Requirements for an ArcGIS Connection in Map 3D

July 17, 2019 Kevin Breslin

Bryant Quinney | Applications Expert

As both Autodesk and ESRI have, over the last few years, moved towards building a form of partnership for how GIS-related data is accessed and shared, both platforms have seen a few tools implemented to bridge this access gap. In the Autodesk world, this has taken form of options in the Data Connect palette inside of Map 3D-based products.

These access points are:

  • GIS Connection
    • Online
    • Local/Network
      • File Geodatabase
      • Personal Geodatabase
  • ArcSDE Enterprise

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Though I’m not quite sure why the folks at Autodesk felt the need to place ‘Add ArcGIS Online Connection’ in the choices when it simply points to the command on the Home ribbon in the Map workspace (Planning and Analysis). It just takes a different name there: “Autodesk Connector for ArcGIS”.

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Now, all of that aside and before proceeding, it is important to note that, according to Autodesk, there are licensed ESRI products that must reside on the computer before being able to use these features.

From System requirements for AutoCAD Map 3D 2019:                                  

FDO Provider

Certified With

Notes

ESRI ArcSDE

ArcSDE® 9.3 SP1
ArcSDE 10.2

This Provider requires ESRI licensed components to be installed on client system. Required components depend on the type of connection (SDE Service or Direct Connect)

ESRI ArcGIS

ARCGIS® 10.4
ARCGIS 10.3.1
ARCGIS 10.3
ARCGIS 10.2

This Provider requires ESRI licensed components to be installed on client system.

From System requirements for AutoCAD 2020 including Specialized Toolsets:

ESRI ArcSDE

ArcSDE 10.2

This Provider requires ESRI licensed components to be installed on client system. Required components depend on the type of connection (SDE Service or Direct Connect)

ESRI ArcGIS

ArcGIS® 10.6.1
ArcGIS 10.5
ArcGIS 10.4

This Provider requires ESRI licensed components to be installed on client system.

Of course, the wording of “licensed components” may seem vague, but it shows that the products referred to are only the ones shown in the “Certified with” column. It should be noted that the ArcReader does not qualify as such a component. My experience and assumption here are that the connection requires a read/write access to the data store. It does, however, give you the belief that it is about to connect with the progress meter.

ArcGIS Connection – File/Personal GDB

The ability to connect is straightforward. As with any of the other file-based methods of connecting, simply browse to a specific file (PGDb) or folder (FGDb) containing the geodatabase and click Connect. From there, you simply add the feature data to your map from the included schema found within.

ArcGIS Connection – ArcSDE Enterprise

Here, as with the other web/service-based connections, you must enter details on how to connect to the server, instance, and data store, as well as inputting the proper credentials. At that point, the data is available for access.

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ArcSDE Connection

This is a simple connection interface which authenticates the server and instance information entered, then provides the data stores and versions to which you can connect.

So, though this makes mention of the connection options for ESRI data stores, the main takeaway is that you must have a licensed product/component installed on the workstation on which you will access the databases.

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