Add layers to a map and publish

Background information

Here is some background information to consider before creating a map.

  • Security: The map's sharing settings supersede the sharing settings of the layers. Suppose a map has relatively open access, but you add a layer to which access is restricted. The map's access setting prevails and determines who will be able to view the published data in the layer.
  • Stack order: The stack order of the layers on a map reflects the way that layers are ordered on the Map Details page. You can modify the order when editing a map.

Editing map details

You can edit the following map details.

Name The name of this map. This name will identify this map to users. It must be unique across all maps and layers.
Description A text description for this map. This is an important field, because the text is shown to the end user in some clients, such as Google Earth clients. Descriptions can use standard HTML hyperlink syntax (<a href="">linkname</a>). Descriptions can use <br> to insert line breaks. Additional HTML tags, such as image source, are not supported in descriptions.
Tags The text strings that should return this map in response to a search. Separate multiple values with commas.
Shared with The access list whose members can work with this map in your authoring environment.
Viewable by: The access list whose members can view the published map. This list can include external viewers, in addition to people in your organization.
Layer names By default, the layer name is shown to users, so it's useful to replace the system-generated layer names with user-friendly names. For example, you could create display names such as "Most populous cities," "Fueling stations," "Water depth of 100m," "Endangered wildlife," "Recommended hotels," and so on.

Other information on the page is system-generated.

Publishing the map

A map is automatically processed and becomes ready for publishing if all the layers have been published. It takes a few seconds for Maps Engine to reprocess and refresh the map.

If the map has the status Map not ready to publish, check the Published on and Status values for the layers. If a layer is unpublished, click its name to display its Layer Details page and then process and publish it. When all a map's layers are published, it automatically becomes ready for publishing.

Every published map has a set of URLs to use in map-viewing clients. For more information, see How to view maps in supported clients.

Modifying and republishing

You can modify and republish a map at any time and you must republish a map if you add or remove layers. When you republish a map, the new version replaces the old version, and the old version is not saved.

You need not republish a map under these circumstances:

  • The contents of a layer changes and the layer is republished. 
  • A layer is unpublished. In this case, the contents of the layer become invisible to users.

To modify and republish a map, you don't need to unpublish the map first; just leave the external version as it is if you like. First edit the map, and then when the internal status is again Map is ready to publish, click Publish. The newly published version replaced the previous version.