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Gauging ArcGIS GIS Server Performance with Integrated Windows Authentication

If you want to know how much traffic your ArcGIS Server site can handle, you’ll have to thoroughly test. And because you’re probably not going to convince thousands of people to log on to your apps and services all at once, you need something like JMeter to perform load testing.

My first introduction to performance testing, and really just the JMeter in general, was with this awesome blog post from Randall Williams. I eventually started to use JMeter widely and also suggested users to run a sanity check and load test their GIS environments before moving to production.

In the enterprise world, a domain-based approach is widely used for secure authentication and authorization, where credentials of currently logged in Windows users are seamlessly passed to web applications, allowing single-sign-on. JMeter lets you emulate requests being sent from a real user by constructing relevant headers and passing them along with the request. This post focuses on configuring JMeter to perform load testing when the services are secured with Integrated Windows Authentication (IWA).

Here, I assume you have already installed JMeter and created a test plan. If you haven’t, fret not! Refer to this blog for a detailed walkthrough: Preparing for the flood: Will your GIS Server sink or swim?

Once you have modified ArcGIS Server for Windows Authentication, you can forge ahead with adjusting JMeter to handle the authentication challenge. Here are the steps:

1. Navigate to the JMeter bin directory (apache-jmeter-2.7/bin).

2. Open the file in text editor and set to the following:


3. Save and close the file.

4. Open the file httpclient.parameters and set to the following:


5. Save and close the file.

6. You must use the HTTP Authorization Manager configuration element to construct a relevant authentication header. The Authorization Manager lets you specify one or more user logins for web pages that are restricted using server authentication.

7. Complete the HTTP Authorization Manager as follows:

Username: “User logon name” for Windows domain
Password: Windows domain password
Domain: [DOMAIN]
Other fields like “Base URL” and “Mechanism” can be left as it is.

To accurately simulate the users, you can setup each thread to login with different credentials by placing an HTTP Authorization Manager configuration element in each thread group element.

Tip: You can add a ‘View Results Tree’ listener to debug your test plan. Thus, you can review the request and response data to ensure that your test plan works well.

Below is a sample request with the Authorization Manager disabled:

Below is a properly configured HTTP Authorization Manager:

Here you can see JMeter sending authentication information in an Authorization header: NTLM.

Because the way Microsoft NTLM (also known as Windows Challenge/Response) and IWA work, the first few requests return a 401 response as part of the NTLM handshake scheme. This means that for the first request, you might encounter an unusually high response time.

This should help you understand how your services from ArcGIS Server would perform with Windows Authentication security. You may have a more complex situation if more Active Directory domains are involved (for example, domain trusts, forest trusts, complex nested groups, and so forth), or if there is a performance issue with your domain controller. Head over to your Active Directory Administrator for more information. If there’s a performance bottleneck that cannot be eased, you may want to use the other type of security scheme.

Happy load testing!

Divyam Gulati – Server Support Analyst

Original author: Divyam Gulati


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Tips and Tricks for Working with 3D Data on the ArcGIS Platform

3D data is becoming more ubiquitous nowadays and is especially promoted throughout the ArcGIS Platform. From web scenes, to CityEngine, to ArcGIS Pro, there are many different applications to import, manage, model, and share your 3D data. To get the output you are looking for, it may require numerous steps and tools. To navigate some of these steps and tools, here are some tips and tricks for working with 3D data in ArcGIS.

3D File Coordinate Systems

The majority of 3D formats do not store a coordinate system. GeoVRML and KML are the lone exceptions. KML will use a WGS 1984 coordinate system and meters for the unit of measurement. All other types (DAE, 3DS, OBJ) must be placed properly, otherwise they may import at “0,0″ (off the coast of Africa).

Trick #1

If you are using CityEngine, you can drag and drop your shape from the Navigator window into the scene (this workflow assumes a scene coordinate system is already set). When you export the shape to a multipatch feature class, the coordinate system is created with the data so you can bring it into another ArcGIS product.

Import Overview

Trick #2

The same workflow can be accomplished in ArcGIS Pro. Create an empty multipatch feature class, navigate to Editor > Create Features > Select Model, and click the globe to place the model.

Trick #3

Use the Replace with Model tool (ArcScene or ArcGlobe) or the Replace with Multipatch tool (ArcGIS Pro).

ArcGIS Desktop Replace with Model

ArcGIS Pro Replace with Multipatch

Trick #4

If you are using ArcScene, ArcGlobe, or ArcGIS Pro, manually place the model during an edit session using the Move, Rotate, or Scale operations.

