Publish hosted tiles from hosted features

Tile layers published to and hosted on ArcGIS Online support fast visualization of large datasets using a collection of predrawn map image (raster) tiles or vector tiles. Tile layers are ideal when you need to view many features at once. For example, you may have parcel data for your county that you want to view for the entire county.

To take advantage of the rapid drawing performance of hosted tiles, you can publish them from the hosted feature layers or hosted feature layer views you own. Tiles published from hosted features reflect the changes you make to the feature data, and these tile layers automatically have pop-ups enabled.

Advantages of publishing tiles from hosted feature layers

You can take advantage of the following when publishing tiles from hosted feature layers:

  • The hosted tile layer can be kept up to date with edits made in the source hosted feature layer.
  • Raster tiles are built as needed by default. Tiles are created on demand when someone views the tile layer and are only created for the extent and scale being viewed. Once created, cached tiles are available for all subsequent views.
  • For larger datasets, creating tiles of your hosted feature layer data improves display performance.

Tile layers are ideal for a variety of use cases. For example, you may have parcel data of your city’s tax lots. Parcel data is typically composed of many polygon features with many vertices. Publishing your parcel feature layer as a hosted tile layer provides fast visualization, while still providing pop-ups to query attributes. If the feature data changes—for instance, you adjust parcel boundaries in the hosted feature layer—the hosted tile layer automatically reflects the changes. If the attribute used to symbolize the data is updated, the tile layer automatically reflects the updated symbology.

Configure your feature layer prior to publishing tiles

Before publishing tiles from a feature layer, configure the feature layer as you intend the tile layer to be displayed. Once you publish the tile layer, you cannot reconfigure it. Additionally, updating the feature layer configuration after the tile layer has been published does not update the tile layer configuration.

Most notably, you should configure style and scale range on the feature layer before publishing. Additional optional configurations include configuring pop-ups (used by raster tiles only), creating a view definition, and removing labels before publishing.

Follow these steps to configure your hosted feature layer or feature layer view prior to publishing a hosted tile layer:

  1. Sign in to your organization and click Content > My Content.
  2. Set the scale range for the hosted feature layer or view that you want to see in the hosted tile layer.

    The scale range of the hosted feature layer or view determines the maximum possible scale range for the hosted tile layer. Although you can adjust the scale range on the tile layer to be less inclusive, you cannot adjust the tile layer to be more inclusive than the scale range configured on the feature layer when you publish the tile layer. Therefore, you should set the scale range for the hosted feature layer or view that you want to see in the hosted tile layer. Once published, scale ranges for the hosted tile layer do not change when you change the scale range of the primary feature layer.

  3. Configure styling for the hosted feature layer, sublayer, or view. Be sure the style you use meets these styling restrictions.

    Hosted tile layers use the style of the feature layer as configured when you publish the tile layer.

  4. If possible, disable labels on the hosted feature layer, sublayer, or view, as automatic tiles are not available if the source feature layer is configured with labels.

    If you cannot disable labels, you must use the manual option.

  5. If you want the hosted tile layer to inherit the pop-up configuration of the hosted feature layer when you publish, configure pop-ups on the feature layer before publishing the hosted tile layer.

    You can configure pop-ups on the hosted tile layer after publishing. In either case, though, related records are currently not supported in tile layer pop-ups.Pop-ups are not currently supported with hosted vector tile layers.

  6. To filter features used by tile layers, create a hosted feature layer view and set a view definition rather than set a filter on the hosted feature layer. Hosted tile layers honor the view definition configured on the hosted feature layer view from which you publish.

    Note:

    Once the tile layer is published, you cannot modify or remove the view definition, and you cannot create a new view definition.

Considerations when publishing tiles from hosted feature layers

The following are restrictions you should consider when publishing hosted tile layers from a hosted feature layer or view:

  • Calculate, add, and remove fields options are not available for hosted feature layers that have a related hosted tile layer.
  • You cannot overwrite a hosted feature layer that has a related hosted tile layer.
  • You cannot publish a hosted tile layer or hosted vector tile layer from a multipatch or point cloud hosted feature layer or from a hosted feature layer with clustering enabled.
  • Hosted tile layers and hosted vector tile layers do not support feature search, even when you publish them from a feature layer.
  • If you published the source hosted feature layer from ArcGIS Pro, certain styles may not appear in the hosted tile layer. The hosted tile layer will revert to default styles for the data type.

