as ARCH D, will not work for a scale as small as Letter. I didn't want to have to re-manipulate the symbology and layout every time a customer wanted a map printed like I was doing in ArcMap 10.6.

I just copied the map, and then created a new layout for each map. I now have 4 maps that all source their data from my core .gdb, but can all have unique symbology and unique layout properties all within the same instance of ArcGIS Pro instead of having to open a whole new instance of ArcMap 10.6 for each layout.

I have not experimented with ArcView at all.



My projects are evolving into a similar thing you have going on. 

What I'm doing to work-through the different scales is over time I'm copying maps AND Layouts, renaming them to the size I want and then adjusting symbology as necessary.  This way my data all dynamically updates as I update my .gdb's and I have a map for every occasion so to speak.  


Having only created this workflow this week, I haven't really had a chance to test it out. I think it'll work pretty slick, however, I see the downside to having multiple maps and layouts such as what we are having to do is this:

If you want to zoom to a certain parcel or feature, and then print multiple formats from there, you need to find that feature each time you change layouts since their extents are not linked. I guess this can be both good and bad depending on each situation.

It may also get a little cluttered if you have the need for many layouts.



Bookmarks might help for some work flows but it still requires some manual work for sure.


I finally had a few chances this week to put my layouts to the test. My layouts worked and I was able to pinpoint my features and get them nicely symbolized and printed a really nice looking parcel map.

Unfortunately, I am one of the users that finds AGP extremely slow in some tasks. When I was zeroing in my symbology and labeling for this printed map, it would take sometimes 5 minutes for a simple change to take place. For instance, I changed "overrun", so my labels only labeled larger parcels and not the tiny ones, and I also changed the "reduce size" settings and it would take minutes for the new settings to take effect. When trying to zero in my settings, and having to change them a few times to get them just where I want them, that is very frustrating. It took probably a half hour just to get the labels where they needed to be when I could have probably done it in less than 5 if the software was keeping up.

I really like the final product that I am able to create in AGP, I just can't make a customer wait a half hour while I tweak the layout for them.