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About saving a map to a previous version of ArcGIS
Mapping and visualization
Once you open and save an existing map document (.mxd) using ArcGIS 9.2, the map can no longer be opened with earlier versions of ArcGIS because it will now reflect the new functionality added at 9.2. Similarly, new documents you create with 9.2 also cannot be opened in earlier versions of the software. However, you can use the Save A Copy command to make a copy of a map document so you can open and work with it in previous versions of ArcGIS. With ArcGIS 9.2, you can save to ArcGIS 9.0/9.1 or 8.3. ArcGIS 9.0 and 9.1 map documents are directly compatible with each other and those versions of the software.
Geodatabases and saving map documents to previous versions
Each new version of ArcGIS introduces functionality and properties that aren't available in previous versions. When you save a map document, layer file, or 3D document to a previous version of ArcGIS, the format of the file is changed to eliminate properties not available in the older version.
This means saving from 9.2 to a previous version removes from the file any functionality that depends on the newer software in ArcGIS 9.2. Therefore, some work may be lost if you save to 9.0/9.1 or 8.3, then start working with the older copy again in 9.2, since the 9.2 functionality was stripped out in the Save A Copy process. (Your original ArcGIS 9.2 file will still have the new functionality.)
In addition, when you save a map document to a previous version of the software, only the .mxd file is saved; the data sources referenced in the .mxd remain unchanged. See the following sections for more information about geodatabases, data sources, and saving to previous versions.
You can also save layer files and ArcGlobe and ArcScene documents to previous versions of ArcGIS.
If your organization uses different versions of ArcGIS, you need to confirm the ArcGIS release version with which your geodatabase is associated, as it can have an impact on whether or not ArcGIS will be able to access the data referenced in the map. Newer versions of ArcGIS can read older geodatabases, but older versions of ArcGIS cannot read newer geodatabases, except in the case of 9.0 and 9.1 since they're directly compatible.
For example, if your map contains data from an ArcGIS 9.2 file, personal, or ArcSDE geodatabase, you can save the .mxd so it can be opened in ArcGIS 9.0, 9.1, or 8.3, but those versions won't be able to display the 9.2 data. Similarly, data in any 9.0, 9.1, or 9.2 geodatabase cannot be read in ArcGIS 8.3. Shapefiles, coverages, and file-based rasters don't present a problem in this regard.
Existing geodatabases created using previous releases can be opened and used in 9.2 without being upgraded to 9.2. However, to take advantage of new functionality added at 9.2 (representations, terrains, high-precision storage, vertical coordinate systems, and so on), existing geodatabases must be upgraded. However, if you upgrade a geodatabase, you can't convert it back for use in its original version of ArcGIS. For this reason, you may want to make a copy of the geodatabase before you upgrade.
If you already have a newer geodatabase that you want to work with in an older version of ArcGIS, you can create a geodatabase in the older version, then copy and paste the data into it using the current ArcGIS release. However, some items in newer geodatabases, including terrains, topology, and annotation feature classes, can't be copied into an older geodatabase.
Some other things to remember when working with geodatabases from different ArcGIS releases include:
Saving from ArcGIS 9.2 to ArcGIS 9.0/9.1
- Geodatabase functionality that is new at ArcGIS 9.2 is only supported in 9.2 map documents and geodatabases.
- Geoprocessing toolboxes stored in upgraded geodatabases cannot be opened in ArcGIS 9.0 or 9.1. Similarly, once you make a change to a file-based toolbox (.tbx) in 9.2, it can no longer be accessed by the previous version. You can right-click a toolbox and click Save as 9.0/9.1, but you will need to make manual edits to consider any functionality in the toolbox that is not available in 9.0 or 9.1.
- ArcGIS Network Analyst layers and network datasets are only supported in ArcGIS 9.1 or newer geodatabases or map documents.
- ArcGIS Schematics layers and schematic datasets are only supported in ArcGIS 9.0 or newer geodatabases and 9.1 or newer map documents.
- There are some limitations and guidelines with replication with pre-ArcGIS 9.2 geodatabases.
ArcGIS 9.2 introduced some new functionality and properties that were not available in previous versions of ArcGIS. Here are some tips to keep in mind when saving to ArcGIS 9.0/9.1.
Saving from ArcGIS 9.2 to ArcGIS 8.3
- Layers based on data from any ArcGIS 9.2 geodatabase are not supported. In addition, any new 9.2 data source or layer type, such as tables based on Microsoft Excel data, are not supported.
