Using Portal for ArcGIS on your localhost

It’s been a while since I posted something, but now I solved a frustrating issue and I wanted to share that. Recently, I’ve installed ArcGIS Enterprise 10.5.1 on a development machine, using my EDN licences (or should I say ArcGIS Developers license?). The base deployment of ArcGIS Enterprise is:

  • Data Store
  • ArcGIS Server
  • Portal
  • Webadaptor(s)

Everything installed fine, but when I wanted to create the Portal, my local machine was unreachable for the webadaptor. Long story short: the webadaptor uses a fully qualified domain name for accessing Portal, e.g. In my case, this address was unreachable. The workaround here is to change the hosts file in Windows (located in C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc). Add a new line to the hosts file:

This basically redirects the traffic from your windows computer to to your localhost, and that is where your Portal lives. Problem solved! For me anyway…

Portal for ArcGIS


arcpy in Visual Studio 2015

I wanted to switch from PyCharm to Visual Studio for my Python (more specific: arcpy) development, since we do a lot of developing in VS and I figured it would be nice to have a single development environment. I was pleasantly suprised that Python was available out-of-the-box after installing VS. But would it recognize my arcpy sitepackage (which was already present in my C:\Python27\ArcGISx6410.3 directory, since ArcGIS for Desktop is installed on my system).

Guess what? No, it didn’t.

But then I came across this blogpost. And it totally was applicable to my situation. So, if you think VS doesn’t understand arcpy, wait a few minutes after your first try… Thank you, Cindy Williams, for saving me a lot of frustration.

Look Ma, no squiggly lines!

Some more reading on arcpy in Visual Studio can be found here.

Tip: ArcGIS API for JavaScript Web Optimizer

If you’re building custom ArcGIS API for Javascript web applications, you might want to check out the Web Optimizer provided by Esri. It helps you by packaging your code and the required modules in one single, optimized package. The resulting code is quicker to download because it is smaller in size and it reduces the number of http requests, which is also beneficial for application loading times and performance.

There are some prerequisites:

  • All code must use AMD-style require and define to load and create modules. Code that uses global references to Esri and/or Dojo modules is not supported.
  • ArcGIS Online organization or ArcGIS for Developers account.
  • JS API version 3.4 or later.
  • Custom modules should define a package.json file that, at minimum, defines name and version properties.

More info here:

Access the Web Optimizer here: