Use the CData ODBC Driver for Avalara AvaTax in MicroStrategy Desktop

Ready to get started?

Download a free trial:

Download Now

Learn more:

Avalara ODBC Driver

The AvaTax ODBC Driver is a powerful tool that allows you to connect with live data from AvaTax, directly from any applications that support ODBC connectivity.

Access AvaTax data like you would a database - read, write, and update AvaTax Accounts, Customers, TaxCodes, Transactions, etc. through a standard ODBC Driver interface.



Connect to Avalara AvaTax data in MicroStrategy Desktop using the CData ODBC Driver for Avalara AvaTax.

MicroStrategy is an analytics and mobility platform that enables data-driven innovation. When paired with the CData ODBC Driver for Avalara AvaTax, you gain database-like access to live Avalara AvaTax data from MicroStrategy, expanding your reporting and analytics capabilities. In this article, we walk through adding Avalara AvaTax as a data source in MicroStrategy Desktop and creating a simple visualization of Avalara AvaTax data.

The CData ODBC Driver offers unmatched performance for interacting with live Avalara AvaTax data in MicroStrategy due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from MicroStrategy to Avalara AvaTax, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to Avalara AvaTax and utilizes the embedded SQL Engine to process unsupported operations (often SQL functions and JOIN operations) client-side. With built-in dynamic metadata querying, you can visualize and analyze Avalara AvaTax data using native MicroStrategy data types.

Connect to Avalara AvaTax as an ODBC Data Source

Information for connecting to Avalara AvaTax follows, along with different instructions for configuring a DSN in Windows and Linux environments.

The primary method for performing basic authentication is to provide your login credentials, as follows:

  • User: Set this to your username.
  • Password: Set this to your password.

Optionally, if you are making use of a sandbox environment, set the following:

  • UseSandbox: Set this to true if you are authenticating with a sandbox account.

Authenticating Using Account Number and License Key

Alternatively, you can authenticate using your account number and license key. Connect to data using the following:

  • AccountId: Set this to your Account Id. The Account Id is listed in the upper right hand corner of the admin console.
  • LicenseKey: Set this to your Avalara Avatax license key. You can generate a license key by logging into Avalara Avatax as an account administrator and navigating to Settings -> Reset License Key.

When you configure the DSN, you may also want to set the Max Rows connection property. This will limit the number of rows returned, which is especially helpful for improving performance when designing reports and visualizations.

Windows

If you have not already, first specify connection properties in an ODBC DSN (data source name). This is the last step of the driver installation. You can use the Microsoft ODBC Data Source Administrator to create and configure ODBC DSNs.

Linux

If you are installing the CData ODBC Driver for Avalara AvaTax in a Linux environment, the driver installation predefines a system DSN. You can modify the DSN by editing the system data sources file (/etc/odbc.ini) and defining the required connection properties.

/etc/odbc.ini

[CData AvalaraAvatax Sys] Driver = CData ODBC Driver for Avalara AvaTax Description = My Description User = MyUser Password = MyPassword

For specific information on using these configuration files, please refer to the help documentation (installed and found online).

Connect to and Visualize Avalara AvaTax Data using MicroStrategy Desktop

In addition to connecting Avalara AvaTax in MicroStrategy enterprise products, you can connect to Avalara AvaTax in MicroStrategy Desktop. Follow the steps below to add Avalara AvaTax data as a dataset and create visualizations and reports of Avalara AvaTax data.

  1. Open MicroStrategy Desktop and create a new dossier.
  2. In the datasets panel, click New Data, select Databases, and select Type a Query as the Import Option.
  3. Add a new data source and choose DSN data sources.
  4. Choose the DSN you previously configured (likely CData AvalaraAvatax Sys) and select Generic DBMS in the Version menu.
  5. Set the User and Password properties for the DSN (or use placeholder values) and name the data source.
  6. Select the new database instance to view the tables. You may need to manually click the search icon in the Available Tables section to see the tables.
  7. Create a SQL query for the Avalara AvaTax data (see below) and click Execute SQL to test the query. SELECT * FROM Transactions NOTE: Since we create a live connection, we can execute a SELECT * query and utilize the filtering and aggregation features native to the MicroStrategy products.
  8. Click Finish and choose to connect live.
  9. Choose a visualization, choose fields to display (data types are discovered automatically through dynamic metadata discovery) and apply any filters to create a new visualization of Avalara AvaTax data. Where possible, the complex queries generated by the filters and aggregations will be pushed down to Avalara AvaTax, while any unsupported operations (which can include SQL functions and JOIN operations) will be managed client-side by the CData SQL Engine embedded in the driver.
  10. Once you are finished configuring the dossier, click File -> Save.

Using the CData ODBC Driver for Avalara AvaTax in MicroStrategy Desktop, you can easily create robust visualizations and reports on Avalara AvaTax data. Read our other articles on connecting to Avalara AvaTax in MicroStrategy and connecting to Avalara AvaTax in MicroStrategy Web for more examples.