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gdal_rasterize - Man Page

Burns vector geometries into a raster.


gdal_rasterize [--help] [--help-general]
    [-b <band>]... [-i] [-at]
    [-oo <NAME>=<VALUE>]...
    {[-burn <value>]... | [-a <attribute_name>] | [-3d]} [-add]
    [-l <layername>]... [-where <expression>] [-sql <select_statement>|@<filename>]
    [-dialect <dialect>] [-of <format>] [-a_srs <srs_def>] [-to <NAME>=<VALUE>]...
    [-co <NAME>=<VALUE>]... [-a_nodata <value>] [-init <value>]...
    [-te <xmin> <ymin> <xmax> <ymax>] [-tr <xres> <yres>] [-tap] [-ts <width> <height>]
    [-ot {Byte/Int8/Int16/UInt16/UInt32/Int32/UInt64/Int64/Float32/Float64/
         CInt16/CInt32/CFloat32/CFloat64}] [-optim {AUTO|VECTOR|RASTER}] [-q]
    <src_datasource> <dst_filename>


This program burns vector geometries (points, lines, and polygons) into the raster band(s) of a raster image.  Vectors are read from OGR supported vector formats. If the output raster already exists, the affected pixels are updated in-place.

Note that on the fly reprojection of vector data to the coordinate system of the raster data is only supported since GDAL 2.1.0.


Show this help message and exit


Gives a brief usage message for the generic GDAL commandline options and exit.

-b <band>

The band(s) to burn values into.  Multiple -b arguments may be used to burn into a list of bands.  The default is to burn into band 1.  Not used when creating a new raster.


Invert rasterization.  Burn the fixed burn value, or the burn value associated with the first feature into all parts of the image not inside the provided polygon.


When the vector features contain a polygon nested within another polygon (like an island in a lake), GDAL must be built against GEOS to get correct results.


Enables the ALL_TOUCHED rasterization option so that all pixels touched by lines or polygons will be updated, not just those on the line render path, or whose center point is within the polygon.  Defaults to disabled for normal rendering rules.

-burn <value>

A fixed value to burn into a band for all objects.  A list of -burn options can be supplied, one per band being written to.

-a <attribute_name>

Identifies an attribute field on the features to be used for a burn-in value. The value will be burned into all output bands.


Indicates that a burn value should be extracted from the "Z" values of the feature. Works with points and lines (linear interpolation along each segment). For polygons, works properly only if the are flat (same Z value for all vertices).


Instead of burning a new value, this adds the new value to the existing raster. Suitable for heatmaps for instance.

-l <layername>

Indicates the layer(s) from the datasource that will be used for input features.  May be specified multiple times, but at least one layer name or a -sql option must be specified.

-where <expression>

An optional SQL WHERE style query expression to be applied to select features to burn in from the input layer(s).

-sql <select_statement>

An SQL statement to be evaluated against the datasource to produce a virtual layer of features to be burned in. Starting with GDAL 3.7, the @filename syntax can be used to indicate that the content is in the pointed filename.

-dialect <dialect>

SQL dialect. In some cases can be used to use (unoptimized) OGR SQL instead of the native SQL of an RDBMS by passing OGRSQL. The "SQLITE" dialect can also be used with any datasource.

New in version 2.1.

-of <format>

Select the output format. Starting with GDAL 2.3, if not specified, the format is guessed from the extension (previously was GTiff). Use the short format name.

-a_nodata <value>

Assign a specified nodata value to output bands.

-init <value>

Pre-initialize the output image bands with these values.  However, it is not marked as the nodata value in the output file.  If only one value is given, the same value is used in all the bands.

-a_srs <srs_def>

Override the projection for the output file. If not specified, the projection of the input vector file will be used if available. When using this option, no reprojection of features from the SRS of the input vector to the specified SRS of the output raster, so use only this option to correct an invalid source SRS. The <srs_def> may be any of the usual GDAL/OGR forms, complete WKT, PROJ.4, EPSG:n or a file containing the WKT.

-to <NAME>=<VALUE>

set a transformer option suitable to pass to GDALCreateGenImgProjTransformer2(). This is used when converting geometries coordinates to target raster pixel space. For example this can be used to specify RPC related transformer options.

New in version 2.3.

-co <NAME>=<VALUE>

Many formats have one or more optional creation options that can be used to control particulars about the file created. For instance, the GeoTIFF driver supports creation options to control compression, and whether the file should be tiled.

The creation options available vary by format driver, and some simple formats have no creation options at all. A list of options supported for a format can be listed with the --formats command line option but the documentation for the format is the definitive source of information on driver creation options. See Raster drivers format specific documentation for legal creation options for each format.

-te <xmin> <ymin> <xmax> <ymax>

Set georeferenced extents. The values must be expressed in georeferenced units. If not specified, the extent of the output file will be the extent of the vector layers.

-tr <xres> <yres>

Set target resolution. The values must be expressed in georeferenced units. Both must be positive values.


(target aligned pixels) Align the coordinates of the extent of the output file to the values of the -tr, such that the aligned extent includes the minimum extent. Alignment means that xmin / resx, ymin / resy, xmax / resx and ymax / resy are integer values.

-ts <width> <height>

Set output file size in pixels and lines. Note that -ts cannot be used with -tr

-ot <type>

Force the output bands to be of the indicated data type. Defaults to Float64


Force the algorithm used (results are identical). The raster mode is used in most cases and optimise read/write operations. The vector mode is useful with a decent amount of input features and optimise the CPU use. That mode have to be used with tiled images to be efficient. The auto mode (the default) will chose the algorithm based on input and output properties.

New in version 2.3.

-oo <NAME>=<VALUE>

New in version 3.7.

Source dataset open option (format specific)


Suppress progress monitor and other non-error output.


Any OGR supported readable datasource.


The GDAL supported output file.  Must support update mode access. This file will be created if it does not already exist If the output raster already exists, the affected pixels are updated in-place.

The program creates a new target raster image when any of the -of, -a_nodata, -init, -a_srs, -co, -te, -tr, -tap, -ts, or -ot options are used. The resolution or size must be specified using the -tr or -ts option for all new rasters.  The target raster will be overwritten if it already exists and any of these creation-related options are used.


This utility is also callable from C with GDALRasterize().

New in version 2.1.


The following would burn all polygons from mask.shp into the RGB TIFF file work.tif with the color red (RGB = 255,0,0).

gdal_rasterize -b 1 -b 2 -b 3 -burn 255 -burn 0 -burn 0 -l mask mask.shp work.tif

The following would burn all "class A" buildings into the output elevation file, pulling the top elevation from the ROOF_H attribute.

gdal_rasterize -a ROOF_H -where "class='A'" -l footprints footprints.shp city_dem.tif

The following would burn all polygons from footprint.shp into a new 1000x1000 rgb TIFF as the color red.  Note that -b is not used; the order of the -burn options determines the bands of the output raster.

gdal_rasterize -burn 255 -burn 0 -burn 0 -ot Byte -ts 1000 1000 -l footprints footprints.shp mask.tif


Frank Warmerdam <warmerdam@pobox.com>


Jun 23, 2024 GDAL