I'm in the process of opening up as much data to the public as possible. I've been told to open up for the background map (tiles?) which is used from a geoserver(.org), so others can use the maps/tiles? for their own projects.

Which way would be the best way to do it? Is it a collection of images which should be exported, is it some sort of vector-graphics or documents which can be exported or...?

I really do hope such a question is OK, I'm in no way a GIS expert (or GIS-user for that matter).


Geoserver serves out data via an API called OGC Services. These are of mainly two types:

  • WMS or Web Map service, where the client can ask for an Image of the rendered Data
  • WFS or Web Feature Service where the client can ask for the features in your Data.

In Addition to these, Geoserver also comes with a component called GeoWebCache, which is used to create tilesets of your WMS service, so that some Clients who ask for the tiles get them immediately, Instead of Making WMS requests.

Now I can't say which one you should open, because it all depends on your situation and services.

You should also know that one way of 'opening data' is informing your audience that they can use your Services, and Access the data via these OGC services via a particular address.

  • Thank you for your answer. The reason for my rather "newbee" question is, that we want to publish the data via the platform CKAN and not the Geoserver, in its raw format, so others can use it freely and do whatever they whish. – user809829 Aug 7 '14 at 7:11
  • CKAN and GeoServer are two different servers. I can see that CKA can serve out data on its own. In this case you do not need geoServer at all. If you need something with CKAN, I suggest that you open a new question, since this question just mentions GeoServer, and there is no Mention of CKAN – Devdatta Tengshe Aug 7 '14 at 7:41
  • It's because we have the data stored in a Geoserver I'm asking here. If it's possible to export the raw data from Geoserver. CKAN should be ignored in this matter, it was just to explain that we need the raw files to be used for open data. – user809829 Aug 7 '14 at 12:58
  • Geoserver does not store data. It only serves out the data. Your data will be stored in some other format like shapefiles, or even a Database like PostGIS – Devdatta Tengshe Aug 7 '14 at 14:05
  • I see, thank you. I will investigate further internally to see if we can figure out where it gets its data from. – user809829 Aug 8 '14 at 10:51

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