We have a map service containing base maps then create other map services for the application/data layers that go on top. These application/data layer MXDs don't have any base maps in them, just the data layers. We've been discussing how it would be useful to have basemaps in the data MXDs for reference and to see how the data layer symbology worked when displayed over the base maps. The obvious thing to do is to add the base map service from ArcGIS Server into the data MXD.
We can add the base maps to the data MXD when developing, then remove it before we publish the data services but then we have to add it back in for further development. So we could just leave the base map service in the data MXD and turn off the layer before we publish the service. But does this cause any issues for performance or anything else? Does it upset ArcGIS Server to access a map service whose MXD contains another ArcGIS Server map service?