SharePoint Magazine – Business Data Catalog Series

A Great Series on Business Data Catalog

Series Outline

With that, that nearly brings us to a close for this first article. But before we let you go, here is an outline on how we are structuring this series.  To get the full value, you should go through these in order, but we’ll try to keep them discrete so that you can jump around and focus on the ones that are most important to you. Note: these may slightly change as we go through each of these.

Part 1
In this first part, as you have now read, the focus is be on the concepts, the value it can bring organizations, the architecture, and an overview of each article in the series.

Part 2
This article will introduce the Application Definition File. By the end, you’ll understand the role it plays, how it works, and have a high-level grasp of its schema.  We’ll also introduce tools that allow you to generate these XML files.  Securing ADFs will also be covered in this article.

Part 3
This article will cover how the Web Services can be used instead of a direct connection to a database.  It will look at the kind of Web methods you’ll need to write if you want to expose your systems to BDC this way.

Part 4
This will be a two-part article.  In first half, we’ll look at the out of the box Web Parts that BDC provides.  These is the most common way that this structured data is presented to users, so we’ll give it a solid overview.  The second half will cover how you can cache BDC data into SharePoint lists.  This will allow you to marry SharePoint data and BDC together into one consolidated view.

Part 5
This article will cover everything you need to know to to configure Enterprise Search to crawl BDC data.  We’ll cover content sources, scopes, and how to configure MOSS for both full and incremental crawls of your structured data.

Part 6
As mentioned above, BDC can supplement properties contained within User Profiles. This allows you to pull critical data elements from external ERP or HR systems and map them to out-of-the-box or custom User Profile properties.  This article will cover everything you need to know to get this working for you.

Part 7
This article will apply mostly to the developers out there and will cover the BDC Object Model.  You’ll see how custom Web Parts, application pages or other custom-built SharePoint applications can consume BDC database without your having to write another data layer.

Part 8
In the final article, we will cover Custom Actions how these can be used to safely write changes to the back-end database or Web Service.  While not used often, this may prove to be a practical way for users to maintain some of the data in these external systems.

MOSS BDC;BDC;BDC Development;

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