Monthly Archives: July 2009

New Product Support for ESRI Support Services

Hi Folks! My name is Marco, and I’m the Senior Support Technical Lead for the Server Unit in ESRI Support Services.

Hope everyone had a great time at the UC this year. There were a lot of new and exciting ESRI products demo’d this year in San Diego. I just wanted to share with you some basic information about these new products that ESRI Support Services will be supporting as of…right now! :-)

ArcGIS API for Microsoft Silverlight

Silverlight is a programmable Web browser plug-in that allows you to create animations, vector graphics, and enable multimedia in your Web mapping application. In short, it is Microsoft’s answer to Flex. The ArcGIS API for Microsoft Silverlight enables you to integrate ArcGIS Server and Microsoft Virtual Earth (now called “Bing”) services and capabilities in a Silverlight application. In short, you can make really functional and pretty Web applications that consume ArcGIS Server services.

During the Beta program, the Silverlight API has proven to be very popular, and we expect this to grow over time. Anyone that experiences issues with the Silverlight API can contact ESRI Support Services, provided that you are current on ArcGIS Server Maintenance.

For more information on the Silverlight API, hop on over to the ArcGIS Server Resource Center.


MapIt is a product that allows you to create simple maps and is composed of a couple components. First, the MapIt Data Loader allows you to either load a shapefile into Microsoft SQL Server or geocode existing records in a Microsoft SQL Server Database. The spatial information will be stored using the Microsoft Spatial Data Type.

Next, you can create a feature service, similar to ArcGIS Server, that can be consumed by the Microsoft Silverlight API. Using this, you can create a Silverlight Application to do things like display all of your customers on a map. What makes this product cool is that you can embed your map as a Web part in SharePoint (YAY!).

The target audience for this new product is not existing ArcGIS Server customers, as ArcGIS Server customers already have this functionality and more. Really, this product is designed for Microsoft shops that have some need to map information but have not gotten into GIS.

This is a great opportunity to expose those places to GIS, get them interested, and show them how powerful GIS can be to their organization. MapIt will have its own maintenance contract.

If you haven’t seen it already, take a gander at some of the demos and videos on the MapIt Web site.

That’s all for now! Take care everyone!

- Marco B., Senior Support Technical Lead, Server Unit, ESRI Support Services

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 ESRI works hard to address the bugs in our software. As you may already know, you can get dynamic information about logged bugs, through Bugs Online,* a resource that allows you to view the status of a bug on its way to being fixed. But now we’ve gone a step further!


New today, each Bugs Online report provides the service pack & version in which the bugs are…well, fixed!



*New to Bugs Online? Access it by going to Online Support Resources, log in, search by keyword or bug ID, and click Bugs Online among the filters in the search returns.

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Tips for Customers Dealing with SDK Incidents

Hi there, my name is Kaushik M.; I work as an SDK Support analyst with ESRI Support Services.

Within the SDK team, Support analysts often request sample codes, data, and projects for common reasons such as understanding workflows, troubleshooting codes or reproducing issues from you, the user community. I wanted to share some basic and simple tips related to this that may help you receive a faster resolution.

  1. In a majority of the cases, sending a sample code, test project, or test data that can be used ‘as provided’ with little modification to reproduce the issue helps us. A clear test case allows a Support analyst to set up a test environment much faster and without spending a lot of time gathering resources. Plus, a problem could be specific to anything such as code, workflow, data, a project file or the softwarehardware environment, so having these resources provided to us is invaluable.

  2. Sometimes automated workflows are long. In many cases, customers do an excellent job of finding a code segment responsible for erroneous behavior. In such cases, sending a succinct version of only the code that is required to reproduce the issue helps an analyst better understand where the issue is happening and why.

  3. If a code sample provided uses user-defined classes, methods, functions and/or variables, then their source codes and/or declarations should also be provided. This makes troubleshooting easier and closely comparable to the user’s environment; sometimes errors are related to user-defined components.

  4. If a programmatic workflow is possible to replicate using ‘out of the box’ tools, then it often helps to test it using standard tools and comparing the outputs or behaviors. This usually helps determine if the issue is related to the custom code, workflow or source data.

  5. If any new discoveries or changes with respect to the incident are noted after an incident is opened, updating the Support analyst is important. This helps in determining any future direction for further troubleshooting.

- Kaushik M., Support analyst, SDK Group, ESRI Support Services

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Obtaining the Aptana Studio IDE Plug-in to help in developing ArcGIS Server JavaScript API applications


Hi, my name is Jamie P., and I am an SDK Analyst with ESRI Support Services. Having worked in both Development and Support Services has provided me with in-depth skills in the world of GIS. I hope you enjoy my blog postings and find the information useful.

