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Use Dash to Build to Web Apps on Act CRM Data

The CData Python Connector for Act CRM enables you to create Python applications that use pandas and Dash to build Act CRM-connected web apps.

The rich ecosystem of Python modules lets you get to work quickly and integrate your systems more effectively. With the CData Python Connector for Act CRM, the pandas module, and the Dash framework, you can build Act CRM-connected web applications for Act CRM data. This article shows how to connect to Act CRM with the CData Connector and use pandas and Dash to build a simple web app for visualizing Act CRM data.

With built-in, optimized data processing, the CData Python Connector offers unmatched performance for interacting with live Act CRM data in Python. When you issue complex SQL queries from Act CRM, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to Act CRM and utilizes the embedded SQL engine to process unsupported operations client-side (often SQL functions and JOIN operations).

Connecting to Act CRM Data

Connecting to Act CRM data looks just like connecting to any relational data source. Create a connection string using the required connection properties. For this article, you will pass the connection string as a parameter to the create_engine function.

The User and Password properties, under the Authentication section, must be set to valid Act! user credentials. In addition to the authentication values, see the following:

  • Connecting to Act! Premium

    In addition to the authentication values, the URL to Act! is also required; for example https://eup1-iis-04.eu.hosted.act.com/.

    Additionally, you must specify the ActDatabase you will connect to. This is found by going to the About Act! Premium menu of your account, at the top right of the page, in the ? menu. Use the Database Name in the window that appears.

  • Connecting to Act! Premium Cloud

    To connect to your Act! Premium Cloud account, you also need to specify the ActCloudName property. This property is found in the URL address of the Cloud account; for example https://eup1-iis-04.eu.hosted.act.com/ActCloudName/.

Note that retrieving ActCRM metadata can be expensive. It is advised that you set the CacheMetadata property to store the metadata locally.

After installing the CData Act CRM Connector, follow the procedure below to install the other required modules and start accessing Act CRM through Python objects.

Install Required Modules

Use the pip utility to install the required modules and frameworks:

pip install pandas
pip install dash
pip install dash-daq

Visualize Act CRM Data in Python

Once the required modules and frameworks are installed, we are ready to build our web app. Code snippets follow, but the full source code is available at the end of the article.

First, be sure to import the modules (including the CData Connector) with the following:

import os
import dash
import dash_core_components as dcc
import dash_html_components as html
import pandas as pd
import cdata.actcrm as mod
import plotly.graph_objs as go

You can now connect with a connection string. Use the connect function for the CData Act CRM Connector to create a connection for working with Act CRM data.

cnxn = mod.connect("URL=https://myActCRMserver.com;User=myUser;Password=myPassword;ActDatabase=MyDB;")

Execute SQL to Act CRM

Use the read_sql function from pandas to execute any SQL statement and store the result set in a DataFrame.

df = pd.read_sql("SELECT ActivityDisplayName, Subject FROM Activities WHERE Subject = 'Sample subject'", cnxn)

Configure the Web App

With the query results stored in a DataFrame, we can begin configuring the web app, assigning a name, stylesheet, and title.

app_name = 'dash-actcrmedataplot'

external_stylesheets = ['https://codepen.io/chriddyp/pen/bWLwgP.css']

app = dash.Dash(__name__, external_stylesheets=external_stylesheets)
app.title = 'CData + Dash'

Configure the Layout

The next step is to create a bar graph based on our Act CRM data and configure the app layout.

trace = go.Bar(x=df.ActivityDisplayName, y=df.Subject, name='ActivityDisplayName')

app.layout = html.Div(children=[html.H1("CData Extension + Dash", style={'textAlign': 'center'}),
	dcc.Graph(
		id='example-graph',
		figure={
			'data': [trace],
			'layout':
			go.Layout(title='Act CRM Activities Data', barmode='stack')
		})
], className="container")

Set the App to Run

With the connection, app, and layout configured, we are ready to run the app. The last lines of Python code follow.

if __name__ == '__main__':
    app.run_server(debug=True)

Now, use Python to run the web app and a browser to view the Act CRM data.

python actcrm-dash.py

Free Trial & More Information

Download a free, 30-day trial of the Act CRM Python Connector to start building Python apps with connectivity to Act CRM data. Reach out to our Support Team if you have any questions.



Full Source Code

import os
import dash
import dash_core_components as dcc
import dash_html_components as html
import pandas as pd
import cdata.actcrm as mod
import plotly.graph_objs as go

cnxn = mod.connect("URL=https://myActCRMserver.com;User=myUser;Password=myPassword;ActDatabase=MyDB;")

df = pd.read_sql("SELECT ActivityDisplayName, Subject FROM Activities WHERE Subject = 'Sample subject'", cnxn)
app_name = 'dash-actcrmdataplot'

external_stylesheets = ['https://codepen.io/chriddyp/pen/bWLwgP.css']

app = dash.Dash(__name__, external_stylesheets=external_stylesheets)
app.title = 'CData + Dash'
trace = go.Bar(x=df.ActivityDisplayName, y=df.Subject, name='ActivityDisplayName')

app.layout = html.Div(children=[html.H1("CData Extension + Dash", style={'textAlign': 'center'}),
	dcc.Graph(
		id='example-graph',
		figure={
			'data': [trace],
			'layout':
			go.Layout(title='Act CRM Activities Data', barmode='stack')
		})
], className="container")

if __name__ == '__main__':
    app.run_server(debug=True)