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g.mapsets - Modifies/prints the user’s current mapset search path.
Affects the user’s access to data existing under the other mapsets in the current


general, settings, search path


g.mapsets --help
g.mapsets [-lps] mapset=name[,name,...] operation=string [separator=character] [--help]
[--verbose] [--quiet] [--ui]

List all available mapsets in alphabetical order

Print mapsets in current search path

Launch mapset selection GUI dialog

Print usage summary

Verbose module output

Quiet module output

Force launching GUI dialog

mapset=name[,name,...] [required]
Name of mapset (default: current search path)
Name(s) of existing mapset(s) to add/remove or set

operation=string [required]
Operation to be performed
Options: set, add, remove
Default: add

Field separator for printing (-l and -p flags)
Special characters: pipe, comma, space, tab, newline
Default: space


For basic information about GRASS mapset, location and data base refer to GRASS

A mapset holds a distinct set of data layers, each relevant to the same (or a subset of
the same) geographic region, and each drawn in the same map coordinate system. At the
outset of every GRASS session, the user identifies a GRASS data base, location, and mapset
that are to be the user’s current data base, current location, and current mapset for the
duration of the session; any maps created by the user during the session will be stored
under the current mapset set at the session’s outset (see g.mapset [without an "s"] and
g.gisenv for changing the mapset with a session).

The user can add, modify, and delete data layers that exist under his current mapset.
Although the user can also access (i.e., use) data that are stored under other mapsets in
the same GRASS location using the mapname@mapsetname notation or mapset search path, the
user can only make permanent changes (create or modify data) located in the current
mapset. The user’s mapset search path lists the order in which other mapsets in the same
GRASS location can be searched and their data accessed by the user. The user can modify
the listing and order in which these mapsets are accessed by modifying the mapset search
path; this can be done using the g.mapsets command. This program allows the user to use
other’s relevant map data without altering the original data layer, and without taking up
disk space with a copy of the original map. The mapname@mapsetname notation may be used
irrespective of the mapset search path, i.e., any map found in another mapset with
sufficient g.access privileges may be called in such a manner.

g.mapsets shows the user available mapsets under the current GRASS location, lists mapsets
to which the user currently has access, and lists the order in which accessible mapsets
will be accessed by GRASS programs searching for data files. The user is then given the
opportunity to add or delete mapset names from his search path, or modify the order in
which mapsets will be accessed.

When the user specifies the name of a data base element file (e.g., a particular vector
map, raster map, imagery group file, etc.) to a GRASS program, the program searches for
the named file under each of the mapsets listed in the user’s mapset search path in the
order listed there until the program finds a file of the given name. Users can also
specify a file by its mapset, to make explicit the mapset from which the file is to be
drawn; e.g., the command:
g.copy raster=soils@PERMANENT,my_soils
ensures that a new file named my_soils is to be a copy of the file soils from the mapset

In each location there is the special mapset PERMANENT included in the mapset search path,
as this mapset typically contains base maps relevant to many applications. Often, other
mapsets which contain sets of interpreted maps will be likewise included in the user’s
mapset search path. Suppose, for example, that the mapset Soil_Maps contains interpreted
soils map layers to which the user wants access. The mapset Soil_Maps should then be
included in the user’s search path variable.

The mapset search path is saved as part of the current mapset. When the user works with
that mapset in subsequent GRASS sessions, the previously saved mapset search path will be
used (and will continue to be used until it is modified by the user with g.mapsets).


By default g.mapsets adds to the current mapset search path mapsets named by mapset
option. Alternatively mapsets can be removed (operation=remove) from the search path or
defined by operation=set.

Users can restrict others’ access to their mapset files through use of g.access. Mapsets
to which access is restricted can still be listed in another’s mapset search path;
however, access to these mapsets will remain restricted.


Selecting mapsets with the graphical mapset manager
Using the -s flag, a convenient graphical mapset manager can be opened to select and
deselect other mapsets (the actual mapset and the PERMANENT mapset are always selected):
g.mapsets -s

Print available mapsets
All available mapsets in the current location can be printed out by
g.mapsets -l
Available mapsets:
PERMANENT user1 user2

Add new mapset
Add mapset ’user2’ to the current mapset search path
g.mapsets mapset=user2 operation=add
The current mapset search path is changed accordingly
g.mapsets -p
Accessible mapsets:
user1 user2

Overwrite current search path
Overwrite current search path
g.mapsets mapset=user1,PERMANENT operation=set

Using shortcuts for search path
The current mapset can be defined by a shortcut "." (dot)
g.mapsets mapset=.,PERMANENT operation=set
Note: The current mapset will be always included in the search path on the first position
even if you change its position or omit the current mapset from the mapset option.
g.mapsets -p
Accessible mapsets:

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