Esri User Conference Highlights: ArcGIS Pro Panel Discussion

Amidst the excitement of the 2017 Esri User Conference, you may have missed out on an awesome opportunity to interact with senior members of the ArcGIS Pro team. At the ArcGIS Pro Panel Discussion, attendees were able to get their questions about ArcGIS Pro answered by the experts themselves. The event was well attended and the information was rich! This was not your typical Technical Workshop. There were no demos or scripts– instead everyone was invited to text, email, tweet or step up to the microphone to ask the panel anything related to ArcGIS Pro live.

In case you missed it, here is every question and answer from the panel!

Your Questions and Our Answers

1.             What geoprocessing tools from ArcMap are still not in ArcGIS Pro? When will they be added?

         95% of the ArcMap tools are in there already. A full list of ArcMap tools that are not in ArcGIS Pro is available here. Some tools, like anything to do with Coverages, will not be added to ArcGIS Pro. Another thing to consider is there are a lot of new and exciting tools in ArcGIS Pro that are not in ArcMap.

2.             Parity date of ArcGIS Pro with ArcMap?

         Currently there is no date, but a lot of users are already accomplishing all of their workflows in Pro even more efficiently than they had with ArcMap. Some customized tools and add-ons are not there yet, but let us know where you hit a roadblock. Keep an eye on the ArcGIS Pro roadmap to see what’s coming.

3.             Geodatabase administration such as, replication, checkout, and version management in ArcGIS Pro?

         It’s coming soon.

4.             When can I publish directly to Server from ArcGIS Pro?

         There are no plans to allow the publishing of services from ArcGIS Pro directly to ArcGIS Server. Our advice is to get the newest version of ArcGIS Enterprise and set up Portal for ArcGIS. We are going to continue to review this request. Vote and discuss this on ArcGIS Ideas.

5.             Will there be command line functionality in ArcGIS Pro?

         Python is your answer. It has a lot of capabilities and modules (including ArcPy and the ArcGIS API for Python). It is easy to use and it has an interface built directly into Pro. R is also integrated in Pro through the R Bridge.

6.             Will ArcGIS Pro support PDF to TIFF?

          We are currently looking into a way to bring Geo-enabled PDFs into Pro.

7.             What are the graphics processing unit (GPU) requirements for ArcGIS Pro? Gaming GPU vs. normal GPU?

       GPU requirements and recommendations are available on the ArcGIS Pro system requirements page. For longevity, we suggest that you get a normal, high-end GPU instead of a “gaming” GPU, which don’t tend to last as long.

8.             When will Utility Network functionality be built into Pro (specifically migrating data in)?

        Utility Network is currently on the ‘ArcGIS Pro Roadmap‘ under ‘Near-term.’ The main functionality will be coming soon but we will continue to add capabilities and improve the user experience in the ‘Mid-term’ and ‘Long-term’ timeframes.

9.             Can I run multiple instances of ArcGIS Pro simultaneously?

         Running multiple instances of ArcGIS Pro simultaneously was implemented in the 2.0 release.

10.         Can I drag and drop between multiple instances of ArcGIS Pro?

         Not yet but we are working on it, maybe in the Pro 2.2 release. In 2.1 you will be able to drag and drop from a local folder.

11.         Will ArcCatalog workflows be better enabled in ArcGIS Pro?

         We have been discussing this heavily. We know there are currently a lot of users asking for it. We have been making improvements to the catalog pane and catalog view and will continue to do so to fulfill the traditional ArcCatalog workflow requirements. We suggest creating a “data management” project and doing your work there. With multiple instances of Pro and the ability to drag panes and views to other monitors you can already get a more traditional Catalog feel.  We want to have all of the Catalog functionality in Pro.

12.         What versions of Visual Studio does the ArcGIS Pro SDK support?

         The ArcGIS Pro 2.0 SDK for .NET supports Visual Studio 2015 and 2017.

