Open Failed - Error opening feature class

Last Published: April 25, 2020

Error Message

The content in this article pertains to ArcGIS versions 8.x only. Later versions of ArcGIS may contain different functionality, as well as different names and locations for menus, commands and geoprocessing tools.

This error is returned when trying to add feature classes from an ArcInfo coverage:

Open Failed
Error opening feature class


There is at least one item or redefined item in one of the coverage feature attribute tables that is supported in INFO only, not in Arc.

Solution or Workaround

  1. Locate the unsupported items in Workstation ArcInfo.
    1. Start ArcInfo and navigate to the workspace where the data resides.
    2. Type DIRECTORY INFO <COVERAGE_NAME>.* to list all of the INFO tables for the coverage.
    3. Type ITEMS <INFO_FILE_NAME> to list the item definitions for an INFO file. Look under the TYPE column heading.
      • Item types B, C, D, F, I, and N are supported in ArcInfo.
      • Item types L, O, P, T, and V are supported in INFO only.
  2. Use the ALTER command in INFO to change the definition of the item to a supported type.
    1. Start INFO by typing INFO at the Arc: prompt.
    2. Select the INFO file by using SELECT <INFO_FILE_NAME>.
    3. List the INFO file item information using ITEMS.
    4. Type ALTER:
      • Enter the item name.
      • Enter an alternate item name.
      • Enter the new starting column.
      • Enter the item width.
      • Enter the output width.
      • Enter a supported item type.
      • Fill in new items for the remainder of the ALTER prompts. Press the Enter to keep the same value.
    5. Type Q STOP to exit INFO.

Article ID:000001943

  • ArcMap 8 x

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