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What is geoprocessing?

Geoprocessing is a framework and set of tools for processing geographic and related data. The large suite of geoprocessing tools can be used to perform spatial analysis or manage GIS data in an automated way. Geoprocessing is for everyone that uses ArcGIS Pro. Whether you are a new or advanced user, geoprocessing will likely be an essential part of your day-to-day work.

Geoprocessing is used to automate GIS tasks and for modeling and analysis

A typical geoprocessing tool performs an operation on a dataset (such as a feature class, raster, or table) and creates a resulting output dataset. For example, the Buffer tool takes a map layer as input, creates areas around the layer's features to a specified distance, and writes those areas to a new output layer.

In addition to the suite of tools, geoprocessing also has a powerful framework that supports control of the processing environment and allows you to build custom tools that can further automate your work. You can use the geoprocessing tools included in ArcGIS as building blocks to create an infinite number of custom tools that automate repetitive tasks or solve complex problems.

In ArcGIS Pro you can

  • Find the right geoprocessing tool for the job by searching or browsing a list of all tools.
  • Run the geoprocessing tool after specifying input and output datasets and other options.
  • View the geoprocessing history of your project.
  • Save sets of geoprocessing tools that are important to your project.
  • Use and create custom geoprocessing tools through ModelBuilder or Python scripting, which help you automate your work.