Problem: Data type in a feature class converts to double when exported from a non-spatial database to an ArcSDE geodatabase


When a feature class is moved from a non-spatial database to a geodatabase using ArcCatalog, the field data type of the feature class is not retained. The data type in the feature class is converted from 'float' data type to 'double' data type.

A feature class can be moved from one geodatabase to another in ArcCatalog by copying and pasting or exporting the feature class.


This behavior occurs when the precision and data type of a field in a feature class are not set during creation of the field. This causes the float field in the feature class to be converted automatically to double data type.

Solution or Workaround

Specify the precision and scale of a new field on a feature class using the Add Field geoprocessing tool.

  1. Open ArcMap and navigate to ArcCatalog > Toolboxes > System Toolboxes > Data Management Tools > Fields > Add Field.
  2. Fill the parameters in the Add Field dialog box to create a float data type field in the attribute table of the feature class, and specify the precision and scale of the field. The precision must be 64 or more.
  3. For further explanation on the precision and scale of the fields, refer to the following documentation:
    ArcGIS field data types
    Oracle data types supported in ArcGIS
    SQL Server data types supported in ArcGIS.
  4. Click OK.

Related Information