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I have ArcPad10 installed on a Trimble Juno. I tried to use a geodatabase with a feature class set up with domains and subtypes for field data collection, but, I learned quickly that ArcPad10 doesn't recognize a geodatabase... only shapefiles.

I understand that an *.apl file (part of a shapefile package) is used in arcpad10 to constrain data editing, or create forms. Do you need ArcStudio to create an apl file? What is the structure of an apl file? Can you write your own?


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ArcPad dos not directly read geodatabases - it uses *.axf format based on SQL compact as it works better on mobile devices.

You can use the ArcPad Data Manager toolbar in ArcMap to check out data from your geodatabase into an *.axf file. This will include any domains, subtypes and related tables you have set up. After using ArcPad to collect and edit your data, use the ArcPad Data Manager to check your edits back into your geodatabase.

The ArcPad Layer File (*.apl) is created automatically during the checkout process if you checkout a shapefile. Otherwise the information is stored inside the *.axf. You can then modify the forms and symbology in ArcPad Studio.

If you want, *.apl files are an xml format described in the docs, so you could write one yourself if you wanted to.

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I'm running Arc9.3, and I see the ArcPad extension. But I'm assuming you need ArcPad installed on your desktop. I only have it installed on my Juno Trimble. I won't have access to the ArcPad software right away.... will I have to resort to creating my own *.apl file then? Thanks for all the helpful links!! – Czed Mar 8 '12 at 13:57
If you're looking to creaet forms you can do it in ArcPad for shapefiles only. If you create a QuickForm for a Shapefile layer you can do basic form design and configure your own required fields, range domains and pick-lists. Hopefully that's a bit easier than doing it manually! – om_henners Mar 9 '12 at 0:01

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