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What's New in Global Mapper v21

Significant New Features

  • The Global Mapper MangoMap Extension. This new data sharing tool allows users to publish maps to MangoMap online map site directly from Global Mapper. The MangoMap Extension allows users to quickly and easily share online maps in a new and powerful way.
  • Global Mapper Mobile 2.0. The Mobile 2.0 release for iOS and Android features many free updates and a new Pro version available for purchase. Features include streaming online data, expanded projection support (for packages exported from Global Mapper 21), many UI enhancements, GeoPackage and GeoPDF support, Enterprise licensing and much more. Refer to https://bluemarblegeo.com/products/global-mapper-mobile.php for more info.
  • Improved feature label creation and management including assigning labels to their own layer and individual label editing and moving.
  • Improved layer management with target layer selection now available in all vector feature creation dialog boxes.
  • New tool for identifying local peaks and depressions in a terrain layer.
  • New tool for recording a fly- and walk-mode path in the 3D Viewer as a line feature, which can be used to create a fly-through recording.
  • Improved layer template creation for form-based data collection. This is especially useful when collecting data in the field on Global Mapper Mobile.
  • Keyframe animation allowing the display of a sequence of layers to visualize change over time.
  • New option to replace a mesh's texture with a different one or to remove it altogether in the 3D Viewer.
  • New option to calculate Strahler's stream order as part of watershed analysis.
  • New function to add a specified slope to vector features.
  • New option to create a textured 3D model from terrain and draped imagery
  • New option to allow the export of Global Mapper Mobile package files (for use in Global Mapper Mobile) in the current display projection (requires Global Mapper Mobile 2.0)

Significant New LiDAR Module features

  • Automatic identification and reclassification of utility poles from a point cloud layer
  • New masking option in the Pixels-to-Points tool to eliminate uniform background colors from images. This is especially useful when attempting to process oblique images that contain sky. [Item #GM-7763]
  • Reorganized Pixels-to-Points dialog box with larger Image Preview window. [Item #GM-9935]
  • Improved orthoimage and point cloud quality when created from a mesh (3D Model) during the Pixels-to-Points operation using the 'High' quality setting. [Item #GM-10001]
  • New option in the Pixels-to-Points tool for orthorectifying each camera image.
  • New function for displaying the approximate ground coverage polygons for selected images in the Pixels-to-Points tool. [Item #26339]
  • Support for deriving image locations (EXIF information) from external text files such as those reported from RTK or PPK. [Item #GM-7811]
  • New Pixels-to-Points option for harmonizing colors in input images that have inconsistent contrast to produce better reconstruction results.
  • New tool for panning the Image Preview in the Pixels-to-Points dialog box by dragging with the middle mouse button.
  • New Pixels-to-Points tool for identifying images that may contain ground control points based on their location.
  • Speed improvements when gridding LiDAR with large gaps and when selecting large numbers of LiDAR points with the Digitizer Tool. [Item #17693]

New Supported Formats

  • Added support for loading TerraScan Trajectory (.trj) files. [Item #25784]
  • Added support for GEBCO 2019 Data and SID Grids [Item #26283]
  • Added support for HDF5 files from Copernicus Global Land Service. Valid data sets include LAI, FCOVER, FAPAR, LCCS, NDVI, SSM, GDMP, DMP, LST, LSWT(see https://land.copernicus.eu/global/ for details of these types of data sets) [Item #GM-6693]
  • Added support for importing NetCDF (HDF5) files from GEBCO [Item #GM-9734]
  • Imports HECRAS plan HDF5 files (*.Pxx.HDF)to show 'Depth' and 'Water Surface' data [Item #26065]
  • Added ability to export 3d models to 3D PDF. [Item #25648]

Global Mapper Mobile

  • Global Mapper Mobile 2.0. The Mobile 2.0 release for iOS and Android features many free updates and a new Pro version available for purchase. Features include streaming online data, expanded projection support (for packages exported from Global Mapper 21), many UI enhancements, GeoPackage and GeoPDF support, Enterprise licensing and much more. Refer to https://bluemarblegeo.com/products/global-mapper-mobile.php for more info.
  • Export Global Mapper Mobile Package (GMMP) in selected view projection. Global Mapper Mobile 2.0 supports projections other than Geographic.
  • Fixed handling of Feature Templates for Global Mapper Mobile with non-ASCII characters. [Item #26247]

