How To: Replace a feature class participating in a geometric network


In some instances, a copy of feature class data is made as a back-up. After making a copy and applying edits to the feature class, the user wants to replace the edited feature class to the existing geometric network to update the geometric network with the changes. However, directly replacing and rebuilding the feature class causes the junction points to be duplicated. It is not possible to delete a feature class in a geometric network without dropping the whole geometric network.

Geometric networks can be both created and edited in ArcGIS for Desktop Advanced and Standard but are read-only in ArcGIS for Desktop Basic.
The instructions provided describe how to replace a feature class participating in a geometric network.


Ensure there is a copy of the original geometric network before doing this procedure.
  1. In the Catalog window, navigate to the dataset containing the geometric network.
  2. Delete the geometric network.
  3. Delete the feature class that is to be replaced with the newly updated feature class.
  4. Import the updated feature class to the dataset.
  5. Unregister the data as versioned.
For more information on how to unregister data as versioned, refer to the following ArcGIS Web Help page: Unregistering data as versioned.
  1. Create a new geometric network by right-clicking the geodatabase, New > Geometric Network.
  2. Import all the feature classes to participate in the network.
  3. Change the edges to complex edges, and keep the rest to default.
Change all the edges to complex edge. 
For more information on simple and complex edges, refer to the following ArcGIS Web Help page: Essential geometric networks vocabulary.
  1. Load the map document. The feature class participated in the geometric network is updated with the changes.

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