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Configure a hosting server

Configure a relational and tile cache data store with one of your federated GIS Server sites and set that site as the hosting server for your ArcGIS Enterprise portal to allow members to do the following:

  • Publish hosted layers.
  • Share layers and maps from ArcGIS Maps for Office.
  • Add a zipped shapefile, CSV file, or GPS Exchange Format file to Map Viewer.
  • Batch geocode addresses from a CSV file or table.
  • Perform feature analysis in Map Viewer, Insights for ArcGIS, or ArcGIS Pro.
  • Perform raster analysis from Map Viewer or ArcGIS Pro.

To designate a GIS Server site as a hosting server, the site must be licensed as an ArcGIS GIS Server site at the Standard or Advanced edition. See What is ArcGIS GIS Server? for licensing details.

Configure data storage

The hosting server needs to access the data used by the hosted layers published to ArcGIS Enterprise. You need to configure storage locations for this data.

At minimum, you must configure storage for hosted feature layer data. Depending on what other types of layers you and members of your organization will publish to ArcGIS Enterprise, you may need additional storage. The following is a list of hosted layer types and where data is stored for each:

Layer typeStorage type

Hosted feature layers

ArcGIS Data Store relational data store

Hosted scene layers

ArcGIS Data Store tile cache data store

Hosted spatiotemporal feature layers

ArcGIS Data Store spatiotemporal big data store

Hosted tile layers and hosted vector tile layers

Disk space on the hosting server machines to store caches

In addition, if members of your organization will publish ArcGIS Server web services to the hosting server (in essence, using the hosting server as a federated server), you may need to configure additional disk space to hold content for those layers. For example, if your members publish cached map services or publish map image layers but choose to copy the data when they publish, you must ensure there is enough disk space available on the hosting server machines.


In versions 10.5.1 and earlier, enterprise geodatabases were supported for use as the managed database for a hosting server. At ArcGIS Enterprise 10.6, this is no longer supported. You must use an ArcGIS Data Store relational data store. You can still register an enterprise geodatabase with the ArcGIS GIS Server site, but you cannot configure the enterprise geodatabase as a managed database.

ArcGIS Data Store configuration

ArcGIS Data Store is a separate installation available with ArcGIS Enterprise that allows you to create and maintain the following data stores for hosted web layers you publish to ArcGIS Enterprise:

Install ArcGIS Data Store, preferably on a machine that is separate from the hosting server, and create a relational data store. For each additional data store type you require, install ArcGIS Data Store on a separate machine and create that data store. If the machine where you install ArcGIS Data Store contains a large amount of memory and storage and you won't be publishing many of scene layers, you may be able to create the relational and tile cache data stores on the same machine without any adverse effects. However, you should not create the spatiotemporal big data store on the same machine as the other data stores or on the same machine as ArcGIS Server; doing so will likely lead to poor performance or even render the deployment unusable.

See An overview of ArcGIS Data Store configuration and its related topics for instructions.


See Apps and functionality that require ArcGIS Data Store to help determine which additional types of data stores you need.

Specify the hosting server

Once one of your federated GIS Server sites has a relational and tile cache data store, register it as the portal's hosting server.

  1. Sign in to the portal website as an administrator and browse to Organization > Edit Settings > Servers.
  2. From the Hosting Server section of the page, click the drop-down list and choose one of the GIS Server sites you have federated with the portal. If you have added multiple GIS Server sites to your portal, only one can be designated as the hosting server.
  3. Click Save.

You can now publish hosted web layers.

Items for each of the services appear on the My Content tab of the content page in the portal website for your portal organization.

The services that power these items appear in a folder named Hosted, which you can see when you sign in to your GIS Server site from ArcGIS Server Manager.

If you have not already done so, you should now configure utility services for your portal.