- Saving a map
- Saving to previous versions of ArcGIS
- Geodatabases and saving map documents to previous versions
- Functionality and properties that are removed when saving to a previous release
- Saving to ArcGIS 10.5
- Saving to ArcGIS 10.4
- Saving to ArcGIS 10.3
- Saving to ArcGIS 10.1/10.2
- Saving to ArcGIS 10.0
- Saving to ArcGIS 9.3
- Saving to ArcGIS 9.2
- Saving to ArcGIS 9.0/9.1
- Saving to ArcGIS 8.3
- How to save a map to a previous version of ArcGIS
Saving a map
After you finish working on a map, you can save it and exit ArcMap. You save a map as a document and store it on your hard drive. If you haven't saved the map before, you'll need to provide a name and save it into a folder location. ArcMap automatically appends a file extension (.mxd) to your map document name.
The data displayed on a map is not saved with it. Map layers reference the data sources in your GIS database. This helps keep map documents relatively small in size.
You can also save the map with its data using a map package, which can be used to share your map and its related data with other users.
Saving to previous versions of ArcGIS
In most cases, after you open and save an existing map document (.mxd file), the map can no longer be opened with earlier versions of ArcGIS because it will now reflect the new functionality. Similarly, new documents 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. Note that documents from ArcGIS 10.1, 10.2, and related releases, such as 10.2.1, are directly compatible with each other; ArcGIS 9.0 and 9.1 documents are also compatible with each other.
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 to a previous version removes from the file any functionality that depends on the newer software. Therefore, some work may be lost if you save to a previous version and start working with the older copy again in the current ArcGIS product, as the new functionality was stripped out in the Save A Copy process. Your original 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 file remain unchanged. See the following sections for more information about geodatabases, data sources, and saving to previous versions.
Geodatabases and saving map documents to previous versions
If your organization uses different versions of ArcGIS, you need to confirm the ArcGIS release 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 following cases:
- Starting with ArcGIS 10, the release number is associated with individual items within the geodatabase, rather than being applied to the entire geodatabase. Only datasets with newer functionality in these databases will be unopenable by the previous release. For best results in identifying such datasets, use ArcGIS 10.0 Service Pack 3 (SP3) or higher which can properly identify newer datasets.
- ArcGIS 9.2 Service Pack 5 (SP5) and Service Pack 6 (SP6) can open and edit a 9.3 geodatabase; however, 9.2 SP5/SP6 will not be able to open, edit, or create datasets containing new functionality available with ArcGIS 9.3, such as creating a terrain with a Window Size pyramid format or a network dataset with an attribute that uses the 9.3 global turn delay and network function evaluators.
- ArcGIS 9.1 and 9.0 geodatabases are directly compatible with each other.
For example, if your map contains data from an ArcGIS 10 personal, file, or ArcSDE geodatabase, you can save the .mxd file so it can be opened in an ArcGIS 9.3 release, but 9.3 won't be able to display the newer data. 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 the current release without being upgraded; however, to take advantage of new functionality, existing geodatabases must be upgraded. If you upgrade a geodatabase, you can't restore it 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 have data in a geodatabase that you have created or upgraded in the current version that you want to be able to work within an older version of ArcGIS, you have two options. In the current version, you can create a new, empty file geodatabase that can be opened in an older version using the Create File GDB geoprocessing tool, then in the current version, copy and paste the data from your geodatabase into that new, empty file geodatabase. This will create a geodatabase that can be opened in the older version; however, note that some items supported in newer geodatabases can't be pasted into a geodatabase intended for an older version if that version doesn't support them. Alternatively, in the current version, add the data into a map as a layer and create a layer package, which can be opened with ArcGIS 9.3.1 and newer. If you have multiple layers you want to prepare, you can create a group layer, then package that layer, or create separate layer packages for each layer.
Some general points to remember when working with geodatabases from different ArcGIS releases include:
- Geodatabase functionality that is new at a particular release is only supported in map documents from the same release or higher.
- Geoprocessing toolboxes stored in upgraded geodatabases cannot be opened in previous releases. Similarly, once you make a change to a file-based toolbox (.tbx), it can no longer be accessed by the previous version. You can right-click a toolbox and click Save As and choose the release number to save it to, but you will need to make manual edits to consider any functionality in the toolbox that is not available in those releases.
- Parcel fabrics are only supported in ArcGIS 9.2 or newer geodatabases or map documents.
- Mosaic datasets are only supported in ArcGIS 10.0 or newer geodatabases or map documents.
- 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 geodatabases from different releases.
Functionality and properties that are removed when saving to a previous release
The following sections describe which functionality or properties may be changed when you save documents from the current release to an earlier release of ArcGIS. The headings represent the release numbers to which you are saving. Because ArcGIS 10.2 and 10.1 are directly compatible, as are ArcGIS 9.1 and 9.0, you do not need to perform any additional steps to use a document between these sets of releases; however, if you want to open a 10.2 file in ArcGIS 10.0, for example, you must use Save A Copy. When you do this, you are removing the new items available that the older version, 10.0, cannot read.
Functionality that was introduced in all intermediate releases is removed when you save to a release that is older and incompatible with the one you are using. For example, if you save from ArcGIS 10.6 to ArcGIS 10.5, you should review the sections listed under Saving to ArcGIS 10.5 to understand the effects of the Save A Copy process.
Saving to ArcGIS 10.5
Here is a list of functionality that is not supported when saving ArcGIS 10.6 or later to ArcGIS 10.5 or earlier:
- Raster layers using raster functions for Fill, Flow Accumulation, Flow Direction, Flow Distance, Stream Link, Watershed, Nibble, Sentinel-1 data thermal, or Sentinel-1 data radiometric calibration will be dropped when saved to 10.5.
- Raster layers using raster types for Sentinel-1 (radar) and WorldView-4 sensor data will be dropped when saved to 10.5.
Saving to ArcGIS 10.4
Here is a list of functionality that is not supported when saving ArcGIS 10.5 or later to ArcGIS 10.4 or earlier:
- Raster renderers that use a Sigmoid stretch will be dropped when saved to 10.4.
- Custom parameters on a Web Mapping Service (WMS) layer will be dropped when saved to 10.4.
- Some raster functions will be dropped when saved to 10.4.
- Some Network Analyst solver parameters will be dropped when saved to 10.4.
Saving to ArcGIS 10.3
Here is a list of functionality that is not supported when saving ArcGIS 10.4 or later to ArcGIS 10.3 or earlier:
- Some raster data types will be dropped when saved to 10.3.
- GEOCON transformations will be dropped when saved to 10.3.
- Some raster functions will be dropped when saved to 10.3.
Saving to ArcGIS 10.1/10.2
Here is a list of functionality that is not supported when saving ArcGIS 10.3 or later to ArcGIS 10.1/10.2 or earlier:
- Raster layers using the vector field renderer will be dropped when saved to 10.1/10.2.
- The image coordinate system is not used when saved to 10.1/10.2.
- Raster layers that are using the following functions will be dropped when saved to 10.1/10.2:
- Elevation Void Fill
- Python Raster
- Segment Mean Shift
- Statistics and Histogram
- Transpose Bits
- Unit Conversion
- Vector Field
- Vector Field Renderer
- Mosaic layers with the multidimensional setting will be dropped when saved to 10.1/10.2.
- Mosaic layers with a processing template setting will be dropped when saved to 10.1/10.2.
Saving to ArcGIS 10.0
Functionality or properties that are not supported when saving to all releases newer than ArcGIS 10.0 are also not available in 10.0. In addition, here are some other notes specific to saving to ArcGIS 10.0:
- Label, display, and hyperlink macros that use Python expressions will be reverted to VBScript when saved to 10.0. The expression will remain so that it can be ported back to VBScript or JScript.
- Layers using new Maplex properties at 10.1, such as key numbering and label class level feature connection options, will lose these capabilities when saved to 10.0.
- Symbols using 32-bit PNG images will lose transparency when saved to 10.0.
- LAS dataset and WMTS layers will be dropped from the map when saved to 10.0.
- Map's displaying time data in live mode will lose that capability when saved to 10.0.
- Legends on the page layout will lose their dynamic, text wrapping, and columning abilities when saved to 10.0.
- Dot density renderers using the capability to maintain density by dot value will lose that capability.
- Feature service layers will be saved but will be unable to connect to the feature service in 10.0.
- Layers referencing geodatabase datasets with functionality specific to 10.1 will not be able to connect to these data sources in 10.0.
Saving to ArcGIS 9.3
Functionality or properties that are not supported when saving to all releases newer than ArcGIS 9.3 are also not available in 9.3. In addition, here are some other notes specific to saving to ArcGIS 9.3:
- The map document's default geodatabase property will be removed when saving to 9.3.
- Customized layer field ordering will be removed when a layer is saved to 9.3.
- The time properties of a layer will be removed when a layer is saved to 9.3.
- The time properties of the data frame will be removed when a layer is saved to 9.3.
- Field properties noting fields as highlighted or read-only will be removed when a layer is saved to 9.3.
- Dynamic text elements will be realized to static text when saving to 9.3.
- Mosaic layers will be dropped when saving to 9.3.
- Feature templates will be dropped when saving to 9.3.
- Group layer transparency can be set at both the sublayer and top-level group layer at ArcGIS 10. When saving to a previous version, the appearance of the map will be preserved in this situation, but the transparency values will change.
- Basemap layers will be converted to group layers when saved to 9.3.
- Accelerated raster layers will be converted to raster layers when saved to 9.3.
- Data-driven pages did not exist in ArcGIS 9.3 and will be dropped from the map document.
- The ability to automatically derive the extent of one data frame from another will be removed when saving to 9.3.
- Extent indicators will be rectangle indicators when saved to 9.3.
- Data frame clipping options for clipping specific layers will be removed when saving to 9.3.
- Layer symbology options for 3D rotation and field-driven sizing will be removed from the layer.
