GeoServer is the leading open source server to publish geospatial data at scale. GeoServer is a robust solution for management and disseminating geospatial data. It supports a wide range of input formats, used to generate stunning maps, perform analysis or simply make such content available on the web via well-known APIs according to standards published by OGC and ISO TC 211, as well as community standards. Organizations use GeoServer to serve petabytes of data, from point data (e.g., real-time worldwide ship positions) to massive multidimensional earth observation data. GeoServer is open source and available for free; it is an OSGEO core project which gives users peace of mind of having a not-for-profit organization as the license holder for the project to ensure that it will be open forever.

GeoServer formats

GeoServer Input Formats and Interfaces

Inputs formats supported by GeoServer include:

  • Shapefile
  • GeoPackage
  • Oracle Spatial
  • PostGIS
  • SQL Server
  • MongoDB
  • GeoTiff
  • JPEG200
  • NetCDF
  • ElasticSearch
  • SAP Hana

Protocols and output formats supported by GeoServer include:

  • OGC Web Map Services (WMS)
  • OGC Web Feature Services (WFS)
  • OGC Web Coverage Services (WCS)
  • OGC Web Processing Services (WPS)
  • OGC Web Map Tile Services (WMTS)
  • Catalogue Service for the Web (CSW)
  • Tile Mapping Service (TMS)
  • OGC Web Map Services
  • GeoJSON
  • GeoRSS
  • DDS/BIL for 3D mapping


GeoServer comes with a comprehensive administrative user interface so that configuration tasks can be performed easily from the web.

GeoServer Administration User Interface

GeoServer Administration User Interface


GeoServer can be used to generate stunning maps by applying highly sophisticated styling to the geospatial data ingested, both raster and vector data. Data can be styled according to your styling language of choice like OGC SLD, GeoCSS and Mapbox Styles. You can find more information in the GeoServer documentation or in our training material.

GeoServer supports Vector Tiles output through a free and open-source plugin for both WMS and WMTS in various formats like GeoJSON, TopoJSON, and MapBox Vector (MVT).

GeoServer at work rendering OpenStreetMap data

GeoServer can be used to ingest, manage, disseminate and analyze time series for both raster and vector data at scale. Earth Observation data can be ingested then visualized and access using the advanced capabilities for dimensions management like TIME, ELEVATION and more.

Serving Meteorological Data with GeoServer


DLR MetOp GOME L2 Daily Dataset

Animating Meteosat Products with GeoServer


GeoServer can be used to power advanced solutions for smart cities, utilities companies, IOT, precision farming and more as it can go well beyond mapping capabilities to provide advanced queryingfiltering and analysis capabilities as shown below (especially when used together with our flagship Web GIS MapStore).

Dashboard for reservoir capacity monitoring

SAR Interferometry portal for the region of Tuscany

City of Genoa Energy Monitoring Dashboard


GeoServer integrates with GeoWebCache to provide tile caching services for maps. The integration allows for faster and more scalable serving as GeoWebCache makes direct calls to the GeoServer rendering image process to speed up tile generation. GeoServer enables automatic tile truncation when performing Transactions via OGC Web Feature Service (WFS) to modify vector data. Tiles can be saved on disk, in MBTiles, in AWS S3 or in Azure Blobs. Moreover, the GeoServer user interface supports a number of additional configuration options for the Tile Services, as well as for, the layers due to the GeoWebCache integration which makes it easy to control tile caching as part of the normal administration tasks.

Tile Cache Options for Layer Configuration


GeoServer can be used to create  INSPIRE services for both View and Download services using the freely available extension. You can find more information in our training as well as in the GeoServer documentation. Also, a plugin for configuring complex-features in HALE and then moving such configuration to GeoServer is available for free. Below you can find the recording of a workshop that will guide you through publishing INSPIRE services with GeoServer and HALE.


GeoServer provides a REST API for programmatically configuring data and services which makes it a natural choice for playing a key role in large infrastructures where it can integrate with existing data and configuration management workflows. At GeoSolutions we have used the REST Interface over the years to:

  • Ingest data in real time for earth observation, MetOcean models, sensor and vector data
  • Ingest and configure data from third party applications
  • Automate deployments

A number of client libraries have been built over the year for various languages like Python, Go, R, Ruby, NodeJS and Python again.

GeoServer REST Interface at work


GeoServer is cloud-friendly as it is known to work at scale in various cloud environments like AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, Kubernetes and more. Our clients are serving data in the order of Petabytes in the cloud on a daily basis using GeoServer. Various Docker images are available on the web as well resources for Ansible, Puppet, Chef and Terraform. Here is the GitHub for the GeoSolutions maintained Docker image.

GeoServer provides advanced security through pluggable authentication and authorization. It provides support for a variety of authentication protocols and single sign on software like CAS, Keycloak, OAUTH2, SAML2. It provides advanced authorizations for layers and services. It can also integrate with a more sophisticated rule system called GeoFence, through which fine grain permissions can be administered. For example, configuring which attributes from a vector data source can be accessed and manipulated or which operations from which services are accessible and  to whom.

GeoFence rules in GeoServer


GeoServer is used by renowned organizations worldwide on a daily basis to support mission critical operations serving big data at scale from various domains like aerial imagery, earth observation data, MetOcean model outputs, ship positions, sensor observations. Here below you can find some of them:

  • DLR (Ge)
  • DigitalGlobe (US)
  • Halliburton (US/UK)
  • New York City (US)
  • MassGIS (US)
  • Topcon (Jp/It)
  • FarmersEdge (Can/US)
  • San Jose Water (US)
  • PDF (US)
  • FNMOC (US)
  • NOOA (US)
  • City of Genoa (It)
  • World Bank
  • UN FAO
  • UN WFP
  • BEV (At)
  • IGN (Fr)
  • BRGM (Fr)
  • EMSA (EU)
  • National Land Survey (NLS) of Finland (Fi)
  • Swedish Agency for Maritime and Water Management (SWAM)
  • Finnish Environment Institute (Fi)
  • New South Wales Geological Survey (Au)
  • GeoScience Australia (Au)
  • Total (fr)
  • Norbit (No)
  • NPRA (No)
  • DWD (Ge)
  • Rennes Metropole (Fr)

You can find more information at the links provided here below as well as in our portfolio or in our blog. We regularly provide talks about GeoServer (check our speakerdeck page) and webinars (check our youtube channel for past episodes).

We, as one the main developers and maintainers of GeoServer, provide development and support services for GeoServer under our Enterprise Support Services offer to make your deployment more robust and scalable, Subscription Services for deployment care and Professional Training Services for knowledge transfer so you can acquire the confidence to manage your own GeoServers.

We would bebe more than happy to hear from you about your GeoServer deployment. You can contact us to schedule a live demo session to talk about your installation or learn more about GeoServer.