Features do not draw after joining data to a layer with a definition query


Features no longer draw in ArcMap after performing a join to a layer that has a definition query applied.


Joins do not alter a target layer's definition query. If the definition query is applied before the join, the field references in the query may not be fully qualified.

Solution or Workaround

To draw all the features, reapply the definition query or remove the join.

  • Use the Query Builder to redefine the definition query so all field references are fully qualified.

    A. Right-click the layer in the ArcMap table of contents.
    B. Select Properties from the layer context menu.
    C. Click the Definition Query tab.
    D. Click Query Builder.
    E. Define the query so that all fields are fully qualified. For example:
    FieldA - not fully qualified
    OwnerA.TableA.FieldA - fully qualified

    The query fails if both tables contain a field with the same name and the fields are not fully qualified. The query does not know which field to reference and no features draw.

  • Remove the join and the shapes draw.

    Right-click the layer containing the join in the ArcMap table of contents, and Select Joins and Relates > Remove Joins.

Article ID:000002957

  • ArcMap

Get help from ArcGIS experts

Contact technical support

Download the Esri Support App

Go to download options

Discover more on this topic