Skip To Content

Publish a map service from ArcMap

Once you finish creating a map in ArcMap, you can publish the map document as a service to a GIS Server site and share it locally and on the web.


You must use an ArcGIS Server site licensed as ArcGIS GIS Server to publish map services.


If you are working with versioned data, by default, only the version in the map document is exposed through the map service when you publish the service. If you want to work with a version other than the one that was used to publish the map service, you can do so using the ArcGIS Server REST and SOAP APIs. To learn more, consult the documentation specific to these APIs.

To publish your ArcMap document as a service, follow these steps:

  1. Open your map document in ArcMap and choose File > Share As > Service from the main menu.

    The Share as Service window appears.

  2. Choose Publish a service and click Next.
  3. Choose the GIS Server connection you want to use from the Choose a connection drop-down list. If the connection you want to use is not listed, you can create a connection by clicking Add ArcGIS Server Add ArcGIS Server. For full instructions, see Connect to ArcGIS Server from ArcGIS Desktop.
  4. Optionally, in the Publish a Service window, type a new name for the service. The name cannot be more than 120 characters and can contain alphanumeric characters and underscores only.
  5. Click Next.

    By default, services are published to the ArcGIS Server Site (root) folder. Services can be organized into subfolders under the root folder.

  6. Choose the folder where you want to publish the service, or create a folder to contain the service, and click Continue.

    The Service Editor appears.

  7. Set the properties for your map service. You can choose what users can do with your service and take fine-grained control of how the server will expose your service.

    For details on how to manually set map service properties, see Set map service properties. You can also automatically import properties from an existing service definition or a published map service by clicking Import Import. For information on how to best configure your service for deployment, see Tune and configure services.


    If you close the Service Editor during this session, you'll be prompted to save your work as a draft service. Draft services allow you to come back to your service configuration work at a later time. By default, draft services are saved in the Drafts folder of your ArcGIS Server connection. For more information, see About draft services.

  8. Click Analyze Analyze.

    This examines your map document to determine if it can be published to the server.

  9. Fix any errors (Error) in the Prepare window so you can publish your map document as a service. Optionally, you can fix the warnings and informational messages to further improve the performance and appearance of your map service.

    For more information about resolving these issues, see Analyze your GIS resource.


    To give yourself more viewing area when configuring your map service, click the Collapse button Collapse at the top of the Service Editor.

  10. Optionally click Preview Preview to see how your map will look when viewed on the web.

    See Preview your map for more information.

  11. Once you've fixed the errors and, optionally, any warnings and messages, click Publish Publish.

    If data is copied to the ArcGIS Server machine when you publish the map service, the size of the data and your network bandwidth will impact the time it takes to publish.

Your map service is now running on the server and can be accessed by users and clients on your network. If your server administrator has allowed web access to the service, your service is also now available on the web.