I'm curious if anyone has undertaken a migration for their organization from ArcGIS Enterprise -> ArcGIS Online)and can speak towards their experience.
It's becoming evident that the time and cost requirement of renting a virtual machine for our Enterprise system has really impeded our organization's progress towards its goals. The intricacies of managing the Enterprise setup for our number of staff adds to costs and I believe a transition to Online would help alleviate some of the time and money drain from the organization. Our primary data use is collecting data, including photos, in remote field areas which is synced with Hosted Feature Layers, and then incorporating that data on visualizations (dynamic or static maps) for presentations with others. In my discussions with other, similarly sized organizations (small) most of them are ArcGIS Online subscribers exclusively. Finding staff with adequate Enterprise experience in our area for the future when current staff leaves has been difficult as well.
The Enterprise on Virtual Machine setup makes it really difficult to assess exactly how much of our DataStore's storage is taken up by hosting Feature Classes vs. Feature Attachments vs. Imagery - which makes the cost analysis for me difficult to complete. DescribeDatastore lists our datastore as having 80GB with additional storage on our VM taken up by backups and other system files.
I'm aware of the ArcGIS Online Assistant workflow and am planning eventually to purchase a base Creator level license, running the two concurrently and migrating some of our critical services over first that way, eventually bringing it to a place where we could get rid of the Enterprise setup.
Does anyone have any thoughts or experience that they wouldn't mind sharing?
There are a number of things to consider when deciding to go exclusively with ArcGIS Online:
A potential migration strategy:
Thank you for the recommendations, Mark. They are immensely helpful for us in considering this process. We were already largely operating in a Cloud environment through the Virtual Machine that hosted our entire Portal, Server, and Datastore setup. Where we are the internet service is not great, but it's worked for the most part whenever I've needed to rarely edit the services directly through ArcGIS Pro.
Is it possible to still connect to the AGOL portal through ArcMap at all or would it have to be wholly done through ArcGIS Pro? I know newer licenses for AGOL don't even provide ArcMap but ArcMap still works better on much of our hardware. It doesn't need to be connected in a capacity where we will be editing these live services, but it can be helpful to drop some of our Portal Hosted content from our current Cloud setup into an ArcMap .mxd alongside other locally stored reference data for presentation purposes.
Yes, you can continue to use ArcMap to work with AGOL:
I understand that your machines perform better with ArcMap but 10.8.1 was the last version of ArcMap to be produced. Support won't expire for that till early 2026 but the writing is on the wall and you will miss out on any new functionality from now on. I recommend migrating to Pro, which might mean getting higher performing machines.