ArcGIS Explorer

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ArcGIS Explorer Desktop
Esri Logo
Original author(s) Esri
Developer(s) Esri
Stable release 2500
Operating system Windows
Language Multilingual
Type GIS
License Free Download
Website ArcGIS Explorer Desktop product page

ArcGIS Explorer Desktop allows users to explore, visualize, and share geographic information system (GIS) for free. Users have access to ArcGIS Online basemaps and layers, able to create custom maps by integrating local data with map services, add more information on maps, such as videos, photos, videos, and reports as well as carry out spatial analysis for example visibility, modelling, and proximity search.


These are some of the features in ArcGIS Explorer Desktop:

  • Ribbon user interface – Users can navigate easier within the application using the ribbon user interface that presents tools including the Help and integrated tool tips in the context of how to use the tools.
  • Basemap Gallery - Users can access various basemaps, such as World Imagery, World Streets, or World Topographic Maps available in the gallery or users can upload custom-made basemaps.
  • Add local data – Users can add local data like geodatabases, shapefiles, Keyhole Markup Language File (KML) or KMZ, GPS Exchange Format (GPX), and raster formats for example JPEG 2000, GeoTIFF, MrSID, and so forth. Users can add locations from spreadsheets or layer files and packages generated using ArcGIS Explorer Desktop.
  • Various mapping services – Users have access to various mapping services from ArcGIS for Server, Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc (OGC) Web Map Service (WMS), and GeoRSS feeds.
  • Combine different content types – Users can integrate various contents for example photos, videos, documents, and so forth to create geographical context.
  • Integrated 2D and 3D Display – Users can display maps in either 2D or 3D modes as well as in any projection or coordinate system.
  • Extend ArcGIS Explorer Desktop – Users can use add-ins like the geoprocessing tools and models published using the ArcGIS for Server to extend the core ArcGIS Explorer Desktop capabilities. Users also have access to various available services.
  • Share geographical information using Presentations – Users are able to communicate geographic information using Presentations, which is a popular ArcGIS Explorer Desktop feature.
  • Personalize ArcGIS Explorer Desktop - Users do not need programming to customize the application using centrally managed applications configurations while users can also use software development kit (SDK) to create add-ins.
  • Available in various languages – Users can choose from Spanish, English, German, French, Chinese, and Japanese languages to localize ArcGIS Explorer Desktop including all user interface elements and Help.

What is New in ArcGIS Explorer Desktop

Enhancements in ArcGIS Explorer Desktop 2505 are as follows:

  • Windows 8.1-certified and installable.
  • Better accuracy using Zoom To button for custom geocode service results.
  • Better pinning in 3D for note graphics and measure.

System Requirements

ArcGIS Explorer Desktop requires the following platforms to run [1]:

  • Windows 2003 Server Standard, Enterprise, and Datacenter (32-bit and 64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows 2008 Server Standard, Enterprise, and Datacenter (32-bit and 64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows 2008 R2 Server Standard, Enterprise, and Datacenter (64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows 7 Ultimate, Professional Edition (32-bit and 64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows 8 Basic, Professional, and Enterprise (32-bit and 64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows 8.1 Basic, Professional, and Enterprise (32-bit and 64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Vista Ultimate, Enterprise, Business (32-bit and 64-bit [EM64T])
  • Windows XP Professional Edition (32-bit)
  • Windows XP Professional Edition (64-bit [EM64T])
  • Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1.


  1. System requirements for ArcGIS Explorer Desktop Accessed 16 June 2014.

External links