What’s New in the ArcGIS Pro SDK 2.8

ArcGIS Pro 2.8 is now available with the ArcGIS 2021 Q2 release, and included are many new capabilities with the ArcGIS Pro SDK for Microsoft .NET.

The ArcGIS Pro 2.8 release focuses on performance and productivity improvements in addition to new capabilities.  ArcGIS Pro developers will find many new opportunities to support and streamline organizational workflows with custom tools built with the SDK.

Here are some of the highlights of the release with links to new documentation and resources.

New Geodatabase DDL API

Following on its pre-release at 2.7, the new DDL (Data Definition Language) API for geodatabase schema management is now in full release and supported at 2.8. Traditionally, developers have created geodatabase schema such as feature classes and standalone tables with the SDK by calling geoprocessing tools.

Developers are now able to use the new API to directly create, modify and delete geodatabase schema such as feature classes, tables and their attributes, and feature datasets and file geodatabases.

You can learn more in the ProConcepts DDL document to help you get started on the concepts, and review code snippets of some of the common patterns.

API Enhancements

As with each release, there’s also been updates to many other Pro APIs and capabilities at 2.8.


There is new support for project favorites with 2.8.  Favorites are a collection of frequently used connections to folders, databases, toolboxes, servers, custom styles and statistical data collections.

The FavoritesManager class allows developers to programmatically customize the favorites collection which is accessible in the UI via the Catalog pane or Catalog view.  See the new section in the ProConcepts Content document for using favorites.  Also, there are new code  snippets available for using favorites.

Map Authoring

There is now support for downloading and managing offline maps.  Maps in Pro containing sync-enabled feature service content can be taken “offline”.  The offline content refers to content that can be accessed in the map even in the absence of a network connection.

You can learn more about generating and managing offline maps in a new section in the ProConcepts Map Authoring document.

For further code samples, see the new Offline Map snippets section.

Map Exploration

At 2.8, the Reports API has received several updates including events to help manage how reports are used, such as datasource changes.

You can find more in the new Report Events section, as well as in the API Reference.

Also, at 2.8 there have been performance improvements made for use of the TableControl.  For further information, see the ProGuide TableControl document and community samples.


There are new second-generation builder classes available at 2.8 which can be run on any thread.  These are described in the Builders section in the ProConcepts Geometry document with links to the API Reference.

All 2.8 API Changes

For a complete listing of all of the 2.8 API updates available, see the “API Changes” section of the What’s New for Developers at 2.8 page in the API Reference Guide.

Installation and Documentation

You can download the Pro SDK from My Esri or from the Visual Studio Marketplace or right from within the Visual Studio IDE with instructions found in the Installation and Upgrade ProGuide.

Check out all of the information resources on the SDK documentation site with all the concept and guide documents and links to the many community samples.

Collaborate and Share your Feedback

As always, we invite you to send us your feedback and needs for the Pro SDK.  Let us know, find out more and collaborate with others in the Esri Community Pro SDK Group.  You can post questions, search for answers on existing threads, and collaborate and answer questions as well.  We look forward to hearing about your new work with 2.8!

Finally, for more information on all the key updates in ArcGIS Pro 2.8, see the What’s New in ArcGIS Pro 2.8 page.  Below is the What’s New video highlighting new functionality, which may give you some new ideas for using and extending Pro 2.8.



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About the author

Chris is a product manager on the ArcGIS Desktop Team, focused on the ArcGIS Pro SDK and helping users achieve their Pro customization goals.

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