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A Tale of Two Runtimes: ArcMap and ArcGIS Pro

With each release of ArcGIS Enterprise, the big question we often hear is: When should my organization upgrade to this version? With ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 this is an important question because the ArcMap-based runtime has been removed, meaning services published from ArcMap are not supported. In this blog we’ll cover what this change means, what you can do to be successful when upgrading to 11.0, and if you should consider upgrading to 10.9.1 before upgrading to 11.0.

With each release of ArcGIS Enterprise, we see new capabilities and process improvements to support your organization’s work. These releases also tend to come with one big question: When should my organization upgrade to this version? The release of ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 is no exception!

During a webinar on ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 held on September 29, my colleague John Osborne and I dove into everything new at this release and some considerations for upgrading. One area that we got many questions about was the removal of the ArcMap-based runtime at 11.0 and how that impacts organizations looking to upgrade. In this blog we’ll cover what this change means, what you can do to be successful when upgrading to 11.0, and if you should consider upgrading to 10.9.1 before upgrading to 11.0.

ArcMap-based Runtime and ArcGIS Pro-based Runtime

In versions 10.9.1 and earlier, the ArcGIS Server component has included an ArcMap-based runtime to support services published from ArcMap. Starting at version 10.7, the ArcGIS Server component also includes an ArcGIS Pro-based runtime to support services published from ArcGIS Pro. One of the most significant changes at ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 is the removal of the ArcMap-based runtime. This means that starting at 11.0, it will no longer be possible to publish services using ArcMap and existing services using the ArcMap-based runtime will no longer work.

ArcGIS Server Manager window with two map services, one published with ArcMap and one published with ArcGIS Pro. There are red boxes around the service runtime for each layer to indicate importance.

Within the ArcGIS Server Manager you can see what runtime is powering your services. Above we have service runtime examples for ArcGIS Pro and ArcMap.

What does this mean for new installations and upgrades?

The path you take to deploying or upgrading to ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 depends on what versions you are currently at with your existing deployments. Fear not! There is a plan for everybody to move forward on their quest toward 11.0.

New Installation of ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0

If you are looking at starting fresh with a new installation of ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0, you’ll focus less on migration and more on considerations for pre-publishing. A key element to consider with a fresh 11.0 installation is that you will not be able to publish services from ArcMap. Deprecated data sources that the ArcGIS Pro runtime does not support will no longer work. This includes raster catalogs, time-enabled layers created by the Tracking Analyst extension, and data stored in IBM Informix or IBM Db2 for z/OS. Finally, ArcObjects SOEs and SOIs will need to be​ migrated to the ArcGIS Enterprise SDK.​These are all things you will need to work through before publishing services to your new 11.0 installation.

Upgrading ArcGIS Enterprise 10.7 and later

ArcGIS Enterprise 10.7 is the minimum version supported for direct upgrades to 11.0. Before starting your upgrade make sure to back up your environment before proceeding. If you have any hosted services, back up your Data Stores using the command line tools installed with the ArcGIS Data Store.

Compatible ArcMap-based services, such as map services, feature services, and geodata services, will be automatically migrated to the ArcGIS Pro-based runtime during the upgrade. Non-compatible services such as geocode services, geoprocessing services, and network analysis services, will need to be manually migrated to the ArcGIS Pro-based runtime.

With the ArcGIS Pro-based runtime available in these versions, you can start manually migrating your services to prepare for a future upgrade to 11.0. This helps ensure things continue to work as needed for your organization following the upgrade, rather than troubleshooting without the ArcMap-based runtime available. Alternatively, consider upgrading to 10.9.1 to take advantage of migration tools!

Upgrading ArcGIS Enterprise 10.6.1 and earlier

If you are currently working with 10.6.1 or earlier, we recommend a stepped approach to upgrading by first going to a compatible upgrade version before moving to 11.0. With 11.0 no longer including the ArcMap-based runtime, there will likely be a needed shift in desktop workflows towards ArcGIS Pro. This shift takes time to carry out with map document migrations, script testing and reconfiguration, workflow changes, and staff training.