Move, rotate, or scale a feature

Note: There is known issue with the Import 3D files tool. The placement points parameter is not honored so as of ArcGIS 10.4.1 or ArcGIS Pro 1.3, this tool is not a viable option. This issue is planned to be fixed in a future release.


To import your 3D file with textures, you must ensure the texture resides next to the 3D file, either as an individual image file or a folder with the images.

Note: Both the file and folder must have same name for the software to recognize the texture.

Trick #1

Textures are only supported in file or enterprise geodatabases. Shapefile multipatches do not support textures, so make sure to import the multipatch into a geodatabase.


Make sure your 3D data has valid z-values. When sharing a web scene or importing the data into ArcGIS Pro, you want to make sure the elevation values are correct.

Trick #1

If your multipatch is not at the correct elevation, you can use this trick. In ArcGIS Pro,

set the multipatch data “on the ground” and use the Layer 3D To Feature Class tool. The elevation values are then embedded into the multipatch.

Trick #2

If you are using simple feature data (non-multipatch), use the Add Surface Information tool to add z-values to the data. Also, you can add z-values to an attribute table and with the Add Z Information tool, you can verify the values with the tool’s output. If the data does not have valid elevation values, see the next tip.

Tools to Create 3D Data

Understand which tools can create 3D data: Layer 3D To Feature Class, Interpolate Shape, or Feature To 3D By Attribute.

Understanding 3D Data

Understand your 3D data. Extruded 2D polygons are not true 3D features, so you must export to multipatch to make the polygon a true 3D feature. Simple point, line, and polygon features can be considered 3D data if they have the correct z-values. 2D features can also be symbolized using 3D marker symbology.

Know the difference between a z-enabled feature class and a non-z-enabled feature class with a z field in the attribute table. Feature classes must be z-enabled to display at the correct elevation. You might see a z field in the attribute table, but that does not mean the geometry has the correct z-values. This can be verified by editing the vertices or adding z-values to an attribute table, as described above.

While this blog does not cover every facet of working with 3D data, it is my hope that this will provide some valuable information for working with 3D data on the ArcGIS Platform.

Andrew J. – Desktop Support Analyst

Original author: Andrew J


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How can I use the new ArcGIS Pro PerfTools Add-in?

I’ve installed the new PerfTools add-in for ArcGIS Pro; what are some scenarios in which this new tool can help optimize performance?

Displaying and Logging Rendering Time for Specific Spatial Extents

Have you created a series of spatial bookmarks in your ArcGIS Pro project? A one-line script command (ZoomToBookmarks all) can zoom through these spatial bookmarks and log draw time, frames per second (FPS) metrics, and other timestamps. No bookmarks?  No problem…you can also specify extents by providing 2D or 3D camera positions in the same spatial coordinates as your data.

Playing and Timing Animations

Have you added an animation? Using the PlayAnimation command returns measures of total elapsed animation time, as well as average and minimum FPS.


To build a thorough display cache or simulate navigation through large datasets without specifying bookmarks or camera positions, you can use the roaming capabilities of PerfTools. This allows you to virtually “walk” across the active view, starting from the upper left and moving row-by-row towards the lower right. The total draw time, in addition to average and minimum FPS, are logged for your reference.

Timing Spatial Selection

Moving from a file geodatabase to an enterprise geodatabase? Or have you updated your spatial index? You can examine the impacts these changes have on making spatial selections in ArcGIS Pro. The SelectFeatures command allows you to specify your selection bounding box in screen coordinates on the active 2D or 3D view. PerfTools logs a count of the features selected, as well as the selection and draw complete times.

Scripting Commands

Most power from the PerfTools add-in comes through a comprehensive scripting language that allows you to assemble several commands into a more comprehensive scenario. With this functionality, you can simulate typical user interactions with ArcGIS Pro, including creating and opening projects, panning, zooming, selecting, and so forth. You can add delays or “think time”, as well as looping commands (ForCount, ForFile, ForFolder, and ForTime) to repeat key parts of your workflow. Via script command, you can also control key aspects of logging content and structure in PerfTools.

Custom Script Commands

Not finding the script command you’re looking for? PerfTools allows you to create your own commands through leveraging the ArcGIS Pro SDK. Part of the PerfTools download includes documentation and a sample, “T1Command”, that gets you started with your own customizations.

Is PerfTools comprehensive? You bet! We’ll be taking a closer look at some of these techniques in upcoming blog posts. In the meantime, feel free to download the PerfTools AddIn and try it out for yourself!

