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Point File Information


Generates statistical information about one or more point files in a polygon or multipatch output.


Point file information output


  • When a folder containing point data files is selected as input, the File Suffix must be entered. However, this is not needed for file inputs.

  • When the summarize option is not used, the statistical information presented in the feature attribute table consists of the point count, average point spacing, z minimum, and z maximum of each point file entered. A separate row is created for each input file encountered. The point spacing is an estimate that assumes the points within the input file are evenly spaced over the XY extent of each input file.

  • Each resulting feature will encompass the XY extent of an input file. The features can be created as 2D polygons or extruded multipatch features that provide a 3D bounding box whose z-values at the base and top reflect the range of elevation values found in the file. The multipatch can be visualized in 3D using ArcScene or ArcGlobe.

  • The summarize option is useful to statistically summarize information for each class code in the input file, but is expensive, as each file must be scanned and analyzed.

  • The point spacing reported by Point File Information is not exact; it is an estimate. The point spacing given is a summary when looking at trends for collections of files. The tool uses a rough estimate that simply compares the area of the file's bounding box with the point count. It is most accurate when the rectangular extent of the file being examined is filled with data. Files with points over large water bodies or on the perimeter of a study area, only partially occupied with data, will not produce accurate estimates.


PointFileInformation_3d (input, out_feature_class, in_file_type, {file_suffix}, {input_coordinate_system}, {folder_recursion}, {extrude_geometry}, {decimal_separator}, {summarize_by_class_code}, {improve_las_point_spacing})
ParameterExplanationData Type

One or more point data files or folders that will be analyzed.

In the tool dialog window, a folder can also be specified as an input by selecting the desired folder in Windows Explorer and dragging it into the parameter's input box.

Folder; File

The feature class that will be produced by this tool.

Feature Class

The format of the input files.

  • LASAirborne lidar format defined by the American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS).
  • XYZXYZ file.
  • XYZIXYZI file.

The suffix of the files to import when a folder is specified in the input. This parameter is required if an input folder is provided.


The coordinate system of the input data.

Coordinate System

Scans through subfolders when an input folder is selected containing data in a subfolders directory. The output feature class will be generated with a row for each file encountered in the directory structure.

  • NO_RECURSIONOnly the data found in the input folder will be used to generate the results. This is the default.
  • RECURSIONAny data found in the input folder and its subdirectories will be used to generate results.

Specifies whether to create a 2D polygon or multipatch feature class with extruded features that reflect the elevation range found in each file.

  • NO_EXTRUSIONThe output will be created as a 2D polygon feature class. This is the default.
  • EXTRUSIONThe output will be created as a multipatch feature class.

The decimal character used in the text file to differentiate the integer of a number from its fractional part.

  • DECIMAL_POINTA point is used as the decimal character. This is the default.
  • DECIMAL_COMMAA comma is used as the decimal character.

Specifies if the results will summarize LAS files per class code or LAS file.

  • NO_SUMMARIZEEach output feature will represent all the class codes found in a lidar file. This is the default.
  • SUMMARIZEEach output feature will represent a single class code found in a lidar file.

Provides enhanced assessment of the point spacing in LAS files that can reduce over-estimation caused by irregular data distribution.

  • LAS_SPACINGRegular point spacing estimate is used for LAS files, where the extent is equally divided by the number of points. This is the default.
  • NO_LAS_SPACINGBinning will be used to obtain a more precise point spacing estimate for LAS files. This may increase the tool's execution time.

Code sample

PointFileInformation example 1 (Python window)

The following sample demonstrates the use of this tool in the Python window.

arcpy.env.workspace = "C:/data"
arcpy.PointFileInformation_3d('las_files', "Test.gdb/two_las", 
                              in_file_type="LAS", file_suffix="las", 
                              input_coordinate_system="NAD 1983 UTM Zone 17N.prj", 
PointFileInformation example 2 (stand-alone script)

The following sample demonstrates the use of this tool in a stand-alone Python script.

Name: PointFileInformation Example
Description: This script demonstrates how to use the 
             PointFileInformation tool to create an output file that contains
             all LAS files under a parent folder.
# Import system modules
import arcpy

# Set environment settings
arcpy.env.workspace = "C:/data"
lidarList = arcpy.ListFiles("*.las")
if lidarList:
    # Set Local Variables
    outputFC = "Test.gdb/output_las_info"
    prj = "Coordinate Systems/Geographic Coordinate Systems/World/WGS 1984.prj"
    extrudeGeom = True # Indicates whether to create extruded geometry shapes
    sumClass = True # Indicates whether to summarize output by class code
    decSep = "DECIMAL_POINT" # Identifies the decimal separator
    #Execute PointFileInformation
    arcpy.PointFileInformation_3d(lidarList, outputFC, "LAS", "las", prj, 
                                "", extrudeGeom, decSep, sumClass)
    print("Finished executing Point File Information.")
    print("There are no LAS files in {0}.".format(env.workspace))

Licensing information

  • ArcGIS Desktop Basic: Requires 3D Analyst
  • ArcGIS Desktop Standard: Requires 3D Analyst
  • ArcGIS Desktop Advanced: Requires 3D Analyst

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