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I'm trying to realign layers in QGIS. As you can see here, the "background" light-blue layer is not aligned with the top layers. I'm working with pgAdmin III and importing PostGIS Layers in QGIS. My SRID is 32632. I tried almost everything but had no luck. Do you have any ideas?

background layers

Here are my layers.

Layers image

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A bit more information is needed: Can you measure the offset in metres? And in what CRS are your layers: all EPSG:32632, or also lat/lon? You might get such an offset if you have older data in Gauss-Krüger with potsdam datum. –  AndreJ Feb 16 '13 at 8:28
Hi Andre, so the 4 layers in the image were given to me. When I imported them via "Add PostGIS Layers" I noticed that "background" layer had SRID set to 0. pgAdmin said the same thing. I fixed this in pgAdmin as it now says 32632 in the QGIS "Add PostGIS Layers" dialog box (just like the other layers), but apparently this did'nt solve anything. When I explore those tables they all contain exadecimal values (no Lat/Lon). I also have other 2 layers representing phone calls and SMSs as points consisting of lan/lon values from tables I created, but I don't think this is the problem. Am I right? –  Nicola Lamonaca Feb 16 '13 at 13:06
The offset is about 220 metres. –  Nicola Lamonaca Feb 16 '13 at 13:08

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

With an offset of around 200 metres, it looks like a missing data shift.

Your target SRS is exactly WGS84, that is +towgs84=0,0,0,0,0,0,0

If I create a raster grid with ED50 UTM 32 EPSG:23032, it is shifted 200m to the south and 80m to the west to the WGS84 UTM 32 grid. The shift parameter of ED50 is +towgs84=-87,-98,-121,0,0,0,0

To see which of your layers is right, you can change the project SRS to EPSG:3857, install open layers plugin, load Google or Openstreetmap background and see which layers are well aligned to that.

Most probably the false layers must be assigned to EPSG:23032. Please do not reproject the data to EPSG:23032, because this will change the coordinates, but will not shift the data. Instead you have to assign that CRS.

On-the-fly-transformation should be switched on.


If the background data is from, it will most probably be in ED50-UTM32N, according to this document. Here is a small example of the border data in right (green) and wrong (red) CRS: Borders in WGS84+ED50 UTM32

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So Andre, in my application I have records such as: INSERT INTO Call VALUES(..., ST_buffer(ST_GeomFromEWKT('srid=32632;POINT(538669,5016683)'), ...)); which store positions of calls and messages. As you can see, I set CRS to 32632 because the tables given to me had that CRS set (apart from "background", as I explained above). If I change CRS as you suggested wouldn't I mess things up? Unfortunately I still feel unconfortable within this field. As to the coordinates of a point, Google Maps tells me (see address for coords) and it corresponds to QGIS: 539388,5017988 –  Nicola Lamonaca Feb 17 '13 at 18:59
So 'background' Layer is displaced from the others. What coordinates do you read for the same crossing in the displaced layer? How did you import the background layer? –  AndreJ Feb 18 '13 at 7:50
I read 539388,5017988, so they're the same. As of the borders, yes, they're stored as Istat codes. I tried both adding a PostGIS layer, and exporting tables as .shp from pgAdmin and then importing them in QGIS, but nothing changes: "background" remains displaced with respect to the other layers.. –  Nicola Lamonaca Feb 18 '13 at 10:51
If you download the background data directly from, you get shapefiles which identify as EPSG:23032, ED50-UTM32N. What happens if you rightclick on the missplaced "Background" layer in table of content, and "Set CRS for layer" to EPSG:23032? –  AndreJ Feb 18 '13 at 11:00
I'm going to try it right now, but the project's CRS must be set to which CRS? –  Nicola Lamonaca Feb 18 '13 at 11:05

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