Easy Way to Transfer or Copy Webmap Application to Client!

08-09-2021 02:30 PM
Status: Open
New Contributor II

Seems like something ESRI should have figured out before selling ArcGIS online as a legitimate webmap building application. But we have recently struggled along with ESRI customer service to do something as simple as transfer a webmap application we built on our Enterprise account to the client Enterprise account.

There should be a simple way to doing this so the exact webmap application that a client pays for can be entirely transferred to the client's ArcGIS online account including all the associated layers. We don't want to simply share the webmap created on our account, we literally want a usable copy cloned on the client's account so they can edit a version that is independent of whether we continue to host the application and its layers on our account.

We spent more than a week struggling to see how we can do this using the ArcGIS Online Assistant, Partnered Collaboration, as well as Shared Groups. But no matter what we do, the webmap still references our layers or is transferred in a way that loses all the formatting we set up. Seems like nobody at ESRI Customer Service could help us out with this in an elegant manner that doesn't require the client side to also understand python...

Are we missing something or did ESRI not figure out something very basic for enterprise accounts?


We have the same struggle and concern. It's a significant issue if we're operating one account for academia and another for business operations, where content is developed under one license and then used for purposes applicable to the other license.


@sbiswas_geoadaptiveare you trying to transfer a web application from ArcGIS Enterprise to ArcGIS Enterprise or ArcGIS Enterprise to ArcGIS Online? 

If you are performing the former, try the following tools:


The latter may prove more difficult, if you are looking to copy a web application, since ArcGIS Online is always at a later release than ArcGIS Enterprise.  The configuration of certain widgets may have changed in ArcGIS Online.


Thank you Jake!

We are trying to transfer from one ArcGIS Enterprise account to another.

This tool does seem to offer exactly what we need but note a comment on this tool stating "this notebook did not copy over the services that power the service based items. Such items continue to point to the same URL as the ones in source portal did"

We are basically stuck with the problem that the transferred webmap application continues to reference layers hosted on our account even if those layers also exist on the client account. We went through a long session manually copying links to those layers using the ArcGIS Online Assistant to no success. As mentioned, other collaboration options did not successfully do so either.

We also understand the tool will only work if it is run by someone with administrative access to both accounts? This is not feasible when private vendors work with institutional clients.

We are hesitant to waste our client's time on yet another workflow that may not succeed, so we want to confirm if there indeed isn't a formal tool by ESRI to make this work. Otherwise, we will keep trying to experiment with early stage apps and python code tricks. We are afraid we cannot recommend working with ArcGIS Online to clients in the future if this issue isn't formally resolved for enterprise accounts.


When transferring content from portal to portal, whether it's ArcGIS Enterprise to ArcGIS Enterprise, or ArcGIS Enterprise to ArcGIS Online, I've found from working with customers is that there is not a 'one size fits all' solution.  There are A LOT of 'what ifs'. 

For example, say an organization needs to copy a web map from their ArcGIS Enterprise organization to another ArcGIS Enterprise organization, and the web map is referencing ArcGIS Server services.  What happens if the target organization does not have this ArcGIS Server service published?  What should occur:

  • the web map should not be copied
  • the web map should be copied, but reference the original source data
  • the service should be transferred as a hosted feature service

One organization may say the web map should not be copied, but another says it should but reference the original source data.  This is just one example of a what if scenario.  I've found the best path forward is to gain an understanding of what the customer is looking to achieve and create a custom tool (usually leveraging the ArcGIS API for Python) to do this.


Thank you Jake!

Then we will work with this using the Python route and hope it works.

There aren't too many permutation combinations of what an institutional client may need from a private vendor in terms of hosting a web application. So we hope it can become a fairly automated function for ArcGIS Online web applications - at least for enterprise organizations.

I believe going forward we may ask to build applications within client accounts to avoid this hassle. But we could only do this if Collaborations can ensure a shared workspace that keeps all other files private. We found with the ArcGIS Online Assistant this was not the case and would flag it as a serious issue from a security/privacy issue between organizations.


Following up on this to say we did try to the python route with the client and it failed to transfer with the error message "Your request has timed out."

Let me just say, even if this did work out it is the most convoluted workflow that ends up spending a lot of time on the client's end and expects all institutional clients to have the technical expertise that they expect from private vendors in the first place.

We are still working with ESRI customer service but do not hope for a better outcome any longer.

I find this to be an egregious issue that ESRI has overlooked. I cannot recommend ArcGIS online as a platform to build web maps to any future clients as long as this issue remains.


Hi @sbiswas_geoadaptive , I'd like to know if you were successful in finding an effective method for this. Did you manage this in the end?