[QGIS-Developer] Question on FGDB support for "Save As" / "Export"

James Wood jwood911 at gmail.com
Sun Aug 5 14:04:27 PDT 2018

As a QGIS and ArcGIS user, I am glad the file geodatabase support is there, so please don’t take the following negatively. I am the Spatial Infrastructure Manager for a statewide Next Generation 9-1-1 implementation here in the U.S., and we have successfully shared data with local public safety agencies using GeoPackage generated from the Esri suite. Alex had mentioned this earlier, but I wanted to elaborate so you could pass it on to your constituents if need be.  

Users can create SpatiaLite or GeoPackage (v1.0, 1.1, 1.2) using either the Python Console or a Python script stored in the Workspace toolset under the Data Management Tools toolbox. This works at all license levels (Basic, Standard, or Advanced) and in Desktop (ArcMap\ArcCatalog) and ArcGIS Pro. 

Here is a link to the Desktop help which, in this case, is the same for Pro:

Once created, it’s easy to drag-and-drop simple feature classes (points, lines, and polygons) from ESRI geodatabases into the OGC DB, and from OGC to Esri. We have no reported errors from QGIS users in the field with this type of data exchange, and vice versa. From my perspective, there is little use for file geodatabase exchange unless the other user is at a lesser ArcGIS Desktop version (as referenced by Alex). This also promotes the OGC portable database model over the use of shapefiles, in which we have seen degradation of attributes because of the DBF restrictions. 


Sent from my iPhone

> On Aug 2, 2018, at 08:17, Even Rouault <even.rouault at spatialys.com> wrote:
>> On jeudi 2 août 2018 19:34:54 CEST Nyall Dawson wrote:
>>> On Thu, 2 Aug 2018 at 18:21, Andreas Neumann <a.neumann at carto.net> wrote:
>>> However - I wonder if there would be a way to support both drivers? The
>>> Open Source driver as default for reading. And the FGDB driver for
>>> writing?
>> That's a great idea!
>> In the QGIS world we'd have to compromise a bit here and not allow
>> editing of existing layers (as you'd normally get with the closed
>> driver). I.e. we'd only use it when writing an existing layer out to a
>> copy on disk (e.g. via right click menu on a vector layer). But still,
>> allowing layers to be saved as a geodatabase would be a step forward.
>> I'm not sure how this change would need to be made though. At the
>> moment if you install the closed driver in osgeo4w it's always used,
>> for both reading and writing layers. Even/Jürgen is this an osgeo4w
>> thing or a GDAL thing? Is it possible to have two drivers installed
>> for the one format and always read using the closed driver?
> As the FileGDB driver is loaded as a plugin by GDAL, it is registered first, 
> and then probed first when opening a dataset.
> Banning one of the driver can be done by defining GDAL_SKIP=FileGDB or 
> GDAL_SKIP=OpenFileGDB and calling GDALAllRegister() again.
> It is also possible to control which drivers are allowed at dataset opening 
> with GDALOpenEx() and the papszDriversAllowed argument (but that means you 
> need to know this is a FileGeodatabase)
> Even
> -- 
> Spatialys - Geospatial professional services
> http://www.spatialys.com
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