- Symbols and properties new to ArcGIS 9.2 aren't available in ArcGIS 9.1. These include new document properties, new rendering and display options, custom full extents, and so on.
- Graphs created in ArcGIS 9.2 using the new graphing functionality are not supported and will be removed. However, if you use the existing graphing tools from the ArcGIS 9.2 Customize dialog box, the graphs will work in ArcGIS 9.1.
- Animations in .mxd files are dropped when saving to 9.1. However, you can save animations in .sxd or .3dd files back to 9.1 as long as the animations do not have time tracks.
- New 3D properties, layers, and functionality, such as Google Earth KML/KMZ files, graphics layers, annotation, and text, are not supported.
- The Goode's Homolosine projection, which is new at 9.2, is unknown to 9.1.
- Published map files (.pmf) created with ArcGIS Publisher in 9.2 must be viewed in ArcReader 9.2; they can't be opened in ArcReader 9.1 or earlier versions. If you need to create a .pmf that can be opened by a previous version of ArcReader, you can save the .mxd to a previous version and publish it on a machine with an older version of ArcGIS. Another option is for the recipient of the .pmf to download and install ArcReader 9.2 for free to read .pmf documents created in ArcGIS 9.2.
- If you have other ESRI or third-party extensions, you should check with the manufacturer to determine their compatibility to previous versions of ArcGIS.
Functionality or properties that are not supported when saving from ArcGIS 9.2 to 9.0/9.1 are also not supported in ArcGIS 8.3. In addition, here are some other notes specific to saving to ArcGIS 8.3.
How to save a map to a previous version of ArcGIS
- If you have updated geodatabase annotation feature classes from ArcGIS 8.3 to ArcGIS 9, you will be unable to open the geodatabase in ArcGIS 8.3 because you were required to upgrade the geodatabase first.
- ArcGIS 8.3 survey datasets must be updated before you can use them in ArcGIS 9, so you will be unable to open the datasets in ArcGIS 8.3.
- Symbols and properties new to ArcGIS 9 aren't available in ArcGIS 8.3. For example, 3D text elements aren't supported, and 3D symbols will be converted to 2D symbols.
- Paragraph text elements aren't supported in ArcGIS 8.3 and will be dropped.
- Symbol level drawing is a property of a data frame at ArcGIS 8.3 but is a property of the layers for which it is defined at ArcGIS 9. When saved to ArcGIS 8.3, the supported aspects of the layer's symbol level drawing are retained and added to the data frame's Advanced Drawing Options dialog box.
- Data frame masking properties aren't supported and no masking will occur. If ArcGIS 8.3 can read your masking layers, they'll appear in your map but will be drawn just like other layers.
- Data frames labeled with the ESRI Maplex Labeling Engine in ArcGIS 9 will be labeled with the ESRI Standard Labeling Engine.
- ArcGIS Map Server and Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) Web Map Service (WMS) layers aren't supported in 8.3.
- Projections new at ArcGIS 9 are unknown to ArcGIS 8.3. These are:
Rectified Skewed Orthomorphic (RSO) projection
Cube map projection
Transverse Mercator Complex projection
Robinson projection (ArcInfo)—the same version of Robinson supported in ArcInfo Workstation
Local Cartesian projection
- Some page and printer setup options aren't retained.
- Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) code is retained but is not altered when a .mxd is saved to a previous version. Therefore, you may need to convert references to ArcGIS 8.3-compatible object libraries.
- Stereo views in ArcScene aren't supported.
- ArcGIS Tracking Analyst properties aren't supported.
- Click the File menu and click Save A Copy.
- Navigate to the location where you want to save the map document.
- Type a file name.
- Click the Save as type drop-down arrow and click ArcMap 9.0/9.1 Document or ArcMap 8.3 Document, depending on to which version you want to save.If you choose ArcMap Document (the option without a version number), the map will be saved in the current version of the software.
- Click Save. The 9.0/9.1 or 8.3 map document will be saved to disk, and your ArcGIS 9.2 document will remain open.
If there are any layers in your current document that the previous version won't be able to draw, a dialog box will appear listing them. You can then decide whether to continue with saving the copy in ArcGIS 9.0/9.1 or 8.3 format.
- The Save A Copy command is different from the Save As command. The Save As command allows you to save your document with a new name, file location, or format (such as a map template or map document). When you use the Save As command, the new Save As document is loaded as the current document in the application. With the Save A Copy command, you are saving a copy of the document to disk and the document is not reloaded in the application. In addition, the Save A Copy command can also be used to save a document so it can be opened in a previous version of ArcGIS.