I am using the Iterate Feature Class tool in ModelBuilder to iterate through feature classes within a Geodatabase. I would like to add the capability to custom select which feature classes within a single GDB to iterate through. This desired capability is very similar to the "Input Datasets" step of Merge (Data Managment).

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The Iterate Feature Class tool only provides you with 3 ways to filter:

-Feature Type (line, polygon, etc)

The ability to custom select which feature classes to iterate does not exist, can someone please help me figure out how to customize the input? Thanks!

2 Answers 2


You cannot create the interface you are asking for with the iterator. If you want the interface as in the merge tool you need to add to your model a variable of type FeatureClass and tick on MultiValue and expose it as a parameter. This will give your the required selection control.

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What do the feature classes you want to iterate through have in common with each other/why do you need to select just those? (might help me give a better answer). Two suggestions:

  1. Rename the feature classes you would like to iterate through so that the wildcard parameter can be used in the tool. Example, prefix each feature class name with a common identifier that is unique to just those names and then use the wildcard symbol (*)

  2. Export the desired feature classes to a new geodatabase so you can iterate through the entire folder without needing to limit the selection with a wildcard.

  3. Based on the great answer by @Hornbydd, after you add the multivalue feature class variable as mentioned, insert the 'Iterate Multivalue' command to proceed with your model.

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