Tuesday, September 14, 2010

BDC in SharePoint 2010 Foundation for a Department Level Database

One big project we are workign on currently is using the BDC to surface our company's EDI project to end users in a familiar way to have them enter confirmation of new orders from clients quickly. Before we got too deep into this we were looking at various options and ways to experiment and learn the technology. One thing we did not have was a tracking system of our servers and their assigned IP addresses and assigned roles. Here is a diagram of the testing database that I designed and wrote.

The steps to create a fully CRUD enabled application that looks like a SharePoint liust but has all the benefits of being backed by a SQL database are as follows:

1. Design your database as you normally would.
2. Create a set of views that the users will access to see the data.
3. Use INSTEAD OF triggers to make the views updateable.
4. Create External Content types to connect to the SQL data.
5. Create External Lists to display the data in SharePoint 2010.
6. Add the correct permissions to the External Content Type in the SharePoint BDC management in Central Admin.
7. Test that you can add, update, and delete items in the lists.
8. Write a webpart to supply the users with a richer, easier to understand GUI.

In my next post I hope to detail the steps for adding a CRUD enabled Silverlight web part to work with the External Lists.


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