Creating Business Data Catalog Entities in SharePoint Server 2007
Summary: Learn how to create Business Data Catalog entities in Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007.
Applies to: 2007 Microsoft Office System, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007
John Peltonen, 3Sharp
The Business Data Catalog is a Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 feature that exposes and incorporates line-of-business (LOB) data into other baseline portal functionality, such as lists and enterprise search. To incorporate this data into your portal, you must build an XML file that identifies where the data is stored (either Microsoft SQL Server or a Web service) and what the data looks like (for example, what the data types and primary keys are).
This section walks through building a Business Data Catalog metadata file that defines a simple LOB data entity. The prerequisites are as follows:
To build a Business Data Catalog metadata file that defines a simple LOB data entity, follow these instructions:
1. Create an Empty XML File
Begin by creating an empty XML file.
To create an empty XML file
2. Define the LOB System
Add the following XML to the file (below the XML declaration) to define the LobSystem top-level parameters:
3. Define Top Level Security Parameters
This is optional. You can also configure these parameters in the Business Data Catalog admin pages.
Add the following XML to the end of the LobSystem element (before the </LobSystem> end tag). Note that you must update the Principal attribute values with the correct domain and user or group names.
4. Define the LOB System Instance
With a database, the system instance defines the database connection parameters that the Business Data Catalog uses. Add the following XML as a child of the LobSystem element (after the AccessControlList element). Note that you must replace the text your_server_name with the actual server name.
A drawback to using pass-through authentication is that the operating system exposes only the user name and password. Therefore, if a company uses two-factor authentication (that is, users are required to have some specific—private—information in addition to a user name and password), you cannot use pass-through authentication. Despite these drawbacks, its simplicity makes pass-through authentication a good candidate for use in a testing environment. If your company is using two-factor authentication and you want to connect the Business Data catalog to a SQL Server database, you can use Single Sign On (SSO). To use SSO, follow either these instructions Step 6 (Optional): Use Single Sign-On to Connect to the AdventureWorks2000 Database (WindowsCredentials), or these instructions How to: Adapt the Samples to Connect to Oracle and Other Databases (RdbCredentials).
5. Define the Customer Entity
An entity consists of a title (defined in the Properties element), a unique identifier (which equates to a primary key), and methods that both define the fields of an entity and indicate to the Business Data Catalog how to pull the entity data out of the LOB system. The following steps define an entity named Customer.
To define the customer entity
6. Upload the Completed Metadata File into the Shared Service Provider
The next step is to upload the completed metadata file into the shared service provider.
To upload the completed metadata file to the shared service provider
7. Use the Business Data List Web Part to Show the Customer Data
The next step is to use the Business Data List Web Part to show the customer data.
To use the Business Data List Web Part to show customer data
The Business Data Catalog is a Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 feature that allows you to include LOB data that is hosted outside of the portal in such items as lists and enterprise search. The Business Data Catalog requires an XML metadata file that defines the connection parameters to the external data source, the various queries (or Web service method calls), and both the input and output parameters of each query or method. To build the metadata file, it is important to understand its structure. However, understanding entities is the most important part of understanding the Business Data Catalog. Entities consist of:
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