Building a first web app with ArcGIS Server was meant as a test to see if I had installed and configured everything correctly. I have AGS running on Windows 7, and my desktop client is running Windows Vista with ArcGIS 9.3 and IE8.0. Since I am entirely new to AGS and its capabilities, I didn’t really know what to expect. So I stuck with the instructions in the EDN documentation library for first steps with web apps.
I created a simple project (.MXD) in ArcGIS Desktop using only four (4) shapefiles for North Texas – counties, cities, highways, and hydrology, data I downloaded a long time ago from the North Central Texas County of Governments GIS (NCTCOG) website. Something simple, yet familiar to experiment with. Once my MXD was there, I started ArcGIS Server Manager, selected “Publish GIS Resource”, added my Project1 and published it. That was the easy part.
I spent the rest of the time with Project 1 trying to figure out how to access this resource on the server with ArcCatalog or Internet Explorer on the client. In the process of getting this to work, I came across a number of issues that may have been causing error messages. In the end, I am afraid, I am not sure what finally solved the problem. But I finally figured it out, and I love the results.
When AGS informed me that service Project1 was running, I tried http://<mylocation>/<arcgisserver>/services on the client to pull up the web app. But I got an error that “the connection could not be made”.
It appears that often problems with connecting to AGS from a client have to do with DCOM – Distributed Component Object Model. So a first step was to check whether both server and client had DCOM enabled.
Then, I had to check R/W permissions for the SOC/SOM accounts on the server. Those appeared to be in order. And just in case, because someone somewhere in a discussion thread suggested it, I deleted and added again the SOC/SOM/Web accounts. But that didn’t help.
At some point, the error message had changed to :
Access Denied: Either the SOM service on the machine is not started or the user attempting this connection is not a member of the agsuser or agsadmin group and cannot be granted access to the SOM.
This sounded like the client was “seeing” the server but had no permission to “talk”.
On the ESRI website I found another Bugfix. Again, I checked whether SOM/SOM had remote launch and activation permissions set correctly, and they did.
Finally, I went back to agsusers on the server (see my post on install/post install), and it occurred to me that the client wasn’t part of the agsusers group. How to fix that since only local users (accounts on the server) show up as choices to add to the group. Going through some of the ESRI pages again, I finally figured out that I can add an account on the server that is identical to the one used to log into the client.
In general, the list of accounts you add to the ArcGIS Server user and administrator groups will depend on what clients you anticipate will connect to the server. When connecting to a windows GIS Server, each operating system account from which ArcGIS Desktop is run will need to be added to the ArcGIS Server users group if you want that client to access the GIS server. Additionally, each Web application you create can connect to the GIS server through a particular operating system account. Each account your Web applications utilize should be added to the ArcGIS Server users group as well.
Once I added this to the agsusers group, I was able to see my Project1 service running on Internet Explorer. Again, many lessons learned !