The following considerations apply to hosted tile layers only:

  • Tile generation uses credits, including when tiles are regenerated due to changes in the source hosted feature layer.
  • At smaller scales, there are more features per tile in the tile layer. If you see delays in the time it takes to generate tiles automatically, precreate tiles for that scale and other scales where there is a delay.
  • Change tracking is required for the edits you make in the source hosted feature layer to appear in the related hosted tile layer. When you publish a hosted tile layer with Create tiles automatically enabled, ArcGIS Online enables change tracking on the source feature layer; you cannot disable it.
  • You can enable Create tiles automatically only on hosted tile layers published after June 26, 2017.

Hosted vector tile layers published from a hosted feature layer or view cannot be replaced using another hosted vector tile layer.

Publish a hosted tile layer from features

Follow these steps to publish a hosted tile layer from a hosted feature layer or feature layer view:

  1. Sign in to your organization and click Content > My Content.
  2. To publish a hosted tile layer, do one of the following:
    • Open the item page of the hosted feature layer or view and click Publish > Tile Layer.
    • From My Content, click Create > Tile Layer, choose a feature layer to publish as tiles, and click Create.
  3. Type a title, tags, and summary, and choose a folder for the hosted tile layer.
  4. If your organization has set up content categories, click Assign Category and select up to 20 categories to help people find your item. You can also type in the Filter categories box to narrow the list of categories.
  5. Choose whether the layer's spatial reference matches ArcGIS Online basemaps (which uses Web Mercator) or another tile layer of your choosing.
    • If you choose ArcGIS Online basemaps, specify the range of scales at which the layer will appear on the map.
    • If you choose Your own custom tile layer basemap, provide a URL to any existing ArcGIS Server tile layer.
  6. Optionally change the extents at which the layer will display by dragging the end points of the Visible Range slider.
    Caution:

    ArcGIS Online presents you with a suggested scale range, but you can modify it. Be aware that including large scales in your scale range can vastly increase the number of credits consumed by tile generation and storage. Don't create tiles beyond the precision of your data.

    Also note that increasing the scale range to include additional smaller scales may increase the time it takes to generate a tile at the smaller scale.

  7. Be sure Create tiles automatically is checked unless you know you need to create tiles manually (for example, if the hosted feature layer from which you are publishing has labels saved to it).

    You can leave the entire layer to have tiles built as people view the layer at different scales within the visible extent, or you can create tiles for certain tile levels after you publish and leave others to be built the first time they are viewed. Once tiles are built, they are available as part of the tile cache for all subsequent users.

    You can precreate tiles in certain scales and areas that you know people will use. This allows the layer to load faster the first time it is viewed at that scale and extent. See Manage hosted tile layers for more information on tile creation.

    Enabling Create tiles automatically also enables change tracking on the source hosted feature layer.

  8. Click OK.

    The hosted tile layer is created and its item page appears.

  9. If you want to build tiles for certain levels and extents, or if you unchecked Create tiles automatically, build tiles now.

Publish a hosted vector tile layer from features

Follow these steps to publish a hosted vector tile layer from a hosted feature layer or feature layer view:

  1. Sign in to your organization and click Content > My Content.
  2. To publish a hosted vector tile layer, do one of the following:
    • Open the item page of the hosted feature layer or view and click Publish > Vector Tile Layer.
    • From My Content, click Create > Vector Tile Layer, choose a feature layer to publish as tiles, and click Create.
  3. Type a title, tags, and summary, and choose a folder for the hosted vector tile layer.
  4. If your organization has set up content categories, click Assign Category and select up to 20 categories to help people find your item. You can also type in the Filter categories box to narrow the list of categories.
  5. Choose whether the layer's spatial reference matches ArcGIS Online basemaps (which uses Web Mercator) or another tile layer of your choosing.
    • If you choose ArcGIS Online basemaps, specify the range of scales at which the layer will appear on the map.
    • If you choose Your own custom tile layer basemap, provide a URL to any existing ArcGIS Server tile layer.
  6. Optionally change the extents at which the layer will display by dragging the end points of the Visible Range slider.
  7. To include attributes from the feature layer in the vector tile layer, click Select. The entire vector tile cache will be rebuilt to incorporate the attributes you chose.

    At this time, attributes in vector tiles are only used in custom applications created using third-party software. Only attributes required to apply the styling to the feature layer are included by default. If no style is applied to the feature layer, no attributes are included unless you choose to include them. The more attributes you include in the vector tile, the more resources the vector tile layer uses, which can affect layer performance.

  8. Click OK.

    The hosted vector tile layer is created and its item page appears.

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