I see that in Portal 10.5 there functionality introduced to enable collaboration between multiple Portal instances.
I have a couple of questions:
Ideally, I would like to see actual data replication between AGOL and a portal instance. This would allow us to administer/review/analyse data in Portal on-premise using direct connection tools and scripts that would otherwise not be possible or practical using AGOL, while allowing AGOL to handle the scaleability required for users to access and update data, e.g. via mobile or web apps. The key component here would be keeping the two databases in sync (i.e. database replication).
Does anyone have any info or comments on how or whether this could work, and what might be coming up in 10.5?
In response to your questions:
Is data content physically replicated across the different portals, or merely items kept in sync that allow a user of one portal to see items from other portals and access them?
Yes, most of the data will be physically replicated between the different portals. This applies to almost anything that can be stored as an item in Portal under My Content: web maps, web apps, shapefiles, map packages, tile packages, service definition files, etc. The exception is map service and feature service data. In 10.5 the service items will be copied over by reference. This means if you have a map image layer or feature layer in one Portal, the item will be copied to the collaborating Portal but it will still access the data through the original url. There are plans to replicate feature service data between collaborating Portals in 10.5.1.
Is it possible to connect a Portal instance to an AGOL account?
No, for 10.5 a Portal instance cannot collaborate with an AGOL account. That is another feature we plan on including in 10.5.1. When this is supported it will include the database replication between Portal and AGOL as well.