The tindex command is used to create a GDAL-style tile index for PDAL-readable point cloud types (see gdaltindex).

The tindex command has two modes. The first mode creates a spatial index file for a set of point cloud files. The second mode creates a point cloud file that is the result of merging the points from files referred to in a spatial index file that meet some criteria (usually a geographic region filter).

tindex Creation Mode

$ pdal tindex <tindex> <filespec>

This command will index the files referred to by filespec and place the result in tindex. The tindex is a vector file or database that will be created by pdal as necessary to store the file index. The type of the index file can be specified by specifying the OGR code for the format using the --ogrdriver option. If no driver is specified, the format defaults to “ESRI Shapefile”. Any filetype that can be handled by OGR is acceptable.

In vector file-speak, each file specified by filespec is stored as a feature in a layer in the index file. The filespec is a glob pattern. and normally needs to be quoted to prevent shell expansion of wildcard characters.

--tindex                   Non-positional option for specifying the index file name.
--filespec                 Non-positional option for specifying pattern of files to
                           be indexed.
--lyr_name                 Name of layer in which to store the features. Defaults to
                           the base name of the first file indexed.
--tindex_name              Name of the field in the feature in which to store the
                           indexed file name. ["location"]
--ogrdriver                OGR driver name. ["ESRI Shapefile"]
--t_srs                    Spatial reference system in which to store index vector
                           data. ["EPSG:4326"]
--a_srs                    Spatial reference assumed to be the reference for the
                           source data.  If the source data includes spatial reference
                           information, this value is IGNORED. ["EPSG:4326"]
--write_absolute_path arg  Write absolute rather than relative file paths [false]

tindex Merge Mode

$ pdal tindex --merge <tindex> <filespec>

This command will read the existing index file tindex and merge the points in the indexed files that pass any filter that might be specified, writing the output to the point cloud file specified in filespec. The type of the output file is determined automatically from the filename extension.

--tindex    Non-positional option for specifying the index filename.
--filespec  Non-positional option for specifying the merge output filename.
--polygon   Well-known text representation of geometric filter.  Only
            points inside the object will be written to the output file.
--bounds    Bounding box for clipping points.  Only points inside the box
            will be written to the output file.
            --bounds "([xmin,xmax],[ymin,ymax],[zmin,zmax])"
--t_srs     Spatial reference system in which the output data should be
            represented. ["EPSG:4326"]

Example 1:

Find all LAS files via find, send that file list via STDIN to pdal tindex, and write a SQLite tile index file with a layer named pdal:

$ find las/ -iname "*.las" | pdal tindex index.sqlite -f "SQLite" \
    --stdin --lyr_name pdal

Example 2:

Glob a list of LAS files, output the SRS for the index entries to EPSG:4326, and write out an SQLite file.

$ pdal tindex index.sqlite "*.las" -f "SQLite" --lyr_name "pdal" \
    --t_srs "EPSG:4326"