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Local cache directories on the server

When many GIS server machines try to write tiles into a shared cache directory at the same time, scalability degrades. For this reason, the server uses a local cache directory to temporarily write tiles on each GIS server.

Map and image service caches

Local cache directories on the server are only used with caches that use the compact storage type. The server writes one bundle file (which can include up to about 16,000 tiles) to the local cache directory. When complete, the bundle is moved to the shared cache directory. Writing bundles locally and moving them to the shared cache directory is more scalable than having all the machines write the bundles directly into the shared cache directory.


In 10.0 and earlier versions, you could enable or disable the use of local cache directories. In 10.1 and later versions, if ArcGIS Server detects that you have used a shared network folder for your cache directory, the bundle files are always written to the local cache directory first.

Scene service caches

The server writes several temporary files in the local cache directory before they are moved to the tile cache data store for final cache tile storage. These temporary files are very large, and can be as large as three to five times the final cache size. These temporary files get deleted when caches finish building.

Set the local cache directory location

The default local cache directory is the temp folder for the ArcGIS Server account. You can change this using the ArcGIS Server Administrator Directory.

It's recommended that you have at least 0.5 GB of available space in this location for each running instance of the CachingTools geoprocessing service multiplied by the number of GIS servers in your cluster. More space may be required for JPEG or mixed-format caches that use a high compression quality, or detailed PNG caches with high bit depth.

As mentioned in the previous section, if you are publishing scene services, the local cache directory must have enough space available to accommodate the temporary files generated when creating scene service caches.

  1. Create a directory on each GIS server using an identical path. Make sure the ArcGIS Server account has write access to these directories.
  2. Open a web browser to the ArcGIS Server Administrator Directory. The URL is formatted
  3. If necessary, log in using a user name and password that has administrative access to ArcGIS Server.
  4. Click system > properties > update.
  5. In the text box, add a localTempFolder property pointing at your folder. For example: {"localTempFolder":"E:\\arcgistemp"}
  6. Click the Update button.
  7. Use Manager or the Catalog window to navigate to the ArcGIS Server folder named System and stop and then start the following services:
    • The CachingTools geoprocessing service for map and image services
    • The SceneCachingTools geoprocessing service for scene services