What file types are supported for background layers in the standalone platform?

Product(s): WaterGEMS, WaterCAD, StormCAD, SewerCAD, SewerGEMS, CivilStorm, PondPack, HAMMER
Version(s): 10.00.xx.xx, 08.11.xx.xx
Area: Layout and Data Input


What file types are supported for background layers for the standalone platform for the water or storm-sewer products?


Backgrounds can be added using the Background Layers manager, from View > Drawing Views > Backgrounds

Prior to the release of the Connect Edition products, the supported file types included:

  • CAD Files
    • V8i and earlier: .DXF
    • CONNECT Edition and greater: .DXF, DGN, DGNDB, imodel
    • Note: for DWG files, you will need to convert to DXF first, using another application such as AutoCAD.
    • Note: currently only the linework in model space (MicroStation model type = design) will be displayed, and certain entity types may not be supported, such as arcs and Mtext.
  • ESRI Shapefiles (.SHP + .SHX +.DBF)
  • Raster picture / images - .BMP, .JPG, .JPEG, .JPE, .JIFF, .TIF, .TIFF, .PNG, .GIF, .SID
    • Note: MrSid (.SID) files are no longer supported starting with the CONNECT Edition Update 1 releases (10.01.XX.XX) for technical reasons because of the introduction of Bing Maps.
    • In older versions, MrSid backgrounds were only supported in the 32-bit version of the OpenFlows product. How do you run a hydraulics and hydrology product in 32 bit mode?

Bing Maps

Starting with CONNECT Edition Update 1, Bing Maps can also be added directly in the Background Layers manager: How to add background aerial and road map images to your model

World file support for background images

Some image formats support associated world files, starting with the CONNECT Edition release. When attaching a background image file that has an associated world file present, the image will now be spatially located automatically (ie. georeferenced).

Currently the following file formats support an associated world file:

  • bmp
  • jpg
  • jpeg
  • jpe
  • jfif
  • tif
  • tiff
  • png
  • gif

The World file extension is based on the image's extension. One convention is to use the first and last letter of the image's extension and add a "w" (eg. .jpg>.jgw). Another convention is to append the image's extension with a "w" (eg. .jpg, .jpgw).

When opening the file, the Image Properties dialog will automatically enter the coordinates from the World file in the editable  (Drawing) fields.


See Also

MrSid files are not available as a background layer type

Consuming ContextCapture production files within your hydraulic model


  • Created by
  • When: Mon, Aug 31 2015 2:28 PM
  • Last revision by Bentley Colleague
  • When: Tue, Mar 16 2021 10:07 AM
  • Revisions: 16
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