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Import symbology from another layer

To maintain consistency between multiple feature layers, you can import the symbology of another feature layer file or layer. This way, the feature layer displays with the same symbology as the layer you imported.

Use the Apply Symbology From Layer tool to transfer symbology settings from one layer to another. For information on importing symbology settings for an image or raster layer, see Change the symbology of imagery.

Import symbology to a feature layer

When you are working with feature layers, you can access the Apply Symbology From Layer tool directly from the Symbology pane by using the following steps:

  1. Select the feature layer in the Contents pane.
  2. On the Appearance tab, in the Drawing group, click Import.

    The Apply Symbology From Layer geoprocessing tool opens, and the Input Layer parameter is set to the current feature layer.

  3. Set the Symbology Layer parameter to the layer that contains the symbology you want to import.
  4. Optionally set the Symbology Fields parameter to match the fields from each layer to define the symbology.
  5. Click Run to execute the tool and apply the imported symbology to the current layer.

Potential errors using the tool

The following errors may occur when you run this tool:

  • The imported layer is in an invalid format. You cannot apply the symbology of a group layer .lyr file to a single layer.
  • The import geometry type does not match the destination geometry type. You cannot apply the symbology of a layer file from one feature type to a different feature type.