Register a table or view with the geodatabase

Enterprise geodatabases can contain a combination of geodatabase registered objects as well as tables or views that are not registered with the geodatabase. You can view or query these unregistered objects; however, for them to participate in geodatabase functionality, they must be registered with the geodatabase.

The following are examples of unregistered objects in a geodatabase:


Review the Source tab of the properties for the table or view to determine the registration state. The value for Data Type indicates whether the object is a database or geodatabase object.

Requirements to register tables and views with an enterprise geodatabase

For database tables, registering with the geodatabase allows editing and full participation in geodatabase functionality, such as subtypes, defining attribute domains on fields, participation in relationship classes, a topology, and more. For database views, registering with the geodatabase allows read-only participation in some geodatabase functionality such as defining geodatabase metadata on the view and the ability to be included in query-only feature services.

The table or view must meet the following criteria to register it with the geodatabase:

  • The field data types used must map to ArcGIS data types. See Database data types supported in ArcGIS for a list of data types.
  • The table or view can contain only one spatial field. This field can only store one geometry type (such as point, line, or polygon) and all features must use the same coordinate system.
  • There can be only one field with an ArcGIS data type of object ID in a table or view registered with the geodatabase.
  • For the Object ID Field parameter, the geodatabase requires a field that is not null, unique, and an integer data type.
    • Integer data type fields are registered as a 32-bit object ID.
    • Big integer data type fields are registered as a 64-bit object ID.
    • If an existing field is not provided when you register the table, ArcGIS will add a 32-bit object ID field to the table.
  • If an existing field is chosen during registration for a table that contains rows, the geodatabase will take over maintaining the object ID field by populating it with unique ID numbers. If the existing field values are unique and not null, the next value inserted by ArcGIS will be the maximum existing ID value +1. For example, if the maximum existing value in the field is 204, the next value ArcGIS inserts is 205.


    If this field contains any null or duplicate values, the field's contents will be overwritten by ArcGIS starting with a value of 1.

  • When registering a view, you must specify an existing field to be used as the object ID field. As views are not editable from ArcGIS, the geodatabase will not maintain the object ID field. The field used must be prepopulated with not null, unique numbers. If the field chosen contains existing values that are not unique, you may not see all records when viewing or querying the view from ArcGIS.

Register with the geodatabase

Follow these steps to register a table or view with the geodatabase using the Register With Geodatabase geoprocessing tool:

  1. In a new or existing project, in the Catalog pane, go to Databases and connect to the enterprise geodatabase that contains the table or view to register.

    Connect as the owner of the table or view, as only the owner can register it with the geodatabase.

  2. On the Analysis tab, click the Tools button in the Geoprocessing group and search or browse to the Register With Geodatabase tool in the Geodatabase Administration toolset of the Data Management toolbox.

    Alternatively, right-click the table or view in the Catalog pane and click Register with Geodatabase on the context menu.

  3. Using the Register With Geodatabase tool, specify the input dataset to register and a field to use as the object ID field.
    • To register a table, either choose an existing integer column to be used as the object ID field or clear the Object ID Field parameter value, and the tool will add an object ID field to the table.
    • To register a view, the Object ID Field parameter value is required. Choose an existing integer field that contains not null, unique values to be used as the object ID field.
  4. If the table or view contains a spatial field, provide the following information:
    1. Choose the spatial field name from the Shape Field drop-down menu.
    2. From the Geometry Type drop-down menu, choose the type of geometry to be stored in the shape field.

      This parameter populates automatically if the table or view contains features.

    3. Choose the coordinate system of the shape field from the Coordinate System drop-down menu.

      This parameter populates automatically if the table or view contains features.

    4. Specify the spatial extent of the data in the table.
  5. Click Run to run the tool and register the table or view with the geodatabase.

Information about the table or view is stored in the geodatabase system tables, and the table or view can participate in geodatabase functionality.