Whitebox Geospatial Analysis Tools v. 3.2.1 Now Released!

I am very pleased to announce the release of version 3.2.1 of the free and open-source GIS Whitebox Geospatial Analysis Tools. Although I was not able to accomplish all of the development tasks that I had set out to do over the summer, this version does incorporate numerous improvements and additions (see below for details). Whitebox 3.2.1 requires Java 8u20 or higher, which can be downloaded from the Oracle site here. Please update your Java runtime before launching Whitebox. I hope that you enjoy the new version. As always, I welcome any feedback you may have, including suggestions for future features and tools and feedback on general usability. Bugs and other errors can be submitted using the ‘Report An Error‘ found within Whitebox’s Help menu. For questions regarding specific applications, please consider subscribing to the Whitebox Listserv which can be found at the following site:


The following modifications have been made:

  • Added the Retrieve SRTM DEM Data tool. This tool will download SRTM DEM tiles from the USGS FTP site, import the tiles into Whitebox GAT, and optionally fill missing data holes and mosaic the tiles.
  • Added the ability to natively display LAS file point clouds in the map area.
  • Added Hex-binning tool for producing hexagonally gridded heat-maps (this is pretty cool for data visualization!).
  • Added a tool for isolating ground return points from LiDAR LAS files. I plan on adding additional methods for performing this type of LiDAR point filtering in the near future.
  • Added a tool for separating large LiDAR LAS files into smaller tiles of shapefile points.
  • Added a Lee filter (Sigma filter) tool.
  • Added Interior Point tool.
  • Added CreateRectangularGridTool for creating a vector grid of polygons based on
    a rectangular grid.
  • Added Single-part to Multi-part and Multi-part to Single-part tools.
  • Added List Unique Values tool to list all of the unique values in a categorical
    field contained within a vector’s attribute table. It will also report category
  • Added a fast depression breaching tool. Depression breaching is a far superior
    method for pre-processing a DEM for hydrological analysis (e.g. mapping
    watersheds). One of the reasons that people continue to fill depressions instead of breaching is that filling is computationally much more efficient than
    breaching. Well this tool is just about as fast as Whitebox’s depression filling
    tool. So now you have no excuse. This should be your default tool for hydrological processing of DEMs. Its result is not as good as the optimal breaching tool but it is far more efficient and still much better than filling. Please breach!
  • Added the tool BurnStreamAtRoads, which will carve a stream path through road embankments at the site of road/stream crossings.
  • Added a Minimum Interpolation tool for shapefile point inputs similar to the
    Minimum Interpolation (LiDAR) tool.
  • Added the ability to update individual scripts from the source code repository.
    This way, if you modify the code for a tool and break it, you can always
    revert it back to the source on the main trunk. There’s also now a menu entry
    that will update all scripts for which there are newer versions within the
    code repository and new scripts.
  • Added a Flood Order tool; details in tool’s help.
  • Added a polygonize tool for converting polylines into polygons.
  • Updated the centroid (vector) tool with the option to handle multi-part polyline
    and polygon features as a single entity or to extract centroids for each part,
    as well as, the ability to extract centroids for groups of points.
  • Created a convenience tool, Feature Selection, for opening the feature selection tab within the attribute table dialog after selecting a vector layer. If the layer is not currently displayed, it will be. The reason I added this tool is
    because many people search for feature selection in the toolbox rather than
    in the attribute table dialog.
  • The Hillshade tool will now automatically calculate an appropriate z conversion value when it detects that the DEM is in geographic coordinates with XY units of degrees. I also fixed the Slope, Aspect, and all the Curvature tools to do this as well.

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