SDSFIE FAQs

General
What is SDSFIE?

The Spatial Data Standards for Facilities, Infrastructure and Environment (SDSFIE) are a family of IT standards (models, specifications), which define a DoD-wide set of semantics intended to maximize interoperability of geospatial information and services for installation, environment and civil works missions. The SDSFIE family consists of 7 parts: SDSFIE-Vector (SDSFIE-V), SDSFIE-Metadata (SDSFIE-M), SDSFIE-Raster (SDSFIE-R) (draft), SDSFIE-Data Quality (SDSFIE-Q) (draft), SDSFIE-Portrayal (SDSFIE-P) (to-be), SDSFIE-Services (SDSFIE-S) (to-be) and SDSFIE-Endorsed Standards (SDSFIE-E) (to-be).

What is the SDSFIE Vector standard (SDSFIE-V)?

SDSFIE-V is focused on the geospatial representation of features and attempts to maintain a minimum number of attributes. It is intended to link to business databases for attribute data and not duplicate attributes found in business databases. SDSFIE-V resides in the public domain to the extent possible by DoD regulations. It is vendor neutral and provides a data model that is scalable from local to global and from site mapping up to District and Headquarters levels. If a relevant data content standard already exists, SDSFIE-V incorporates it into the model rather than developing new content. SDSFIE-V standard development follows a nationally recognized development process. The intent is for the standard to be responsive to the business needs of data creators and end users. SDSFIE-V is governed and managed by the IGI&S Governance Group (IGG), a cross-Service DoD governance body for installation geospatial information and services (IGI&S) which were established through DODI 8130.01, published 9 April 2015. For more information about the IGG, go here.

Why is SDSFIE important?

By implementing and using the SDSFIE in a common fashion the ability to share spatial data becomes possible. SDSFIE is an evolving standard that strives to continuously improve functionality to meet the needs of the SDSFIE user community. SDSFIE supports the underlying structure of DoD geospatial data efforts and if implemented will promote awareness and implementation of complimentary policies, common standards and effective mechanisms for the development and availability of interoperable digital geographic data and technologies to support decision making at various levels within the DoD. Without standards, the DoD geospatial enterprise cannot mature.

What is the difference between the SDSFIE-V Logical Data Model and the SDSFIE Physical Data Model?

SDSFIE is a Logical Data Model (LDM). A LDM is a structured logical representation of business requirements validated and approved by business representatives; it contains entities and relationships of importance within an organized framework, as well as business textual definitions and examples. It becomes the basis of physical database design. To utilize the standard with real-world data, however, the LDM must be converted to a Physical Data Model (PDM). A PDM is the representation of a data design typically derived from a logical data model that takes into account the character and constraints of a given database management system; it includes all the database artifacts required to create relationships between tables or achieve performance goals, such as indexes, constraint definitions, linking tables, and partitioned tables or clusters.

What is an Adaptation?

An adaptation allows authorized users or organizations to tailor the SDSFIE-V LDM to their mission needs while remaining compliant. Adaptations are formalized alterations to the LDM resulting in a data schema that is tailored to the particular business requirements of an implementing organization. Adaptation involves profiling and extension through the web-based tools. Profiling is the generation of a strict subset of a model to form another model. Extension is the addition of model elements to one model to form another model. The implementation flexibility afforded by adaptation must be sufficiently constrained to ensure the integrity of the standard. Therefore, all adaptation will be performed in accordance with SDSFIE-V Implementation Guidance. Please be sure to check with your Component IGI&S program for details of the implementation guidance specific to your Component.

How do I make changes to my profile?

You can make changes to your profile through your dashboard after logging in.

How would I change my service and user profile?

Any registered SDSFIE user can change their service through his or her dashboard. Go to your dashboard and click the Edit Information tab, then change the "Desired Component" from the dropdown list. The registered user can select the service they would like to change and their profile is updated with the new service.

It seems like some content for the SDSFIE website is missing. What do I do?

First you need to be registered and logged in. A registered user will have access to a lot of the content that a visitor to the website will not. There are also a lot of workflows, adaptations, and information associated with components that you may not be seeing. To get access to these things you will need to submit access permission through your dashboard. If you are still not finding what you are looking for please feel free to contact the help desk through your dashboard.

How do I submit feedback to SDSFIE?

You can leave feedback here!

How do I submit a Help Desk ticket?

If you are a registered user you can submit a help desk ticket through your dashboard. If not registered you can submit a ticket from the contact us page.

What is a change request?

A change request is a request for changes or corrections to the current model, processes, documentation, or website of SDSFIE.

How can I submit a change request?

Prior to making a change request (CR), please be familiar with the process specified on the Change Management Process (CMP) Page. Checking with the SDSFIE Support Contractor about potential CRs is a recommended practice.

