Tile Package on External SD Card with Survey123 (Android)

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08-02-2020 06:58 PM
DuncanKinnear
New Contributor III

I'm trying to set up Survey123 forms to have access to a tile package held on an external SD Card (Android). The internal storage of the tablet I'm using is 16GB and I need access to tile packages totaling much more than this.

I've followed the instructions on this page, but the tile packages just don't seem to show up in the map library. However when I move the tile package into Internal storage (My Surveys/Maps) - they show up fine. Has anyone else had this problem?

Frustrating as I really need these detailed maps available offline, otherwise I will have to use Collector (which can use offline basemaps save don the SD Card just fine.

I'd rather not upload the tile packages to AGOL when I don't need to - and even then I can't seem to direct Survey123 to save data on the SD Card either - it's all going to internal storage.

Thank in advance,

Duncan

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Philip-Wilson
Esri Notable Contributor

Hi Duncan,

What you are seeing is expected, and is the way Android lists mounted volumes. Mounted volumes can be SD cards, external storage, USB, internal storage and even the system or apps can set folders as being mounted volumes.

Unfortunately on Android, as Doug mentions, there is nothing we can do about this, there is no additional information or properties of the file paths and folders as to which one is actually the SD card you are looking for, and each time you format or use a different SD card the number will change. Generally on Samsung the SD card will resemble "/storage/3366-3038/" or a similar number, however with other SD cards on other Android devices (makes/models) this may look completely different.

Regards,

Phil.

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6 Replies
Philip-Wilson
Esri Notable Contributor

Hi Duncan,

What version of Survey123 field app are you using? It is possible to achieve what you are wanting, this has always been supported, tpks can be used from a SD card by adding the path to the folder on your SD card via Settings -> Map -> Map Library settings? In 3.9 and earlier the UI to select the folder on Android was not very user friendly due to some underlying limitations, but was still possible.

Good news is we will be releasing version 3.10 in coming days which improves the UI on Android for file and folder selection, and any folder can easily be selected on the Internal or SD card locations. Using the Settings -> Map -> Map Library settings you can navigate to any folder and add that folder that contains all of your tpks.

Regards,

Phil.

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DuncanKinnear
New Contributor III

Hi Phil,

Thanks for the reply (and sorry for my delayed response). I was waiting for one of the tablets to come back from the field so I could test out 3.10 (we were using 3.9).

You're right - the GUI for selecting SD Card folders in 3.9 was not user friendly - I tried all sorts of combinations of filepaths that I thought were pointing to the SD card, but nothing worked. Thanks to 3.10, I have now resolved this issue (but still not very user friendly!). The SD card, which shows up in File Explorer on Windows simply as 'Card', is located in the Survey123 interface as '/storage/3366-3038/'.

So the folder /Card/ArcGIS_Collector (where my .tpks are kept for use in Collector) is now showing up in Survey123 as /storage/3366-3038/ArcGIS_Collector. I only found this by going through each listed folder using the new UI.

Not sure if it's the particular tablets we are using (Samsung Active Tab2), but my feedback would be that the interface is still not very user-friendly, and it might save people a lot of frustration if it was a bit more obvious what the actual SD card location. I'm guessing the 3366-3038 is maybe the SD card's number or something, but I wouldn't have a clue where to find that, and wouldn't know to look for it.

I've attached a screenshot of the available folders on the tablet I was using, for your info.

Cheers!

Duncan

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DougBrowning
MVP Notable Contributor

The random naming is a Android thing.  Not much 123 team can do about that.  I ran into this issue trying to have an autocopy script using Android developer tools.

It renames it self on every format.   See here for a way to "rename" it.   VFAT, UUID, SD Cards, Android Mount | Clements Family 

Hope that helps

DuncanKinnear
New Contributor III

Thanks Doug, good to know.

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Philip-Wilson
Esri Notable Contributor

Hi Duncan,

What you are seeing is expected, and is the way Android lists mounted volumes. Mounted volumes can be SD cards, external storage, USB, internal storage and even the system or apps can set folders as being mounted volumes.

Unfortunately on Android, as Doug mentions, there is nothing we can do about this, there is no additional information or properties of the file paths and folders as to which one is actually the SD card you are looking for, and each time you format or use a different SD card the number will change. Generally on Samsung the SD card will resemble "/storage/3366-3038/" or a similar number, however with other SD cards on other Android devices (makes/models) this may look completely different.

Regards,

Phil.

DuncanKinnear
New Contributor III

Thanks Phil, that clears it up. I'll know what to look out for in future!

Cheers for your help, much appreciated.

Duncan