As a side project with my coworkers -- we are oil and gas geologists -- we have been creating an interactive map-based learning tool for other geologists.

We are having trouble building the database, and here is what we're doing:

  1. Using ESRI ArcGIS software to create map polygons from literature.
  2. Exporting them as CSV files
  3. creating the tabular database with myPHPadmin on our web host's control Panel.
  4. trying to populate that database with our polygon data exported from ArcGIS.

We have the CSV files located in the FTP also provided by our web host.

We are stuck at step 4 and my question is not seeking any specific lines of code, but whether or not this is a good workflow for this type of job. And if not, what would you suggest?

  • 1
    What exactly is the problem you have? Commented Sep 22, 2016 at 19:04
  • We are struggling populating the database with the CSV files
    – Tony
    Commented Sep 22, 2016 at 19:39
  • 3
    I get that, but you haven't described what the actual problem is. If its just 'how do I put data into a database using PHP', you will probably be better served with some php database tutorials. Commented Sep 23, 2016 at 2:57

1 Answer 1


There's a solution with a much nicer workflow, although the initial setup is more complex: use a geospatial database like PostGIS, Oracle Spatial, or even the geospatial features of MySQL (although it looks like ArcGIS doesn't integrate properly with spatial MySQL yet). You should be able to connect the database to an ArcGIS layer (I've never tried that, though), which will let you edit the polygons and their attributes almost seamlessly: no exporting required. You may find this question useful for PostGIS.

  • Blm768: if I have this properly installed on my HostGator cP, can we edit and update our maps straight from ArcGIS?
    – Tony
    Commented Sep 26, 2016 at 2:40
  • If you're using PostGIS and a recent ArcGIS version (10.1 or later), I believe so.
    – blm768
    Commented Sep 26, 2016 at 2:53
  • But it looks like it may depend on which Arc licenses you have. In particular, it looks like ArcSDE and ArcEditor may be important. That article may be somewhat out of date, though. There are also open-source GIS programs that can edit PostGIS databases, which might be a workable option if you can't get Arc to work properly, but then you have a new tool to learn. GIS Stack Exchange would be a good place to get more info about Arc/PostGIS interop.
    – blm768
    Commented Sep 26, 2016 at 3:12

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