What is archiving?

Archiving provides the functionality to record and access changes made to all or a subset of data in a geodatabase. Archiving is the mechanism for capturing, managing, and analyzing data change over time.

Organizations need to preserve the changes made to their data in order to answer common questions such as the following:

  • What was the value for a specific attribute at a certain moment?
  • How has a particular feature or row changed through time?
  • How has a spatial area evolved over time?

Archiving assists you in answering these types of questions by preserving data changes. It is important to understand that archiving maintains change on a dataset from the moment archiving is enabled until archiving is disabled.

Archiving allows you to connect to a moment in time using a historical marker or by providing a specific date and time. A historical marker is a named moment in time that you create, for example, "Completion of Subdivision 158" referencing the date 2:13 p.m. July 11, 2012. Connecting to a historical moment gives you a read-only representation of what the data looked like at that specific time.

Archiving offers you the ability to investigate changes to your data through the History pane. In the History pane, you can quickly navigate between specific moments in time displaying how the data appeared at that moment.

For more information, see Historical moments.

Additionally, adding the archive class directly to the map allows you to perform queries to explore how the data has evolved over time; for example, view all of the edits that were made to a specific road between Jan 1, 2012, and Jan 1, 2014.

For more information, see Work with the archive class.