LiDAR Changes

  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Add option to load Picture Point (i.e. JPG w/ EXIF) features as Orthoimages placed on the surface. There is available via a right-click Digitizer Tool option when one or more picture points are selected, or in the Pixels to Points Tool by selecting one or more images, then right-clicking and selecting to place them as ortho-images. [Item #GM-9301]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Automatic identification and reclassification of utility poles from a point cloud layer
  • Added the ability to save modified LAS/LAZ data back to the original source files without doing a full export. This option is under the right-click Layer submenu of the Control Center when modified LAS/LAZ files are selected. [Item #25997]
  • Added addition fields to Lidar edit dialog, including return number/count, scan angle, scanner channel, point source ID, user data, and edge-of-flight-line. [Item #25931]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Added new option to Pixels-to-Points dialog to create separate ortho-rectified image layers from each input image rather than creating a single seamless combined result. [Item #GM-7706]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Added ability to smooth/flatten selected Lidar points relative to the average of the Lidar points within some distance of the selected points. This new option is available with Lidar selected under the Digitizer Tool's right-click Move/Reshape submenu. [Item #25996]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Added new option to shift selected Lidar points towards a loaded surface, optionally along the pulse path. This option is available in the Digitizer Tool's right-click Move/Reshape submenu when Lidar is selected and terrain is loaded. [Item #25784]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Updated Pixels-to-Points to support generating geo-referenced results when the original input files are TIFF images with EXIF tags rather than JPG or PNG files. [Item #GM-8297]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Added option to Lidar Filter tab of Configuration dialog to choose what field to use in addition to GPS time to identify multi-pulse returns. This is used when we are updating return numbers/counts when deleting points. [Item #26031]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Improved Pixels-to-Points dialog control point handling. Now images that likely contain a selected control point location will be labelled with green text. The options to move to the next/previous image with a control point can now include the images that likely contain the control point as well as those that the point has already been explicitly added to. [Item #GM-8142]
  • Added functionality in the "Apply Elevations to Selected Feature(s)" dialog to allow the user to select that elevations should come from lidar layers (if available). [Item #25928]
  • Added button to Lidar Manual Classification toolbar to change Lidar Class. [Item #GM-9726]
  • Dramatically sped up the drawing of Lidar selection boxes when large numbers of points are selected. [Item #GM-9768]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Fixed issue extracting building features as 3D model meshes from classified Lidar when the option to generate side walls is checked. [Item #26184]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Show results of Lidar noise classification in dialog identifying count of high and low noise points, as well as by selecting the identified points with the Digitizer Tool. [Item #GM-9975]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Allow drag-and-drop of image or .gmi2c workspace files from Windows Explorer on to a Pixels-to-Points dialog. [Item #GM-9973]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Added right-click options to Control Points list on Pixels-to-Points dialog to load and save control points from/to a text file. [Item #GM-10049]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Changed the default extension for Pixels-to-Points workspace files to .gmp2p from .gmi2c. The old .gmi2c files will continue to work. [Item #GM-10031]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Fixed issue with Pixels to Points failing on images from cameras (like Sony ILCE-6000) that don't specify a focal length. Now the the process will ensure that a valid focal length is obtained for processing. [Item #26501]

3D Viewer Changes

  • Meshes now render in 3D with respect to elevation settings, as when obtained from terrain. [Item #GM-9323]
  • Fix issues when point model uses "depth" as altitude mode setting. [Item #GM-9517]
  • Fixed several problems with GPS tracking in the 3D Viewer: GPS tracks and vessel are now rendered independently, and GPS track display now honors line styles that use dash patterns and/or background lines. [Item #GM-2968]
  • Fixed 2DM interior shading when shown in 3D viewer. [Item #25861]
  • 3D View now refreshes mesh features when various mesh properties change, such as mesh color, model placement, texture, etc. [Item #GM-9516]

Path Profile/Line of Sight Function Changes

  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Automatically select Lidar points on a Lidar path profile when they are selected in the main map view. Previously the selection only went from the profile to the map view and not vice-versa. [Item #25953]
  • Mouse wheel messages are now forwarded to the path profile view if the mouse is over it. [Item #GM-9142]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Made a Lidar path profile redraw automatically when the location of Lidar points is changed. [Item #25784]

Analysis Function Changes

  • Fixed generation of elevation grids from mesh (3D model) layers so that you can choose to use the edges as breaklines. [Item #26385]
  • Added ELEVATION attribute to iso-height areas generated with Contour Generator. [Item #26211]
  • Updated application of per-vertex elevations to line/area features from loaded terrain so that is only a handful (< 10%) of vertices are off the terrain that those vertices can be filled in by interpolating rather than not updating any elevation values for the feature. [Item #26426]
  • Fixed issue gridding a layer that is all area features where some have more than 4 unique vertices. This was a new issue in v20.1.0 release. [Item #26164]
  • Made min/max spot elevations generated by contouring process better match those from Layer menu option to find min/max elevations in layer. [Item #26262]
  • Fixed Raster Calculator when working on 2 different terrain layers. [Item #26332]

