A vector data storage format for storing the location, shape, and attributes of geographic features. Often referred to as 'an ESRI shapefile', as ESRI developed it.

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78
votes
20answers
75k views

How to convert between KML and Esri's shapefile (SHP) format?

My users are sending me point data that were digitized using GoogleEarth. How can I convert their KML to a shapefile?
58
votes
7answers
2k views

Are there any attempts to replace the shapefile?

Recently I've been spending a lot of time converting perfectly good field names like "Percent of citizens age 25 and over with a bachelor's degree or higher" into things like "edbchogtr" to meet the ...
48
votes
11answers
22k views

Identifying Coordinate System of Shapefile when Unknown?

I have a Shapefile but its coordinate system is Unknown, and there is no *.prj file. How I can identify it now? Are there any tools that could help?
43
votes
7answers
25k views

Whether to use File Geodatabase (*.gdb), Personal Geodatabase (*.mdb) or shapefiles?

I am a bit confused on the topic of geodatabases. Previously, I have used geodatabases as an easy way to keep all files together rather than having dozens of shapefiles all over the place. And it's ...
35
votes
4answers
28k views

Which character encoding is used by the DBF file in shapefiles?

Which character-encoding is used by the dbf-file in Shape-files? It seems it is handled different, based on the program and the local encoding-settings of the machine. Which encoding is 'right' - ...
32
votes
3answers
14k views

Simple thematic mapping of shapefile using Python?

I wish to visualize geographical data in Python, without using ArcGIS/ArcPy, and make a map. On the internet I found how to make a thematic map using Python: Here is some code that I tried: ...
32
votes
4answers
40k views

How to open a Shapefile in R?

I need to open a shape file from ArcMap in R to use it for further geostatical analysis. I've converted it into ASCII text file, but in R it is recognized as data.frame. Coordinates function doesn't ...
30
votes
9answers
22k views

Open Source Tool capable of reading Esri File Geodatabase (.gdb)?

I have an ESRI File Geodatabase (.gdb) file that I would like to convert to shapefile (or any other non-proprietary format). Are there any Open Source tools to do so?
29
votes
3answers
56k views

How to calculate polygon areas in QGIS?

Hi I would like to simply calculate areas of a area-shape file in square meters or in acres (ha). I didn't find that functionality in the vector tools. Could anyone here help me with that?
28
votes
12answers
70k views

Converting MapInfo TAB and/or MIF to SHP using free tools or ArcGIS for Desktop core product?

How do I convert MapInfo TAB and/or MIF files to SHP using only free tools or ArcGIS itself? I've not had much luck trying to do this in the past and I don't want to have to shell out for the ArcGIS ...
27
votes
4answers
5k views

Bulk load multiple shapefiles into PostGIS

I've got over a hundred data layers in shapefile format that I want to upload into a PostGIS database. They are all in the same projection, but represent different data layers so they do not have the ...
25
votes
12answers
30k views

Converting Shapefiles to Text (ASCII) files? [duplicate]

How can I convert a shape file (GIS) to text? or, How can I extract the information in a shape file?
25
votes
5answers
3k views

What are advantages of using spatialite over shapefile?

I found spatialite more useful than shapefiles as it does not have the limitations of shapefile and it is also portable. Many people here use shapefiles to exchange data and even the experts do not ...
25
votes
4answers
13k views

How to bypass 10 character limit of field name in ShapeFiles?

I'm exporting geometry with attached text attributes from oracle database to esri shapefile format (.shp) with Java and Geotools library. Attribute columns in our database have names with more than ...
25
votes
6answers
1k views

“Oddities” in the Shapefile technical specification

I've been writing a shapefile parsing library, and have encountered a couple of design decisions in the specification that I don't immediately understand. I'm hoping there's a wizened old ESRI ...
24
votes
10answers
33k views

Adding Attribute data to shapefile?

I can display a shapefile in openlayers but I need to add some attribute data. I can open the dbf file in excel but there is no save as option in excel to the updated file as a dbf. What is the ...
24
votes
3answers
10k views

How to easily edit attribute data using Regular Expressions?

