Integrate Live Active Directory Data into Custom Business Apps Built in Power Apps

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CData Connect



Use CData Connect Cloud to create a virtual SQL Server Database for Active Directory data and integrate live Active Directory data into apps built in Microsoft Power Apps.

Power Apps is a service for building and using custom business apps that connect to your data and work across the web and mobile — without the time and expense of custom software development. When paired with CData Connect Cloud, you get instant, cloud-to-cloud access to Active Directory data from the apps you build using Power Apps. This article shows how to connect to Connect Cloud from Power Apps and build an app based on live Active Directory data.

CData Connect Cloud provides a pure SQL, cloud-to-cloud interface for Active Directory, allowing you to easily integrate with live Active Directory data in Power Apps — without replicating the data. CData Connect Cloud looks exactly like a SQL Server database to Power Apps and uses optimized data processing out of the box to push all supported SQL operations (filters, JOINs, etc) directly to Active Directory, leveraging server-side processing to quickly return Active Directory data.

Create a Virtual SQL Database for Active Directory Data

CData Connect Cloud uses a straightforward, point-and-click interface to connect to data sources and generate APIs.

  1. Login to Connect Cloud and click Databases.
  2. Select "Active Directory" from Available Data Sources.
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to Active Directory.

    To establish a connection, set the following properties:

    • Valid User and Password credentials (e.g., Domain\BobF or cn=Bob F,ou=Employees,dc=Domain).
    • Server information, including the IP or host name of the Server, as well as the Port.
    • BaseDN: This will limit the scope of LDAP searches to the height of the distinguished name provided.

      Note: Specifying a narrow BaseDN may greatly increase performance; for example, cn=users,dc=domain will only return results contained within cn=users and its children.

  4. Click Test Database.
  5. Click Privileges -> Add and add the new user (or an existing user) with the appropriate permissions.

Connecting to CData Connect Cloud

To use Connect Cloud to integrate Active Directory data into your Power Apps, you need a new SQL Server connection:

  1. Log in to Power Apps
  2. Click Data -> Connections -> New connection
  3. Select SQL Server
  4. In the connection wizard:

    • Choose to connect directly
    • Set SQL server name to the address of your Connect Cloud instance (myinstance.cdatacloud.net)
    • Set SQL database name to the name of the virtual Active Directory database you created earlier (like activedirectorydb)
    • Set the Username and Password and click Create

Building a Data-Centric App for Active Directory Data

With the connection to Connect Cloud configured, you are ready to integrate live Active Directory data into the apps you build in Power Apps.

  1. Log in to Power Apps
  2. Click Create, hover over "Start from data" and click Make this app
  3. Select the SQL Server connection you created
  4. Search for or choose a table to work with
  5. Click Connect
  6. Customize the newly created app just like you would any other, including changing the layout and setting the fields exposed in BrowseScreen, DetailScreen, and EditScreen

At this point, you have an app with read and write access to live Active Directory data that you can save and publish for use within your organization.

SQL Access to Active Directory Data from Cloud Applications

Now you have a direct connection to live Active Directory data from Microsoft Power Apps. You can create more connections and apps to drive business — all without replicating Active Directory data.

To get SQL data access to 200+ SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources directly from your cloud applications, see the CData Connect Cloud.