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QGIS 1.8.0 Mac: I've got a polygon shape file with values 1-5 in it i.e. contours. How do I get the polygons for value 5 into one layer, 4 into another... so I can assign each a colour and see them?

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? You want to split your layer or you want to apply a classified coloration? – Curlew Mar 19 '13 at 23:12
it's supposed to be a polygon hazard map with 5 values 1-5; I want to end up with each polygon value showing a distinct colour fill. One layer or 5 is OK, it's just that at the moment I can't see anything at all. – johnsankey Mar 19 '13 at 23:32
that is 1-2 being one colour, 2-3 being a 2nd etc. – johnsankey Mar 19 '13 at 23:44
note also that it isn't a contour map where 1 must be adjacent to 2; there can be an area level 5 surrounded by level 1. – johnsankey Mar 20 '13 at 0:18
done - I just wanted to be sure I had it 100% right – johnsankey Mar 23 '13 at 12:00
up vote 1 down vote accepted
  1. start new project (to avoid CRS confusion)
  2. load vector
  3. under layer properties, style, choose graduated from drop-down list
  4. click classify
  5. adjust colours and ranges as you wish
  6. OK

see above & link to for further details if confused.

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