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File geodatabases

A file geodatabase is a collection of files in a folder on disk that can store, query, and manage spatial and nonspatial data. Create a file geodatabase in ArcGIS Pro or using a Python script that calls the Create File Geodatabase geoprocessing tool.

The following sections explain how you can use file geodatabases and their contents with ArcGIS Server sites and ArcGIS Enterprise portals. For information about creating and managing file geodatabases, see the ArcGIS Pro help.

ArcGIS Server sites and file geodatabases

Add feature classes, tables, mosaic datasets, and raster datasets from the file geodatabases in your registered folders to maps in ArcGIS Pro, configure the data in the map to look and behave as you require, and publish the data as web layers that reference the data in your file geodatabase as follows:

  • Publish map services from feature classes and tables in a file geodatabase to a federated or stand-alone ArcGIS GIS Server site.
  • Publish image services from raster datasets in a file geodatabase to a federated or stand-alone ArcGIS GIS Server site.
  • Publish an image service from raster datasets or mosaic datasets to a federated or stand-alone ArcGIS Image Server site.

ArcGIS Enterprise portals and file geodatabases

The map, feature, and image services you publish to federated ArcGIS Server sites are automatically available to you in your portal as layers. You can also add the services you publish to stand-alone ArcGIS Server sites as layer items in your portal or use the services in maps you create in a portal map viewer.

To share an entire file geodatabases with other portal members or the public, compress the file geodatabase and add it to your ArcGIS Enterprise portal. If you're a member of a role that has publishing privileges, you can publish the file geodatabase contents as a hosted feature layer that can be used in maps, apps, and analysis.

Depending on your privileges, you can do the following with file geodatabases in an ArcGIS Enterprise portal:

  • If you're a member of a role that has privileges to create content, you can add a file geodatabase to your portal and share it with other members of your portal. The people you share it with can download the file geodatabase and access its contents. The file geodatabase must be compressed in a .zip file to add it to your portal.
  • If you're member of a role that has privileges to publish hosted feature layers and your file geodatabase contains feature classes and tables, you can publish the contents of the zipped file geodatabase as a single hosted feature layer. Or, you can add individual feature classes to maps in ArcGIS Pro and publish hosted feature layers to your portal. You, and the people you share the hosted feature layers with, can visualize the layer data in maps and apps and analyze the data.
  • Any hosted feature layer in the portal can be configured to allow portal members to export data from it. If the owner of the layer or organization administrator enables this capability and shares the layer with you, you can export the hosted feature layer data to a file geodatabase. Download the file geodatabase from the portal and use its contents in desktop apps, other ArcGIS Enterprise portals, or ArcGIS Online organizations.