The Long Tail. Drivers for your APIs.

Connect BI, Reporting, & ETL tools to live data from any application, database, or Web API.

Create New Drivers for Your APIs

Do you want to increase the adoption of your APIs and make them accessible beyond the developer market? With the CData API Drivers, you can leverage the same powerful framework that we use internally to build new drivers for your APIs in a fraction of the time it would normally take.

Driver development doesn't have to be difficult. The CData API Drivers include everything you need to help reach new users with standards-based drivers for your APIs. Implement a lightweight API Driver Profile and you will instantly offer users access to your API data through ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET, SSIS, BizTalk, Excel, etc.




Connect BI, Reporting, & ETL tools to any data source.


API Drivers bring the power and ease-of-use of our driver and provider technologies to APIs and new data sources not currently supported with individual drivers. The API Drivers offer a standard framework of driver APIs (ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET, BizTalk, SSIS, etc.) that leverages extensible Driver Profiles to access virtually any API or data source.

Using the API Drivers to connect to data is easy. Install any one of the available API Driver technologies (ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET etc.) and connect to the API Driver from your favorite BI, reporting, or analytics tool - just like you would connect to any standard database. Then, simply select the data source (Driver Profile) though a parameter of the API Drivers' connection string.


Create Drivers & Enhance Platform Accessibility



Do you want to encourage developers to build on top of your WebAPI or application interface? The API Drivers offers an open and extensible interface that unlocks a straightforward path toward Driver development. Furthermore, all of the included Driver Profiles are open and accessible, allowing developers to modify and extend the connectivity features of existing driver sources.

Thanks to the flexible plug-and-play architecture of our API Drivers, building a single Driver Profile will make it accessible through any API Driver form-factor, including ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET, BizTalk, SQL SSIS, and even directly through our Microsoft Excel Add-In.

API Driver Technology Features


Our API Drivers are built using the same Driver development platform that we use to build all of our Drivers. They provide customers with easy access to the same powerful features for data integration, including:

