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What’s new in QGIS 2.2

Please note that this is a release in our ‘cutting edge’ release series. As such, it contains new features and extends the programmatic interface over QGIS 2.0. We recommend that you use this version over previous releases.

This release includes hundreds of bug fixes and many new features and enhancements that will be described in this manual. You may also review the visual changelog at http://changelog.linfiniti.com/qgis/version/21/.

Application and Project Options

  • Support for measurement in nautical miles: You can now measure distances using nautical miles. To enable this, use the Settings ‣ Options ‣ Map Tools option panel.

Data Providers

  • One-to-many relations support: This release supports the ability to define 1:n relations. The relations are defined in the project properties dialog. Once relations exist for a layer, a new user interface element in the form view (e.g., when identifying a feature and opening its form) will list the related entities. This provides a powerful way to express, for instance, the inspection history on a length of pipeline or road segment.
  • DXF Export tool: A new tool for exporting DXFs has been added to the Project menu.
  • Paste as new vector layer: It is a common activity in a GIS to create a sub-selection and then to create a new layer from the selection. In QGIS you can already do Save Selection As to save a layer from your selection; now, functionality is offered that allows you to create a new file or memory layer from whatever is in your clipboard. Simply select some features, copy them to your clipboard and then do Edit ‣ Paste Features As and choose either ‘New Vector Layer’ or ‘New Memory Layer’ from the submenu. The best part of this new feature is that if you have some Well Known Text (WKT) features in your clipboard from another app, you can simply paste them into QGIS as a new layer now.
  • WMS legend graphic in table of contents and composer: Prior to QGIS 2.2 the WMS data provider was not able to display a legend in the table of contents’ layer list. Similarly no legend could be displayed in the map composer. QGIS 2.2 addresses both of these issues.


  • Fill ring digitizing tool: This new tool is used to cut holes in polygons and automatically fill them with new features. If you hold down Ctrl when finalising the feature, the attributes will be taken from the parent feature.


  • Recent expressions saved: The expression builder will now remember the last 20 used expressions.
  • Paste WKT from clipboard: QGIS can now paste and create a new feature based on WKT that is found in the clipboard. Simply copy some WKT and paste into an editable layer. You can also create a new layer by selecting Edit ‣ Paste As ‣ New Memory Layer.

Map Composer

  • Zebra map border improvements: You can now set the colours of the Zebra border on the map element in the map composer.
  • Element rotation support: Every type of element in the composer can now be rotated, including scale bars, tables and legends. For example, you can rotate a label on the composition so that it fits into your page layout better (as illustrated). Resizing of rotated elements has also been improved.
  • Composer scale added and ruler improvements: The appearance of rulers has been improved by adjusting the scale logic and by adding smaller ruler divisions, and by making vertical rulers use rotated text. There is also a new composer action for hiding/showing rulers. You can now quickly zoom to 100% page scale using the new Zoom to 100% tool on the toolbar. The composer window now lets you quickly switch the page scaling via a new scale combobox in the status bar. In addition, a new indicator has been added to show you the precise pixel position of your cursor. The [Close] and [Help] buttons have been removed from the bottom of the composer window to give you the maximum amount of screen space for working with your compositions.
  • World file generation: In the composer, you can now create georeferenced maps! Simply ensure that you choose the correct map element in the Composition tab and then export your map as a PNG file. An accompanying world file will be written, allowing you to load your exported composition in QGIS as a raster layer.
  • Working with multiple items: Support has been added for moving and resizing multiple items simultaneously. You can now hold Shift while resizing to maintain an item’s ratio while resizing, or hold Ctrl to resize from the item’s centre. These shortcut keys also apply to moving items, so holding Shift while moving an item constrains the movement to horizontal or vertical movement, and holding Ctrl temporarily disables item snapping. You can also hold Shift while pressing a cursor key to shift all selected items by a larger amount.
  • Atlas enhancements: You can now preview the individual pages of the map atlas that will be generated in the composer. While in atlas preview mode, you can output the current page without outputting the entire atlas. You can also tweak the map extent or scale for each feature while previewing the atlas page. Atlas map settings have been moved from the atlas panel to the map properties panel, so now, more than one map can be controlled by the atlas generation. There’s a new option to automatically centre an overview map, which comes in handy when creating atlas-based maps. More context information is also now available so that you can adjust your symbology based on whether the feature is the current atlas feature or not.
  • Improved item selection: You can now select more than one item by clicking and dragging a box to select multiple items, and there are shortcuts for adding to a selection (holding Shift while dragging), subtracting from a selection (holding Ctrl while dragging) and switching to “within” selection mode (holding Alt while dragging). Shift-clicking an already-selected item will remove it from the selection. There are also shortcuts and menu items for selecting all items, clearing a selection, and inverting a selection. It’s also now possible to select items that are hidden below other items by Ctrl-clicking an item, or by using ‘Select Next Item Above/Below’ in the new composer Edit menu.
  • Better navigation of compositions: QGIS 2.2 includes many improvements to help you navigate your compositions. You can now zoom in or out from a composition by using the mouse scroll wheel. A dedicated pan tool has been added, which allows you to drag the composition around, and you can also switch immediately to pan mode by holding the space bar or by holding the mouse scroll wheel. There’s also a new zoom tool, which allows you to precisely zoom to a specific area of your composition. You can also switch to zoom mode at any time by pressing and holding Ctrl-Space and drawing a zoom region on the composition.
  • Improved styling of pages and shapes: You can now control the style of the composition background using the full range of QGIS’ symbology options. It’s now possible to export compositions with a transparent (or semi-transparent) background. Shape items (rectangles, triangles and ellipses) can also be styled using the same options as polygon map layers. You can even style the page background or shapes by using data-defined settings based on the current atlas feature! There’s also a new option for rounding the corners of rectangle shapes.

