Problem: The Sign In and ArcGIS Online options are inactive on the File menu


Hosted feature services cannot be published from ArcMap because the Sign In and ArcGIS Online options when clicking on the File menu are inactive. The Sign In option allows users to log in to ArcGIS Online from ArcMap, and the ArcGIS Online option allows users to access data and maps uploaded to ArcGIS Online.

The Sign In and ArcGIS Online options inactive in ArcMap


  • The ArcGIS Connection Utility is disconnected because the ArcGIS Connection Properties is set to 'Never check'. This setting allows ArcGIS Desktop to check for ArcGIS Online's availability. A globe icon symbolizes a good connection; a globe icon with a red 'X' symbolizes a bad connection.
The disconnected ArcGIS Connection icon
  • ArcMap is referencing an incorrect ArcGIS Online connection. In ArcGIS Administrator, the default ArcGIS Online connection (www.arcgis.com) is referenced instead of the organizational domain.

Solution or Workaround

Use one of the workarounds listed below to solve the issue.

Re-establish the ArcGIS Connection Utility

  1. Open ArcMap. Click the Show hidden icons button on the Windows taskbar
  2. Locate the disconnected ArcGIS Connection globe icon on the taskbar.
The Show hidden icons and the disconnected ArcGIS Connection icon
  1. Right-click the ArcGIS Connection icon and click ‘Properties…’.
The ArcGIS Connection icon only displays after launching ArcMap.
  1. In the ArcGIS Connection Properties dialog box, under Connection Test Frequency, select the Always check at the start of a session option, and click OK.
The ArcGIS Connection Properties dialog box with the Always check at the start of a session option checked.
  1. The ArcGIS Connection Utility is now connected. Hover the cursor over the ArcGIS Connection icon to check the status.
The ArcGIS Connection icon showing it is connected

Add the ArcGIS Online organizational domain in ArcGIS Administrator

Refer to ArcMap: Manage ArcMap portal connections for steps to add the organizational domain in ArcGIS Administrator.

Related Information

Last Published: 3/10/2021

Article ID: 000013176

Software: ArcGIS Online 8.3