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Publish hosted vector tile layers

Vector tile layers reference a set of cached vectors and the information for rendering the vectors. Data in vector tile layers is stored in individual layers containing geometry, attributes, and styles. Styling information is stored separately from the tile geometry and attributes, and more than one style can be defined. This means that one set of vector tiles may be styled numerous ways without having to generate a new cache for each style. This saves space and speeds up the process for creating new map styles. Accessing vectors as precreated tiles also improves performance.

You can publish a vector tile layer to your portal using one of the methods described in the following sections. Use the resultant hosted vector tile layer for basemaps.

Build and publish a vector tile package

You can use ArcGIS Pro 1.2 or later to build vector tiles for a map and store them in an easily transferrable vector tile package (.vtpk) file. You can share a vector tile package from ArcGIS Pro to your portal and publish the uploaded vector tile package as a tile layer.

  1. Open the ArcGIS Pro project that contains the map vector data you want to package into tiles and publish.
  2. Sign in to your portal from ArcGIS Pro using an account that has privileges to create content.
  3. Use the Create Vector Tile Package geoprocessing tool to create a vector tile package.
  4. You have two options for adding the vector tile package to your portal and publishing a tile layer.
  5. If your vector tile package is over 2 GB, follow these steps to add and publish the package:
    1. Run the Share Package geoprocessing tool to add the vector tile package to your portal.
    2. Sign in to the portal website and open Content > My Content. You must have privileges to publish hosted tile layers.
    3. Click your tile package to display its item details page and click Publish.
    4. Type a title.
    5. If your portal administrator configured content categories, click Assign Category and select up to 20 categories to help people find your item. You can also use the Filter categories box to narrow down the list of categories.
    6. Type tags and click Publish.
  6. If your vector tile package is smaller than 2 GB, you can use the previous method to add to your portal and publish a tile layer, or you can sign in to the portal and add the vector tile package.
    1. Sign in to the portal website and open Content > My Content. You must have privileges to create content and publish hosted tile layers.
    2. Click Add Item > From my computer.
    3. Browse to the location of the vector tile package file (.vtpk).
    4. Leave Publish this file as a hosted layer checked.
    5. Type a title and tags to be applied to the package and the hosted layer.
    6. Click Add Item.

The vector tiles are unpacked, and a hosted tile layer is created. You can see the tile layer in My Content and add it to Map Viewer or Scene Viewer.

Note:

Vector tile layers can be displayed if you use Internet Explorer 11 and most other current versions of desktop browsers, including Chrome and Firefox.

Also note that vector tile layers perform best on machines with newer hardware.

Define a map in ArcGIS Pro and publish as a vector tile layer

Starting with ArcGIS Pro 1.4, you can publish a vector tile layer to be hosted on your portal.

Note that web browsers cannot display some of the more complex cartographic symbols you may have originally used when you authored the map. Most symbol types are available, but in some cases, the symbols may be downgraded when you publish them. See Author feature services in the ArcGIS Server help for more details about what symbols are supported, and make any required changes to your map symbology prior to publishing.

  1. Start ArcGIS Pro and open the project that contains the map you want to publish.
  2. Be sure your portal connection is active and sign in to your organization using an account that has privileges to create content and publish hosted tile layers.
  3. To publish a vector tile layer, do one of the following:
    • Select the layers in the Contents pane. Right-click the selection set and click Share As Web Layer.
    • To publish all the layers in the map, click Web Layer in the Share As group of the Share tab and click Publish Web Layer.

    Tip:

    If the Share As Web Layer menu option is not available, it may be due to one of the following:

    • The account you used to sign in does not have privileges to publish hosted layers.
    • Your portal is not configured with a hosting server, which is required to host web layers.
    • You're trying to publish a multipatch layer, which is not supported.

  4. Type a name for the vector tile layer. The layer is saved to My Content by default. You can save to a folder in My Content by either typing the folder name or browsing to an existing folder.
  5. Choose Copy all data.
  6. Choose Vector Tile for the Layer Type.

    Check marks are automatically removed from other Layer Type options, as only one can be checked at a time when copying data.

  7. Provide a summary and tags for the vector tile layer.
  8. Specify who can access the layer. All layers you publish are automatically shared to your personal workspace in your organization (My Content) and only you and the administrator can access it. Your content is inaccessible to others until you share it with one or more of the following:
    • Your organization— Choosing this option allows the layer to be shared with all authenticated users in the portal.
    • Everyone—Choosing this option makes the layer available to anyone who can access your portal, even those who do not sign in to it.
    • Groups—You can share the layer with members of groups to which you belong.
  9. Click Configuration and click the Configure Web Layer Properties button for the vector tile layer to specify cache settings.
  10. Choose a Tiling Scheme.
  11. Resize and drag the Levels of Detail bar to indicate minimum and maximum scale for your vector tile layer.

    The estimated size of the resultant cache changes as you change the minimum and maximum scale.

  12. Specify a location on the local ArcGIS Pro machine to temporarily store the vector tile cache.

    ArcGIS Pro generates the cache locally and temporarily stores it in a vector tile package. ArcGIS Pro automatically uploads the vector tile package to your portal and publishes the precreated tiles there.

  13. Choose a Tiling Format.
    • An Indexed tiling format creates tiles based on an index of feature density. This optimizes tile generation and file sizes.
    • A Flat tiling format creates tiles for each level of detail without regard to feature density. This produces a larger cache than one created with an indexed tiling format, but you can use a flat file format if all features in your map are fairly evenly distributed.
  14. If you chose an indexed tiling format, you can optionally specify an index polygon that you precreated using the Create Vector Tile Index geoprocessing tool.

    If you do not specify an index polygon, ArcGIS Pro generates index polygons during tile creation; however, the index polygons are not saved.

  15. When you're done specifying cache options, click the back button.
  16. Click the Content tab to confirm the tile layer includes the data layers you intended.
  17. Click Analyze to check for any errors or issues.

    If any issues are discovered, they are listed on the Messages tab. Right-click each message to get more information, read help for the error or warning, and access suggested fixes. You must fix the errors before you can publish. Optionally, you can fix the warnings to further improve the performance and appearance of your hosted tile layer.

  18. Once you've fixed the errors and optionally any warnings, click Publish.
    Note:
    Your data is copied to the server at this point. The size of the data and your network speed and bandwidth impact the time it takes to publish.

When publishing completes, you can click Manage the web layer to open the portal website.