GPSBabel is cross-platform, free software to translate between the myriad of GPS and spatial file formats and to down/upload from files to GPS. It can perform a number of spatial and management operations on GPS data, including simplification and trimming by geographic area.

GPSBabel is free software for GPS file management and runs on Windows, Linux and OSX. Its basic capabilities are:

  1. Download and upload of data from/to a GPS unit. Garmin, Magellan and other makes are supported for serial and USB transfer.
  2. Conversion between over 100 GPS and spatial file formats, including the open source GPX standard, ESRI shapefiles, and most of the major formats used by GPS manufacturers.

GPSBabel is a command-line application but there are several GUI frontends for each operating system (gebabel, HoudahGPS).

A number of spatial and filtering operations can be performed during conversion and processing, including:

  • Simplification, reducing a track to a smaller number of points;
  • Filtering to remove waypoints, trackpoints or routes;
  • Removal of duplicate points;
  • Filtering by spatial location, including points, lines and polygons.