KML Layers

KML Layers specify a set of features (such as place marks, images, polygons, 3D models, textual descriptions, etc.) for display in Earth browser, such as Google Earth and Google Maps.

Adding an Organisational KML Layer

If you have a KML source that you want to add to your map on our new spidertracks website, follow the next steps;

1. Select the 'Admin' cog in

2. Select the organisation that you would like to add the KML to.

3. Click 'Map Overlays' on the left-hand menu.

4. Click Add KML Layer.

5.  Add the name of the KML 

6. Choose whether the KML is available to the whole organisation by clicking 'KML is public'.

7. Enter the URL of the KML or

8. Upload your KML or KMZ file

9. Click Save.

If you need to change the publicity of the KML, you will need to remove it and re add it, making sure to untick the KML in Public box.

Adding a Personal KML Layer

A Personal KML fly will only appear on your own Flying Page, it will not display in any other members account.

1. On the Flying Page, click 'Personal Settings' then on 'My Settings'

2. Under Personal Settings, click 'Map Layers'

3. Click 'add new map layer'

4. Add the Map Name of the KML 

5. Enter the URL of the KML or

6. Upload your KML or KMZ file

7. Click Save

Activating KMLs 

1. To activate your KMLs go to the Flying Page

2. Select 'Map Layers

3. Select KMLs

Dynamic KMLs

Google Maps automatically supports dynamic KML as part of its normal functionality. The KML file itself should specifies the expiration time for a linked KML file.

What does this mean? To have an auto-refreshing KML feed, you would have a main KML file which specifies a list of linked KML files to be displayed. This is all this file does, and it is in this file (which must be uploaded through the URL section on spidertracks website) that specifies how and when a file should be refreshed.

For more information please see the Google Developers KML Guide.

Creating a KML File

Please note we do not support KML issues that do not directly relate to our system, this is a basic guide to get your started

  1. Launch an Internet browser (Chrome, Firefox, Safari).
  2. Type "" in the browser window and press the "Enter" key.
  3. Click "Downloads," "Agree and Download" and then click "Save" to save the "Google Earth" setup program on your "Desktop."
  4. Double-click the "Google Earth" setup program icon on your "Desktop" and then click "Run" to install "Google Earth."
  5. Double-click the "Google Earth" icon on your "Desktop"
  6. Click "Search" and click the "Fly To" tab to type or paste the longitude and latitude for your location. If needed, use your Internet browser and type in type in the address of your location (for example, 25 Main Street Glencoe IL/USA), click "Go," select the longitude and latitude showing in the popup, hold down the "Ctrl" key and type the letter "C".
  7. Type or paste (hold down "Ctrl" and type the letter "V") the longitude and latitude in the "Fly to" box in "Google Earth" and press the magnifying glass or "Search" icon and the location is displayed on the map.
  8. Create the type of KML overlay you require for example; SamplesInEarth
  9. Click "File," "Save," "Save Place As" and the "Save file" dialog box is displayed.
  10. Type in a "File name," for your location, click the "Save as type" drop-down menu to select "Kml (*.kml)," and then click "Save." Your KML file has been created.

If you require support with this please consult Google Earth Support.


Q. When you use the option to upload a KML layer, where are these files stored? Is it on a secure Spidertracks server or unsecured public domain?

A. If you upload the actual file on our new website, instead of using the URL 'upload', the file will be hosted on our server. This means the data will be as secure as the track data of each Spider and is not publicly hosted.If you upload it as an administrator within the organisation settings page then it will be visible to all the members of the organisation. If you upload it within your personal account then it will only be visible to you.


Q. Do you know if there is a way to change how we display the location marks? In the original KML it's just a number within the square, however if we uploaded to the flying page, the number changes to a blue tear drop.

A. Sadly, we (Spidertracks) do not control any of that unfortunately. Google will display some KML files differently on their Google Maps. The API that we use, the normal Google Maps, and Google Earth can be displayed differently. Unfortunately we have no control over this.


Q. Is there a limit to how many KMLs you can have displayed?

There is a limit on the number of KML Layers that can be displayed on a single Google Map. If you exceed this limit, none of your layers will appear on the map, and an error will be reported in your web browser’s JavaScript console.

The limit is based on a combination of the number of KML Layer classes created and the total length of all the URLs used to create those layers.

Each new KML Layer you create will take up a portion of the limit for the layer and a further portion of the limit depending on the length of the URL where the KML file was loaded from.

Consequently, the number of layers you can add will vary by application; on average, you should be able to load between 10 and 20 layers without hitting the limit. If you still hit the limit, use a URL shortner (such as to shorten the KML URLs. Alternatively, create a single KML file consisting of NetworkLinks to the individual KML URLs.

If you have any further questions please contact us at