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Geoprocessing service settings: Parameters

Parameter Explanation


The cluster the service will run under.

Execution mode: Synchronous or Asynchronous

Asynchronous and synchronous define how the client (the application using the task) interacts with the server and gets the result from the task. When a service is set to synchronous, the client waits for the task to finish. Typically, a synchronous task executes quickly—five seconds or less. An asynchronous task typically takes longer to execute, and the client must periodically ask the server if the task has finished and, if it has finished, get the result. A web application using an asynchronous task must have logic implemented to check the status of a task and handle the result once execution is finished. ArcGIS Desktop clients handle both execution types natively.

View result with a map service

When publishing a geoprocessing service, you can choose to view the result of all tasks within the service as a map (in addition to other results of your task). The map image is created on the server a map service and transported back to the client as an image (a .tiff, with style information). The symbology, labeling, transparency, and all other properties of the map image to be returned are the same as the output layer in your current ArcMap session. There are several reasons why you would use a result map service:

  • If your task outputs a large number of features that the client has to symbolize and draw, it will be faster and easier for the client to receive a map.
  • The best way to display your result requires capabilities found in ArcMap and not on the client.
  • For data distribution reasons, you don't want to send the client any features, just a map image.
  • The result of your task is a nontransportable dataset such as a TIN or CAD drawing. The only way to send geography to the client is with a map image.

If your output layer is drawing unique values, you might need to uncheck <all other values> in the layer properties to force recalculation of the unique values prior to drawing. See Creating a layer symbology file for more details.

If you want the client to only view the data and not be able to download data, set the Maximum Number of Records Returned by Server option to 0 (zero) when publishing.


A result map service can only be used when the service is set to be Asynchronous.

Show Messages

You can return messages of varying levels to the client that executed your geoprocessing service.

  • None: (default) No geoprocessing messages are returned to the client, only whether the execution was successful or failed.
  • Error: Only tool messages that produce an error are returned to the client.
  • Warning: All tool error and warning messages are returned to the client.
  • Info: All tool messages from execution are returned to the client.


All messages, regardless of level, may contain dataset paths and names, and this may pose a security risk. The Info level is verbose and typically contains more references to dataset paths and names. In general, you will want to return messages during development but turn them off in production.

Learn more about message types and severity in geoprocessing

Maximum Number of Records Returned by Server

The maximum number of results the service can return to a client. Setting this value to a large number means your GIS server can handle sending a lot of individual records or features to the client. If you don't want to return any features, set this value to 0 (zero). Typically, you set this value to zero only when you enable View result with a map service.


The directories used by the server to write files when executing a task.

Some geoprocessing service settings can only be set inside the ArcGIS Server Administrator Directory web page. These advanced settings cannot be configured from ArcMap or ArcGIS Server Manager.

Modifying the properties of an existing service

All the service properties listed above can be modified after the service has been published. You will need at least a publisher or administrator connection to modify the settings. These settings can be applied on a service that is already running or stopped. If modifying the settings of a running service, it will be restarted when you apply the settings.


Use caution if you disable or enable the result map service of an existing service. A geoprocessing task inside the service could require a result map service to draw unsupported output types, and as such, you should not disable the View result with a map service setting.

Differences between 10.0 and later versions


Prior to 10.1, you could enable local jobs for a geoprocessing service. This option has been deprecated, and when your service is published, the server will determine whether it needs to enable the setting. Local jobs will be enabled when the output directories are set to a UNC path or when more than one machine makes up your entire GIS server cluster. The directory is typically set to C:\Documents and Settings\arcgis\Local Settings\Temp or C:\Users\arcgis\AppData\Local\Temp on Windows or C:\windows\temp\Temp on Linux. Through advanced service settings, a GIS server administrator can modify the path location.


Prior to 10.1, when geoprocessing services made use of either ArcGIS Spatial Analyst extension or coverage tools, you sometimes had to change the arcgis account temporary directory to another folder such as C:\arcgisserver\temp. Some of these tools had limitations when writing to a path with more than 100 characters or paths with spaces. Beginning at 10.1, the path limitation has been increased to 255 characters, and paths can have spaces.

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