A stepped approach will allow you time to work through migrating your services, utilize migration tools, and ensure things are working as expected. We recommend upgrading to 10.9.1, as it has the most up-to-date migration tools available to help you prepare for upgrading to 11.0 and beyond. Although an upgrade to any upgrade-compatible version between 10.7 and 10.9.1 is a viable option.

What resources are available to help with service migrations?

Manual migration? Bulk migration? Non-compatible services? We have you covered! Whether you have a handful of services or hundreds of services, there are resources to help make your migration a success.

Migration Tools

Service migration tools are included with ArcGIS Enterprise 10.9 and 10.9.1. These tools help ease the transition from the ArcMap-based runtime to the ArcGIS Pro-based runtime. These migration tools will help you migrate all compatible map and image services, and at 10.9.1 they can also help with geodata service migrations.

The Edit Runtime operation allows for compatible services to be migrated one at a time through the ArcGIS Server Manager. To use this tool the service must have been published from ArcMap, use dedicated instances, not have schematics enabled, and not include any deprecated data sources. The Edit Runtime operation doesn’t change the content or settings of the service. For further considerations on using the Edit Runtime operation, refer to the Migrate a service in Server Manager documentation.

Service properties for the National Parks Canada map service that uses the ArcMap runtime. There is a warning at the top of the page informing users that ArcMap services will need to be migrated for future releases.

When looking at the properties of a service using the ArcMap Runtime there is a warning at the top of the page informing users about the need to migrate services in the future. To change the runtime from ArcMap to ArcGIS Pro, click on the edit icon on the bottom right.

The command line tool UpdateArcMapServices is another option that allows users to migrate services bulk to the ArcGIS Pro-based runtime. Before performing any migration work, you can utilize the analysis mode on the UpdateArcMapServices to determine what services are compatible with migration and which ones have unsupported capabilities.

Command prompt window that has executed the UpdateArcMapServices command in analysis mode. The results show that there are two compatible services that are ready to be upgraded.

Use of the command line tool UpdateArcMapServices in analysis mode.

The tool provides the results of the analysis in the command window, as seen above. If you are looking for something more visually friendly or sharable to others, there is an HTML report output that includes the same details as seen below.

An HTML report output from the UpdateArcMapServices command line tool that was run in analysis mode. The results show that there are two compatible services that are ready to be upgraded.

HTML report output from the UpdateArcMapServices command line tool.

Any services with unsupported capabilities will need to be temporarily disabled while you use the UpdateArcMapServices to perform the service migration. For further considerations on using the UpdateArcMapServices tool, refer to the Migrate services with the UpdateArcMapServices utility documentation.

Manual Migrations

For manual service migrations, the best place to start is the technical paper on Manually migrating services from the ArcMap-based to the ArcGIS Pro-based runtime. The document walks you through every type of service migration with step-by-step instructions, making it an invaluable resource for those upgrading.

What’s Next?

With the changes introduced at ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0, there is a lot to consider when planning your next upgrade. While it may feel more daunting than other upgrades, take your time! As mentioned above, consider a stepped approach to 10.9.1 as your next move. It is a long-term support release with support guaranteed until 2027 and has tools to help with your migration. This means you will have plenty of time to plan and execute an upgrade to 11.0 when your organization is ready.

Already at this point with your organization? It sounds like you are ready to take the leap to ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 or one of the future releases. You can check out all the new functionality waiting for you in the What's New in ArcGIS Enterprise 11.0 blog post or the recent Esri Canada webinar.

This post was translated to French and can be viewed here.

About the Author

Michelle Brake is an Enterprise Solutions Specialist for Esri Canada. She focuses on demonstrating the wide range of possibilities with Esri’s ArcGIS Enterprise technology. Michelle discovered digital mapping at university, which led her to pursue an Advanced Diploma in Geographic Sciences at the Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS). Michelle recently finished a Master of Sustainability at the University of Saskatchewan, where she explored how communities can strengthen regenerative ecological and social systems. When not at a computer, you can find her outside hiking, kayaking or camping.

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