Image extension

The ArcGIS Server Image extension is a license added to ArcGIS Server to serve collections of imagery. This license extends ArcGIS Image Services to serve mosaic datasets that can contain large collections of raster datasets with associated processing to be applied as the images are accessed. Therefore, if you are serving an image service, the following are true:

It adds the abilities to

Additionally, map and globe documents can contain raster data, but if you are serving one that contains a mosaic dataset, the Image extension will be required.

Mosaic datasets

Mosaic datasets allow you to manage and serve large collections of raster and image data. Creating, editing, or working with mosaic datasets in ArcGIS Desktop is not affected by the ArcGIS Server Image extension (there is no extension for ArcGIS Desktop). You are required to have an ArcEditor or ArcInfo license to create or edit mosaic datasets, which are created within a geodatabase. There is a Mosaic Dataset toolset within the Data Management toolbox that is used to create and edit mosaic datasets. Often you will create and edit mosaic datasets within ArcMap where there are additional shortcut menu options to assist you. Users with ArcView licenses will also be able to view mosaic datasets but cannot make any modifications.

ArcGIS Image Server


ArcGIS 10.0 is the last release of the stand-alone ArcGIS Image Server product. This product has been replaced with the ArcGIS Server Image extension and the use of mosaic datasets.

ArcGIS Image Server is an application you install and configure separately from ArcGIS Server. When registered with ArcGIS Server, ArcGIS Image Server lets you publish image service definitions and use the client plug-ins to connect to the image services. A separate install provides the Image Service Definition Editor toolbar in ArcMap that can be used to author image service definitions.

Learn more about ArcGIS Image Server

Migrating from 9.3 to 10

To manage and serve image and raster collections, it is recommended you create mosaic datasets. If you have existing image service definitions (.ISDef), it is recommended that you convert these to mosaic datasets. To convert your .ISDefs to a mosaic dataset, create a new mosaic dataset, then use the Add Rasters To Mosaic Dataset tool to import all the properties and links to the source data in the .ISDef. Using the ArcGIS Server Image extension, you can publish your mosaic dataset as an image service. It will have all the capabilities of the image service created from an .ISDef plus many more.

Learn more about migrating an ISDef to a mosaic dataset