Frequently asked question

Why do shapefiles draw faster than file geodatabase feature classes in some instances?

Last Published: April 25, 2020


Large feature classes may perform slower as file geodatabase feature classes than they do as shapefiles.

A file geodatabase can become fragmented, causing performance issues. Running ‘Compact’ on the geodatabase greatly improves its performance; however, in an unsymbolized draw, redrawing the shapefile may still be faster.

When using an attribute value for a symbolized draw, file geodatabases usually draw faster than shapefiles.

To maintain a high level of performance, periodically right-click on the geodatabase and select 'Compact'.

Article ID:000010902

  • ArcMap

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