Supported functionality in MSD-based map services

The following list shows which features are available with the fast drawing engine used when you publish a map service from a map service definition (.msd) file. You can obtain an MSD file using the Map Service Publishing toolbar in ArcMap.

If the functionality you require is not listed here, you must use either Manager or ArcCatalog to publish your service from the map document (.mxd) file. Your service will use the standard drawing engine from ArcGIS Server versions 9.3 and previous when MSD files were not available.

Data types

The following data types are available:

Layer symbology

The following layer symbology options are available:


The standard ESRI labeling engine is available, as well as annotation. The Maplex labeling engine is available but is recommended for cached maps only.

Layer types

The following layer types are available:

Graphic elements

The following graphic elements are available:

Raster symbology

Most raster symbology is available. The raster pan-sharpening filter is also available. Hillshading on the fly is not available.


Most 2D symbols are available, but 3D symbols and chart symbols are not supported.

The following symbols are available:

Cartographic representation rules are supported, although using representations with MSD-based services is recommended for cached maps only.

ArcGIS Server map caching

You can create ArcGIS Server map caches with MSD-based services. Only fused caches are supported, meaning all the layers in the MSD are "fused" into one image. Caches of type multilayer are not available with MSD-based services.


Additional features that are available include these:

Page layouts are not available. Scale bars are available through the service's Web Service Description Language (WSDL) only.