As Nova Scotia schools under IEI or in P3 environments undertake the installation of ArcView 3.2, ArcVoyager and associated GIS data files, it is suggested that by following a standard practice, teacher/student instruction and solutions to common problems can be easier to accomplish later on.

It is recommended that the following practices be followed:

INSTALL ArcView 3.2 and ArcVoyager Special Edition

  1. Install your ArcView 3.0 (Mac) or ArcView 3.2 (PC) program on the hard drive of the local workstations (only recommended optionNOTE: ArcView 3.0 (Mac) no longer functions unless operating in a true OS 9 environment - i.e. before OS X).

    If installed on the network (not recommended), then each workstation will need the workstation install, by going to the apps volume where the ArcView program was installed and running the setup.exe file from the drive letter:\ESRI\AV_GIS30\ARCVIEW\BIN32 folder.

    If using ZenWorks, then have your technician following the existing protocols for your board/school to distribute the program to each workstation..

  2. Once ArcView is installed on the local drive of the workstations, then ArcVoyager Special Edition should be installed as well.  A link should be added to the desktop for students using the following sample code:  C:\ESRI\program\BIN32\arcview.exe u:\ESRI\data\voyager.apr   where C:\ is replaced by the drive letter where you installed ArcView such as C if on your local drive. 

  3. NOTE: the first time you run ArcView, it will prompt you for the school site registration ID number found on the original license agreement and master install CD. Use same one for all machines.


  1.  Now you are ready to add the GIS datasets needed to support curriculum in addition to the built in datasets already in ArcView and ArcVoyager directories. 

    To do this work with your local network administrator or technician to create a new directory on the server's data volume labeled GISDATA with 1.5 to 2 gigs allocated, if possible.  Create the same directory on the local hard drive data area where data files can be transferred for student work.

  2. Then switch to NWAdmin or your network administration software.

    First create a GISAdmin user with full rights (other than supervisor) to the GISDATA directory. You may also want to create a group if in a large school with several teachers using the program.  These users will be the teachers who will add/delete GIS datasets as needed to support the school curriculum. Also as they are responsible for data security, they may want to limit this group to two individuals, a primary and a backup administrator. Use your group login script to map the GISDATA directory directly to a drive letter ( letter G is suggested, if possible) for this group.

    Next create a GISUser and GISUser group with file scan, modify, and read rights to the GISDATA directory. Add only those students who need to access the GISDATA directory to the group. This will increase data security as only those students needing access to this GISDATA directory should be included. In your GISUser group login script, map the GISDATA directory to a drive letter ( letter G is suggested if possible) for easy location and use by students.

  3.  The previously created GISDATA directory on the server will be where all datasets get placed by the GISAdmin as students and classes need them. As such, the data CD-ROMs that come with the ArcView K-12 bundle need NOT be installed as theses datasets can be added as needed by the school's GISAdmin.  Teachers will have to plan ahead for data use, just as they do other school resources. If several classes are doing major projects, ensure that the drive space allocated is at least 1.5 to 2 gigs for GIS data. This will allow temporary copying of data CDs such as the ArcCanada two CDs to the GISDATA directory to allow full project work. 

    Create a new sub directory (folder) under GISDATA for your class's lesson/topic that has been given a name that reflects the curriculum lesson. Examples are acidrain or icestorm or tarponds as these reflect the focus of the lesson. If copying from already prepared sources such as CD's, always use the same folder name as the existing folder (sub directory) name. Then select the files needed from your data source. These sources of datasets available are as follows:

    If building your own class datasets for a specific lesson, then using your file manager program, copy the any individually selected theme (layer) datasets into a new folder (sub directory)  ensuring that each layer (theme) has the three needed files:
    as all three are needed to allow the program to add a layer or theme to ArcView. If other files with the same name are present, copy all files with the same name. If copying from a CD (or any source) be sure to check that the read only property is not activated on the file. If it is, then deselect Read-Only under the properties option on all files BEFORE students commence copying to their local hard drive from the server GISDATA directory.

    All this is better shown in the two tutorials, Using the LRT Support CD Lessons and Using the ArcCanada Data for Lessons


  1. All student project files should be saved on their home directory on the server or in a folder created on the local hard drive in their name which is NOT overwritten if DeepFreeze is active.

  2. If you must use local hard drives, then first create a class folder, then the student folders. To ensure that all edits, projects get saved to the correct student folder, ALWAYS have students set up the WORKING DIRECTORY as soon as they begin any project. This will ensure that the file paths always point to the location of all data files in the GISDATA directory allowing teachers to run the projects as well without need to modify the project file data location paths.

  3. Students if expected to edit data in their lesson or in their project, will need to copy these data files to their home folder. It is highly recommend that they create two directories on their home directory. One called GISDATA, the same as the network or hard drive folder name for storing the GIS data sets. Then data would be copied as required from the server GISDATA folder to the local workstation GISDATA.  The second folder called GISProjects would be their working directory and where they would save all their personal ArcView files.  This would then be the place any edits to files get saved as well. 

  4. Finally if you have an existing project file as part of the source directory being copied, then you will have to consult the Port-a-Project utility instructions to tell the project file where the datasets it used are now located. Don't copy the project file into the GISDATA sub folder yet. 

  5. ENJOY and have FUN mapping !