I am trying to connect to Postgresql database that I just installed on my server machine. As instructed by Esri I have download from postgres and installed psqlodbc. However, when I tried to add the database connection using "Add OLE DBconnection" I could not find it listed under OLE DB provider(s). More over I do not understand the connection parameters. I could the see driver installed in the control panel (under add/delete programs). However I could not see it listed in the OLE DB connection. Can you help me understand my problem? Thanks.

Additional information: I just install postgresql. It has a default database. I have not install ArcSDE on top of it.

  • are your plans to connect to spatial data ((or just tabular)? are there any tables in your database now? are you trying to create the ole db connection in arccatalog? – Brad Nesom Jun 12 '12 at 1:05
  • My intention was to create a spatial data by adding and deleting featureclasses using ArcCatalog. I am learning how to connect to postgresql. As of now I just installed postgres on remote server. I learnt that from ArcGIS 10 onwards, ArcSDE is integrated into desktop and server products. Now that I have postgres on my remote server, I am trying to connect to Posgres from my computer which as ArcGIS 10 (desktop). From Esri documentation I have installed psqlODBC (posgtres)driver. However, I could not see the driver in the Ole DB providers list. – OPENGISTECH Jun 12 '12 at 14:16
  • Or Do I need to install SDE for postgres on top of Postgres even though ArcSDE is integrated?. Even then am I not suppose to have this OLE DB driver connection established to work with ArcCatalog? – OPENGISTECH Jun 12 '12 at 14:19

If you finished install vanilla PostgreSQL, then...

  • How to allow connections from other machines by editing pg_hba.conf? Pardon my ignorance. – OPENGISTECH Jun 12 '12 at 14:22
  • 1
    I updated the answer to have a link to this page instead cyberciti.biz/tips/… which describes what you need to change in your postgresql.conf and pg_hba.conf – Ragi Yaser Burhum Jun 12 '12 at 14:33

Ragi is correct for just connecting to db. If you need "true esri" functionality in arccatlog you will need to install sde (actually since this post esri has changed this. Now sde is installed with every install of desktop/server). and your last comment would have true and false statements in it.

  1. do install sde on postgres. Then follow the create geodatabase instructions in esri help
  2. arcsde is not integrated, only sde for sqlexpress.
  3. OLE_DB is only for tabular connection (no spatial) to arccatalog.
    There is a lot of great reading on the resources site.
    So don't sell your project short by skipping around, You get the benifit of all that you paid for if you know how it ALL works.

Try this.

Geodatabasse Tutorial
ESRI Help - Geodatabases in ArcGIS
ArcSDE Admin Guide
What is ArcSDE
What is a direct connection
Direct connect to Oracle 1
Direct connect to Oracle 2

  • Yes, I need true esri functionality. If I need SDE installation on top of Oracla and Postgres tye RDBMS databases, what is the meaning of direct connect? – OPENGISTECH Jun 12 '12 at 18:51
  • there are two types. sde and direct connect. – Brad Nesom Jun 12 '12 at 23:52
  • Right. We have sde connection with Oracle. We are moving away to posgtres. I am interested in direct connect. The idea is to use direct connect to postgres and import shapefiles into the database using arccatalog. Postgres machine has ArcGIS Server installed on it before we even installed postgres. I know I missing few parts like modifying postgres config file, postgres drive on arcgis desktop on the client side. But I do not know whare to look for to have proper installation setup. – OPENGISTECH Jun 13 '12 at 14:53

This is not a direct answer to you question, but there is a plugin for ArcGIS called ST_SpatialKit that will allow you to connect to a PostGIS database. The connection parameters are relatively straight forward. The plugin is free.


  • I learnt about this st_spatialkit software. Unfortunately it is only free for one year. Moreover, my business does not allow me try additional third party products. I would try postgis later. For now, I want keep it simple by trying with existing products. – OPENGISTECH Jun 12 '12 at 14:26

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