ArcGIS Pro

Geoprocessing Selection and Filter Tip in ArcGIS Pro 3.0

Approximate reading time: 4 minutes

Geoprocessing tools in ArcGIS Pro 3.0 now display an information tip information icon that will let you know when your input layer has an active selection or filter.

Has this ever happened to you?

You run a geoprocessing tool, and a new layer appears in the contents pane; however, nothing appears or is obvious on your map. Where did the new output go?

Here is an example using data from Shikoku Island, Japan.

Example of running the Clip tool and getting an unexpected output.

We are attempting to Clip the administrative regions (i.e., Cho-cho-moku) by rural areas to determine the portion of each administrative region that is rural. Unfortunately, the output does not display immediately on the map as expected.

The cat is just as confused as we are.

What went wrong?

Using Zoom To Layer, we find that only one administrative region clipped to the rural areas. Upon further inspection, we notice a selection on the same administrative region. All administrative regions were not included in the output even if they contained rural areas because of the selection, meaning that only one administrative region was clipped.

Information about a selection is available at the bottom of the view or by selecting List By Selection list by selection icon in the contents pane.

List By Selection organization in the Contents pane.

However, these elements may not be immediately obvious when running a geoprocessing tool, so it’s easy to make this mistake.

The Selection or Filter Tip

New in ArcGIS Pro 3.0, there is a selection or filter tip information icon that informs you how many records will be processed when you run a tool. You will never feel more confident about the number of records you are about to process. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg!

Clip geoprocessing tool from a previous release (left), and the tool with the new selection tip from ArcGIS Pro 3.0 (right).

A Deeper Look

Selections and other filters (definition query, time filter, and range filter) are beneficial when you want to work with only a subset of records within your dataset. For instance, using our example above, you may only want to analyze administrative regions with populations greater than 1,000 people. In this case, you could apply a definition query to your dataset before running a tool.

Clip tool with a filter applied to the input features.

If you would like to use the entire input, clear the selection or filter on your data prior to running a tool.

Example of locating and removing a selection on an input feature before running the Clip tool.

Note: The tip does not automatically update when you change or clear a selection or filter; to update the tip click the refresh button  refresh


The new selection or filter tip information icon informs you when a tool’s input layer has a selection or filter impacting the data the tool will process. The message in the tip indicates whether there is a selection or filter and includes the number of records processed when the tool runs. You can also click on the tip to learn more about geoprocessing tools, selections, and filters.

The data and workflow used in this blog post can be accessed at Learn ArcGIS: Estimate access to infrastructure.

About the author

Margaret is a Product Engineer on the Geoprocessing team. Her passion for GIS began with her interest in human-environmental relationships, and her graduate studies utilized spatial analysis to study the growing impact of flood-induced cascading disasters caused by sea level rise. Margaret leverages her foundation in research methodologies and spatial analysis techniques in her role at Esri, where she creates written content and demonstrations on technical concepts and functions in ArcGIS Pro. She also contributes to refining and redesigning geoprocessing tools and functions with additional capabilities and improved usability. In her personal life, Margaret is a loving cat parent to three cats, and enjoys swimming and snowboarding.

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