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Building your first Spatial Database

2011 January 28

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spatialite_gui Fig.1
All right, you just started your first SpatiaLite working session: as you can easily notice, there is no DB currently connected.

spatialite_gui Fig.2
so you'll now create / connect a new DB file: simply press the corresponding button from the tool bar (a platform standard file open dialog will soon appear) and set some file name.
Just for uniformity, please name this DB as Italy.sqlite

spatialite_gui Fig.3
As you can notice, immediately after creation the DB already contains several tables: all them are system tables (aka metatables), i.e. tables required to support internal administration.
For now, simply ignoring them at all is the better choice to be done (you are an absolute beginner, isn't ? be patient, please).
Anyway, now you are connected to a valid DB, so you can now load the first dataset: press the Virtual Shapefile button on the toolbar, and then select the com2001_s file.

spatialite_gui Fig.4
A dialog box will appear: please, select exactly the above shown settings and confirm.
We'll examine later all this in deeper detail: for now simply trust my authority, and duly copy the suggested values avoiding to understand at all: that's black magic for now, and that's all.

Once you've loaded the com2001_s dataset you can then continue (always using the same settings) and load both prov2001_s and reg2001_s files.
spatialite_gui Fig.5
Your database will now look like this: using the left-sided tree-view control is really easy checking tables (and columns within each table).

spatialite_gui Fig.6
You are now ready to complete the initial DB setup: press the Virtual CSV/TXTe button on the toolbar, and then select the cities1000.txt file.

spatialite_gui Fig.7
A dialog box will appear: please, select exactly the above shown settings and confirm.
This dialog box strongly resembles the one you've already used in order to connect Virtual Shapefiles, but isn't identical. In this case too we'll examine later any related detail.
All right: now you have three datasets ready to be queried: but it's now time to explain better what we where doing in the above steps.

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CC-BY-SA logo Author: Alessandro Furieri a.furieri@lqt.it
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