I followed the instructions here. My input layers are 7 .tif images, each representing a spectral band of a Landsat image. I'm attempting to extract these bands using GDAL:

raster_dataset = gdal.Open(raster_data_path, gdal.GA_ReadOnly)

bands_data = []
for b in range(1, raster_dataset.RasterCount+1):
    band = raster_dataset.GetRasterBand(b)

Issue is, raster_dataset.RasterCount == 1 and I'm getting arrays full of zeros.

  • If you have 7 TIFF images for one scene each will have 1 band, therefore 7 raster datasets to read. Do you have enough memory to read the entire image as an array? It might be better to use ReadRaster to read a block than ReadAsArray to try to grab the entire band as one array. Commented Mar 21, 2017 at 3:36
  • @MichaelMiles-Stimson Not sure about the memory question - haven't gotten that far. I'm trying to follow this guy's blog post: machinalis.com/blog/python-for-geospatial-data-processing/…. He seems to do it just fine and then transforms the band’s data into a numpy array. Commented Mar 21, 2017 at 3:47
  • Regardless, I'm wondering if the image was somehow merged incorrectly since raster_dataset.RasterCount == 1 and not 7. Commented Mar 21, 2017 at 3:50
  • Reading a whole image less than a megabyte works well but doesn't work so well for huge scenes, especially if you exceed your addressable memory. What are you trying to achieve here? Is the problem that the image doesn't appear to be stacked? To create a stacked image you need to create it with the correct number of bands, did you do that in python or in QGIS toolbox?. Commented Mar 21, 2017 at 3:51
  • @MichaelMiles-Stimson Correct. The image doesn't appear to be stacked. Shouldn't the instructions I linked in my original post do that? I'm not sure what step I missed. Commented Mar 21, 2017 at 3:52

1 Answer 1


I do it exactly as you've written it, here's my production code:

for band_n in range(n_parameters):
    band = ds.GetRasterBand(band_n + 1)
    band_array = band.ReadAsArray()
    all_data[band_n] = band_array

So I don't think there's an issue with this code.

I'd check your source files in something like QGIS, where you can view the data and ensure that it's correct in the files.

Also, you mention you have 7 files, so don't you need to loop over each file rather than through bands in one file?

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