Import database and server connections from ArcGIS Desktop to ArcGIS Pro


When working with both ArcGIS Desktop and ArcGIS Pro, the database and server connections established in ArcGIS Desktop can be imported to ArcGIS Pro by connecting to the folder that stores the connection files on the local machine and adding them to a project in ArcGIS Pro.

The database and server connection files (.ags and .sde files) created in ArcGIS Desktop are generally stored in:


This article provides steps to import and rebuild the database and server connections from ArcGIS Desktop in ArcGIS Pro.


The AppData and Roaming folders are hidden by default. Ensure both folders are unhidden before running ArcGIS Pro. If ArcGIS Pro is running while enabling the Show Hidden Folders options in Windows, restart ArcGIS Pro to register the changes.
  1. In ArcGIS Pro, navigate to the Insert tab, click Add Folder, and select the ArcCatalog folder located in:

For more information on adding a folder connection, refer to ArcGIS Pro: Connect to a folder.

  1. Once the folder connections are added, right-click the connection file, and click Add to Project. The connection is added to the Servers or Databases directories in the Catalog pane.
The Catalog window in ArcGIS Pro displaying the Servers and Databases directories.

Once a connection has been added to a project, add it as a favorite to make it available quickly from any project.  Alternatively, use the Add To New Projects option to add the connection automatically to all new projects, as described in: Add an item to all new projects

Article ID:000016815

  • ArcMap
  • ArcGIS Pro

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