The ArcPad Team Blog

Unofficial stuff from the team behind the World's leading mobile GIS platform

Thursday, April 26, 2012

ArcPad 10.0.4 Now Available

We are pleased to announce that ArcPad 10.0.4 is now available!  This version of ArcPad is primarily a maintenance release which resolves the following issues:

  • * Typo errors on the StreetMap Data Activation box;
  • * Non-English AXF file and field names are no longer corrupted when displayed in ArcGIS desktop.  (Note: This fix requires FME Desktop 2012 SP1 – more information here:;
  • * Synchronization issues when using the ArcGIS Server ArcPad Extension to update field and office edits.

Additionally, ArcPad now supports the $GPGST NMEA sentence which means you will be able to see additional measures of the GPS signal quality in the GPS Position Window > Quality tab.
If you are current on your ArcPad maintenance, you can download v10.0.4 from the Esri Customer Care Portal at If you’d like to try v10.0.4, you can download the trial version at

Monday, April 23, 2012

My Favorite Toolbar

Don't you wish there was an easy way to take all of the ArcPad Tools you use the most and put them all on one easy-to-access toolbar?

Let me introduce you to the Favorites Toolbar. This magical yellow-star spangled toolbar is one of the quickest and easiest ways to customize your ArcPad Project.

Simply navigate to the Quick Access Menu (small drop-down arrow on the right-hand side of your Toolbars) and select "Toolbar Settings" from the list under "Toolbars". Then switch to the "Favorites" Tab to see a list of all of the Tools available in ArcPad.

Now it is as easy as checking the boxes next to your favorite Tools to add them to the Favorites Toolbar. You could choose to group together the tools you use the most. You may want to put all of the tools you will need for a specific project in one place. Maybe you are looking for a place to put all of those editing tools you don’t use all of the time, but don’t want to spend time looking for them when you need them. You could be looking to use some tools that are not available on the current toolbars, such as the Script Window or the Restart ArcPad Tool. Or a combination of all of the above!

 Once you have selected your tools, tap OK and Restart ArcPad to see your new toolbar!

When you first create your Favorites Toolbar, a configuration file called ArcPadFavorites.apx will be placed in your ‘My ArcPad’ folder. To catch a glimpse of the inner workings of the Favorites Toolbar you can open and edit this file in ArcPad Studio. A quick and easy way to remove your Favorites Toolbar is to delete the ArcPadFavourites.apx file.

Have fun customising your new favorite toolbar!!  

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A custom toolbar for working with ArcPad Tracklogs

Recently I went hiking and wanted an effortless way to:
  • record each days walk individually
  • review each walk on a single map, showing the start, end and direction of the walk
  • query the length of each walk
  • take some photos along the way
  • make sure the battery lasted all day
  • not risk losing data because I collected to many features or overworked the hardware
To do this I chose to:
  • use the out-of-the-box tracklog feature in ArcPad to collect the data (tracklog set to collect at 5 sec intervals)
  • use the out-of-the-box photo layer to snap photos along the way
  • create this custom toolbar applet which contains three tools: archive tracklog, load from archive, and clone points to line features.
The result was a very easy to use ArcPad project for collecting the data (the GPS device dangled from my hand most of the walk, I only interacted with it when I wanted to take a photo). At the end of each walk I archived and clone my tracklogs which meant they were safe from being deleted and were easy to review and show my friends.

So how fancy is this toolbar? Not fancy at all. Here is a breif explanation of each of the tools

1.The Archive tool 
  • Turns of the GPS if it is on
  • Moves contents of the Tracklog shapefile to another shapefile that has the name Tracklog_hhmmss_dd_mm_yyyy
  • If the GPS was previously on, turn the GPS and Tracklog on.
  • This tool is an adaption of the How to Archive GPS tracklog sample already on the ArcPad Gallery
2. The Load tool
  • Launches the add layer dialog for user to add the desired tracklog archive layer
  • Makes this layer editable
3.The Clone tool
  • Checks that an editable point layer and editable line layer exists in the current map
  • Clones the points contained in the tracklog archive and create a single line feature from these points into the editable line layer
  • For more information on cloning points to line features check out Gareths recent blog and sample.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Clone, Copy/Paste or Convert Features

Many people have often asked “How can I copy/paste with ArcPad?” or “Can I convert features from one feature type to another such as points to polylines?”

Unfortunately you cannot do this out of the box but with a bit of scripting knowledge you certainly can. The clever developers here at ArcPad central provided a scripting method call CLONE, which enables you to build a collection of points and then create the new feature.
Some scenarios might be:
  • Create a custom Multi-Select tool
  • Convert an entire point featureclass to a single Polyline or Polygon
  • Convert a Polygon boundary to a Line Perimeter and point file for vertices
  • Copy a Polygon feature from a hidden reference layer to an editable layer polygon layer

If you check out the link there is a sample on the ArcPad Resources Gallery - CLICK HERE - that will show you how this can be achieved.

By using the clone method you are ensuring that the new feature will have exactly the same geometry as the source layer.

This sample only shows how to go from Points to differing feature types but you can adjust it to fit your needs.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

An engineers analysis of why ArcPad is great

The ArcPad Team recently came across Mark Silver from iGage's analysis of ArcPad and were very impressed by his assessment - not because he paints ArcPad in a good light, but because of his honest and succinct messages
Take a look for yourself at

GeoMobile ArcPad Bootcamp Training - May 14th-15th in Portland Oregon

Have ArcPad? - Get GeoMobile ArcPad Bootcamp Training
Last Chance - Be Prepared before Summer Field Season!   
May 14th-15th in Portland, Oregon.

ArcPad users, don’t miss this. GeoMobile Innovations and expert ArcPad Mobile GIS instructor Craig Greenwald are back one more time in 2012 for ArcPad Bootcamp on May 14/15th in Portland Oregon.   GeoMobile Innovations will not have another pre-scheduled class until sometime later in fall of 2012 or winter 2013.

Download more information about the ArcPad Bootcamp and a registration form.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Using a ToolBox Model to create a customised ArcPad Check Out (PART 3)

Some of our long time listeners will recognise this blog post title. its getting a re-run. The toolbox model posted on ArcScripts back in 2008 is one of the most asked about items on the blog so Ive given it a little update and uploaded it to the new resource centre.
The original premise is still the same, use model builder to automate your check out to ArcPad, include some customisation, and deploy to a mobile device. Even though Process ArcPad Project has since come along, some users may chose to continue using ArcPad Check Out (there is no right or wrong - they are just different).

For more explanation on using this model, the previous posts are still valid

The updated model and help document is now on the ArcPad resources page at

As per before there is reference in this model and help document to a tool called cecopy.exe (for optionally copying to a connected mobile device). This is a microsoft tool and you will download that seperately from

The two changes in this current set of files are:
1) folder path location has changed - i now use the folder C:\Users\Public\Documents\ArcPad\Samples\AXFCopy
2) Removal of AXFCopy.vbs. The vbs seems to be obsolete now, I simply added AXFCopy.exe as the script in Toolbox in ArcMap 10.

Today I tested successfully with ArcGIS 10 SP3 and ArcPad 10. There is no reason why this model wouldnt continue to work with older versions of ArcGIS or ArcPad, or even ArcGIS/ArcPad 10.1.