View Full Version : Problems converting shape files to KML

09-07-2010, 08:29 PM
I used Geocommons ( www.geocommons.com )-it's a free online service that converts shapefiles to KML for use in Google Earth. The data I was working with was property boundaries for a municipality. When I opened the shapefiles in a GIS mapping program, every parcel in the town appeared. However, after I converted them I opened them in Google Earth and the parcels appeared in random clusters with large portions of the town un-mapped. Anyone have any idea why this might happen? I'm downloading some free conversion software now in the hopes that a different program might work better.

09-12-2010, 06:05 AM
You would probably need to talk to GeoCommons people if you want to know why their website doesn't work correctly. As far as I know there aren't any really good free ways to convert SHP to KML.

I would suggest Shape2Earth (http://shape2earth.com/default.aspx)($29.99) if you're on a budget or Global Mapper (http://www.globalmapper.com/)($349) if you want a very powerful GIS program that will convert pretty much anything to KML.

09-14-2010, 04:07 AM
QuantumGIS is a FOSS GIS app that can convert shapefiles to kml through a plugin (OGR converter). I use it all the time and it's never let me down.

Also, sometimes shapefiles have trouble converting to KML. I think it's because GE has it's own ideas about terrain while some shapefiles have different ideas. Try turning off the terrain in GE and see what happens.