Publish hosted imagery layers

Hosted imagery layers can be used to manage, share, and analyze raster and imagery data in your organization. You can perform analysis using tools and raster functions with hosted imagery layers in Map Viewer or Map Viewer Classic. You can also manage large collections of imagery, and include imagery layers in hosted apps and maps. Hosting an imagery layer on ArcGIS Online is one way to share data with an internet audience if your own ArcGIS Server site cannot be made public. Maps, apps, and desktop map viewers in your organization can access your services from anywhere on the internet if you choose to allow it.

Publish a hosted tiled or dynamic imagery layer in ArcGIS Online by using the Create imagery layers window that guides you through creating an imagery layer. You can publish one or multiple imagery layers for supported data types.

To create hosted imagery layers, you must have privileges to publish hosted imagery layers and create content.

Note:

Hosted imagery layers are different from raster tile layers. Raster tile layers support visualization of imagery and raster data, but they do not support analysis. Hosted imagery layers allow access to the imagery or raster data, including the pixel or cell values across multiple bands, and multidimensional data.

Create an imagery layer

To create web maps with raster and imagery data, and to share this data with internal and external users, publish your data as hosted imagery layers.

You can publish data as tiled or dynamic imagery layers, with one or multiple imagery layers, or you can mosaic several images as one imagery layer. You can also publish multiple images as an image collection, which allows you to query the resulting hosted imagery layer for the properties of individual images.

Both tiled and dynamic imagery layers support access to imagery pixel data and metadata such as raster attribute tables, statistics, and histograms. With tiled imagery layers, groups of pixels are processed as static tiles, and processing occurs on the client machine. With dynamic imagery layers, you can also use raster function templates as a custom renderer to perform analysis on the fly. All processing is done on the server side.

Follow the steps below to create a hosted imagery layer.

Note:

If you do not see the Imagery layer option in the New item menu, you might not be assigned the ArcGIS Image for ArcGIS Online license, or your organization may not have published at least one hosted feature layer. One hosted feature layer must be published before publishing imagery layers.

  1. Verify that you are signed in with an account that has privileges to create content and publish hosted imagery layers, and click the My Content tab of the content page.
  2. Click New item and choose Imagery layer.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Choose a layer type based on your input data and the type of information you want to include in the layer.

    The following options are available:

    • Tiled Imagery Layer—Create a hosted tiled imagery layer. Analysis and rendering are done on the client machine, and imagery is processed as static tiles for faster rendering.
    • Dynamic Imagery Layer—Create a hosted dynamic imagery layer. Analysis and rendering are done by the server machine, and image collections are supported.
    Note:

    You cannot share dynamic imagery layer items with the public. Even if you have privileges to share data publicly, the option to share dynamic imagery layers with Everyone (public) is not available.

  5. Click Next.
  6. Choose a layer configuration.

    The following options are available:

    • One Image—Create one hosted imagery layer from a single image. This option supports all supported raster and image formats, multidimensional raster data, and configuration with various source types and compression settings. The only raster type that is supported is the Raster Dataset data type. Use this option for simple imagery layers where advanced metadata is not needed.
    • One Mosaicked Image—Create one imagery layer by mosaicking multiple images. This option supports generating a single imagery layer that is a mosaic of multiple images over space, multidimensional raster data, and many raster types that allow you to control how your satellite or aerial products are processed. Use this option for imagery layers where advanced metadata is required, such as for multiband preprocessed satellite scenes.
    • Image Collection—Create one imagery layer that manages a collection of many images. This option supports querying single images within the imagery layer that is made up of a collection of images. This option also supports storing the imagery in the original source format.

      Note:
      The performance of a dynamic Imagery Collection layer is dependent on the format and structure of the imagery upload. For example, dynamic imagery collections published in CRF format will be very responsive, while dynamic imagery collections published in JP2 or Raw format will have diminished responsiveness. It is recommended that you optimize your image collection by converting to CRF, MRF, or TIF with pyramids before publishing.

    • Multiple Imagery Layers—Create one imagery layer for each input image. This option generates multiple imagery layers. Use this option instead of choosing the One Image option multiple times.

    When you have selected the layer configuration you want, click Next.

  7. Select the raster type of your input imagery from the drop-down menu. The raster type metadata is used to display, correct, and process the imagery in a consistent manner.