  • Standards-Compliant ODBC: ODBC 3.8 compliant native protocol based drivers.
  • Unicode, 32-bit and 64-bit support: Support 32-bit and 64-bit applications and unicode ODBC APIs.
  • Cross-platform ODBC: Available for Microsoft Windows, Unix, and Mac (macOS / OS X) platforms.
  • Certified Compatibility*: Our drivers undergo extensive testing and are certified to be compatible with leading analytics and reporting applications like Tableau, Microsoft Excel, and many more.
    * Please visit our knowledge base to access how-to articles.
  • ODBC Remoting: Our exclusive remoting feature allows hosting the ODBC connection on a server to enable connections from various clients on any platform (Java, .NET, C++, PHP, Python, etc.), using any standards based technology (ODBC, JDBC, etc.). ODBC Remoting is enabled using the popular MySQL wire protocol server.
  • Replication and Caching: Our replication and caching commands make it easy to copy data to local and cloud data stores such as Oracle, SQL Server, Google Cloud SQL, etc. The replication commands include many features that allow for intelligent incremental updates to cached data.
  • String, Date, Numeric SQL Functions: The driver includes a library of 50 plus functions that can manipulate column values into the desired result. Popular examples include Regex, JSON, and XML processing functions.
  • Collaborative Query Processing: Our drivers enhance the data source's capabilities by additional client-side processing, when needed, to enable analytic summaries of data such as SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, etc.
  • Easily Customizable and Configurable: The data model exposed by our ODBC Drivers can easily be customized to add or remove tables/columns, change data types, etc. without requiring a new build. These customizations are supported at runtime using human-readable schema files that are easy to edit.
  • Secure Connectivity: Includes standard Enterprise-class security features such as TLS/ SSL data encryption for all client-server communications.
  • Pure Java Type 4/5* Drivers: 100% Java architecture based drivers that implement the native protocol without reliance on client-side libraries.
    * Our drivers fit the definition of Type 5 drivers; however, there are only 4 official JDBC Driver types.
  • All-in-One Deployment: Single JAR that supports JDBC 3.0 and JDBC 4.0 specification and JVM versions 1.5 and above.
  • Certified Compatibility*: Our drivers undergo extensive testing and are certified to be compatible with leading analytics and reporting applications like SAP Crystal Reports, Pentaho, Business Objects, Crystal Reports and many more.
    * Please visit our knowledge base to access how-to articles.
  • Metadata Discovery:Full support for JDBC DatabaseMetaData provides extensive schema discovery capabilities. Explore tables, columns, keys, and other data constructs based on user identity.
  • Developer Friendly: Design-time support for all major Java IDEs, including Eclipse, IntelliJ, and NetBeans.
  • JDBC Remoting: Our exclusive remoting feature allows hosting the JDBC connection on a server to enable connections from various clients on any platform (Java, .NET, C++, PHP, Python), using any standards-based technology (ODBC, JDBC, etc.). JDBC Remoting is enabled using the popular MySQL wire protocol server.
  • Replication and Caching: Our replication and caching commands make it easy to copy data to local and cloud data stores such as Oracle, SQL Server, Google Cloud SQL, etc. The replication commands include many features that allow for intelligent incremental updates to cached data.
  • String, Date, Numeric SQL Functions: The driver includes a library of over 50 functions that can manipulate column values into the desired result. Popular examples include Regex, JSON, and XML processing functions.
  • Collaborative Query Processing: Our drivers enhance the data source's capabilities by additional client-side processing, when needed, to enable analytic summaries of data such as SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, etc.
  • Easily Customizable and Configurable: The data model exposed by our JDBC Drivers can easily be customized to add or remove tables/columns, change data types, etc. without requiring a new build. These customizations are supported at runtime using human-readable schema files that are easy to edit.
  • Secure Connectivity: Includes standard Enterprise-class security features such as TLS/ SSL data encryption for all client-server communications.
  • Integration Services: Support for Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) (2005, 2008, 2012, & 2014)
  • Straightforward Data Workflow: Fully integrated with SQL SSIS Visual Studio .NET environment and Microsoft Business Intelligence Development Studio at design-time.
  • Easy-to-Use: Drop in Tasks requires no additional development and are easy to deploy.
  • Fully managed .NET: 100% fully managed.NET libraries supporting .NET Framework 2.0 and beyond.
  • Replication and Caching: Our replication and caching commands make it easy to copy data to local and cloud data stores such as Oracle, SQL Server, Google Cloud SQL, etc. The replication commands include many features that allow for intelligent incremental updates to cached data.
  • String, Date, Numeric SQL Functions: The Components include a library of 50 plus functions that can manipulate column values into the desired result. Popular examples include Regex, JSON, and XML processing functions.
  • Collaborative Query Processing: Our Components enhance the data source's capabilities by additional client-side processing, when needed, to enable analytic summaries of data such as SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, etc.
  • Easily Customizable and Configurable: The data model exposed by our Components can easily be customized to add or remove tables/columns, change data types, etc. without requiring a new build. These customizations are supported at runtime using human-readable schema files that are easy to edit.
  • Secure Connectivity: Includes standard Enterprise-class security features such as TLS/ SSL data encryption for all client-server communications.
  • Fully managed .NET: 100% fully managed ADO.NET libraries supporting .NET Framework 2.0 and beyond.
  • Developer Friendly: Seamless integration with all versions of Visual Studio.
  • Powerful ADO.NET Features: Including support for ADO.NET Entity Framework (EF 5 & 6), ADO.NET 2.0, LINQ to Datasets, etc.
  • Replication and Caching: Our replication and caching commands make it easy to copy data to local and cloud data stores such as Oracle, SQL Server, Google Cloud SQL, etc. The replication commands include many features that allow for intelligent incremental updates to cached data.
  • String, Date, Numeric SQL Functions: The driver includes a library of 50 plus functions that can manipulate column values into the desired result. Popular examples include Regex, JSON, and XML processing functions.
  • Collaborative Query Processing: Our drivers enhance the data source's capabilities by additional client side processing, when needed, to enable analytic summaries of data such as SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, etc.
  • Easily Customizable and Configurable: The data model exposed by our ADO.NET Providers can easily be customized to add or remove tables/columns, change data types, etc. without requiring a new build. These customizations are supported at runtime using human-readable schema files that are easy to edit.
  • Secure Connectivity: Includes standard Enterprise-class security features such as TLS/ SSL data encryption for all client-server communications.
  • Certified for BizTalk Server: Our Adapter framework has passed the official adapter certification program established by Microsoft for BizTalk Server, administered by Unisys. Thoroughly tested for both scalability and interoperability with Microsoft BizTalk Server.
  • Straightforward Data Orchestration: Fully integrated with BizTalk Server's Visual Studio .NET environment at design-time.
  • Fully managed .NET: 100% fully managed .NET libraries supporting .NET Framework 2.0 and beyond.
  • Replication and Caching: Our replication and caching commands make it easy to copy data to local and cloud data stores such as Oracle, SQL Server, Google Cloud SQL, etc. The replication commands include many features that allow for intelligent incremental updates to cached data.
  • String, Date, Numeric SQL Functions: The Adapters include a library of 50 plus functions that can manipulate column values into the desired result. Popular examples include Regex, JSON, and XML processing functions.
  • Collaborative Query Processing: Our Adapters enhance the data source's capabilities by additional client-side processing, when needed, to enable analytic summaries of data such as SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, etc.
  • Easily Customizable and Configurable: The data model exposed by our Adapters can easily be customized to add or remove tables/columns, change data types, etc. without requiring a new build. These customizations are supported at runtime using human-readable schema files that are easy to edit.
  • Secure Connectivity: Includes standard Enterprise-class security features such as TLS/ SSL data encryption for all client-server communications.
  • Easy-to-Use: Integration with the Excel Toolbar provides straightforward data access and one-click updates.
  • Bi-Directional Access: Access remote data from Excel, make changes, and easily push updates back to the underlying data source.
  • PowerPivot Support: Perform powerful data analysis with the Microsoft PowerPivot BI extension.
  • String, Date, Numeric SQL Functions: The Add-Ins include a library of 50 plus functions that can manipulate column values into the desired result. Popular examples include Regex, JSON, and XML processing functions.
  • Collaborative Query Processing: Our Add-Ins enhance the data source's capabilities by additional client-side processing, when needed, to enable analytic summaries of data such as SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, etc.
  • Easily Customizable and Configurable: The data model exposed by our Add-Ins can easily be customized to add or remove tables/columns, change data types, etc. without requiring a new build. These customizations are supported at runtime using human-readable schema files that are easy to edit.
  • Secure Connectivity: Includes standard Enterprise-class security features such as TLS/ SSL data encryption for all client-server communications.


