I have an FME Workbench file that was built up slowly over time and has ended with many readers and many writers (each to a separate feature class), even though every reader points to the same geodatabase (in this case an Esri Personal Geodatabase).

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Now I am trying to tidy up the file to remove duplication of transformers to make it easier to maintain the file over time (it is use for data translation daily), and I would like to also consolidate all the readers into one.

I found that with the Writers, I could just open each writer's properties and use the drop-down to select a different writer, so just changed them all to point at the same one (this worked perfectly!)

Writer Feature Type Properties

However, for the readers there is no drop-down, the reader property is read-only here, so I can't easily change which reader needs to be used

Reader Feature Type Properties

How can I re-point each feature type to use the same reader, like I can easily with the writers?

  • Do your writers all have different Table Names?
    – nr_aus
    Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 0:56
  • @nr_aus My writers are all different feature classes (different names) and are into a different geodatabase
    – Midavalo
    Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 1:40
  • 1
    It looks like an FME limitation, I was able to replicate the issue in 2018.1..... You probably already know this, but I would use the 'Update Reader' function on your first reader, and then expose all tables required from that first reader. which should add them as reader icons onto your workbench canvas, then repoint the connector lines manually.
    – nr_aus
    Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 3:02
  • Correction - 'Import Feature Types' .....not Update Reader.
    – nr_aus
    Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 3:08
  • Thanks @nr_aus that's pretty much what I've been doing and I guess I'll have to continue doing. I had hoped there would be a single-step option like on the writers
    – Midavalo
    Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 14:54

1 Answer 1


As was mentioned by @nr_aus, you can try to import feature types on the Reader menu for one of your geodatabases. It will present you with different feature classes in the geodatabase. Just select the ones that you have in your other readers, connect them up, and delete the old ones.

For a cleaner approach, I use the FeatureReader and FeatureWriter transformers. You get more flexibility, in my opinion. You can initiate a FeatureReader with a Creator transformer.

  • 1
    Thanks @Fezter - the import feature types and then connect new/delete old suggestion is similar to what I've already been doing, I was hoping there was a single-step option similar to re-mapping the writers, but I guess not. I had a look at the FeatureReader etc. and would use in my own workbenches, I will probably need to steer clear in these files since they're not mine and I don't want to change them too much, just giving them a tidy up
    – Midavalo
    Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 14:53

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