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I am wondering what is the best approach to use for text layers in GeoServer. AFAIK, there is no text layer in GeoServer. But in many occassions we need to use text layers and not simply label for other (point/line) layer. What I am using is as follows: WMS Point layer Style:

           <CssParameter name="fill">#B28080</CssParameter>
       <CssParameter name="fill">#000000</CssParameter>

But I am feeling there must be some other more smart options available in GeoServer. I must be missing some trick. Any help?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

in geoserver, Styled Layer Descriptor (SLD) which is a XML-based markup language uses for styling any geospatial data. up to the present i have never come across with Styler for Geoserver. but you can use some tools with converting and adding some codes to core in it for your needs.

1.GeoServer Styler plugin -- example

Styler is built on open standards, using the Styled Layer Descriptor (SLD) XML language at the center. It is rendered with the Web Map Service (WMS) standard, which has extensions to render remote SLDs, and uses REST calls to persist styles to servers. It is built with GeoServer as an initial target, but the emphasis on open standards and flexible design should make it adaptable to any WMS server.

guide for some tutorial here.


Download the REST plugin for your version of GeoServer (1.7.1 or newer) 
from the download page.
Unzip the archive into the WEB-INF/lib directory of the GeoServer installation.
Restart GeoServer
Download the GeoExt Styler extension from the Download page.
Unzip the archive into the www directory of the GeoServer data directory.


2.AtlasStyler SLD editor

AtlasStyler is a user-friendly application to style geodata. The resulting styles can be saved to XML files that follow the OGC SLD/SE standard 1.0.

The AtlasStyler is a "stand-alone" application, that can be used independently for any vector data. ESRI Shapefiles, OGC WFS and PostGIS datasources are supported. Automatic upload of the SLD styles to Geoserver will be possible soon.

atlas styler

3.GeoServer Style Editor

To design and implement an editor for SLD files with using JavaScript.
Desired Features:

Standalone - editor is not tied to a particular program (uDig, MapBuilder, GeoServer)
Visual - users can preview the results of changes as they are made.
Intuitive - easy to learn but not cumbersome or limiting for the advanced user.

i hope it helps you...

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I think the concept of "TextLayer" is a bit odd, you have a text property, along with a geometry.

In Geoserver (and SLD) you can have a rule with just a TextSymbolizer, to write out your text.

Some examples:

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