API Server Cloud Tunneling Capabilities

The modern company has data has data in fifteen to twenty on-premises sources, ranging from traditional databases to applications (like QuickBooks and Microsoft Excel) to flat files, and at least as many web-based Software-as-a-Service applications. Accessing the on-premises data externally (from a web-based BI tool, for instance) often requires the IT team to open ports in the corporate firewall, which most IT teams are loathe to do.

The Cloud Gateway feature of the API Server allows you to generate publicly accessible OData feeds of your on-premises data sources by creating a reverse SSH tunnel to a publicly accessible SSH host, protecting the machine(s) hosting the API Server and the on-premises data behind the firewall. This article walks through configuring the Cloud Gateway on the API Server and demonstrates connecting to on-premises data externally.

Set Up the Remote SSH Host

In order to establish a reverse SSH tunnel to the API Server, you will need to have or create a hosted (or web-facing) SSH host. Client applications and devices wishing to connect to the API Server need only know the public address of the SSH host and the port used for incoming traffic being forwarded to the API Server.

Configure the Cloud Gateway on API Server

The next step is establishing the reverse SSH tunnel. The following instructions are for Windows. Refer to the Help documentation for configuring the Cloud Gateway on the Java version of the API Server.

  1. Right click the API Server icon in the system tray and select Server Options.
  2. Navigate to the Cloud Gateway tab.
  3. Click to enable the Cloud Gateway.
  4. Set the host and port values for the SSH host, as well as selecting an authentication type and entering the appropriate credentials.
  5. Click the test connection button to confirm your connection to the SSH Host.
  6. Restart the API Server.

Connecting to the API Server through the Cloud Gateway

With the Cloud Gateway configured, you can now connect to the on-premises data exposed by the API Server through the Cloud Gateway. To do so, simply send requests from the client to the SSH host, specifying the port to be used for forwarding. Those requests are forwarded to the API server, which then requests the data from the on-premises data source, and returns the data (as OData by default) through the tunnel to the client.

Reliable Connection Management

Connection management for SSH tunnels is typically handled manually or by 3rd party software. The Cloud Gateway for API Server has built-in functionality that will manage your connection automatically. If the connection is lost or interrupted, the Cloud Gateway will attempt to re-establish the connection.

Free Trial & More Information

Download a free, 30-day trial of the API Server to start connecting to your on-premises data sources (and 80+ other remote data sources) externally through a reverse SSH tunnel. As always, our world-class support team is ready to answer any questions you may have.