OSM Desktop application?


I’m trying to select the best framework to develop a desktop GIS based application in which some additional (non GIS) layers can be added to show status of elements.

This is quite easy to do with openlayers, but I feel it’s not as easy to do in a desktop application.

I tryed first by using OpenJUMP with a WMS layer showing OSM data rendered with Mapnik, but, AFAIK, there is no such WMS for free (where OpenLayers get the tiles from?).

Also, I think OpenJUMP can not make a layer from a Tile Map Server (TMS) that is where I think OpenLayers gets the map.

Finally I’ve installed a GeoServer and added some SLD to render OSM data in a postgis database, but the result is not as pretty as Mapnik renderings.

So, what would you suggest me to use? I’m open to change from OpenJUMP to any other GIS development framework like gvSIG, uDig, …




I am using mostly OpenJUMP and QGis but uDig have nice features as well and gvSIG has the strongest developer team nowadays so it is hard to make a selection. But I believe that the GIS part is not your main consern but how to get good looking background rendered from OSM data. I know of one free experimental WMS service (made with Geoserver), it is at http://services.giub.uni-bonn.de/geoserver/wms
Geofabrik.de can arrange you WMS if you ask for it but you may need to pay for it. Or then you can set up your own local WMS with Mapnik, MapServer or Geoserver. Mapnik WMS is hard to install, Geoserver is easy but as you noticed, there is a lot of work with SLD before you get a good looking map and I do not know if there are ready made SLD files for downloading. For Mapserver there are good instructions at http://trac.osgeo.org/mapserver/wiki/RenderingOsmData
An example of combining my local Mapserver WMS and some additional features coming directly from local PostGIS database with OpenJUMP is at

There are many different alternatives and they all have their strong and weak points. Look around and select the one that feels good for you.

-Jukka Rahkonen-

Hi Jukka,

Thank you for your suggestion, but, in fact, what I’m looking for is a GIS development framework that supports OSM api as well as WMS-C and WMS.

Do anyone know if this framework exists?



Then Quantum GIS may be closest to what you want. It can read OSM data directly from API with its OSM provider and it supports WMS. I am not sure about WMS-C but Qgis is actively developed so I would guess that one day it will.

Thank you!

I will check out Quantum Gis, but I’d like the framework to be a Java GIS.

Do anyone knows such a java GIS framework?


OpenJUMP is a java GIS

Yes, but not such a java GIS that Ilde wants. OpenJUMP does not support handling OSM native data in any way. OSM data model with all its flexibility may suit well for OSM needs but it is hard to convert to traditional GIS data models which most often have layers and fixed schema.