Ian S. – Performance Engineer

About Ian Sims

Product Engineer at Esri (Redlands). Originally from Warwickshire, England. Exploring, mapping, and photographing the world are my biggest passions.
Original author: Ian Sims


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Geocoding Improvements and Deprecations in ArcGIS Desktop 10.5 and ArcGIS Pro 1.4

With almost every new release of ArcGIS Desktop and ArcGIS for Server, there are changes that aim to improve software quality and performance–sometimes, these changes require you to update your workflows. The improvements and deprecations made for geocoding in ArcMap 10.5 and ArcGIS Pro 1.4 may break some existing workflows or require you to prepare before installing ArcGIS 10.5. In this post, we’ll give you an overview of these changes. 

1. Address locators stored in geodatabases are no longer supported, as specified in the deprecation notice for ArcGIS 10.4 and 10.4.1. As such, you must move or copy the address locators from the geodatabase to a file folder before installing ArcGIS Desktop and ArcGIS Server 10.5. By doing this, you’ll avoid the following issues in ArcGIS 10.5:

Address locators currently stored in geodatabases do not display as inputs to tools nor are visible in ArcCatalog when viewing the geodatabase content. Starting a geocode service published from an address locator that is stored in a geodatabase fails to create an instance and returns an error in the server logs. Publishing an address locator stored in a geodatabase or an .sd file that references an address locator stored in a geodatabase directly to ArcGIS Server 10.5 will return an error in the server logs.

2. We made several improvements to the US Address locator styles, such as reordering and adding fields to the Field Map. However, these improvements break any existing workflows that use Python scripts and Model Builder models to create address locators. These issues occur without an error or warning message and render the address locators unusable. Furthermore, geocoding services created from these locators and used in web applications are impacted in ArcGIS 10.5.

To avoid these issues, update the field mapping in the scripts and models after installing ArcMap 10.5 and ArcGIS Pro 1.4 but before running the scripts and models. There are also additional output fields that display in the geocode result that are similar to the output fields of StreetMap Premium and the World Geocoding Service.

3. If it is necessary to continue using the US Address locator style from ArcGIS 10.4 to create address locators after installing ArcGIS Desktop 10.5, contact Esri Support Services to request access to the USAddress.lot.xml file.

In the near future, our teams will publish a technical article that covers more detailed solutions to the aforementioned issues.

Shana B. – Product Engineer

Original author: Megan


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Announcement: Errors Encountered in ArcGIS for Server and Portal for ArcGIS Web Apps after Certain Browser Updates

The forthcoming updates to the Firefox, Chrome, and Safari browsers cause errors in some web applications for ArcGIS for Server and Portal for ArcGIS when users upload content.

The following browser versions are affected:

Firefox 49 (Expected Release Date: September 20th) Chrome 54 (Expected Release Date: October 18th) Safari 10 (Expected Release Date: Fall 2016)

Note: Microsoft Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge are not affected.

The following ArcGIS products are affected:

ArcGIS Server 10.2.x, 10.3.x, and 10.4.x Portal for ArcGIS 10.2.x, 10.3.x, and 10.4.x

The following workflows are affected:

Portal for ArcGIS Home Application

Uploading content via “My Content” > “Add Item” > “From my computer” Uploading content to the Portal for ArcGIS Map Viewer via “Add” > “Add Layer from File” Adding attachments when editing features in the Portal for ArcGIS Map Viewer Updating thumbnails on any Item Details page or via “My Organization” > “Edit Settings” > “General” Updating the banner or background images via “My Organization” > “Edit Settings” > “Home Page”

Below is an example of the error encountered when attempting to upload content in the Portal for ArcGIS home application.

An example of the error which can be seen when trying to upload content to the Portal for ArcGIS Home App

This example shows the error which can be seen when trying to upload content to Portal for ArcGIS

ArcGIS Server Manager

Uploading service definitions (SD) when publishing services Uploading SDE database connection files when registering a database as a data store Uploading SOE or SOI files when adding extensions Uploading KMZ files

Below is an example of the error encountered when attempting to upload an SD in ArcGIS Server Manager.

An example of the error seen when uploading content to ArcGIS Server Manager

This example shows the error seen when uploading content to ArcGIS Server Manager

To resolve these errors, Esri is developing software patches for ArcGIS for Server and Portal for ArcGIS. We will keep you informed as the patches become available.

Thomas E. – User Advocacy

This entry was posted in Announcements, ArcGIS for Server, High Priority and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
Original author: Thomas Edghill


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