Easy-to-use Drivers for Your Sources

The API Drivers allow us to provide the same powerful Driver technologies for markets that might otherwise be too small or specialized to support the creation and maintenance of a full-fledged driver. Our Drivers include thousands of hours of development, QA, and marketing resources to bring to market. The API Driver allows us to provide the same powerful driver interface in a fraction of the time.

How are API Drivers different?

  • Dynamic support for multiple data sources. Unlike the source-specific Drivers that are fixed to a single source, the API Drivers can access an unlimited number of data sources through the same Driver interface. Simply supply the name of the Driver Profile to use when connecting through the Connection String property of the driver.
  • Driver Profiles are fully-extensible. Each API Driver installs with a set of Driver Profiles that outlines which tables, views, and stored procedures are available, along with code for reading, writing, and updating data. These Driver Profiles include source code and can be used as-is or easily customized and extended.
  • If you feel comfortable with writing code, the Driver Profiles are open and completely extensible. Developers can easily extend the Driver Profiles with support for new data using Java, .NET, and a growing list of scripting languages such as Python, JavaScript, etc.
  • Let us know how we can help by sending email to our support team. Our support team is always available to discuss your specific requirements and provide guidance for integration.



Frequently Asked Questions

Common questions about building drivers with our API Drivers




 What are API Drivers?

API Drivers are a powerful framework that can be use to create virtual Drivers and adapters for any data source. API Drivers are available in separate editions targeting each of the major supported driver technologies, including ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET, etc.

 What are Driver Profiles?

Driver Profiles define the interface and connectivity 'glue' specific to a data source. They outline which tables, views, and stored procedures are available and include code for reading, writing, and updating data.

Each API Driver installs with a set of Driver Profiles. These Driver Profiles can be used as-is or they can be easily customized and extended by a developer.

 What do I get with the API Drivers?

  • A powerful driver core that can be easily extended through Driver Profiles.
  • Access to any installed Driver Profile.
  • An easy-to-use interface that you can extend with new Driver Profiles.

 Why should I build a Driver Profile?

Building high-performance connectivity solutions is easy using the API Driver.

Driver Profiles are designed to be accessible from any API Driver. As a result, creating a Driver Profile for a data source is like creating an entire array of Drivers for that source. By creating Driver Profile 'XYZ', developers will instantly deliver XYZ ODBC Driver, XYZ JDBC Driver, XYZ ADO.NET Provider, ... and even an XYZ Excel Add-In! The ability to create any driver enables you to access your data source from the application of your choice. You can also use standard components to develop your own applications.

With API Drivers it is possible to connect to just about any application, database, or Web service. Developers can create new drivers that provide access to proprietary databases, cloud services, custom databases, 'big-data' / NoSQL, applications, all kinds of Web APIs & SDKs, and more. Depending on the complexity of the underlying data source, it is often possible to have a functional driver in under a week.