    Each raster type contains unique metadata specific to the sensor and image parameters. This option is only available if you select One Mosaicked Image as the layer configuration. For all other configuration types, the only supported raster type is Raster Dataset.

  8. Click the Configure properties button to specify the properties for the selected raster type.
  9. The raster type properties help you create an informative imagery layer based on your requirements. The properties available depend on the layer configuration and raster type selections you made. The properties are divided into the General, Processing, Spatial Reference, Auxiliary Information, and Metadata tabs.
  10. On the General tab, configure the options for your imagery layer. If you don't see one or more of the options below, it is because the layer configuration type or raster type you chose does not support the option.

    Product Type

    Specify the type of product included in your satellite imagery. Product types are typically identified by various processing levels associated with the specific sensor.

    This option is available when the layer configuration is One Mosaicked Image or Image Collection and the raster type is set to a satellite product.

    Source Type

    Choose a source type to match the intended use of the imagery. Your choice will determine the default stretch or rendering options.

    • Generic—The raster or imagery does not have a specific use case. This is the default.
    • Elevation—The raster contains elevation data such as digital elevation model (DEM), digital terrain model (DTM), or lidar data.
    • Thematic—The raster contains classified or thematic data, such as land cover or risk levels.
    • Processed—The imagery has been georeferenced and color balanced.
    • Scientific—The raster or imagery is in a scientific data format such as NetCDF, HDF, or GRIB.

    Resampling Type

    Select the resampling method to be used to display the imagery layer:

    • Nearest—Nearest neighbor resampling is recommended for discrete data, such as land cover.
    • Bilinear—Bilinear interpolation is recommended for continuous data, such as elevation.
    • Cubic—Cubic convolution resampling is recommended for continuous data.
    • Majority—Majority resampling is recommended for discrete data.

    Compression

    Select the compression method to use when converting the source imagery to Cloud Raster Format:

    • LERC—Lossless or lossy compression that divides the raster into a number of pixel blocks. If you choose LERC compression, you can also specify the Maximum LERC compression error.
    • JPEG—Lossy compression that uses the public JPEG compression algorithm. If you choose JPEG compression, you can also specify the Compression quality.

    Note:

    All image and raster files are converted to Cloud Raster Format when publishing hosted imagery layers.

  11. On the Processing tab, configure the options for your imagery layer. If you don't see one or more of the options below, it is because the layer configuration type or raster type you chose does not support the option.

    Processing templates

    Select the processing template to use in the imagery layer. The processing template performs common imagery processing tasks, such as extracting specific bands, pansharpening, orthorectification, stretching, and other tasks that are specific to the input data.

    The processing templates available depend on the raster type you selected. This option is only applicable to satellite or aerial data products that come with prepackaged processing templates. For example, Landsat Level-2 products include a Surface Reflectance processing template and a Quality Assurance processing template.

    Apply default stretch to each raster item

    Choose whether to apply default percent clip stretching to each raster item in the imagery layer.

    Build footprints using radiometry (remove low quality edge pixels)

    Choose whether to build footprints for the imagery layer such that only pixels within a given range of values are included. This will eliminate null data values border pixels, which results in seamless mosaics. Removal of the null data border pixels generates more appropriate statistics for each image item, resulting in better image enhancements and analytical processing. If you choose to build footprints, you can provide additional footprint settings.

    Define a pixel value that represents NoData

    Choose whether to define a NoData value for the pixels in the imagery layer. Pixels with the NoData value will display as transparent in the map.

    Orthorectification

    Choose how you want to orthorectify the images.

    Pansharpen

    Select the pansharpen type you prefer, as well as the sharpen image and band weights. This option is available when the input raster type includes coincident panchromatic and multispectral imagery data.

    Footprints

    Specify the footprints options to use. These options are available if you chose to build footprints using radiometry.

  12. If you select Image Collection as the layer configuration, you can also choose to build overviews to improve display performance. Building overviews is recommended to increase display speed and reduce CPU usage when serving imagery layers as a service.
  13. On the Spatial Reference tab, select the output spatial reference for your imagery layer or layers. The default coordinate system is WGS84 Web Mercator (auxiliary sphere).
  14. On the Metadata tab, configure the options for your imagery layer. Options include the image's acquisition date, the measure and unit of pixel values, and the order and wavelength of bands for multiband imagery.
  15. For satellite products, the Band mapping table contains read-only band mapping indexes for reference.
  16. If you chose Thematic for the imagery Source Type, you will also see the Auxiliary Information tab, where you can provide a corresponding raster attribute table (DBF version 5) or color map file (.clr).

