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Annotation from an ArcInfo coverage may be too large when converted to the geodatabase.
If the annotation pseudoitem $FIT is set to ON, $SIZE cannot be reduced beyond a certain point, because the annotation string has to 'fit' between two points.
Open the annotation subclass from the coverage in ArcEdit, and examine the values for the pseudoitem $FIT.
Arcedit: ec <cover_name>
Arcedit: ef anno.<subclass>
Arcedit: select all
Arcedit: reselect $fit ne 'off'
Arcedit: calc $fit = 'off'
Turning $FIT to OFF will allow the annotation in the coverage to be resized.
While still in the ArcEdit session, check to verify that the values for $OFFSETX and $OFFSETY are 0 or positive numbers. If these are calculated to values less than zero, $SIZE cannot be recalculated to a new, smaller value.
The $SIZE value for coverage annotation is expressed in the units of the coverage projection, as the number of units the annotation would measure on the earth's surface.
At the Arc: prompt, after quitting ArcEdit, the annotation feature class must be built to restore the TAT and TXT tables:
Arc: build <cover_name> anno.<subclass_name>
BUILD cannot be run if the annotation subclass is not named. When the DESCRIBE command is run in Workstation on the coverage, the ANNOTATION subclass will display as <BLANK>. To name the subclass, so that BUILD will execute, run the COPYFEATURES command:
Arc: copyfeatures <cover_name> anno <cover_name> anno.<subclass>
You are copying the annotation to a new subclass in the same coverage.
After copying the annotation to a named subclass, run
Arc: build <cover_name> anno.<subclass>
The unnamed annotation subclass can then be dropped from the coverage:
Arc: dropfeatures <cover_name> anno geometry
The GEOMETRY option must be used with DROPFEATURES when dropping annotation, so that all related INFO tables will be removed from the workspace.