ArcGIS provides a comprehensive suite of geoprocessing tools that you can use to perform spatial analysis or to manage the GIS data in a project. Finding the right tool for a particular task is essential. The primary locations where you can find and open geoprocessing tools are the Analysis ribbon tab and the Geoprocessing pane. Geoprocessing is the engine of much of ArcGIS Pro, so geoprocessing tools are integrated in many locations throughout the software.
In ArcGIS Pro, you can find and open geoprocessing tools from the following locations:
- The Tools gallery on the Analysis ribbon tab
- The search bar at the top of the Geoprocessing pane
- Under Favorites in the Geoprocessing pane
- Under Toolboxes in the Geoprocessing pane
- Multiple buttons on ribbon tabs, toolbars, context (right-click) menus, and UI commands
- Project toolboxes in the Catalog pane
- Toolboxes in a folder connection or geodatabase in the Catalog pane
- An ArcGIS Server connection in the Catalog pane
- The Portal group on the Analysis ribbon tab or the Portal tab in the Geoprocessing pane
- A custom ribbon tab or group
- The Quick Access Toolbar
Analysis Tools gallery
The Tools gallery on the Analysis ribbon tab highlights many commonly-used spatial analysis tools in several categories. The Tools gallery shows a few tools by default, but you can expand it or scroll through it to see more. If the project was created from a template or previously configured and shared with you, the tools in the gallery may be customized specifically for that GIS project.
You can find geoprocessing tools by entering a search phrase in the search bar at the top of the Geoprocessing pane. You can search for a geoprocessing tool by name or by describing the type of operation you want to perform, for example, type proximity.
You can view geoprocessing search results as detailed tiles or as a list, with toggle buttons to switch between the two views at the bottom of the search results:
- Display tools with descriptions and details
- Display tools as list
When Display tools with descriptions and details is the active view, each item in the search results displays the tool description text and icons that indicate details about each tool, including the following:
The tool is an Esri built-in tool.
The tool is a model tool.
The tool is a script tool.
The tool is locked due to licensing.
The tool consumes credits.
The tool runs remotely in ArcGIS Server or in ArcGIS Online.
The tool supports parallel or distributed processing.
The tool uses Spark to run analysis on big datasets.
The tool can leverage the processing power of the graphics card (GPU) to improve performance.
The tool supports big data file shares.
You can find geoprocessing tools on the customizable Favorites tab in the Geoprocessing pane. The Favorites tab lists the following tool favorites:
- My Favorites—Tools that are recorded in your user profile and will be listed regardless of the open project.
- Project Favorites—Tools that are specific to your open project. When you create a project, several commonly used tools are included by default.
- Recent—A chronological list of tools that you have used recently.
You can find all geoprocessing system tools that are included with ArcGIS, including extension and industry-specific toolboxes, on the Toolboxes tab of the Geoprocessing pane under the System heading. These tools are organized and grouped into toolboxes and toolsets. Custom toolboxes in the project are listed under the Project heading.
Every project has a default toolbox. You can also add any toolbox from within a folder connection or geodatabase to a project, which stores a link to the toolbox with the project (but does not move the physical toolbox file). Project toolboxes appear on the Project tab of the Catalog pane under the Toolboxes node. Additionally, project toolboxes are listed on the Toolboxes tab of the Geoprocessing pane under the Project heading.
Folders and geodatabases
Toolboxes that are in a folder or geodatabase will display when viewing the container on the Project tab of the Catalog pane under the Folder Connections or Databases nodes.
Geoprocessing services in an ArcGIS Server connection
You can find and use geoprocessing service tools in an ArcGIS Server connection. You can use these tools as you do other geoprocessing tools. The only difference is the tool is run on ArcGIS Server. To use geoprocessing service tools, add an ArcGIS Server connection, expand the server connection under the Servers node of the Catalog pane, and double-click any tool to open it in the Geoprocessing pane.
You can find and run analysis tools from ArcGIS Enterprise through your active portal. Tools from your portal represent services running on an ArcGIS Server site federated with your portal. The Portal group on the Analysis ribbon tab and the Portal tab in the Geoprocessing pane show which tools are available through your active portal. You can use these tools as you do other geoprocessing tools. The only difference is that the tools run on servers federated with your portal instead of on your local desktop machine. These tools also create output layers in your portal instead of new data in a local folder or geodatabase.
Ready To Use tools
Ready To Use tools are geoprocessing services that use ArcGIS Online hosted data and analysis capabilities. They are called ready to use because you only need to provide a few basic input features, since all the other data necessary for the analysis and the computation are hosted in ArcGIS Online.
You can use the Ready To Use tools to solve diverse spatial analysis problems, including the following:
- Profile and viewshed (Elevation)
- Watershed and stream tracing (Hydrology)
Find the Ready To Use tools in the Ready To Use Tools gallery on the Analysis ribbon tab. Click one of these tools and specify the input parameters. When running one of these tools, the output will automatically be given a name based on the service name, copied to the project geodatabase, and added to an open map.
Ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar
You can add geoprocessing tools to any location on the ribbon and to the Quick Access Toolbar. This includes system tools as well as custom model and script tools that have been added to the project. This customization is stored in your user directory and applies to any project you open.
Other ribbon buttons and UI commands
Buttons that open or run geoprocessing tools are located on many of the ribbon tabs, panes, toolbars, context (right-click) menus, and views in ArcGIS Pro. These buttons or commands may immediately run a geoprocessing tool with predefined parameters or may open a tool for you to specify the parameter options before running. For buttons or commands that open a tool, the tool may open in the Geoprocessing pane or in a floating window, as described below:
- When you open tools in the Geoprocessing pane, you will use the standard approach for specifying parameters and environments and running or scheduling the tool to run at a future time.
- Some tools that require shorter, focused interaction within a simplified user interface will open in a floating window where you can specify parameters and click OK or Apply to run the tool. These are the same geoprocessing tools that run in the Geoprocessing pane, but they are included in a simplified and dedicated window that will be dismissed after the tool is run. While the tool is running, a progress dialog box will display messages and progress information, with the Close upon completion option checked by default. Many of the tools accessed this way will run in the main application thread, not in the background geoprocessing thread, for immediate processing, even if longer-running processes are running concurrently in the background geoprocessing thread.