Digitizer Tool Changes

  • Fixed issue in v20.1.1 with modifications to vector data not saving in .gmw files. [Item #GM-9754]
  • Added right-click option to recenter on Measure value for selected line features with per-vertex Measure values. [Item #26183]
  • Added option under Digitizer Tool right-click Advanced Feature Creation menu to create new area features by copying selected island areas. [Item #26250]
  • Updated behavior when editing the length of an edge of an area feature or closed line. Now rectangular shapes will stay rectangular when an edge is edited. Other area features will only adjust the position of the endpoint of the edge to get the specified segment length. [Item #26218]
  • Made the length of the current segment be displayed on the status bar when digitizing area and line features (in addition to the total length or perimeter/enclosed area). [Item #GM-9850]
  • Fixed calculation of a flattened site plan grid when flattening to the heights of an area with a single attribute-based elevation rather than per-vertex elevations. [Item #GM-10020]
  • Updated Digitizer Tool options to select areas containing a point and to select line features connected to areas to leave only the found items selected when finished rather than adding to the existing selection. [Item #26199]
  • Fixed issue creating point features spaced along a line when only sampling at a single fixed distance. [Item #26276]
  • Fixed loss of text when creating areas from lines or lines from areas with labels and/or attributes in a code page other than the system code and non-ASCII characters. [Item #26324]
  • Made cut of selected areas from all overlapping areas automatically fix any invalid polygons in the list of areas to cut from others. [Item #GM-9794]

Scripting Changes

  • Pole Auto-Classification is now a part of the scripting engine auto-classify.For the "LIDAR_CLASSIFY" command there is a new type "POLE".there are the following parameters for it: [Item #GM-9999/GM-5938]
  • o POLE_SMOOTH_COUNT (how many times to smooth data)
    o POLE_MIN_NEIGHBOR_DIS (how far away to look for neighbor points)
    o POLE_MIN_LEN (how tall a potential point needs to be for it to be classified)
    o POLE_MIN_COUNT (how many points a potential pole needs to have for it to be classified)
    o POLE_MIN_THRESHOLD (% pole like)
    o POLE_MAX_EXTENT (how far horizontally a potential pole and still be classifed) These parameters match the options in the dialog
  • Added support for using the minimum or maximum VALUE_ATTR found in the DEFINE_VAR command. A new VALUE_ATTR_MULTI parameter supports this. [Item #26143]
  • Added support for using PRECISION parameter with EXPORT_ELEVATION command when exporting to the XYZ_GRID format. [Item #26352]
  • Made command names in Global Mapper script files be case-insensitive, so you no longer have to write them in all upper-case if you don't want to. [Item #GM-9975]
  • Made elevation legend and scale bar save from an EXPORT_RASTER script command when the script is run from the command line. Also allow for grid lines to be exported with EXPORT_RASTER by adding SAVE_GRID_LINES=YES to the command. [Item #26146]
  • Fixed bug where REMOVE_MAP for EDIT_MAP_CATALOG would not remove the first map in the map catalog. [Item #26252]
  • Updated EDIT_MAP_CATALOG to support working with .gmc files with no maps in them. [Item #26254]
  • Fixed an issue causing duplicate layers to be created during EDIT_VECTOR with MOVE_TO_NEW_LAYER or COPY_TO_NEW_LAYER. [Item #26520]

Online Source Changes

  • Added seamless display of online tiled sources where only part of zoom level is filled with data (i.e. edge of a higher resolution scene). [Item #GM-9982]
  • Fixed issue with exports from some WMS sources (like NAIP 1 foot Color Imagery) not exporting at the proper resolution if vector data was included in the export. [Item #GM-9262]
  • Updated exports to tiled web formats (like Google Maps tiles) to support exporting more than 18 zoom levels. [Item #GM-9980]
  • Fixed issue with web formats with the option to only export fully covered tiles checked only exporting a small number of the tiles that it should in some cases. [Item #26106]
  • Fixed issue with some WMS sources not saving properly to the online source list file when added by a user. [Item #GM-9844]

