Frequently asked questions

Answers to common questions about ArcGIS Hub are provided.

How can I tell which license of ArcGIS Hub I have?

To determine which license of ArcGIS Hub you're using, check your hub's Overview page. First, sign in to ArcGIS Hub at with your ArcGIS Online organizational account. If the Sites option is available on the Overview page, you are using ArcGIS Hub Basic. If the Initiatives option is available on the Overview page, you're using ArcGIS Hub Premium.

For more information, see What is the difference between a site and an initiative below.

How will upgrading to ArcGIS Hub Premium affect my existing content (sites, pages, data, and so on)?

When an organization licenses ArcGIS Hub Premium, existing content is not impacted by upgrading. The only change is that existing sites become initiatives because initiatives provide access to premium features, including templates and events.

Is ArcGIS Hub available for ArcGIS Enterprise?

Yes. ArcGIS Hub Basic is available for ArcGIS Enterprise as ArcGIS Enterprise Sites. With ArcGIS Enterprise, you can manage your data, mapping and visualization, and location analytics on-premises with infrastructure you control. ArcGIS Enterprise Sites is the equivalent to ArcGIS Hub Basic and allows you to create unlimited sites and pages as part of your organization's Enterprise portal. ArcGIS Enterprise Sites does not include ArcGIS Hub Premium features (such as templates, the events management system, integrated support for Survey123, and community accounts).

What is the difference between a site and an initiative?

An initiative requires a subscription to ArcGIS Hub Premium and allows members to bundle content around a project, topic, or goal. Every initiative includes a site, a core team, and the ability to send emails and content to specific audiences, including the public. Core team members can also create a template of the initiative (including its site, apps, and pages) so that others within the organization or community can configure standardized content as their own.

A site, in comparison, is one element of an initiative that provides internal and public audiences with a place to sign in, search for and download content, and find events and surveys. Each site can include multiple pages, so you can build out a comprehensive, branded experience for the initiative. For more information, see What is ArcGIS Hub? and Feature glossary.

How do sites and pages appear as search results when using Google?

Google displays a site in the following format:

  • {site name}
  • {text from the site layout that Google finds relevant for the given query}

A site and its linked page are displayed in the following format:

  • {page name} - {site name}
  • {text from the page layout that google thinks is relevant for the given query}

Can I share open data with ArcGIS Hub?

Yes. You can use ArcGIS Hub to share open data. ArcGIS Hub was initially called ArcGIS Open Data. As the product evolved to support additional data sharing and collaboration features, ArcGIS Open Data was rebranded as ArcGIS Hub. Using ArcGIS Hub, you can use sites and initiatives to share open data as well as other types of content.


Supported items that you add to your site's or initiative's content library are automatically made available for download if you share them publicly. Administrators do not need to enable any settings related to data or downloads to share open data. The open data capability is only necessary if you want to make your content discoverable in searches made on the For more information, see Make public content more discoverable.

How do I create an open data site?

To create an open data site, create a new site or use the Share Open Data template (available with ArcGIS Hub Premium and ArcGIS Hub Basic). If you or an administrator have already organized your data into public groups, you can use the Groups Manager to add this data to your site in bulk. Once you add content, you can use category cards, gallery cards, and the search card to display the content on your site.

Does ArcGIS Hub provide support for data federation?

Once you've created an open data site, you can optionally federate its data with external data catalogs such as CKAN or using the DCAT Configuration editor. For more information, see Federate data with DCAT and other external catalogs.

Do I need an account to download data?

No, you do not need an account to download open (publicly shared) data. If your organization supports community accounts, community members can also mark datasets as favorites and store their downloads for up to 48 hours using their user profile.


You can also share private data using ArcGIS Hub. This means that any item shared internally with a group member or the organization is only accessible through the site's search results when the member is signed in.

How soon after I make an update will it show up in downloads?

When a download request is made, one of two things occurs:

  • For hosted services, ArcGIS Hub checks for changes before refreshing the cache. If a dataset has been changed or updated since the cache was made, ArcGIS Hub refreshes the cache. Otherwise, the download comes from the previous cache.
  • For services hosted elsewhere (for example, on-premises servers), ArcGIS Hub refreshes the cache if it has been more than 24 hours since the last refresh. If it is within the 24-hour period, the user gets the data as it was last cached.

Why does the URL for the content view contain a series of numbers?

If your dataset's content view displays a URL with a series of numbers, it means that your organization does not have anonymous access enabled. ArcGIS Hub accesses your ArcGIS Online organization anonymously to do things such as render a more human-readable URL. If the anonymous access option is disabled, ArcGIS Hub renders the dataset using the item ID. It's recommended that you enable anonymous access in your ArcGIS Online organization settings by following the steps in Configure security.

Where does the update date come from?

There are three places ArcGIS Hub checks when writing the Last Updated date. If an administrator has explicitly set a revised date in the metadata editor in ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS Hub uses that date. If not, ArcGIS Hub uses the most recently updated of the following:

  • The last time the item was edited or opened in ArcGIS Online
  • The last time an update was made to the service (if editor tracking is enabled)

Where does a source on an item come from?

When returning the source for a given piece of content (item), ArcGIS Hub follows a hierarchy. First, if an organization name is set in the formal metadata editor, ArcGIS Hub uses that value. If not, ArcGIS Hub checks other places in ArcGIS Online. The hierarchy is as follows:

  1. Resource > Citation > Contact > Organization Name
  2. Resource > Contact > Organization Name
  3. Organization name in ArcGIS Online
  4. Item Owner in ArcGIS Online

Can I change the extent parameters for hosted feature services shared though ArcGIS Hub?

Yes, ArcGIS Hub honors feature service extent parameters for all sites that use web mercator basemaps. You can update the extent for items in ArcGIS Online.

How can I manually update my site's content?

You can use the Check for Content Updates option that's available in your site's Content Library. For more information, see How to manually refresh your site's content .