What is a deprecated tool?

A deprecated tool is functionality that has been replaced by other tools. The tool will remain in the system, but no further development will be performed. In addition, Help documentation for a deprecated tool is no longer maintained in subsequent releases. As a result, you must reference a previous release if you require the complete tool documentation.

Existing models and scripts that use a deprecated tool will continue to run. However, you are encouraged to migrate to alternative methods noted in the help documentation for the deprecated tool.

Why are tools deprecated?

Tools are deprecated when the ESRI discovers a better way to provide the functionality you need. In almost all cases, it is feedback from our users that leads us to this discovery. We do not take the decision to deprecate a tool lightly; the replacement tool or tools have to be clearly superior to the deprecated tool. It is in your best interest to use the replacement tool or tools. The documentation for the deprecated tool will contain information on the replacement tool.

Can I continue to use the deprecated tool?

Yes. The deprecated tool is still installed with ArcGIS so that your existing models and scripts continue to work.

How do I find a deprecated tool to run it?

When a tool is deprecated, it no longer appears in its toolbox. It is still in the toolbox, but it is hidden from your view to minimize confusion over what may seem to be very similar or duplicate functionality. You will not be able to find the tool in the Catalog , Search, or ArcToolbox windows. You can view the documentation for the tool by opening the Desktop Help system and entering the exact name of the tool on the Search tab.

If you absolutely must run a deprecated tool, you can add the tool as a button or menu choice using the Customize window.

Can I use a deprecated tool in a script?

Yes. You just need to know the alias of the toolbox that contains the deprecated tool. It is just like using a nondeprecated tool.

How do I add a deprecated tool to a model?

You can add a deprecated tool in ModelBuilder by copying the tool from an existing model. The existing model will be a model you created in a previous version of ArcGIS—a version where the tool was not deprecated.

You can also create a script tool that calls the deprecated tool, then use the script tool in the model.

Will ESRI ever remove a deprecated tool?

Our policy is to install deprecated tools with every version of ArcGIS. We do this so all your existing models or scripts continue to work. However, there may be circumstances where it is not technically possible to install a deprecated tool and we have no choice but to remove the tool from the installation. These technical circumstances are very rare and do not typically occur until several releases have passed since the tool was deprecated.