    A color map is a text file with the .clr extension, in which each row has four space-delimited integer values to map a pixel value to a color. The row order follows the pixel value order, and the column order is red, green, and blue. Red, green, and blue values all range from 0 to 255. The following are some examples:

    0 255 10 150

    1 253 0 2

    31 0 220 253

  17. When you have finished configuring your imagery properties, click Apply.
  18. In the Select input imagery window, you can either use the Browse button to browse to the input data, or drag files into the dotted area.

    A table displaying all the files with name, size, and upload status appears. The files are uploaded to ArcGIS Online.

  19. You don't need to wait for the files to finish uploading to proceed to the next step.
  20. Click Next.
  21. Provide the item details for your imagery layer or layers. You can provide these details even if the files have not finished uploading.
    1. Type a title. If you are creating multiple imagery layers, you can provide a prefix and suffix to add to the base title.
    2. Optionally, type tag terms separated by commas.
    3. Type a summary, if desired.
    4. Specify the folder where you want to store the imagery layer or layers.
  22. Click Create.

    The progress of the layer creation is shown, including uploading files and creating the imagery layer item.

The imagery layer is added to My Content. One way to test the new hosted imagery layer once publishing completes is to view it in a web map.

Supported data for imagery layers

When configuring your imagery layers, you can specify the raster type that identifies and uses metadata such as georeferencing, acquisition date, sensor type, and band wavelengths. You can create imagery layers using the raster types listed in the table below. The Raster Dataset raster type refers to any raster format supported by ArcGIS Pro and does not include any metadata.

  • ASTER
  • DMCII
  • DubaiSat-2
  • GeoEye-1
  • GF-1 PMS
  • GF-1 WFV
  • GF-2 PMS
  • GRIB
  • HDF
  • IKONOS
  • KOMPSAT-2
  • KOMPSAT-3
  • Landsat 1-5 MSS
  • Landsat 4-5 TM
  • Landsat 7 ETM+
  • Landsat 8
  • NetCDF
  • Pleiades-1
  • QuickBird
  • RapidEye
  • Raster Dataset
  • Sentinel-2
  • SkySat
  • SPOT 5
  • SPOT 6
  • SPOT 7
  • UAV/UAS
  • WorldView-1
  • WorldView-2
  • WorldView-3
  • WorldView-4
  • ZY3-SASMAC

The imagery data you use as input comes from a local folder. The output can be hosted imagery layers that reference the uploaded data and are managed by ArcGIS Online. When you delete a hosted imagery layer, the data will also be deleted from the organization.

Publish multidimensional imagery layers

You can publish multidimensional raster data as an imagery layer and use multidimensional filtering on you layer to display a specified slice in Map Viewer Classic. You can also use the time slider or range slider to modify the display, and use the multidimensional analysis tools.

To publish a multidimensional raster dataset from a single NetCDF, HDF, or GRIB file, follow these steps:

  1. Verify that you are signed in with an account that has privileges to create content and publish hosted imagery layers, and click the My Content tab of the content page.
  2. Click New item and choose Imagery layer.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Choose a layer type based on your input data and the type of information you want to include in the layer.

    The following options are available:

    • Tiled Imagery Layer—Create a hosted tiled imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done on the client machine, and imagery is processed as static tiles for faster rendering.
    • Dynamic Imagery Layer—Create a hosted dynamic imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done by the server machine, and image collections are supported.
    Note:

    You cannot share dynamic imagery layer items with the public. Even if you have privileges to share data publicly, the option to share dynamic imagery layers with Everyone (public) is not available.

  5. Click Next.
  6. For your layer configuration, choose One Layer and click Next.
  7. Optionally, click the Configure Properties button and modify any properties on the General or Metadata tabs, depending on your data.
  8. Browse to the NetCDF, HDF, or GRIB file, or drag it into the dotted area. Click Next.
  9. Provide the item details for your imagery layer and click Create.

