You can see your own data in ArcMap, now wouldn’t it be good to automatically have an OS map in the background,
Imagine the background map being streamed directly into ArcGIS, with no data to download and process, and generalization automatically adapting to your zoom level, just like in Google Maps!
Such a map service is now available, and it is free for UK academic use. The dataset is called OS OpenData, and it is provided to UK academia through Digimap OpenStream, part of the excellent EDINA Digimap services. In technical terms it is an Web Map Service (WMS), compliant with the OCG WMS specifications.
To use this service you need to register for it and get your personal API key on http://openstream.edina.ac.uk
Once you have your API key, launch ArcCatalog and define OpenStream as a data source:
- In the catalog tree go to GIS Servers and double click Add WMS Server.
- For URL enter:
- Click Get Layers to verify that it works. Click OK.
- You now have a new data source entry under GIS Servers, called ‘OS OpenData on openstream.edina.ac.uk’
Now add the OpenData data to your ArcMap project:
- In ArcMap go to File > Add Data.
- Navigate to GIS Servers > OS OpenData on openstream.edina.ac.uk > OS Open Data and click Add.
- If you don’t see any map content, expand the OS Open Data layer, right click any layer and Zoom To Layer. Then zoom to your are of interest.
- It always is a good idea to set the coordinate systems to British National Grid.
For further documentation and help see http://openstream.edina.ac.uk
Kudos to EDINA, this really makes work a lot easier for many projects.
- In the same way you can add any other map service that complies with OGC WMS standards.
- Digimap OpenStream is an OGC 1.1.1 compliant WMS, so you can display the OS map not only in ArcMap, but in any compliant WMS client, like ERDAS Imagine, Google Earth, QGIS, your web application,… For a complete list of compliant clients see the OGC website.