Projection/Datum Changes

  • Display known PROJCS name for current projection system on status bar rather than projection and datum abbreviations if the PROJCS string is short (i.e. < 20 characters). [Item #26004]
  • Added support for specifying 'XY Plane Rotation' independent of Azimuth for RSO (Rectified Skew Orthomorphic) and Hotine Oblique Mercator Azimuth Natural Origin projections. [Item #9940]
  • Added built-in China 2000 datum. [Item #GM_9765]
  • Fixed EPSG codes 3514-3517 that were flipping State Plane Florida North with Florida West for NAD83(NSRS2017). [Item #26127]

Format Specific Changes

  • Made high-bit-depth raster exports support resampling the values rather than always using 'Nearest Neighbor'. [Item #12034]
  • Added ability to export vector data to Esri File Geodatabase in without requiring that ArcGIS be installed. [Item #15624]
  • Added prompt for elevation units when loading elevation grid files that have a known projection system but no specified elevation units. [Item #15790]
  • Added a tool, HDF5 Definition Creator, to let the user define the data to extract from an HDF5 type file not in GM internal database. Works with HDF5 files containing defined latitude, longitude, and data tables with the same dimensions. [Item #19182/26210]
  • [LIDAR MODULE ONLY] Updated Feature Info Tool to show the approximate ground coverage when selecting image points that have enough camera information to determine coverage (i.e. drone images). [Item #26339]
  • Added support for customizing the no-data value for Erdas Imagine and GeoTIFF elevation exports, both through the UI and using the VOID_ELEV parameter for the EXPORT_ELEVATION script command. [Item #18759]
  • Added ability to read multiple time slices from HEC-RAS simulation results output file (generally *.P??.HDF). Importing this type of file will read in all the geometry, and allow user to specify which time steps of the simulation to load, creating a layer for each. [Item #GM-9728]
  • Added multi-time slice layer importing for AquaVeo SMS, CORTAD, SPEI, and GRIB file formats [Item #GM-9909]
  • Fixed drop of tag-based attributes from DGN files. [Item #26165]
  • Fixed issues exporting to vector text formats (i.e. Landmark Graphics, GPX, WASP .map, etc.) when the Elevation Export/Display Units were set to 'Native Overlay Units' on the Vertical Options tab of the Configuration dialog. [Item #26194]
  • Fixed load of text files with WKT format coordinate strings. [Item #26281]
  • Added new option to the Band Setup dialog for TIFF and MrSID layers marked as using CMYK colors to treat them instead as normal RGBA images. This allows proper rendering of 4-band images that are marked as using CMYK colors incorrectly. [Item #26057]
  • Support direct load of gzipped GeoJSON files with .geojson.gz or .json.gz extensions. [Item #26163]
  • Made F_CODE be recognized as a possible feature type attribute when loading vector features. If the F_CODE attribute value matches or is contained in a single type name, that type/style will be automatically used for the feature. [Item #26319]
  • Added option to ECW export to always store the projection name as 'EPSG:XXXX' if the EPSG code is known. [Item #26413]
  • Fixed missing lines/areas from import of Landmark Graphics files with space rather than comma delimiters in XY fields. [Item #26197]
  • Fixed Openflight, Sketchup, and 2DM export file types to include vector layers in the User Created Features layers. [Item #26353]
  • Fixed problems loading some 3D PDF files. [Item #GM-9727]
  • Fixed shift of DXF exports when exporting reprojected data and including feature attributes. [Item #26157]
  • Updated GPX export when the option to include all feature attributes is checked to ensure that the saved attribute names are valid. [Item #26167]
  • Fixed export of areas with islands/holes to DWG files. [Item #26171]
  • Ensure GCP files loaded as text layer don't transform themselves. Also made default text import options and column names be correct when loading GCP files. [Item #26196]
  • Fixed display of TIFF files using non-standard pixel orientation and a transform matrix for positioning. [Item #26206]
  • Added missing controls to the Import Bounds property page. [Item #26208]
  • Updated ECW SDK to v5.4 Update 1. This fixes an issue causing the alpha channel to not show up for some ECW files. [Item #26261]
  • Fixed vertical flip of HF2/HFZ format files. [Item #26318]
  • Fixed issue where labels were not being drawn when exporting to PDF. [Item #26328]
  • Fixed issues loading and displaying some GRIB format files. [Item #26347]
  • Updated ECW exports on 64-bit builds so that the metadata will store the exact Target Compression Ratio entered. Previously it had been adjusted in 64-bit to match the behavior of the 32-bit version with the same compression target. Now the 32-bit compression target will be adjusted to match 64-bit instead for those few users still on 32-bit versions. [Item #19073]
  • Fixed issue with font attributes being ignored when loading Shapefiles if any non-font style attributes were also present. [Item #26454]
  • Fixed a parsing error that was causing PDF image to load upside down. [Item #26452]
  • Added support for MBTiles databases where the tile size something other than 256x256. [Item #26462]
  • Fixed issue exporting ECW files from online sources. [Item #26504]
  • Fixed parsing of timestamps for GPX points when the times are in Zulu and store a fractional part of a second. [Item #26503]
  • Fixed use of FONT_PLACEMENT attribute when loading vector files. [Item #26611]
  • Fixed issue preventing S-63 charts from exporting to raster formats (they should only have been restricted to not exporting to other vector formats). [Item #GM--9846]
  • Fixed export of high-bit-depth image bands to 8-bit-per-band image formats when Contrast Adjustment is disabled. [Item #GM-9994]