I am writing a tutorial for MSc students that uses QGIS. One of the tasks requires the attribute data to be modified (see pdf draft of tutorial here if interested ). The question is how to get them ...
23
votes
2answers
4k views

Python Efficiency — Need suggestions about how to use OGR and Shapely in more efficient way

I'm looking for some suggestions about how to make my python code more efficient. Normally efficiency doesn't matter for me but I am now working with a text file of US locations with over 1.5 million ...
22
votes
2answers
17k views

How to convert .shp into .gpx using QGIS?

I'm newbie using QGIS. I would like to convert .shp into .gpx. So, using Qgis, I open my shapefile and I tried to "save as" gpx but it gives an OGR error: creation of field ObjectId failed (OGR ...
21
votes
3answers
5k views

Is it possible to look at the contents of Shapefile using Python without an ArcMap license?

I wondered if it is possible to look at the contents of a shapefile using Python without having and ArcMap license. The situation is that you can create shapefiles from many different applications, ...
21
votes
6answers
18k views

How to convert image of map into vector format?

What is the best way of converting a gif of a map into a vector format, such as a shapefile? The only relevant parts that I am interested in are the outline of the island so I realize some manual ...
19
votes
2answers
15k views

How can I get a shapefile from a postgis query?

My data is in a PostGIS database. I would like to generate a shapefile from a query. How can I do that?
19
votes
9answers
13k views

How can I convert an excel file with x, y columns to a shapefile?

How can I convert an excel file with x, y columns to a point shapefile? There are some somewhat optional requirements in addition to the correct creation of a shapefile: Column types (as per Excel'...
19
votes
3answers
19k views

How to encode shapefiles from LATIN1 to UTF-8?

Is there a way to encode shapefiles from LATIN1 to UTF-8?
19
votes
4answers
6k views

How do you determine a shapefile's charset?

Is there a way to determine the charset used for a given shapefile?
18
votes
4answers
14k views

What is the difference between Coverage, Shapefiles and Geodatabases in ArcGIS?

I was wondering about the difference in spatial data storage methodology used by Coverages, Shapefiles and Geodatabases in ArcGIS. Coverage was the initial format, followed by Shape Files and now ...
18
votes
2answers
8k views

Using R to calculate the area of multiple polygons on a map that intersect with another overlaid polygon

I have a shapefile downloaded from the Ordnance Survey that gives electoral ward (division) boundaries for a county of the United Kingdom. I have successfully used R to load the shapefile and plotted ...
18
votes
4answers
12k views

How to add attribute field to existing Shapefile via Python without ArcGIS?

I have a Python script that adds an attribute field to a Shapefile if doesn't exist. This is easy to do with ArcGIS (graphically or via Python), but I'm looking for something that doesn't depend on ...
18
votes
3answers
14k views

Free tool to convert ArcGIS layer package (*.lpk) to shapefile (*.shp)?

I have received a *.lpk file from Esri's ArcGIS platform that I would like to convert to a shapefile. How can I do this, using only free software?
16
votes
6answers
7k views

How to improve rendering performance of very large shapefile?

I have a polygon shapefile that has a 100MB .dbf and 500MB .shp file component. The reason it is so large is it is a landbase classification for a whole district. Everytime I am viewing the file in ...
15
votes
2answers
18k views

Adding shapefile or feature class as layer in ArcGIS Desktop using Python/ArcPy?

I am trying to automate various tasks in ArcGIS Desktop (using ArcMap generally) with Python, and I keep needing a way to add a shape file to the current map. (And then do stuff to it, but that's ...
15
votes
2answers
17k views

Adding shapefiles to PostGIS database

I was able to create a Postgresql database and then I executed, createlang plpgsql geospecies psql -d geospecies -f postgis.sql psql -d geospecies -f spatial_ref_sys.sql So now can I directly ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

Is there an automatic function in QGIS to package all files in a project for transferability?

In my project, I use a lot of geodata from different directories. Now I want to give the QGIS project to a colleague (eg on a CD). Is it possible to copy the shapes from different directories ...
15
votes
1answer
2k views

How to rename field names in a shapefile from the commandline?

