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I have many point shapefiles that are too close together. I need to label 4 lines of data for each point. I have written the expression that shows the 4 lines of data and now the labels are overposting on top of eachother. How can I manually move the labels to another location. I have used the data defined coordinate X,Y options to do this and told the program to use the Expression, please see the attached image, but it does not activate the move label button in the label toolbar. The label toolbar only activates if I choose 1 attribute at a time from a list.

Move Labels that are using an expression

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In the screenshot you've provided, note the 'Data Defined' X and Y options.

First, create two new fields of FLOAT type (to store decimal places) and call them LABEL_X and LABEL_Y

Then go back to the data defined > X, Y options, set the fields to the LABEL_X and LABEL_Y you just created.

Now you can start an edit session and move the labels, and when you do, the LABEL_X and LABEL_Y fields get populated with the coordinates of the label.

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    This solution worked, it just took a little while for the system to recognize it, but once that move label button activated, I was extremely happy. Thank you!!! – Pie_Staff Oct 16 '15 at 14:48
  • Great! Please mark that as your answer if you could! Thanks! – DPSSpatial Oct 16 '15 at 14:57
  • @Pie_Staff just a reminder to mark this as your answer if you could... thanks!!! – DPSSpatial Jan 15 '16 at 22:48
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It looks to me like you've set the data defined X/Y to an EXPRESSION. You instead need to set it to the FIELD - which should be listed directly in the data defined drop down. Then the move label tools will unlock when the layer is in edit mode.

  • I think the expression was used to generate the multi-line labels... – DPSSpatial Oct 15 '15 at 21:54
  • No, the data defined button is set to an expression. The icon is different if it was set to a field. – ndawson Oct 16 '15 at 6:09
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In the screenshot you've provided, note the 'Data Defined' X and Y options.

First, create two new fields of FLOAT type (to store decimal places) and call them LABEL_X and LABEL_Y

Then go back to the data defined > X, Y options, set the fields to the LABEL_X and LABEL_Y you just created.

Now you can start an edit session and move the labels, and when you do, the LABEL_X and LABEL_Y fields get populated with the coordinates of the label.

This solution worked, it just took a little while for the system to recognize it, but once that move label button activated, I was extremely happy. Thank you!!! – Pie_Staff

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