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I have 2 huge files of points (hundreds of thousands of points). I need to determine a way to loop through all the points in one file and find all the points in the second file that are only a certain distance away. So like within a distance outside the buffer. Or on the outer edge of the buffer.

I am thinking of 2 buffers, one larger buffer and then one smaller buffer and then somehow subtracting the values. No idea how this could be accomplished though.

The files are huge so I am also concerned in doing this the quickest way possible.

Any ideas?

Thanks Just Me

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And the software that you have access to would be....???? –  Dan Patterson Jun 21 '11 at 18:30
    
arcinfo, sorry forgot to mention –  Just Me Jun 21 '11 at 18:59
    
Is a programming solution acceptable? –  Kirk Kuykendall Jun 21 '11 at 19:07
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buffering is slow... trying using 'Near' –  Mapperz Jun 21 '11 at 19:13
    
I think the question could be changed to something like "How can I spatially join two large datasets". In the details describe the join logic (more than a min distance but less than a max distance). –  Kirk Kuykendall Jun 21 '11 at 21:34
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1 Answer

Generate Near Table (Analysis) [ArcInfo only]

enter image description here

This tool behaves the same as the Near tool. However, instead of updating the input features, it creates a new output table. Moreover, it can find as many near features as specified by the Maximum number of closest matches parameter.

http://help.arcgis.com/en/arcgisdesktop/10.0/help/index.html#//00080000001n000000.htm

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a programming solution would be great as well –  Just Me Jun 21 '11 at 19:32
    
the Desktop Help link above has code samples –  Mike T Jun 21 '11 at 20:00
    
programming solution is at the bottom of the link for Python as Mike Toews mentions –  Mapperz Jun 21 '11 at 20:38
    
Awesome, thanks everyone. I had not ever used this function. –  Just Me Jun 21 '11 at 20:39
    
Ok, I have tried this solution and realize that it is not helping and I probably did not explain myself. –  Just Me Jun 22 '11 at 18:57
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