I need to rename the field names (attributes) in a shapefile. Is there an easy way to do this from the command line?
15
votes
1answer
7k views

Instantiating spatial polygon without using a shape file in R

So, the usual way we read a shapefile in R is via the maptools package, like this: sfdata <- readShapeSpatial("/path/to/my/shapefile.shp", proj4string=CRS("+proj=longlat")) However, I have a use ...
15
votes
1answer
801 views

The next big thing in standardized spatial data exchange format?

I remember reading something a few months back, in the latter half of 2012, about a coordinated group effort to design a new standard for sharing geographic / spatial data. It has or aims to have the ...
15
votes
2answers
8k views

API documentation for Gdal/Ogr with C#

I want to assign projection to shapefile in my web C# application, for this i am using Gdal/OGR/OSR C# bindings and add osr_csharp.dll and ogr_csharp.dll references. But i am facing some difficulty ...
15
votes
3answers
12k views

ogr2ogr converting to shapefile - how to select feature types?

Shapefiles can only have one geometry type, but many other formats (kml, geojson) can have multiple types. When converting to shapefiles, is it possible to to tell ogr2ogr to create multiple ...
15
votes
1answer
11k views

Merging adjacent polygons in shapefile that has been split at tile boundaries?

I'm currently using building data from the Ordnance Survey Vectormap District and I've noticed that a lot of building polygons are split in 2 because of the way the OS split up the shapefile. This is ...
15
votes
1answer
496 views

How to query OSM for all beaches facing west? - QGIS preferred

I want to identify all beaches on this planet (or a given subset of it) that are facing westwards (+/- 20-30 degrees). My idea is to use OSM as the data source. Extracting all polygons that have the ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

Python module to delete SHP features (without Desktop GIS installed)

I have a piece of software (not Arc) that runs nightly on a non-production machine which updates shapefile features from an external database. Periodically I would like to delete all of the features ...
14
votes
7answers
4k views

Free tool to simplify parcel shapefiles?

Is there any tool available which let's me run millions of parcel shapefiles and simplify them?
14
votes
4answers
31k views

How to convert .shp to .csv including attributes AND geometry?

I have a .shp file with 60k+ entries, all of which are polygons with corresponding attributes (acreage totals, landowner names, tax ID #s, etc.). What I ultimately need is a .csv file with all of ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

Does Re-Projecting ShapeFile only update content of *.prj file?

if i wish to change the projection of some shapefiles from .. lets say NAD83 (4269) to WGS84 (4326) ... and by using some 3rd party app .... does this mean the .prj file is only updated .. and not the ...
14
votes
6answers
1k views

Creating simple image from vector data

Can anyone suggest a quick (and preferably open source) way to create an image from a shapefile. For example, I have a shapefile containing parcel boundaries, I want to create a png file depicting ...
14
votes
2answers
21k views

Merging polygons in shapefile based on field values?

I have a shapefile with a lot of polygons in it. These polygons are grouped into a category: district. How can I merge the polygons based on the same name of the category within this shapefile?
14
votes
6answers
5k views

How can I update ogr2ogr to include the PostgreSQL driver?

I'm trying to use ogr2ogr to upload a shapefile to a remote PostGres installation. When I ran this command: celenius:~ celenius$ ogr2ogr -f PostgreSQL PG:"host=255.34.00.00 user=postgres dbname=mydb ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I represent distance using the dashes or markers of a vector line?

I am a very basic user and dont know the lingo to get to the gist of my question so some background might help. Ive volunteered to create a pre-incident planning system for my rural fire department. ...
13
votes
10answers
31k views

Where can I find Canadian postal code geometries?

Where can I find the shapefiles for Canadian postal codes?
13
votes
7answers
11k views

ogr2ogr convert all shapefiles in a directory

I have a directory with several shapefiles. How can convert all these shapefiles to MapInfo with ogr2ogr. I know how I can convert one file. And I can make a batch script writing a line for each file. ...