What, if any, workflows are available to round trip data between ArcGIS Desktop and an ArcGIS Online for Organizations (AGOL) web map with editable feature layers?

For example, we have a web map with an editable feature service layer. Some staff might add features to the map using ArcGIS.com Map Viewer, others with ArcGIS Online Explorer, and still others with ArcGIS Desktop. Nothing needs to be done for the first two, as soon as the map is saved the other application will see it. However for ArcGIS Desktop, the so-called powerhouse in this equation, there doesn't seem to be a way to synchronize or upload changes back to ArcGIS Online. Is this really the case?

There aren't any SDE or databases in the mix, just ArcGIS Desktop with file geodatabase and AGOL.

Update: ArcGIS Server is not involved at all (disregarding that's what Esri uses power AGOL behind the scenes, as there is no meaningful interaction with it from a user perspective).

  • Matt, Have you made any progress regarding records missing geometries? I'm experiencing the same issues.
    – user22422
    Sep 27, 2013 at 22:23
  • This does not really answer the question. If you have a different question, you can ask it by clicking Ask Question. You can also add a bounty to draw more attention to this question once you have enough reputation. Sep 27, 2013 at 23:02
  • @Blendt, I still get missing features from time to time when uploading new data to an existing feature service. I've tried both data synch tools (e.g. Windows Mobile) and just straight upload everything and overwrite the service. Some features just refuse to go. For what it's worth, I've opened a ticket with Esri Canada "arcpy.StageService omits features {[CASE#143409]}". There is progress but a not a solution I'm willing to trust on an ongoing basis. I've all but given up on ArcGIS Online for our needs. But that's for me, I encourage contacting Esri tech yourself, might be different for you Sep 30, 2013 at 19:56

1 Answer 1


I'm guessing this will be addressed at 10.2 with offline editing workflow, maybe someone at the devsummit can ask around. You can view Feature Services in 10.1 (actually quick well) but there's no direct editing. There's also the old Disconnected Editing process that works from ArcEditor seats, that may be helpful as well.




fwiw, the next version Arc2Earth Sync will connect up to your AGOL account. You'll be able to display/edit your feature services using just an ArcGIS Basic license. it's a couple weeks out but we've really simplified the process for connecting to Google Map Engine, CartoDB, Fulcrum and AGOL. it's OnDemand caching too, so it works well for very large layers (millions of features).

this quick video shows Google Maps Engine but the process is nearly identical for AGOL http://www.screenr.com/0ou7

UPDATE - here's a quick video showing live display/editing of AGOL Feature Services directly from ArcMap http://www.screenr.com/nQ67

UPDATE 2 - a new version of A2E has been released, you can try the live AGOL editing out now. http://www.arc2earth.com

cheers brian

  • I spoke to a couple folks today at the Dev Summit, and I didn't get a 100% authoritative answer. I think it'll be possible at 10.2, but I can't guarantee it. I'll do some more digging.
    – scw
    Mar 28, 2013 at 8:41
  • 1
    Thanks to the threads linked to above, I did get menu options to both "Edit local copy" and "synchronize" from Arcmap. The results were not good however. Somehow the GlobalID's for pre-existing features were turned to 0s, and the new point features I digitized had attributes but no visible geometry; the attribs did sync between local and server. After some more work & testing I'll post my results. Mar 28, 2013 at 15:37

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