What governs the extent of the Work Area for Offline use? And how can I change that?

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05-27-2016 04:08 PM
NeilYoung3
New Contributor

I am working on a linear transportation highway construction project where the alignment is around 20 miles long. Our users need to perform inspections on activities occurring anywhere along the alignment every day. There is spotty internet coverage at best along the project site, so offline is a must.

We have setup an ArcGIS Online map for use in collector and already have gone through the process to create (very large) tpk file that covers the entire project area. The tpk is already loaded on the iPads to be used in the field.

WHEN OUR USERS TRY TO TAKE THE MAP OFFLINE - NO MATTER WHAT WE DO, COLLECTOR WILL NOT ALLOW THE USER TO ZOOM OUT AND SELECT A WORK AREA THAT COVERS THE ENTIRE PROJECT AREA. (which is covered by the pre-loaded tpk).

So my question is this - What process governs/determines the maximum extent of the work area that Collector will allow the end user to see and what factors in our AGOL Maps can we modify to provide users with the ability to use the desired extents for downloading the map?

We have been banging our heads against the wall on this. We really need our maps to cover the entire project area.

It is not a viable workflow to make the users remove the map and then re-download the map for a new area every time they want to collect data at another part of the project not covered by their initial map download. The field users already spent some time downloading for offline use. It also is a time consuming process to re-download a map covering a large area, even if the basemap is already on the device. As a result some of our users have resorted to trying to collect features outside the work area, and this is creating significant headaches as we cannot recover that data.

NOTE - we have an ArcGIS Server tile layer which is the source of the tile package as the basemap of the map. I have some suspicions that Collector is determining the work area polygon by reaching back to the service to determine the maximum number of tiles the service will allow users to take offline, and calculating the extent from that. any insight would be appreciated.

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7 Replies
AdrianWelsh
MVP Notable Contributor

Bump to the top as I am also curious about this

Edit to add: looks like this was asked a while back with no replies...

Initial extent of work area in ArcGIS collector

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MichaelMiller2
Regular Contributor

When you begin to download a map into collector, it will ask you to define a work area, which the user sets by zooming in or out. At the bottom of this window, there should be another button to set Map Detail. The user will also set by zooming in to the approx zoom level.  It will also list the approx amount of space that is required on the mobile device to download the base for the settings you have chosen.

DougBrowning
MVP Notable Contributor

I had to post a yes please to this one too.  It is the major reason we do not use collector and instead use another 3rd party app.  We carry 32 gb of TPK files on our tablets (basically we create a "side loaded basemap" for every layer).  We have guys without internet for a week or more that need access to an area that is 100 miles by 150 miles.  Not everyone has access each morning!  As part of this they really need to open up the sdcard.  Oh and fix the open bugs with the Export Tile Cache tool.

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NeilYoung3
New Contributor

We are well aware of the process for how to download offline maps. and there are two steps - one to select the work area, and one to select the map detail. However what we are experiencing is that the behavior in collector on iOS devices for our specific example is that when we get to the first step where the work area is initially shown it does not cover our entire project area. If we do zoom out, then the map goes blank and the user can no longer see what area they are selecting for the map area. We have created a custom basemap to allow us to zoom into building level detail (as we have 3 inch imagery and engineering design features in our tpk) so we need a basemap in the map that is capable of zooming in beyond the standard AGOL basemap scale limit. Otherwise, in the second step the users cannot select the highest resolution for the map detail, which defeats the purpose of creating the large side-loaded tile package for the entire project if we cannot seem to get Collector to allow us to select and download the correct extent and detail for our purposes.

What I want to know is what generates that square in the first place, so I can hopefully avoid this issue altogether by providing the correct settings within in the map and/or other service layers so that the entire project area is initially within the work area polygon that Collector provides the user in that first step. Seems silly that no-one can answer how Collector determines what area will be within that initial blue square that is presented to the user. There must be some process/setting that governs that inside either in the Collector app or on the service tier.

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NancyStempel
New Contributor

Can you have 2 collector apps that update the same feature service in different areas?

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RyanSmith13
New Contributor

I am curious about this as well, we have collector deployed and are using iOS and Android, we are finding that the iOS platform is allowing a much bigger clip area of the "work area" than the Android devices, on iOS they can take a much bigger area of data with them than the Android, looking at the same maps, service, config? 

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Hayes_Jack
New Contributor

I had the same issue. I fixed it by changing the extents of the layers that make up my base map in sde and then overwriting the service. 

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