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Connect to ArcGIS Server on AWS from ArcMap

Connect to your ArcGIS Server site running on Amazon Web Services from the Catalog window in ArcMap to view and work with your services in the desktop environment. For example, you can drag and drop a service from the Catalog window into the ArcMap table of contents.


Instructions are only provided here for connecting to ArcGIS Server, not your enterprise geodatabase. You should avoid connecting to your geodatabases from your on-premises environment, primarily for performance reasons.

Follow these steps to connect to your server.

  1. In the Catalog tree, expand the GIS Servers node.
  2. Double-click Add ArcGIS Server.
  3. Choose whether you want to make an administrator, publisher, or user connection and click Next.

    The steps in this topic assume an administrator connection, but the process is similar for the other types of connection.

  4. For the Server URL, type the URL of the ArcGIS Server site you want to connect to.

    The URL takes the format http://<Elastic Load Balancer address>/arcgis. One way to get the URL is to display the My Sites list in Cloud Builder and click the name of your site. Select and copy the Manager URL, paste it in the Server URL text box, and delete /manager/ from the end.

  5. Choose ArcGIS Server from the Server Type drop-down list.
  6. During the publishing process, a service definition file is created and temporarily stored locally on disk. When the publishing process completes, the service definition is uploaded to the server and the local file is deleted. You can optionally change the default location by deselecting Use ArcGIS Desktop's staging folder and browsing to a new location. For more information, see Changing the default staging folder in ArcGIS for Desktop.
  7. Enter the User Name and Password of an account that has permissions to ArcGIS Server.

    The privileges associated with the account you enter need to correspond to the type of connection you are making. For example, if you are attempting to make a publisher connection, the account needs to have publisher (or administrator) privileges to ArcGIS Server.

    If you've not created any accounts for ArcGIS Server, use the primary site administrator account that you specified when you defined the site in Cloud Builder.

    Optionally, you can choose to save your user name and password information so that you don't have to enter it each time you connect.

  8. Click Finish. Your connection appears in the GIS Servers node in the Catalog tree.
  9. Optionally, rename your connection. To do so, right-click the connection in the Catalog tree and choose Rename.