- Image format properties of dynamic service layers will be removed from service layers when saved to 9.3.
Saving to ArcGIS 9.2
Functionality or properties that are not supported when saving to all releases newer than ArcGIS 9.2 are also not available in 9.2. In addition, here are some other notes specific to saving to ArcGIS 9.2:
- In 10.0, when layers in a data frame are made transparent, the table of contents and the legends in layout view automatically use lighter colors to reflect transparency. This simulated transparency is removed when you save to 9.2.
- Dimension layers in 10.0 support a label-weight ranking so dimension features can be considered barriers to the labeling process. This property is removed when you save to 9.2.
- All layer types that support HTML pop-up properties will have their HTML pop-up properties removed.
- Fields with a saved sort order will have that order removed.
- JPEG 2000 picture elements will be removed.
- WCS layers will be removed from your data frame when you save to 9.2.
- The style name of a WMS layer will be removed from the layer.
- Field-based hyperlinks containing parameters will not work in releases prior to 9.3. If you save a 10.1 .mxd file to 9.2, parameters will automatically be removed from dynamic hyperlinks, but the links to the document will still work.
- NITF graphics layers will be removed from your data frame.
- Raster layers using the Discrete Color renderer will revert to a default renderer when you save to 9.2.
- The separator property of scale text will be removed from scale text graphics when you save to 9.2.
- Representation rules that are marked as hidden for legend display in 10.0 or higher will be visible when you save to 9.2.
- Network layers and network analysis layers referencing network datasets containing evaluators (global turn delay evaluators and function evaluators) will be saved in the 9.2 document but will be disconnected from their network dataset when opened in ArcGIS 9.2.
- Published map files (.pmf) created with ArcGIS Publisher in 10.0 or higher can't be opened in ArcReader 9.2 or earlier versions. If you need to create a .pmf file that can be opened by a previous version of ArcReader, you can save the .mxd file 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 file to download and install ArcReader 10.0 for free.
Several software features are not available in ArcGIS 9.2 including
- Script tool properties for custom tool validation
- Model properties for storing symbology
- Enhancements to several data types that affect models
- Stars and atmospheric halos in ArcGlobe are dropped when saving to 9.2.
- When consumed in 9.2, the cache for 10.0 or higher layers with full caching will be regenerated on demand.
- Some KML elements, such as screen overlays, COLLADA models, and so on, are dropped from Google Earth KML/KMZ files.
- With ArcGlobe, you can save a layer only to releases that will support it; for example, terrain layers are supported starting with 9.2. So when you save a terrain layer, you can save it as 9.3 or 9.2 (or the regular 10); you will not be able to save it as 9.0/9.1 because terrain layers were not supported in those releases. In addition, if there are any layers in your group layers that the version of ArcGIS you choose 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 the format of that previous version.
If you have other Esri or third-party extensions, you should check with the manufacturer to determine their compatibility with previous versions of ArcGIS.
Saving to ArcGIS 9.0/9.1
Functionality or properties that are not supported when saving to all releases newer than ArcGIS 9.0/9.1 are also not available in 9.0/9.1. In addition, here are some other notes specific to saving to ArcGIS 9.0/9.1:
- Layers based on data from any ArcGIS 9.2, 9.3, or 10.0 geodatabase are not supported. In addition, any new data source or layer type, such as tables based on Microsoft Excel data, are not supported.
- Symbols and properties new to ArcGIS 9.2, 9.3, 10.0, or 10.1 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, 9.3, 10.0, or 10.1 are not supported and will be removed; however, if you use the graphing tools from the ArcGIS 9.3 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 Homolosine projection, which was new at 9.2, is unknown to 9.1.
Saving to ArcGIS 8.3
Functionality or properties that are not supported when saving to all releases newer than ArcGIS 8.3 are also not available in 8.3. In addition, here are some other notes specific to saving to ArcGIS 8.3:
- If you have updated geodatabase annotation feature classes from ArcGIS 8.3 to ArcGIS 9.0 or higher, you will be unable to open the geodatabase in ArcGIS 8.3 because you are required to upgrade the geodatabase first.
- Symbols and properties new to ArcGIS 9.0 or higher 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 9.0 or higher. 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 Maplex Label Engine in ArcGIS 9.0 or higher will be labeled with the Standard Labeling Engine.
- ArcGIS Map Server and WMS layers aren't supported in 8.3.
- Projections new at ArcGIS 9.0 or higher are unknown to ArcGIS 8.3. These are:
- Goode Homolosine projection, Fuller projection, Rectified Skewed Orthomorphic (RSO) projection, Cube map projection, Transverse Mercator Complex projection, Robinson projection (ArcGIS Desktop Advanced)—the same version of Robinson supported in ArcGIS Desktop Advanced Workstation, Local Cartesian projection.
- Some page and printer setup options aren't retained.
- Stereo views in ArcScene aren't supported.
- ArcGIS Tracking Analyst properties aren't supported.
How to save a map to a previous version of ArcGIS
- Click File > 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 the release to which version you want to save.
- Click Save.