GPS Tracking Changes

  • The GPS Status dialog allows the user to select a Waypoint Feature Point, and continually display the distance and bearing to that point. [Item #9761]
  • Rendering/Style Changes

  • Add ability to remove the texture from a mesh. A texture, once removed, may be restored while the mesh stays loaded in Global Mapper. [Item #GM-9672/GM-9668]
  • We now honor orientation settings when loading models referenced in a KML file. These are the "heading", "tilt", and "roll" sub-elements of the "Orientation" element. [Item #GM-9219]
  • Fix 2D renderer to handle mesh texture display when UV coordinates are outside the range of [0-1] [Item #GM-9656/GM-8171]
  • Fixed a problem where a copy/paste operation on a mesh feature that has a texture can result in the copy not having its texture. [Item #GM-9818]


  • Sped the display of tiled online image sources. [Item #GM-9982]
  • Sped up multi-threaded processing when verbose error log levels (i.e. 'Debug' or 'Debug (Extreme)' are enabled. [Item #26448]
  • Sped up exports to palette-based formats (like PNG) when multiple exports are done at once (i.e. tiled exports). [Item #26527]
  • Significantly sped up the drawing of ECW format files. [Item #26537]

User Interface

  • Allow selection of which attribute to use to keep colors the same when using a random styling on the Styles tabs of the Options dialog for layers. [Item #26035]
  • Added function to search for layer names in the Layer Control Center. [Item #GM-9730]
  • Fixed a problem when exporting DEM to STL that caused the exporter to always scale coordinates that are in units of radians or degrees to integral values in order to accommodate low precision STL viewers. The user now has a choice as to whether to scale coordinates or export them as-is. [Item #GM-5994]
  • Cleaned up 3D model load dialog: model orientation and axis choices are easier to understand, and defaults for specific model types are pre-applied [Item #GM-8860]
  • Added right-click option on Feature Vertices dialog to display per-vertex timestamps in UTC rather than local time. [Item #26506]
  • Made the graph on the Histogram tab of the Configuration dialog automatically refresh when changing the band/attribute to display if the last update was quick (i.e. < 3 seconds). [Item #GM-9994]

Misc. Changes

  • Fixed export to raster formats when cropping to area features with holes/islands and including vector data in the export. [Item #GM-10175]
  • Fixed a problem when loading 3D models that use .bmp texture files. [Item #GM-9635]
  • Fix issue when loading a 3D model, and user chooses to skip an unresolved texture [Item #GM-9642]
  • Added an option to increase the scale of arrows on the quiver plot display. [Item #25663]
  • Added ability to restore position of a mesh feature if it was moved [Item #GM-9599]
  • Renamed 'COVERED AREA' metadata item for layers to 'BBOX AREA' to make it more representative of what the value represents (i.e. the area of the bounding box of the layer, not the area covered by data in the layer). [Item #26102]
  • Removed unimplemented "Create Area from Track", "Mark Waypoint at Offset" , and "Create Line from Track" from GPS toolbar [Item #GM-9860]
  • Allow for feathering of features with holes (islands) [Item #25899]
  • Fixed issue with area edges showing up on crop polygon boundaries when exporting to a raster format (i.e. PNG) and including vector data and also cropping to other areas. [Item #GM-10175]
  • Fixed handling of minimized panes when saving a workspace. [Item #26257]
  • Fixed issue assigning new values to duplicate feature attributes. [Item #26543]
  • Fixed problem displaying certain pixel values in the Feature Information tool. [Item #26592]
  • Improved the handling of palette-based images in the Histogram tab. Added color name to the graph as a label for the color. [Item #GM-9788]
  • Fixed issue when the option to pad lat/lon coordinates is checked and the Position Display Format is decimal degrees. [Item #GM-9832]