ArcGIS Online Administration: Questions, Answers and Discussion Points from EdUC 2017

08-04-2017 08:56 AM
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A few questions and discussion points applicable to academic setting came up in a recent Web GIS Administration workshop during the Esri Educational User Conference in July 2017, and we thought we could share them with the community in case others had these same questions.


  1.        For anyone using Enterprise Logins (SSO), since a group is likely created for a course or a program in the respective enterprise identity store, can we automate certain workflows based on that group?
  •       Automatic Group creation for a course
  •       Automatic Esri Access Enabled
  •       Automatic ArcGIS Pro license assignment
  •       Automatic assignment of credits for the group


These are existing enhancement requests. If this is functionality of interest, please consider voting on the corresponding ideas on ArcGIS Ideas:

Automatic Esri Access Enabled

Automatic ArcGIS Pro license assignment

Automatic assignment of credits for the group

Currently a way to accomplish this is through a script using the ArcGIS API for Python or the ArcGIS REST API. A possible scenario for a script is to create a custom role equivalent to Publisher but with other privileges, such as enable Esri Access, assign ArcGIS Pro license, assign credits, etc., then assign it to all users in a group coming from a roster or LMS.

  1.       Managing large number of users - some universities hold on to their student identities indefinitely. What are the best tools to manage large number of users and what are the recommendations to clean up inactive accounts? Is there a setting that if an account is inactive for a period of time, it can be removed? Disabled members still count toward the number of users in an organization, so simply disabling a member may not be a solution.


ArcGIS Online Development team is currently collecting requirements for large organization management and potentially timing out users. We are hoping to get some more bulk tools out for late 2017 or in 2018 (subject to change).

Currently the best tools to clean up inactive accounts are using a script that tracks last login or tags for deleting. This can be done via the ArcGIS API for Python or the ArcGIS REST API.


Please consider voting for the existing idea to Set Expiry Date for User Account.


  1.       Automatic provisioning of ArcGIS Pro – what are the future plans that would allow automatic provisioning of ArcGIS Pro licensing for anyone who joins an organization? This is particularly important when enterprise logins (SSO) are implemented since the ArcGIS Online administrator does not know when users would login, so provisioning happens manually. If accounts are created manually for a class, the provisioning is still an extra step, but at least it could be done at time of user/group creation.


Automatic provisioning for ArcGIS Pro isn’t on the road map, yet. It has been brought up to the ArcGIS Online team for consideration. Please consider voting for the existing idea.    


  1.       Is there an existing enhancement request or need for multiple federated logins? For example, if an ArcGIS Online organization is being used for a school district, but the various schools in the school district have multiple identity stores – what would be a way to accomplish this?


This is under consideration by the ArcGIS Online Development team as well. Please consider getting in idea logged, to our knowledge one has not been logged yet.  


   5: Is there a way for students to know how many credits they have left?


This is on the ArcGIS Online road map for users to be able to check their credits. Please consider voting for the existing idea.


  1.       We’d like to see more examples and uses of social logins and how they work with enterprise logins.


Social logins are especially relevant to K-12 schools which may use Google Classroom or other social media accounts. Social logins give you the ability to allow the members of your organization to be able to sign into ArcGIS Online using their credentials from various social networks. They are different than enterprise logins (often referred to as SSO), and currently there is no connection between the two.


Social logins are your Facebook or Google account which can be used to create a new ArcGIS Online public account. Once you have created a public account, you can sign in to ArcGIS Online and other Esri sites such as GeoNet and Story Maps using your social network login. With the recent ArcGIS Online 2016 updates, we can now even join an ArcGIS Organization by either creating a new account using your Facebook or Google credentials or using an existing public account created using Facebook or Google credentials (only if the organization is configured with the settings which allow members to sign up and sign in using Social network credentials).


  1.       When a student leaves the university, how could they transfer their certificates from Esri Training courses to another account?


Students can call Esri Customer Service ( or 888-377-4575) to have their training history transferred to another account. This will ensure that the students have an ongoing record of any Esri web courses taken.


  1.       Can one share content from ArcGIS Pro when using a concurrent use license?


Yes. While Concurrent Use licensing for ArcGIS Pro in academia is discouraged, it is possible. If implemented, one can still login to their ArcGIS Online organization in ArcGIS Pro, using named user credentials. This will be necessary if one wishes to publish content to the web, or use any of the ArcGIS Online maps and services. More licensing-related and other ArcGIS Pro questions can be found here.


  1.       Data Governance discussion – tools such as Geo Jobe Admin Tools and ArcGIS Online Assistant are extremely useful for managing workflows relevant to academia, but data governance guidelines specific to the institution should be established, especially when applied to transferring content from one ArcGIS Online organization to another. Providing access to content, whether to a 3rd party provider, or from one organization to another, could be of concern in some instances.