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Use your site

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You connect and publish to ArcGIS Server on Amazon Web Services the same way you connect and publish to an ArcGIS server site on premises. This topic contains a few things to remember that will make it easier to work with your site on Amazon EC2.

Connect to the server

When you connect to a site that you built with ArcGIS Server Cloud Builder on Amazon Web Services, you do not use the address of any of the GIS server machines; instead, you use the URL of the Amazon Elastic Load Balancer. This load balancer has been configured to receive incoming traffic to the site through the common port 80, so there is no need to use the typical ArcGIS port 6080 in the URL. The load balancer distributes requests to the different GIS server machines in the site.

If you're not sure of the load balancer URL, open ArcGIS Server Cloud Builder on Amazon Web Services and click the name of your site. You'll see an expanded list of metadata, including an item called Manager URL. The first part of this URL contains the load balancer address (it typically contains

See Connect to your site from ArcGIS for Desktop for step-by-step connection instructions.

It is not necessary for you to install the ArcGIS Web Adaptor on your instances. The Elastic Load Balancer fills many of the roles typically played by the Web Adaptor.

Copy data to the server

There are two ways you can make your GIS data accessible to your Amazon EC2-based site:

  • You can log in to your instance and copy the data to it manually, using a technology like FTP or Remote Desktop Copy and Paste.
  • You can choose to have ArcGIS copy the data to the server automatically when you publish a service. This option does not allow data to be shared between services, nor does it allow data synchronization between the cloud and your on-premises deployment; however, this option is required if you don't have permissions to log in to the server.

Often, you may be publishing from a machine on premises that has different data paths than you use on your EC2 instance. Registering your data locations with ArcGIS Server helps you ensure that your paths will be automatically corrected when you publish.

Once your data is on the server, you may want to keep it in sync with a geodatabase on premises. An ArcGIS Server geodata service can help with this. For more information, see Use a geodata service and connected replica.