Announcing the Microsoft Business Data Catalog Definition Editor for Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007

Business Data Catalog allows for integration of LOB systems with Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007.

The Business Data Catalog Definition Editor tool (or “BDC tool”) is now available in the latest (August 2007) version of the downloadable MOSS 2007 SDK, which was just posted at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=6d94e307-67d9-41ac-b2d6-0074d6286fa9&displaylang=en.

The Business Data Catalog Definition Editor provides a visual tool for creating an Application Definition for BDC in MOSS 2007.  Features include:

  • Underlying XML is abstracted by the design surface and properties window
  • Drag and drop web methods, tables, or views to create line of business (LOB) connections.
  • Entities and methods are created automatically from database metadata and WSDLs.
  • Additional method instances can be added to further enhance the database or web service connection.
  • Method instances can be tested from within the tool, enabling incremental development of LOB connections

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Currently, writing an application definition to connect the BDC to a LOB system is a manual process.  This requires an understanding of both how the LOB system is configured and what must be included in the XML to satisfy the BDC. Having a tool to simplify this process not only lowers the initial knowledge threshold for administering the BDC, it also lessens the required work of the user (such as testing, making modifications, etc.). 

The tool has been designed to assist in the lifecycle management for Application Definition files.  The tool enables searching over databases and web service-based repositories, as well as BDC web parts in MOSS. 

Highlights

  • Tool supports databases (SQL, Oracle, OLEDB, and ODBC) and web services
  • Drag and drop design surface for selecting DB tables or web methods:
  • Metadata is automatically extracted from databases by dragging and dropping tables
  • Web Services require a few additional steps to completely configure the connection
  • Users can import and export Application Definition XML files
  • Users are able to test method instances incrementally from within the tool
  • The tool is not required to run on a web front-end
  • Associations are created automatically when foreign keys are selected; they can also be created easily for web services by adding an Association method instance
Peter de Haas
Peter de Haas

Peter is gedreven door de eindeloze mogelijkheden die technologische vooruitgang biedt. Met een scherp oog voor het herkennen van oplossingen waar anderen slechts problemen zien, is hij een expert in digitale transformaties. Peter zet zich met volle overgave in om individuen, teams en organisaties te begeleiden bij het ontwikkelen van nieuwe vaardigheden en het implementeren van innovatieve oplossingen.

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3 reacties

  1. I can’t get the Microsoft BDC Editor to work after a week of trying it on the AdventureWorks database. It’s totally worthless and a waste of time. If Microsoft ever wants to know what’s slowing down the rate of adoption of BDC, providing crappy tools is the pimary reason. I shouldn’t have to waste my time figuring out various “work-arounds” for the most simple things which should already have been QA tested before it ever made its first public appearance.

  2. Frederick,
    I am not a BDC expert. Have you tried the MSDN forum for this ?
    I am sure the editor has gone through extensive testing but apaently you’ve run into some issues. Let me know if you’ve tried the forum, otherwise ping me and I’ll point you in the right direction.

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