I am working with multiple layers and I have been asked to find the percentage of change between them: GEOM, ATTR and ALL. I know that there is the Feature Compare tool and the Table Compare tool (I can't use the Detect Feature Changes tool as I am not using lines - only polygons.) and I've tried using the "Iterate Feature Classes" in order to iterate through each layer in my gdb, but it randomly selects what layers to compare against eachother.

For example if I have layers FC1 FC2 FC3 FC4, I want to compare FC1 to FC2. Then compare FC2 to FC3, FC3 to FC4 and so on. What the iteration tool does however is something like > FC1 to FC3, FC4 to FC1, FC2 to FC2, FC1 to FC4.

Is there a way to force Feature Compare tool to iterate through multiple files in a specific order?

I've had the thought of trying to create a script tool that lists the feature classes, but my coding skills are weak, and I'm not sure how to make this a functional tool.

I have access to both ArcGIS Desktop 10.5.1 and ArcGIS Pro.

And just to be clear, I'm not married to these tools, they were just what was suggested to me. If there is a better way to do this comparison I'm open!

I need to process upwards of 200 layers eventually, I'm just currently working with 4 layers.


1 Answer 1


You should look into the nested model approach. With this design you can have 1 model that contains the Feature Comparer. This model would have 2 parameters (or more if needed): 1 for input base features and 1 for input test features (maybe 1 for sort field).

The second model would contain your iterator and this is where you could control which feature classes are passed into Model 1. This model (Model 2) would call Model 1, passing the desired feature classes (from the iterator) into the appropriate Model 1 parameters.

If you need more complexity, add another nested model...

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