Aptana Studio is a great IDE for developing ArcGIS Server JavaScript API applications. Aptana Studio is built off of the Eclipse platform. Aptana Studio may be downloaded as a standalone all-in-one IDE installation, or as an Eclipse based plug-in. For current ArcGIS Server Java ADF developers who want to start developing using the ArcGIS Server JavaScript API, the Aptana Studio IDE plug-in is a great option for adding the Aptana JavaScript options to your current Eclipse IDE. For those of you who are not familiar with Eclipse, there is an explanation via this link:


Downloading the Aptana Studio IDE Plug-in


Browse to the Aptana Studio download site to download the plug-in. Under “Step 1”, choose Eclipse Plugin from the Installation Type drop-down list. Choose the version of your current Eclipse IDE from the Eclipse Version drop-down list. Click the “Download Now” button to begin the download process.


Installing the Aptana Studio IDE Plug-in


Notice the “Thanks for Downloading Aptana Studio 1.2.7” text area on the download page. Scroll down to the section where it states “Install Aptana Studio as a Plugin”. Notice the plug-in sections for the supported Eclipse versions listed. For Eclipse 3.4, a URL is provided as an update site that can be referenced from your Eclipse “Software Add ons and Updates” dialog box.


Using the ArcGIS JavaScript API within Aptana


You can now develop ArcGIS Server JavaScript API applications from within your existing Eclipse IDE instance. Reference the ArcGIS Server JavaScript API from within your application page: <script type=”text/javascript”> document.write(“″)</script>.

Editing ArcGIS Server JavaScript application in Aptana

Previewing ArcGIS Server JavaScript application in Aptana

-Jamie P., Support Analyst, SDK Group, ESRI Support Services


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Upcoming Events – User Conference in San Diego, CA

2009 ESRI International User Conference

Meet ESRI Support Services (ESS) at the User Conference in San Diego, CA

Hi, this is Jaime, one of the SDK Group Leads within ESRI Support Services. I just wanted to give you a heads up that User Conference is coming up, and let you know that ESRI Support Services will be there to assist you.

Do you have a question you want to ask us in person? Bring it to us!

Or even if you just want to say ‘hello’, come by; the Technical Support Island (Doctor’s office) will be located in Hall C on the Ground Level of San Diego Convention Center.

As part of the ESRI Showcase, we will be at the User Conference from 9 AM to 6 PM on Tuesday and Wednesday, and from 9 AM to 1:30 PM on Thursday.

Senior Support specialists from ESS will be glad to meet you and provide one-on-one support for your specific technical questions. Or ask the User Advocacy Group your questions about bugs that have been identified in the released software.

Also, you may take advantage of the technical workshop, “ESRI Support Services Operations and Processes”, to provide us with your feedback about our service, and how we may tailor it to better meet the needs of the ESRI software user community. The workshop presents our ongoing and upcoming initiatives, and uses the results from customer surveys as a base for a healthy discussion regarding the aspects that you, our customers, find most important.

Location of the Technical Support Island

See you there!

- Jaime N., SDK Group Lead, ESRI Support Services

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Integrating the Adobe Flex Builder Plug-in into an existing Eclipse IDE

Here’s a brief look into integrating the Adobe Flex Builder Plug-in into an existing Eclipse IDE. This information will be useful for any existing ArcGIS Java ADF developers wanting to work with the ArcGIS Flex API.

Downloading the Adobe Flex Builder Plug-in

A 60-day trial of the Adobe Flex Builder Plug-in is downloadable from Adobe’s Flex site. There are two options when downloading Flex Builder. You can either choose the full Flex Builder installation or the Flex Builder Plug-in. The Flex Builder Plug-in is downloaded as an executable file that installs the plug-in into an existing Eclipse IDE directory.

Installing the Adobe Flex Builder Plug-in

Once the Adobe Flex Builder Plug-in is downloaded successfully, run the executable file to begin the installation of the plug-in. When prompted to provide an existing Eclipse IDE directory, provide the existing Eclipse home folder. The installation will prompt you to install other components, these components are not necessary. After the installation is complete start the Eclipse IDE and choose to create a new project. You will notice a new folder of projects specifically for Flex Builder.

Referencing the ArcGIS Flex API

ArcGIS Flex API is downloadable from the ArcGIS Resource Centers. Once the ArcGIS Flex API has downloaded successfully and been extracted, store the libs folder in your current Flex Project or specify the library path in Flex Builder.

To specify the library path follow the following steps:

a. Right-click the Flex Project.
b. Click Properties.
c. Click Flex Build Path.
d. Click the Library Path tab.
e. Add the ArcGIS API for Flex Library using the Add SWC button.

You are now able to use the ArcGIS Flex API in your existing Eclipse IDE.

- Jamie Powell, Support Analyst, SDK Group, ESRI Support Services

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