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FAQ: Why did the file size of the annotation increase dramatically?

Question

Why did the file size of the annotation increase dramatically?

Answer

When dealing with Annotation feature classes, the symbology is stored one of two ways: in a symbol collection or in-line. When storing the symbology in a symbol collection, the symbology, e.g., color, size, and font, is stored in the properties of the feature class. Storing the symbology in-line stores the symbology in the attribute table.

When storing the symbology in-line, the size of the feature class increases dramatically and causes slower redrawing of the feature layer. Using the in-line method is not recommended.

In ArcMap, determine if annotation is set to display using in-line symbology by right-clicking on the annotation feature layer and selecting Open Attribute Table. Examine the SymbolID field. If it reads '-1', then the annotation symbology is stored in-line. If it reads 0 or above them, it is stored in a symbol collection.