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Edit feature attributes

In the Attributes pane Attributes, on the Attributes tab, you can identify features and edit attributes stored in the feature attribute table or a related table. The Geometry tab provides quick access to editing tools that move finished features and edit vertices.

Fields that are managed by attribute rules restrict your changes to values defined by the rule. When your edits violate a rule, a notification appears in the pane, informing you of the rule that is preventing your changes.

To learn more, see An overview of attribute rules.

Edit attributes and related records

Editing feature attributes in the attributes pane enables you to select and edit features on multiple layers without opening the attribute table. You can set the pane to automatically apply your changes as you enter them or wait until you click to apply them.

To learn about editing attributes in the attribute table, see Open tabular data.

  1. On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, click Attributes Attributes.

    The Attributes pane appears.

    Attributes tab
  2. Click Select Select and select the feature.

    The selection list appears in the pane.

  3. Click the Attributes tab.
  4. Expand the selection list and click the feature you want to edit.
    1. To edit a field that is common to several features, press the Ctrl key while clicking items in the list.
    2. If a warning icon Warning appears next to an item on the list, you can right-click the item, click Add To Map Add Data, and add it to your map.
  5. Click the field you want to edit and change the value.

    When Auto Apply is turned off, edited fields highlight with a vertical green bar on the left side of the field name until you click Apply.

  6. Apply your changes using one of the following methods:
    • If Auto Apply is turned off, click Apply.
    • If Auto Apply is turned on, Press Enter.

Field color codes

Fields with a specific purpose or function are highlighted with a color. The color codes are described in the following table.

Field colorDescription

Orange

Subtype field.

Purple

Symbolizes the layer.

Yellow

The Highlight property is enabled in the attribute table.

Attribute field color codes

Edit contingent attribute values

Contingent attribute values appear as a set of choices in a drop-down list for a particular field. The contents of a drop-down list are driven by one or more fields in the selected feature class or table that act as lookup fields.

For example, the current name in a city name field can determine the postal codes that appear in the drop-down list when you click the postal code field. This can be extended to include other related fields to help you enter only valid attribute values across multiple fields.

Participating fields and their contingent values are defined at the table level of your source data as a field group. A field group specifies how a value in one field determines the list of valid choices for another field.

To learn more, see Contingent values.

Tip:

To modify the list of contingent values, open the attribute table and click the Data tab on the ribbon. In the Design group, click Contingent Values Contingent Values.

  1. On the Edit tab, in the Selection group, click Attributes Attributes.

    The Attributes pane appears.

    Attributes pane contingent values
  2. Click Select Select and select the feature.

    The selection list appears in the pane.

  3. Click the Attributes tab.
  4. Confirm Auto Apply is turned off.
  5. Expand the selection list and click the feature you want to edit.
  6. Click the drop-down arrow for the attribute field you want to edit.

    By default, the list shows all valid choices for the field based on its parent field value.

    Note:

    The best practice is to start at the logical top of the field group and allow the drop-down lists to guide you to the valid choices. Retired values appear grayed out and can't be chosen.

  7. On the drop-down list, you can click the following controls and explore your choices:
    • Partial matches—Hovering over this control shows a pull-out menu containing all defined values for the field group. They appear under the field name for which they are correct choices. Choosing a partial match can require further editing of other fields until you create a valid combination of field values.
    • Show All—Shows all attribute values available to the field group. This can be useful when you want to change attribute values across all fields. This control appears at the bottom of the drop-down list when you click Show Matches.
    • Show matches—Shows all valid choices for the field based on its parent field value. It is the default setting. This control appears at the top of the drop-down list when you click Show All.
  8. On the drop-down list or pull-out menu, click the attribute value you want to apply to the current field.
    Caution:

    Choosing a nonmatching value sets an invalid combination for the field group and a notification appears in the pane, informing you of the fields that are preventing your changes. When this occurs, the field is highlighted with a vertical yellow bar on the left side of the field name until you choose a valid value.

  9. Click Apply to apply your changes.