SMS:File Import Wizard

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Step 1 of the Text Import Wizard – File import options
Step 2 of the Text Import Wizard – File format

SMS can import many files generated by other software in their native format. Refer to Importing Non-native SMS Files for a list. For files that are not included in the list, SMS provides the File Import Wizard.

The File Import Wizard enables importing many different types of data into SMS. The File Import Wizard is initialized in the Open dialog (File | Open) by selecting a *.txt file, *.csv file, *.xyz file, or other file type containing raw data. The File Import Wizard will automatically appear when opening a file type SMS recognizes as requiring using the wizard. Unrecognized file types will open the Open File Format dialog where there is an option to use the File Import Wizard.

The wizard has two steps:

Step 1 – Delimiting Columns

The first step in the wizard delimits the data into columns. The following options exist to delimit the data:

  • Delimited – For the Delimited option, typical delimiters are included as well as an option to specify a delimiter.
  • Fixed Width – Columns can be specified with a fixed width by clicking on the ruler bar or the window with the data. Break lines can be dragged, and they can be deleted by double-clicking on the break line or dragging them off the screen.

Specify the starting row the data will be imported at. If the data has a row of headings, indicate such and SMS will use the headings in the next step to determine what kind of data each column represents.

Step 2 – Assigning Column Types

The first 20 lines of the file are displayed in a spreadsheet according to the file outline specified in step 1. This step decides what kind of data to be imported. Select the data type in the SMS data type option field. See Supported File Formats for a list of available data types.

A No data flag options can be specified for the file. This is a number that, when encountered in the file, tells SMS to mark the value as "NULL" or "no data". For example, a water surface elevation dataset would assign a no data flag to dry nodes.

The data in the columns are identified by selecting the type in the combo box at the top of each column in the spreadsheet. If a row of headings exists, SMS will automatically select the proper type if it recognizes the heading. Otherwise they are "Not Mapped" by default. The available column types changes depending on the SMS data type selected. Certain column types must be mapped for each file format before progressing to the next step in the wizard. The name of each column is changed by editing the Header cell.

Mapping Options

When reading in a scatter set, UGrid, or mesh data, the following mapping options are available:

  • Triangulate dataTriangulates the scatter vertices / mesh nodes
  • Merge duplicate – Merges duplicate scatter vertices / mesh nodes based on the specified tolerance
  • Delete long triangles – Deletes scatter triangles with an edge length longer than the specified edge length
  • Append mesh – Appends the mesh nodes to the existing mesh

When reading in feature data, the following option is available:

  • Cross section database – If a 1D hydraulic cross section is the active coverage, then this option appears. If this is turned on, SMS will create a new database or add to the existing one if the coverage already uses one. Point properties for the cross-section database (such as thalweg, left bank, right bank) can also be mapped. The Options button in the spreadsheet allows entering in the keyword to look for in the CSV file. If SMS encounters an entry that does not match any of the keywords, it will automatically create a new point property. Distance along the cross-section can also be mapped. If this is not mapped, SMS will calculate the distance along the arc for the cross-section database.
  • Coverage – This section allows designating where the feature objects will go.
    • XS – Opens a Select Coverage dialog where a cross section coverage can be chosen.
    • Create – Opens a New Coverage dialog to create a new coverage for the imported feature objects.

Filter Options

When importing a scatter set, pressing the Filter Options button will open the File Import Filter Options dialog. The filter options are useful when reading scatter sets that are too large for SMS to successfully read in. Once the scatter set has been read into SMS, the more sophisticated normals filtering algorithm can be used.

Additional Options

After the data have been imported, the coordinate transformation tools can be used to transform and translate the data.

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