Any registered SDSFIE user can submit a change request through his or her dashboard. Change requests submitted by users will first be evaluated by the appropriate Component Representative and then submitted to the IGG via the SDSFIE Automated Process Portal (/A/P/P).

Because the different IGG Components use differing processes for vetting user change requests, please check with your Component IGG representative BEFORE submitting change requests for consideration.

Click here to visit the SDSFIE /A/P/P - Change Requests Page

How do I know if there is not already a change request in process for what I am concerned about?

All pending change requests can be viewed from your dashboard. Go to your dashboard and click Change Requests > View Pending Requests. In addition, please be familiar with the process specified on the Change Management Process (CMP) Page. Checking with the SDSFIE Support Contractor about potential CRs is a recommended practice.



Models & Workflows
What is Browsing?

The browse function of the Browse/Generate tool is used to explore the content of SDSFIE-V. Entities (feature types and object tables), attributes, enumerations and enumerant values are defined for each registered SDSFIE model, including the highest-level Gold model and Component-specific adaptations.

What is Generation?

The generate function of the Browse/Generate tool is the process of creating an SDSFIE-V compliant schema for geospatial data based on the GIS vendor and user specifications. When generating a schema you will download the schema in XML format. If you need to learn how to convert your schema to and from XML format, check out Best Practices.

What is Validation?

Validation is the process performed by the Validate tool, which allows you to verify compliance with an approved SDSFIE-V model, or find the difference between two registered models. After your model is registered, and the parent model (or another model for comparison) is selected, the Validate tool will produce an Excel workbook that specifies the compliance (or differences) between the two models.

What is Submission?

Submission is simply submitting an adaptation to the authorized model reviewer (either the IGG for new Component-level aka headquarters-level models, or the Component Manager for new lower-level Component adaptations) to be approved as SDSFIE compliant. To find more specific information on how to create a submission visit the SDSFIE Training and/or contact your Component Manager.

What is an SDSFIE Adaptation?

An Adaptation is a customized collection of elements (e.g. feature types, attributes, and additional enumerants), derived from SDSFIE Gold or a Component-level model, intended to specifically satisfy an individual users geospatial information needs. Each DoD Service has an SDSFIE Implementation and Adaptation Strategy and each has developed a Parent Adaptation from which all other adaptations would be developed from.

How do I know what parent adaptations are available?

Parent adaptations can be viewed through the browse function of the Browse/Generate tool, however not all adaptations may be available for viewing. Some may be in "draft" form awaiting approval, and others may be available only to registered users of a particular Component.

How do I get access to additional Workflows and Adaptations?

If you need access to certain Adaptations or Workflows, you will need to fill out an access request form. After logging into the SDSFIE Website go to the SDSFIE Homepage and click on the Service Page associated with the Data Model you need access to. From there you will see where to fill out an access request form on the right side of the page. This will go to the Component Manger associated with that Service and they will be able to grant you access.

What is the SDSFIE Adaptation Process?

The Adaptation process is customizing the contents of a registered and approved SDSFIE model to meet the geospatial information needs of local users without compromising the ability to share data with other SDSFIE compliant organizations. Adaptations are constructed from a customized parent adaptation derived from SDSFIE Gold. To learn more about how to create an adaptation visit SDSFIE Training.

I have a feature from an earlier version that I can’t find in the latest vorsion of SDSFIE Gold. What do I need to do?

With newer SDSFIE versions feature classes are often consolidated into another dataset. Using the release notes can help guide you to the correct feature to use for the latest version of SDSFIE Gold. From the Downloads Page you will see a Feature Crosswalk from SDSFIE Prior Releases to the most recent version of SDSFIE Gold. If you are still not able to find what you are looking for please contact the SDSFIE Help Desk.

What is the sdsId attribute and what is it used for?

The sdsId is a mandatory attribute that is a GUID data type. The GUID is a Globally Unique Identifier will enable an organization to identify records that represent the same feature. This attribute can also be used to uniformly identify a feature regardless of dataset or user. The sdsId is not used as the primary key which is a unique identifier for each row of a database table. The organization that produces features with geometry will be responsible for populating the sdsId attribute for all collected features. There are several ways for populating a GUID depending on the platform used.



Prior Release
What is the difference between an Entity Type Name and a Feature Class Name?

Both the Entity Type Name and a Feature Class Name describe the same thing. The concept of an Entity Type Name in the SDSFIE has been around since 1993, and is intended to be platform neutral. The Feature Class Name is used by various GIS Vendors, including ESRI. In these GIS systems, however, the Entity Type Name contained too many characters. The Feature Class Name is limited, particularly in SDE, to be 32 characters. So, while many Entity Type Names are identical to their corresponding Feature Class Name, the long ones are not. They have been shortened in order to satisfy the requirement. Therefore, 'EnvironmentalRegulatedFacilityComplex' becomes 'EnvRegulatedFacilityComplex'.