The error message "unable to connect to server" occurs when trying to download mobile projects using the secured server option

Last Published: April 25, 2020


When trying to download mobile projects using the secured server option, the following error message appears: "unable to connect to server".


This behavior occurs while downloading a project from a standalone ArcGIS Server with mobile capability or from ArcGIS.com. This is caused by a wildcard (*) being present in the ssl certificate installed on the Web server.

Wildcard certificates are not supported in Windows Mobile 5, but are supported with Windows Mobile 6 and Internet Explorer Mobile. However, there is a bug in the .NET Compact Framework 2.0 that ships with Windows Mobile 6 and is used by the Windows Mobile Application. This bug manifests itself on secured connections between the ArcGIS Mobile application and a Web server containing a wildcard (*) in the ssl certificate.


There are two workarounds for the issue. The first workaround is to use an ssl certificate that does not contain a wildcard (*). This applies mostly to users from a standalone ArcGIS server with mobile capability since access to Web servers and content on ArcGIS.com may be limited.

The second workaround entails downloading the project .wmpk file directly from the mobile content server using Internet Explorer on the mobile device and then tapping on the .wmpk file to open it. Before attempting to download the mobile project on a standalone ArcGIS server with mobile capability, be sure to save the mobile project to the Web server using the Mobile Project Center. Also, be aware that the mobile content server may not be accessible via ArcGIS.com.

To download the .wmpk file using Internet Explorer on the mobile device, follow the steps below:
1. Visit https://yourserver.domainname.com/arcgis/mobile/content (if the ArcGIS instance name is 'arcgis').
2. If prompted whether or not to trust the certificate, click Yes.
3. Click the 'WindowsMobile' link.
4. Click the 'Projects' link.
5. Click on a project from the list.
6. Click the 'Item Link' hyperlink.
7. Scroll down the page to the 'Item Data' link.
8. Tap on the link and Internet Explorer Mobile asks where to save it.
9. Save the data to the main memory or storage card.

    Article ID:000011164

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