Creating a QGIS color map from text file


I recently found the interesting USGS map of global ecosystems. The data can be viewed online but can also  be downloaded as geotif files, which is great as about every GIS program on the planet can read that format. Unfortunately the color legend is included as a *.lyr file, which can only be used in ArcGIS.

But the good people of USGS also provide a dbf file with, amongst others, the mapping unit, names of the ecosystem units and a color code. In ArcGIS this table can be linked to the raster layers, a features which is not (yet) implemented in QGIS. However, it is easy enough to create a color map from this file, which you can use in QGIS. It is just a text file.

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