Alter the geospatial coordinates recorded in the GeoTIFF tags of a TIFF raster

Last Published: April 25, 2020


The internal geospatial referencing for a TIFF image may be incorrect or not acceptable. ArcGIS does not provide a mechanism to alter the GeoTIFF tags that control the internal georeferencing of TIFF images. However, there are several ways you can adjust the internal georeferencing.


There are three procedures to change the information stored in the internal GeoTIFF tags:

  • Generate a new TIFF file that builds its internal GeoTIFF tags using geospatial coordinates you specify:

    1. Convert the TIFF image to a grid with the Image To Raster conversion tool in ArcToolbox.

    2. Use the Grid To Image conversion tool to convert the grid into a non-TIFF image format, such as BIL.

    3. Replace the contents of the generated world file (*.blw) with those from the world file you wish to use.

    4. Convert this intermediate image file into a TIFF with the Grid To Image tool in ArcToolbox.

  • Generate a TIFF file that will incorporate the geospatial coordinates you specified into its internal GeoTIFF tags:

    1. Use the CONVERTIMAGE command in ArcInfo Workstation to convert the TIFF to an another format, such as BIL.

    2. Replace the contents of the generated world file (*.blw) with those from the TIFF’s *.tfw file.

    3. Run CONVERTIMAGE again to convert the intermediate image file back into a TIFF.

  • Use third party software to view and modify the image tags. Two examples of third party software that offer this capability are Erdas Imagine and ER Mapper.

Article ID:000003449

  • ArcMap 8 x

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