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External three tier SDE connections at 10.2

Question asked by mclee021 on Jun 30, 2014
Latest reply on Jun 30, 2014 by vangelo-esristaff
How can external clients connect to our production SDE database using ArcGIS Desktop 10.2.2?

SQL Server 2008 R2
ArcSDE 9.3.1
Desktop 10.2.2

The external client used to have version 10.0, but has recently upgraded to 10.2. Before the upgrade, the user would connect via an external IP that was NAT'd to our SDE server that was running an SDE service open on port 5151 (screenshot 1). This is what I understand as a basic three tier connection.

After the desktop upgrade, I'm not sure how to specify the IP address as the connection dialog is looking for SERVER\INSTANCE name. Esri's recommended approach is to use the Create ArcSDE Connection File tool. This tool will create a Application Server connection that mimics the properties of a 10.0 connection. However, the user cannot run the Create  tool as they only have a basic license. When I create a connection file for them with the tool, it fails when I specify IP as the server name. When I use the server name, the tool executes, but the user gets an "Operation failed" (screen shot #2) error when file is copied to their AppData\Roaming\ESRI\Desktop10.2\ArcCatalog folder. I suspect this is because the user is not part of our internal network and the server name will not resolve. If I alter the server name to the IP address in the connection properties on the created file I get error "Failure to access DBMS server" (screenshot #3). Interestingly, if I click Yes on that error, and double click on the connection in database connections, I get access to SDE. However, this persists for only that ArcMap session. When I open a fresh session, the connection defaults to a SQL connection window with IP as the instance name. It then fails to connect.

I have verified that the port and IP are both running correctly. Why does the 10.0 connection work fine, and the other does not? Is connecting via an external IP no longer supported? Do we need to set up IPV6 as specified here?

http://resources.arcgis.com/en/help/main/10.2/index.html#//00290000003q000000

Can ArcGIS Server be used? Our SDE has about 400 FC's...

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