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About registering and unregistering data as versioned
Geoprocessing tool reference
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The datasets in your ArcSDE geodatabase can be registered as versioned without the option to move edits to base, registered as versioned with the option to move edits to base, or not registered as versioned. By default, when you add or create a dataset in an ArcSDE geodatabase, the data is not registered as versioned. For an introduction to these options, see Data maintenance strategies.
NOTE: Only the owner of the data may register or unregister it as versioned.
Registering as versioned without the option to move edits to base
Registering your data as versioned without the option to move edits to base allows you to take advantage of all versioned editing functionality. This includes the following:
- Undo and redo edits.
- Perform long transaction edits.
- Use named versions for designs and projects.
- Use geodatabase archiving.
- Use replication.
- Place a unique constraint on the base table of a feature class.
NOTE: If, when you compress the database, the changes written to the base table from the delta tables invalidate the constraint, the compress will fail and you will have to either remove the constraint or figure out which row made the constraint invalid and fix the error.
However, before you register data, consider that there are certain ArcGIS operations you can't perform on data that is registered as versioned. These operations are as follows:
- Create a topology.
- Add or remove feature classes from a topology.
- Add or remove topology rules.
- Modify the cluster tolerance or ranks.
- Create a geometric network.
- Add or remove a feature class from a geometric network.
Additionally, when importing a large amount of data, performance is better if you import to a feature class or table that hasn't been registered as versioned.
If you decide to register a feature dataset, stand-alone feature class, or table as versioned, right-click on it in the ArcCatalog tree and click Register As Versioned. This will open the Register As Versioned dialog box. Leave the move edits to base option unchecked, and click OK. When you leave this option unchecked, edits to all versions, including the DEFAULT, are preserved in the delta tables.
Register As Versioned dialog box
Note to the database administrator:
Registering a dataset creates the supporting delta tables—the adds (A) and deletes (D) tables—as well as attribute indexes. The A and D tables and their attribute indexes have the potential to be among the most active in your geodatabase. In this case, these tables are read during all queries against the feature class or table. Also, any time a user makes an edit, a row is added to one or both of these tables, so these tables will grow quickly in an actively edited geodatabase. For this reason, you need to plan for their storage and periodic compression to maintain good performance. For recommendations on storage, see Recommendations to minimize disk I/O contention
. To learn more about performing a geodatabase compress, see Compressing the database
and About compressing a geodatabase
Registering as versioned with the option to move edits to base
Registering data as versioned with the option to move edits to base allows you to perform versioned edits on the data. Although registering data this way is designed to support nonversioned edits by third-party applications, you can't perform nonversioned edits through ArcGIS.
Keep in mind that in addition to the ArcGIS operations you can't perform when the data is registered as versioned (as described above), if you register as versioned and specify the option to move edits to base, you cannot do the following:
- Edit feature classes that participate in a topology or geometric network.
- Archive data with the archiving functionality built into the geodatabase.
- Make use of geodatabase replication.
If you decide to register a feature dataset, stand-alone feature class, or table as versioned with the option to move edits to base, right-click on it in the ArcCatalog tree and click Register As Versioned to open the Registration dialog box. Check Register the selected objects with the option to move edits to base. Checking this option causes edits saved to the DEFAULT version, whether edited directly or merged in from other versions, to be saved in the business tables. Edits to other versions remain in the delta tables when you save.
Move to base option checked
This option is available for simple features only—those that do not participate in a topology or geometric network. Therefore, if you open the Register As Versioned dialog box and find the move edits to base tables check box is not active, it means your dataset contains a topology or geometric network.
Not registered as versioned or unregistering data as versioned
Move to base disabled
As mentioned above, your data is initially not registered as versioned. If it remains in this state, you can perform nonversioned edits and you can create or modify a topology and create or modify a geometric network.
How to register and unregister data as versioned
Registering data as versioned
If you've already registered a feature class as versioned and need to perform one of the above operations, you will need to unregister the feature class as versioned. When you unregister a feature class, the delta tables are dropped from the database—that means all versioned edits that were made but not posted will be lost. To prevent these edits from being lost, either compress all the edits to the base table before unregistering the data or compress them to the DEFAULT version from the Unregister As Versioned dialog box. The software will prompt you to compress the edits to the base table when you attempt to unregister a feature class as versioned.
By default, the Unregister As Versioned command is not present on the dataset context menu.
To avoid the need to unregister feature classes, try to apply all topology and geometric network behavior to your geodatabase before you register data. Pilot the topology and geometric network in a personal geodatabase or on a production server to ensure that you are not missing any rules. This can save you from having to unregister feature classes later in production.
- In the ArcCatalog tree, right-click a feature dataset, feature class, or table.
- Click Register As Versioned.
- If available, check Register the selected objects with the option to move edits to base if you want edits saved to the DEFAULT version, whether edited directly or merged in from other versions, to be saved in the business tables.
- Click OK.
Adding the unregister command to ArcCatalog
- Registering a feature dataset as versioned registers all feature classes within the feature dataset as versioned.
If you add a new feature class to the feature dataset after you have already registered the feature dataset as versioned, the new feature class will not be registered as versioned. Since you cannot register individual feature classes within the feature dataset as versioned, you will need to register the feature dataset as versioned again. Follow the steps above to do this.
The existing feature classes remain registered as versioned. Registering the feature dataset as versioned again simply registers any new feature classes as versioned.
If you do not register the feature dataset as versioned after adding new feature classes to it, you will not be able to edit any of the feature classes in the feature dataset.
Unregistering data as versioned
- In ArcCatalog, click Tools, then Customize.
- Click the Commands tab in the Customize dialog box.
- In the Categories list, click Geodatabase tools.
- Click and drag the Unregister command from the Commands list and drop it onto the Standard toolbar.
Add Unregister As Versioned to toolbar
- Click Close on the Customize dialog box.
- If you want to save edits to all versions, reconcile and post each version in the database against the DEFAULT version. After posting, delete each version. Right-click the database connection and click Compress.
- Add the Unregister command to ArcCatalog (see the previous subsection, "Adding the unregister command to ArcCatalog").
- Right-click the feature dataset you want to unregister and click Unregister.
- If you did not complete step 1 and want to save edits to the DEFAULT version, check Compress all edits in the Default version into the base table. This will compress all versioned edits made to the version to which you are connected only.
- Click OK. If you did not complete step 1 before unregistering but did check Compress all edits in the Default version to the base table, you will lose any edits made to versions other than the version to which you were connected. If you did not complete step 1 before unregistering and did not check Compress all edits in the Default version to the base table, you will lose all edits in all versions.