13.         How do you migrate annotation from ArcMap into ArcGIS Pro?

         You have to update the annotation using the ‘Upgrade Dataset‘ tool.  Once you upgrade, ArcMap cannot read it so maybe save a copy before you update it. We are currently working on adding more annotation editing tools into Pro.

14.         When can I calculate geometry from a projection?

         You can use the ‘Add Geometry Attributes‘ tool.

15.         When will ArcGIS Pro have native GeoJSON support?

         It is a desired functionality, but we aren’t sure where it will fall on the roadmap.

16.         Load Objects function in ArcGIS Pro?

         We are aware of this but we are not sure when it will be implemented. Vote it up or comment on it through the ArcGIS Ideas site.

17.         Does ArcGIS Pro support Concurrent Use licensing?

         ArcGIS Pro supports and will continue to support Concurrent Use licensing. Users with a Concurrent Use license on maintenance will be able to continue to use their existing Concurrent Use licenses and purchase additional Concurrent Use licenses. However, we are finding that the majority of ArcGIS Pro users are using Named User licenses managed with ArcGIS Online.

18.         When can I scale grid with COGO in ArcGIS Pro?

         Grid editing was first implemented in ArcGIS Pro 1.4.

19.         Are layer packages (lpk and lpkx) backwards compatibile?

         .lpkx files are not supported in ArcMap.

20.         How do I setup a basic license that doesn’t include editing privileges?

         Currently, at the application level, this is not possible. However, you can set a Windows ‘read-only’ folder permission for a file GDB to restrict editing.  Alternatively, you can go into ‘List by Editing‘ and uncheck the layers that you don’t want edited but this can be easily undone by a user.

21.         Do you have any trips and tricks for improving drawing performance in layouts?

         Make sure you have updated to the latest version of your GPU driver. Go to the website for your GPU manufacturing and don’t rely on Windows Update. We also made improvements in ArcGIS Pro 2.0 for drawing performance, so make sure you upgrade. Also, see ‘Troubleshooting Performance Issues‘ in the ArcGIS blog.

22.         When will ArcGIS Pro support Coverages?

         We do not have any plans to support coverages in ArcGIS Pro.

23.         Why does ArcGIS Pro still support shapefiles if they are inferior to other data types?

         There are so many people around the world who still use shapefiles and we plan to continuing supporting them.

24.         With the new capabilities to ingest 3D models in Pro, what type of models are the recommended to use?

         COLLADA is the datatype you’ll want to use. We want to have multiple LOD’s that can be turned into an I3S or slpk files.

25.         Can you run instance of Pro and ArcMap on the same machine at the same time?


26.         When will ArcGIS Pro support data driven pages and graphic annotation?

        Map series‘ in ArcGIS Pro is the same thing as data driven pages in ArcMap and it can be scripted in Python.

27.         When will ArcMap stop being supported?

        While Esri has moved most of its development efforts to ArcGIS Pro, we will continue to provide support and minor bug fixes in ArcMap for a long time (you can find the ArcMap Product Life Cycle on the Esri website). The next release of ArcMap will be version 10.6, which we will support for at least 6 years after its release.

28.         Will 3D printing be possible from ArcGIS Pro?

          We have talked about it. Vote it up on the ArcGIS Ideas site.

29.         Do student licenses enable ArcGIS Pro use?

          Yes, including technical support. 

30.         Is Business Analyst coming to ArcGIS Pro?

          Yes! It is coming in the 2.1 release of Pro and it looks great! We will continue to support the ArcMap version as well.

Your Ideas

Do you have a great idea but didn’t get a chance to ask about it during the session? Use the ArcGIS Ideas site!!

Up-vote your favorite ideas, post a comment or create your own new idea on the site. This is a great way to create buzz throughout the community and get your idea implemented in future software releases.

The same people from the ArcGIS Pro Panel Discussion are the ones who take your ideas and get them implemented in the software.

Honestly, every vote counts!

We hope to see you in our session next year!

Happy mapping!

-Tylor the ArcGIS Pro Intern

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