Take the 2-minute tour ×
Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. It's 100% free, no registration required.

USGS provides different resolution orthoimage quadrangles in the WorldImage format (*.tif with an accompanying *.tfw world file). Some of these quadrangles can be used by GeoServer (2.1.0 - 2.1.2) by creating a WorldImage store and publishing the layer (some of them throw an exception when trying to publish the layer). When publishing a GeoTiff layer that has been converted from a currently working WorldImage layer, I am getting the following exception:

2012-01-10 08:38:33,228 WARN [referencing.factory] - Axis elements found in a wkt definition, the force longitude first axis order hint might not be respected:
PROJCS["WGS84 / Simple Mercator", GEOGCS["WGS 84", DATUM["WGS_1984", SPHEROID["WGS_1984", 6378137.0, 298.257223563]], PRIMEM["Greenwich", 0.0], UNIT["degree", 0.017453292519943295]], PROJECTION["Mercator_1SP_Google"], PARAMETER["latitude_of_origin", 0.0], PARAMETER["central_meridian", 0.0], PARAMETER["scale_factor", 1.0], PARAMETER["false_easting", 0.0], PARAMETER["false_northing", 0.0], UNIT["m", 1.0], AXIS["x", EAST], AXIS["y", NORTH], AUTHORITY["EPSG","54004"]]
2012-01-10 08:38:39,674 INFO [geoserver.web] - Error saving layer
    at org.geoserver.catalog.impl.CoverageStoreInfoImpl.getFormat(CoverageStoreInfoImpl.java:42)

I tried using gdal_translate in the following way (substitute 1234 with real values): gdal_translate -of GTiff -a_srs "EPSG:2239" -co "TILED=YES" 1234.tif ../geotiff/1234.tif The conversion succeeds, and I can successfully create a GeoTiff store in GeoServer, but cannot publish the layer because of the error described above. This leads me to believe that I am trying to publish layers (in both cases) that are not properly formatted. Thus, what is the correct way to convert a [working] USGS orthoimage in WorldImage format to a tiled GeoTiff for GeoServer 2.1.2?

share|improve this question
I think we need to know which epsg code you are actually using as it is probably the important bit –  iant Jan 10 '12 at 14:35
Edited to show an EPSG I've tried with a 2007 data set retrieved from EarthExplorer. –  Matt Jan 10 '12 at 14:37
Do you know what the input tiff's SRS is? –  iant Jan 10 '12 at 14:52
It looks like you've not got to the root cause because Parameter message can't be null is an Apache error thrown when a FeedbackMessage doesn't have a message string (see here: bit.ly/zBUjy3 for the gory details). I suggest you post the whole stack trace so we might be able to identify what message GeoServer is trying to tell us. –  MerseyViking Jan 10 '12 at 15:51
gdal_translate -a_srs doesn't reproject, it merely assigns (or overwrites) the image's projection. If the image has no bounding information, it'll assume 1 US foot (for EPSG:2239) per pixel and place the image at the coordinate system's origin. If the bounding box is in a unit other than US feet, then your image could be anywhere or at any size depending on the units and origin of whatever projection it was digitised in. –  MerseyViking Jan 10 '12 at 16:14
show 4 more comments

2 Answers

Why not just download in geotiff? USGS used to have that option. The site USGS list for this format are The National Map and US Topo.

share|improve this answer
add comment

If you're getting geopdf's from USGS and you want to convert to geotiff - and you have a Linux box with perl or mod_perl capability and also GDAL/OGR libraries - you could batch run them with geopdf2gtiff.pl script as shown here: https://github.com/godfreja/qtxastir/blob/master/scripts/geopdf2gtiff.pl

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.