To publish multiple individual imagery layers from single NetCDF, HDF, or GRIB files, follow the steps above but choose Multiple Imagery Layers as the layer configuration in step 7 above.

To publish a single imagery layer from multiple NetCDF, HDF, or GRIB files, where variables will be merged across a dimension, follow the steps below. For example, if you have 10 NetCDF files containing daily temperature data over 10 years, and you want to merge them into a single imagery layer containing 10 years of daily temperature data, use this option.

  1. Verify that you are signed in with an account that has privileges to create content and publish hosted imagery layers, and click the My Content tab of the content page.
  2. Click New item and choose Imagery layer.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Choose a layer type based on your input data and the type of information you want to include in the layer.

    The following options are available:

    • Tiled Imagery Layer—Create a hosted tiled imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done on the client machine, and imagery is processed as static tiles for faster rendering.
    • Dynamic Imagery Layer—Create a hosted dynamic imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done by the server machine, and image collections are supported.
    Note:

    You cannot share dynamic imagery layer items with the public. Even if you have privileges to share data publicly, the option to share dynamic imagery layers with Everyone (public) is not available.

  5. Click Next.
  6. For your layer configuration, choose One Mosaicked Image and click Next.
  7. Optionally, click the Configure Properties button and modify any properties on the General or Metadata tabs, depending on your data.
  8. Browse to the NetCDF, HDF, or GRIB file, or drag it into the dotted area. Click Next.
  9. Provide the item details for your imagery layer and click Create.

Publish cloud raster format data

You can publish cloud raster format (CRF) raster data as an imagery layer, whether it's multidimensional or not.

To publish an imagery layer from CRF data, follow these steps:

  1. Verify that you are signed in with an account that has privileges to create content and publish hosted imagery layers, and click the My Content tab of the content page.
  2. Click New item and choose Imagery layer.

    The Get started window appears and walks you through creating an imagery layer.

  3. Click Next.
  4. Choose a layer type based on your input data and the type of information you want to include in the layer.

    The following options are available:

    • Tiled Imagery Layer—Create a hosted tiled imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done on the client machine, and imagery is processed as static tiles for faster rendering.
    • Dynamic Imagery Layer—Create a hosted dynamic imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done by the server machine, and image collections are supported.
    Note:

    You cannot share dynamic imagery layer items with the public. Even if you have privileges to share data publicly, the option to share dynamic imagery layers with Everyone (public) is not available.

  5. Click Next.
  6. For your layer configuration, choose One Image and click Next.
  7. Keep the default Raster Dataset raster type.
  8. Optionally, modify the properties by clicking the Configure Properties button.
  9. Drag the entire CRF folder into the dotted area. Browse is not supported for CRF data. Click Next.
  10. Provide the item details for your imagery layer and click Create.

Publish categorical imagery layers

You can publish categorical (or thematic) imagery layers, such as land cover, for raster data that has an associated attribute table or color map.

To publish a categorical raster dataset as an imagery layer, follow these steps:

  1. Verify that you are signed in with an account that has privileges to create content and publish hosted imagery layers, and click the My Content tab of the content page.
  2. Click New item and choose Imagery layer.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Choose a layer type based on your input data and the type of information you want to include in the layer.

    The following options are available:

    • Tiled Imagery Layer—Create a hosted tiled imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done on the client machine, and imagery is processed as static tiles for faster rendering.
    • Dynamic Imagery Layer—Create a hosted dynamic imagery layer, where analysis and rendering are done by the server machine, and image collections are supported.
    Note:

    You cannot share dynamic imagery layer items with the public. Even if you have privileges to share data publicly, the option to share dynamic imagery layers with Everyone (public) is not available.

    Click Next.

  5. For your layer configuration, choose One Mosaicked Image and click Next.
  6. Optionally, specify the raster type. Otherwise, keep the default Raster Dataset.
  7. Click the Configure Properties button and, on the General tab, set the Source type to Thematic.

    The Auxiliary Information tab appears.

  8. On the Auxiliary Information tab, check the box labeled My data has a raster attribute table or colormap.

    A browsing window appears.

  9. Browse to the color map file (.clr) or raster attribute table (.vat.dbf) that is associated with your dataset.
  10. Click Apply in the raster type properties window.
  11. Browse to the categorical raster data, or drag it into the dotted area. Click Next.
  12. Provide the item details for your imagery layer and click Create.