ArcGIS Online and attachments

08-17-2015 11:46 AM
New Contributor II

We are using AGOL to host feature services, which are being edited/updated in the field using Collector. Collector is also used to add photo attachments to the feature service. I will be doing QA/QC on the field collected data and using the data and attachments to create reports in ArcGIS Desktop. I was hoping I could do this using the following steps:

1. From AGOL, Open (the Feature Layer) in ArcGIS for Desktop.

2. Create a local copy for editing.

3. Carry out QA/QC, making edits as necessary.

4. Synchronize local edits with AGOL.

5. Use the data and photo attachments to create a report.

I've run into some issues with this process, primarily wiht respect to the handling of attachments. It appears that when I Open in ArcGIS for Desktop (from AGOL), the attachments don't seem to come along with it (even though when I use the identify tool on the feature it shows that there is an associated attachment). I've come across similar issues when I look through the forums and have seen suggestions to download to fGDB as an alternative. That seems to work for bringing along the attachment. However, when I then do my edits and attempt to overwrite the existing feature layer in AGOL (from ArcMap...File>>Share as>>Service...Overwrite an existing service) with the edited fGDB. AGOL seems to simply add the edited fGDB as a new service, making it necessary to adjust the webmap (used in ArcGIS Collector) containing the original feature layer everytime new data is added (ie. new layer has to be symbolized, etc. every day).

Doe anyone know a way to ​Open in ArcGIS for Desktop​ (from AGOL) with attachments intact, or to overwrite the orinal feature layer with the edited fGDB?

2 Replies
New Contributor II

If the data service/attachments was created and served to ArcGIS Online by ArcGIS for Server, would the attachments then be available for download to Desktop? Could the data still be edited in Collector for ArcGIS?

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Occasional Contributor II

I'm interested in this as well.  I don't have the need but it is definitely something I could see coming up.  Have you tried to go into your feature service description and tried to use the export instead of just opening up directly?  Not sure if that would matter.  I have republished feature services and seen no issues in collector and no changes needed but it was just to update with no data.

As a side question to you, the constant republishing are you not running into a lot of credit issues?  Each republish is a credit burn which is why I avoid doing it often especially with data/attachments.

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