Developers can take advantage of a comprehensive set of resources for driver development, including:

  • A set of full-featured Driver Profiles with full source that highlight how easy it is to create new drivers.
  • Extensive technical documentation providing comprehensive information needed to support driver development.
  • Straightforward and easy-to-use facilities for connecting to Web service APIs (SOAP, REST, JSON, ODATA, POX etc.)
  • Outstanding technical support backed by an expert team of support professionals.

 How long does it take to build a Driver Profile?

Depending on the complexity of the underlying data source, building a new driver can be as simple as a few lines of XML for a standard API or a more elaborate effort for custom binary and/or Web APIs that do not rely on standard protocols.

 Why do we offer Driver Profiles?

Our Drivers include thousands of hours of development, QA, and marketing resources to bring to market. The API Drivers allow us to provide the same powerful driver interface in a fraction of the time.

We may build Driver profiles for sources that we have limited vertical experience with. We may also build new Driver profiles to help us gauge market demand for a more complete driver.

 What is the difference between API Driver/Driver Profiles and other CData Drivers?

  • Other CData Drivers are fixed (one data source).
  • API Drivers have less source-specific help documentation (but you may not need it).
  • Driver Profiles are not typically as comprehensive as our other Drivers. They may not include a complete range of tables or fields.

 Can you develop a Driver / Profile for my data source?

We offer a range of custom development solutions, such as building a driver that supports integration with your data source or adding a feature to an existing driver. We offer off-the-shelf integration tools (ADO.NET, JDBC, ODBC, etc.) that can be used to build the kind of integration you are looking for. The API Driver is different from any of our other tools: Developers can leverage existing skills against any API. Profiles make it easy to build your own driver and/or extend the ones that we provide. See the help documentation to get started writing a profile. See Custom Development Services for more information about custom development and partnerships.

 Do I need to know SQL to use the API Driver?

No, for many self-service business intelligence and analytics tools, you can simply specify which profile to use, the login credentials and other connection properties, and then connect. Applications such as Microsoft Power Query, Cognos, Tableau, and Filemaker Pro provide a visual workflow that does not require SQL. As you drag and drop tables and columns, the application will automatically generate SQL queries and use the driver's SQL engine to process them. The API Driver supports a functional subset of SQL that makes using these applications seamless. Queries are executed directly to the data source, which does not make multiple copies of your data and also improves performance.

 What about read/write/update (CRUD) support?

API Drivers provide the interfaces to enable bi-directional access to underlying data. It is up to the individual Driver Profile to implement CRUD capabilities through these interfaces.

 What level of SQL conformance do the API Drivers support?

The API Drivers support a functional, familiar subset of the standard SQL grammar. It does not support data definition language (DDL) constructs as table structures are explicitly created and exposed through Provider Extensions.

For more details on the supported SQL, please refer to the API Driver help documentation.

 How do I use the API Driver with my technology (ADO.NET, BizTalk, SSIS, JDBC, ODBC, Excel, etc.)?

You can connect to the API Driver just like other database Drivers. Specify the Profile and other connection properties and then connect. The Driver Profile for any data source is easily included as a parameter of the connection string.

 What technology do I need to integrate with my application?

The API Driver supports the standard technologies for data integration: IDEs and BI, Analytics, Reporting, and ETL applications provide built-in support for these technologies. If you are using an existing profile or creating a new one, you can follow the standard procedure to connect. See the Knowledge Base and API Driver help documentation for guidance on connecting to your data source from your application.

 Can I use the API Driver to transfer data from one data source to another?

Yes, you can use the API Driver to accomplish ETLs (extract/transform/load). You can use the driver to extract from one data source and load it into another. Use an ETL tool to transform the data.

The API Driver enables you to choose your ETL tool. The API Driver also enables connectivity to many more applications in addition to ETL applications.

 What kinds of authentication does the API Driver support?

The API Driver also supports HTTP authentication: Basic, Digest, NTLM, and OAuth.

 Can I connect over SSL or from behind my firewall?

You can use the API Driver to connect over SSL/TLS. You can also connect through proxies, firewalls, and SSH.

 How fast is the API Driver?

The API Driver provides a number of performance features:

  • Caching: The API Driver executes queries directly to the data source by default: This enables you to work with the most up-to-date data. To reduce the load on network resources, the API Driver offers caching features that provide you with a means to benefit from working with a local copy, while automatically keeping your data current, along with the control to fine-tune performance.
  • High-performance XML and JSON parser: The API Driver uses the same parsing libraries as other CData drivers, which benefit from more real-world trials than any other drivers.
  • Managed code: The API Driver runs on a managed codebase that provides memory management and garbage collection through the .NET Framework and the JVM. Drivers written in lower-level languages, such as C++, can see performance hits from memory fragmentation and other factors.