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I need the near(dist) command, but I think I need to have a more advanced version than what I have.

I have:

ArcMap 10.0 (Build 4000)

ArcGIS desktop 10 service pack 4 (Build 4000)

license type: ArcView

Is that a basic programme? if so, how does one upgrade?

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    Yes, the "ArcView" license was the previous term to the current "Basic" license. Based on the help, you would need to upgrade to a full ArcInfo license. Your profile says you're studying for a Ph.D. Check with your university to see if they have a site license or individual licenses available. – mkennedy Jun 3 '15 at 16:06
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    Depending on what you're trying to do with the Near tool, you may be able to accomplish the same thing with a Spatial Join - which can be done with a Basic license. And to finish out mkennedy's info on license level/name, Editor = Standard, Info = Advanced. – Chris W Jun 3 '15 at 17:51
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As commented by @mkennedy:

Yes, the "ArcView" license was the previous term to the current "Basic" license. Based on the help, you would need to upgrade to a full ArcInfo license. Your profile says you're studying for a Ph.D. Check with your university to see if they have a site license or individual licenses available.

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