Has there been a recent change in behaviour with ArcGIS Online when publishing a feature layer in ArcMap that has a definition query applied to it? I could have sworn that a few months ago when I published a layer with a query that it just ignored the query and published all the data anyway. This ties up with the help page
Be aware that definition queries you apply to layers in ArcMap or ArcGIS Pro are only applied when querying, not when the data is published. All data is published and uploaded to ArcGIS Online. If you want only a subset of the data to be published to and stored in ArcGIS Online, you must export the subset of the data to another feature class and publish that.
However I have tried uploading layers with definition queries in the last couple of weeks and it now seems to honour the definition query and only upload the filtered records. Is it just the case that the documentation is out of date?
I had wondered if it was to do with the version of ArcGIS Desktop but I get the same result in both 10.1 and 10.3.1.