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    I asked ESRI-L if it is possible to email ArcMap bookmarks. I'd like to bookmark the location and zoom scale and email it to some colleagues. They can then load up their base layers and zoom to the same location using the bookmark. Does such a feature exist? If not, is it possible to create it? The answer is: no, not really. There isn't anything approaching the ease of use a browser's 'File > Send Link' facility. We can however approximate it a little bit.

    The simplest approach is to create a map document which contains at least one data frame with one or more bookmarks, remove the layers, save a copy and email it. Strictly speaking removing the layers isn't necessary, it's just nice to clean it up a little for whomever you are sending it to. Of course if the layers are to internet WMS servers or to a shared location you both have access to you can leave them.

    Another approach is to create a point (or line or polygon) shapefile for the location of each bookmarked area and email that shapefile. The users can then zoom to the selected points in ArcMap. A variation on this is to generate a table (dbf, Excel, txt, whatever) with a list of X,Y coordinates of locations of concern. The end user could then add the XY coordinates as an Event Theme, and zoom to selected features. Finally, and similar to the last one, you can add a tool to ArcMap that zooms to a user-defined XY coordinate pair. You can download the code for that script from

    The forum thread "Export/Import existing bookmarks" ( has a vba script to import bookmarks from one mxd to another.

    There is also a (commercial) bookmark tool available at ($55 single user, $99 unlimited user USD) However I think both the sender and the reciever would need to have the tool to use this for email.

    Zoom into your area of interest and retrieve the bounding co-ordinates for the view frame. The end users would just need to type in those co-ordinates and presto they are looking at the same view. Bounding co-ordinates can be found at view--> data frame properties--> data frame tab.

    And finally, you can just email a screen capture: [Alt-PrintScreen], open a graphics program, paste [ctrl-v], save to file, attach to an email.


    So, it all comes down to there are several ways of sending maps and data to each other, but no method for spatial bookmarks and ArcMap (yet). smile

    Thanks to Don Meltz, Todd Fagin, Gerry Garza, Sandi Schaefer Bob Booth, Eric O'Nealm, Cattyan Campbell, Nico Burgerhart, Tim Strickler, and Aminul Islam who all took time out of their busy schedules to contribute an answer.

    -- MattWilkie - 23 Feb 2006





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