ArcGIS: commercially available GIS software from ESRI
ArcGIS Pro: ESRI's latest commercially available GIS software
QGIS: free and open source GIS software
OpenGeoDa: free software for running spatial statistics
CrimeStat: free software for analyzing crime data
ESRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute) software is available to the MIT community for teaching and research. Extensions for ArcGIS Desktop are included in the MIT site license.
ArcGIS does not run on a MAC. See information in the box below.
ArcGIS only runs on Windows, however there are ways to run it on a Mac:
Run it inside a Windows OS installation on the MAC.
Use the citrix server.
The Citrix server can be slow at times and may not be the best option if you will be processing large amounts of data. If you are having trouble accessing data, put it onto your H:\ drive (available on WinAthena machines). That drive is visible from the Citrix version of ArcGIS. You can find WinAthena drives on the computers in the GIS Lab in Rotch Library.
You need to be connected to the MIT Network to use ArcGIS, so that the license server can authenticate. If you will be working off-campus, you can use ArcGIS through the VPN.
If you experience problems connecting to ArcMap through the VPN, see this important information.
If your Internet connection is slow, unreliable, or you will be without Internet Access, you can check out a license so you can work offline.
How to Check Out a License:
ArcGIS Pro is ESRI's newest GIS software, with a new interface design, tools, and 2D and 3D integration. Like ArcMap, it only runs on Windows. Currently an ArcMap user? See what's new in ArcGIS Pro.
There are 2 options for downloading and licensing the software:
Option 1: Download ArcGIS Pro from IS&T and configure the license server. You must be on the MIT network to access the license. This is a good option for lab or shared computers.
Option 2: Access a Pro license through ArcGIS Online (AGOL). This is a good option for your personal computer.
If you are currently running Pro from the license server (Concurrent Use license) and want to switch to a personal license through ArcGIS Online, follow these steps:
Having trouble with Pro extensions (spatial analyst, network analyst, etc.)?
IS&T has not yet installed all the extension licenses on the MIT server so if you are accessing Pro using the license server (Concurrent Use license type), you will not be able to use all the extensions. Until this is resolved, you can license Pro through ArcGIS Online by following the steps above for switching to a Named User License.
The following extensions are automatically included with your Named User License through ArcGIS Online:
Need to use another extension? Email us and we'll activate it for your account.
Quantum GIS (QGIS) is a user friendly Open Source Geographic Information System (GIS) licensed under the GNU General Public License. QGIS is an official project of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). It runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OSX, Windows and Android and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities.
GeoDa is a free software program that serves as an introduction to spatial data analysis. OpenGeoDa is the cross-platform, open source version that runs on different versions of Windows (including XP, Vista and 7), Mac OS, and Linux.
CrimeStat is a spatial statistics program for the analysis of crime incident locations. CrimeStat is Windows-based and interfaces with most desktop GIS programs. The program includes more than 100 statistical routines for the spatial analysis of crime and other incidents. CrimeStat inputs incident locations (e.g., robbery locations) in dbf, point shp or ASCII formats using either spherical or projected coordinates. It calculates various spatial statistics and writes graphical objects to ArcGIS, MapInfo, Surfer for Windows and other GIS packages.