QGIS Server

  • WCS Support added to QGIS Server: QGIS Server already supports various standards, including Web Map Service (WMS version 1.3.0 and 1.1.1), Web Feature Service (WFS version 1.0.0) and Web Feature Service with Transaction (WFS-T). With this new release of QGIS, you can now serve raster layers using the Web Coverage Service (WCS version 1.0.0) standard.


  • Gradient fill support: The new gradient fill feature lets you create better cartography than ever before. The feature has numerous options providing for great flexibility in how you apply gradients to your features. These include:

    • Two-colour or ramp-based fills
    • Canvas- or object-based origin for your gradients
    • Gradients originating from the centroid of a feature
    • Conical, linear and radial gradient types
    • Data-defined options (i.e., to use an expression or a table

    column) for all gradient properties

  • Label support for palleted rasters: Rasters that use a fixed colour pallette (for instance, a land cover map) can now have category labels assigned which will be shown in the map legend and in the composer legend.

  • Colour ramps can be inverted: A new option has been added to symbology dialogs that deal with colour ramps to allow you to invert the colour ramp when it is created.

  • Copy and Paste in rule-based renderer: In the rule-based renderer, you can now right-click on a rule and then copy and paste the rule as a new rule.

  • On-the-fly feature generalisation: QGIS 2.2 introduces support for on-the-fly feature generalisation. This can improve rendering times when drawing many complex features at small scales. This feature can be enabled or disabled in the layer settings. There is also a new global setting that enables generalisation by default for newly added layers. Note: Feature generalisation may introduce artefacts into your rendered output in some cases. These may include slivers between polygons and inaccurate rendering when using offset-based symbol layers.

  • Anchor points can be set for marker layers: When defining symbology with marker layers (e.g., a point layer symbolized with SVG markers) you can now specify what part of the image should correspond to the ‘anchor point’. For example, you can indicate that the bottom-left corner of the image should coincide with the position of the feature. You can also use the data-defined properties to have this property set at render time based on an attribute in the data table for that layer (or an arbitrary expression).

  • Thematic maps based on expressions: Categorized and graduated thematic maps can now be created using the result of an expression. In the Properties dialog for vector layers, the attribute chooser has been augmented with an expression builder. So now, you no longer need to write the classification attribute to a new column in your attribute table if you want the classification attribute to be a composite of multiple fields, or a formula of some sort.

  • Expression support in symbol diagrams for size and attributes: You can now use an expression to define the size and attributes when using the diagramming capabilities of QGIS.

  • Else rule in rule-based renderer: The rule-based renderer now supports an Else rule that will be run if none of the other rules on that level match. Else rules can be nested just like any other rules. An example might be:

    type = 'water' (style grey) ELSE (style red)
  • Inner stroke support for polygons: Support has been added for polygon strokes to be limited to the interior of the polygon (so as not to overflow into a neighbouring polygon).

사용자 인터페이스

  • Improved properties dialogs: All properties dialogs have had their main property menus updated so that they look slicker, with an inverse-coloured side bar. This is purely cosmetic but should make it easier to know what your current context is in a dialog.
  • Expression dialog improvements: We have made some tweaks to the expression dialog - power users can now hide the operator buttons. There are also now splitters between the function list and function help areas, and between the expression and function list area.
  • New keybindings: We have updated the keyboard shortcuts in QGIS to make it more efficient to carry out repetitive tasks.
    • Ctrl-d: Remove selected layers in table of contents
    • >: Select next vertex when using the node tool
    • <: Select previous vertex when using the node tool
    • Delete or Backspace: Delete the selected features (you can undo these actions), or nodes when using the node tool
    • F5: Update the canvas (instead of Ctrl-r)