Repairing paths in a mosaic dataset

When you move or copy a mosaic dataset, the paths to the source imagery or reference mosaic dataset might change, requiring that the paths be updated. If you move the source imagery, the paths will also need to be updated in the mosaic dataset. When paths are broken, you will either not see an image when using the mosaic dataset, mosaic items will appear as a black and white checkerboard, or the overviews will appear gray.


If you do anything to disrupt the connectivity between the mosaic dataset and it’s source data or reference mosaic dataset, the paths need to be repaired.

For example, operations that disrupt the connectivity can include moving the mosaic dataset or the source imagery, or changing permission on an enterprise geodatabase. In these and similar cases, run the Repair Mosaic Dataset Paths geoprocessing tool to update the paths.

If the overviews were created in the default location, next to the geodatabase folder, and they are moved to the same default location, then the path will not need to be updated. If the overviews remain in the same location, and this is visible to the mosaic dataset, then the paths will not need to be updated. If the mosaic dataset cannot access the overviews, or the overviews were moved, the path to the overviews needs to be updated.

If you have lidar data in the mosaic dataset, a cache was likely generated. The cache will regenerate if it doesn't exist in the expected location or it is out of date. If you move the cache and you want to continue to use it, then you must update the path in the mosaic dataset.

If you use the Build Mosaic Dataset Item Cache tool, then you will need to update the path.

If you know the paths you need to replace, you can right-click the mosaic dataset in the Contents pane and click Data > Repair Mosaic Dataset Paths, or in the Catalog pane, right-click on the mosaic dataset and select Repair Mosaic Dataset Paths. This opens the Repair Mosaic Dataset dialog box allowing you to define an old path and a new path. Steps to use this dialog box are described below.

If you need to identify the broken paths, use the Export Mosaic Dataset Paths tool. This tool will output a table with all the paths or just the broken paths. You can then fix the broken paths using the Repair Mosaic Dataset Paths tool or the Repair Mosaic Dataset dialog box.


If publishing a mosaic dataset to ArcGIS Server, then the paths will be automatically updated.

  1. Add your mosaic dataset to the map.
  2. Optionally, use the selection tools to select the rasters in the mosaic dataset whose paths need to be repaired.
  3. Right-click the mosaic dataset in the Contents pane and click Data > Repair Mosaic Dataset Paths.

    If you don't need to make a selection, then you do not need to add the mosaic dataset to the map. You can right-click the mosaic dataset in the Catalog pane and click Repair Mosaic Dataset Paths to open the same dialog. It is not linked to the selected layer in the Catalog pane at this point. You will need to manually build a query.

  4. Optionally, check Only Broken Paths.

    The mosaic dataset is aware of the paths that are broken. When you check this option, you can reduce the length of time used to search for and modify the paths. Alternatively, you may have some rasters that remain in the original path location and you don't want these paths to be modified.

  5. Click the first row, under Old Path, and type in your old path, such as C:\MyData\City\Rasters.
  6. Click the same row, under New Path, and type in your new path, such as \\ServerA\CityData\Rasters. You can also browse to the new folder using the browse button.

    The old and new paths do not have to be the entire paths; they can be the parts of the paths that have changed. For example, if you have renamed the disk location, you only need to rename part of it. For C:\MyData\City\Raster, you can specify C:\ for the Old Path and D:\ for the New Path.

  7. Optionally, you can use the Folder Paths Depth arrows to identify the beginning part of paths that you may need to modify.
  8. Click OK to run this operation.

Related topics