Diagnose the error "The URL http://... is invalid or ArcIMS is not running"

Last Published: April 25, 2020


When attempting to run ArcIMS Administrator the status bar displays the error "The URL http://... is invalid or ArcIMS is not running."

The error is generated when the ArcIMS Administrator is unable to connect to the ArcIMS Servlet Connector or the Servlet Connector is unable to connect to the ArcIMS Application Server.

There are many possible causes for this and the following steps will help identify the underlying problem.


Before troubleshooting it is important to understand what the Administrator is attempting to do. ArcIMS Administrator attempts to make a connection with the Web server where the ArcIMS Servlet Connector is installed. The ArcIMS Servlet Connector listens for requests at the URL http://<yourmachine>/servlet/com.esri.esrimap.Esrimap. The ArcIMS Servlet Connector then forwards this request to the ArcIMS Application Server.

When the error occurs the process has failed.


The following are four common problems that cause this error. Each has a procedure that may resolve the issue.

  • Application Server Not Started

    Determine if the ArcIMS Application Server is started.
    Windows: Start it through the Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Services, if it is not started.

    If it does not start; see the following ESRI article.
    <a href='' target='_blank'>How To: Diagnose a problem with the ArcIMS Application Server failing to start</a>
  • Servlet Connector Configuration Problem

    After confirming that the ArcIMS Application Server is running, check the ArcIMS Diagnostics tests. If the two tests fail there is a servlet connector configuration problem.

    To further diagnose a Servlet Connector configuration problem; see the following ESRI article.
    <a href='' target='_blank'>Problem: URL is invalid or ArcIMS is not running in Administrator</a>
  • Administrator Not Configured for HTTPS

    If the ArcIMS Application Server is running and the ArcIMS Diagnostics succeeds and HTTPS is used, configure ArcIMS Administrator to connect to HTTPS sites.

    To further configure ArcIMS Administrator for HTTPS; see the following ESRI article.
    <a href='' target='_blank'>How To: Configure ArcIMS to work with HTTPS</a>
  • Proxy Server Requires Authentication

    ArcIMS Administrator connects to the ArcIMS Application Server through the Web server and the ArcIMS Servlet Connector. If a proxy server is used and a login is required, ArcIMS Administrator needs to be configured to provide the proxy server login. To determine if this is the case do the following:

    - Empty the Web browser cache.
    - Close all browser windows.
    - Run the ArcIMS diagnostics.

    If a username and password are required to show the diagnostics, it may be a proxy server login.

    For instructions on configuring ArcIMS Administrator with a proxy server; see the ArcIMS Installation Guide (<ArcIMS CD>\Documentation\install.htm). In "Step 5: Configure ArcIMS" find the details about configuring ArcIMS with a proxy server.

    Contact ESRI Technical Support

    If the above steps do not help locate the reason for the error, contact ESRI Technical Support and provide the following information:

    1. What were the results when following the steps in this knowledge base article (#27637)? Include this article number, #27637, in the request for support.

    2. What are the Web server and servlet engine being used?

    3. Is ArcIMS Administrator run on the same machine on which the Web server is installed?

    4. Is load balancing or clustering being used with the Web server?

Article ID:000007250

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