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Frequently Asked Questions

This page provides answers to questions that are frequently asked by users.

General Questions

What is MapSurfer.NET?

MapSurfer.NET is a free, modern and advanced framework for rendering and publishing maps to the web. This framework has a functionality which is very similar to other well-known open source and proprietary software packages such as MapServer, GeoServer, Mapnik or ArcGIS. MapSurfer.NET is written in C# and provides the whole power of the .NET Framework to solve labour-intensive and time-consuming cartographic tasks.

What platforms are supported by the framework?

At the moment, MapSurfer.NET can run on Windows and Linux platforms. The support of other operating systems is a high priority task. Thanks to Mono project which makes it potentially possible.

What is required to run MapSurfer.NET?

MapSurfer.NET requires .NET Framework 4.5.

Are the builds of previous releases still available somewhere?

Yes, although they are not officially supported. The builds of previous releases for different platforms is given on this page.

[Do I need to install GDAL to run MapSurfer.NET?

In general, you don't have to. GDAL is only needed to work with GDAL and DEM data sources.

Which version should I use?

It is highly recommended to use the latest stable release of the framework. More detailed information about available releases, you can get on Downloads page.

What to do if MapSurfer.NET craches?

You can either contact us via e-mail (see contact information at the bottom of the page) or post a question on the forum. In both cases, some details or a crash log would be very helpful to resolve an issue.

What is the performance of MapSurfer.NET in comparison to other existing toolkits?

Our benchmarks show that MapSurfer.NET is as fast as MapServer and Mapnik written in C/C++.

How can I generate a tile cache using my map style?

You can use either MapSurfer.NET Studio or MSNMapGen utility to accomplish this task. Watch this video tutorial.

How can I publish a web map service?

A map can be published through a web map service using either IIS or a self-hosting console application. For developers, we recommend to look at this github repo.


Where can one find sample projects with map styles?

A collection of sample projects is available on GitHub.

I have map styles in SLD format. Is it possible to use them in MapSurfer.NET?

Yes, it is. MapSurfer.NET Studio allows to import or export SLD styles into/from a native format.

Can I produce cartographically plausible labeling?

You sure can. MapSurfer.NET equipped with an advanced labeling engine that allows producing map lettering of a superior cartographic quality comparable to hand-drawn maps. For more information, check out this article.


Can I embed the framework into my application?

Yes, you can. See a developer guide about embedding MapSurfer.NET into a custom application.

What is the quickest way to start using MapSurfer.NET assemblies?

It is highly recommended to use NuGet packages in the development environment.

I want to develop an application using MapSurfer.NET, where can I find code samples?

An official collection of code samples is available on GitHub.