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espena / sosicon

Licence: GPL-3.0 license
Design super-quality maps with raw data from the Norwegian Mapping Authority. Sosicon provides fast conversion from SOSI files to PostGIS or Shape.

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Sosicon v 1.0

For Linux, OS X and Windows. Converts SOSI files to a number of other formats, including shapefile and PostGIS database import files. The parser is still under development.

SOSI is a data format used for exchanging geographical information in Norway. The name is an acronym for "Samordnet Opplegg for Stedfestet Informasjon", which translates into something like "Coordinated Approach for Geospatial Information". Wikipedia has more.

Contributors are most welcome!

Online version

A working web version of Sosicon is now available on There's no need to install any binaries. Just run the conversion right in your browser.

The web application uses a WebAssembly version of Sosicon. The process runs on your local machine only. No data are uploaded to the web server during the process.

As of now, the web version only supports Shapefile conversion. Memory restrictions may limit the maximum SOSI file size that can be successfully handled. In such case an error message will be displayed, advising you to use a locally installed version of Sosicon instead.


  • Swift conversion
  • Selectable feature/objtype/field export
  • Supports command-line piping
  • Written in ANSI C++
  • Compiles and runs on OS X, Linux (32 and 64 bit) and Windows
  • Cross-platform GUI version built in Qt

Graphical user interface (GUI)

Desktop versions of sosicon for OSX and Windows are available for download from the bin directory:

These versions of sosicon are built using the cross-platform development tool Qt, licensed under the LGPL open-source license. A copy of the source code kan be obtained here (OS X and Linux), and is also available from the vendor’s web site.

Command-line interface

Prebuilt Sosicon command-line binaries are located in the /bin directory of the repo. Choose your OS and put the executable in a location where it can be run from the command line.

The Windows executable also requires Visual C++ Redistributable Packages for Visual Studio 2013.

Inspect file content

You can inspect the content of a SOSI file by using the -stat command, like this:

sosicon -stat input.sos

This command will render a list of SOSI elements (geometry types among other things) and SOSI object types (OBJTYPE).

Shapefile conversion

To convert a SOSI file to shape, run Sosicon from the directory where the SOSI file resides. Use the -2shp parameter to emit the three required files: Shape file (shp), database file (dbf) and index file (shx). A projection file (prj) will also be created if the reference grid is recognized by Sosicon.

sosicon -2shp input.sos

On Linux and OS X, batch conversion is supported by piping:

ls *.sos | sosicon -2shp

On Windows, use dir with the /b switch for piping:

dir *.sos /b | sosicon -2shp

The above command will convert every *.sos file in current directory to corresponding shapefiles. The files will be written to the same directory, keeping the file title extended with feature name, geometry type and shp/shx/dbf extensions.

Use the -o parameter to specify optional output file basename:

sosicon -2shp -o ~/myfolder/arealdekke input.sos

PostGIS conversion

Use the -2psql parameter to make a PostGIS import file (SQL script) from a SOSI file. The generated SQL file can be run against any PostgreSQL database with PostGIS installed. Use the psql command-line utility to import the file.

sosicon -2psql input.sos

This command will create a default SQL file named "postgis_dump.sql". When imported to PostgreSQL, the data tables will be put in the schema "sosicon" by default. There will be one table for each recognized geometry in the SOSI file. The tables will be named "object_point", "object_polygon" and "object_linestring".

The "-schema" and "-table" parameters can be used to customize the schema and table base name:

sosicon -2psql -schema topo -table arealdekke input.sos

When imported to PostgreSQL, the tables will be named "arealdekke_point", "arealdekke_polygon" and "arealdekke_linestring". The tables will be put in a schema named "topo".

By default, the SOSI geometries are converted to EPSG:4326 grid when imported to PostgreSQL. Use the "-srid" parameter to specify another target grid, for example Google mercator; SRID 900913:

sosicon -2psql -schema topo -table arealdekke -srid 900913 input.sos

PostGIS takes care of the actual grid conversion when the data is inserted into the table(s). The user must assert that the target srid exists in PostGIS' spatial_ref_sys table.

Build from source code

###Linux/OS X You need g++ to compile Sosicon. To build the command-line version from source code, check out the git repository, enter the src directory and run make and then make install. There's no configure yet. On 32-bit Linux systems, the binaries will be output to bin/cmd/linux32. On 64-bit Linux systems, the binaries will be output to bin/cmd/linux64. On OS X, the binaries will be output in bin/cmd/osx.

If you run make install after building the source, the executable will be copied to $INSTALL_PATH, or default to /usr/local/bin/sosicon.

###Windows Project files for Visual Studio is included in the repository. Open src/sosicon.sln solution file in Visual Studio (Express) 2013 and build the project from there.

###GUI version The source code for the GUI version is located in gui/sosicon. Download and install the community version of Qt for your platform to open and build the project in Qt Creator.


Sosicon is still in beta. Shapefile and PostgreSQL export works reasonably well on most common SOSI geometry types, but there are still bugs.

Source documentation

Documentation exists in html, rtf and pdf formats. See the doc directory within the repository or visit for an online version.

The source code documentation for sosicon is generated by the brilliant Doxygen code documentation tool written by Dimitri van Heesch.

Ragel parser

The parser in sosicon is based on the Ragel state machine compiler. The ragel script is located in the src/ragel directory. Ragel binaries for OS X, Linux 32- and 64-bit and Win32 is precompiled and stored in /src/ragel/bin/. The makefile is set up to reference the correct binary when compiling on Linux or OS X.

Ragel was designed and written by Adrian Thurston and released under the GNU General Public License in 2002. Sosicon relies heavily on the excellent work of Thurston and his team of contributors.

License and disclaimer

Sosicon is written by Espen Andersen, and released under the GNU General Public License.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

Although the author has attempted to find and correct any bugs in the free software programs, the author is not responsible for any damage or losses of any kind caused by the use or misuse of the programs. The author is under no obligation to provide support, service, corrections, or upgrades to the free software programs.

Note that the project description data, including the texts, logos, images, and/or trademarks, for each open source project belongs to its rightful owner. If you wish to add or remove any projects, please contact us at [email protected].