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Edit and Search External Blackbaud FE NXT Objects in Salesforce Connect



Use CData Connect Cloud to securely provide OData feeds of Blackbaud FE NXT data to smart devices and cloud-based applications. Use the CData Connect and Salesforce Connect to create Blackbaud FE NXT objects that you can access from apps and the dashboard.

CData Connect Cloud, enables you to access Blackbaud FE NXT data from cloud-based applications like the Salesforce console and mobile applications like the Salesforce Mobile App. In this article, you will use CData Connect Cloud and Salesforce Connect to access external Blackbaud FE NXT objects alongside standard Salesforce objects.

Connect to Blackbaud FE NXT from Salesforce

To work with live Blackbaud FE NXT data in Salesforce Connect, we need to connect to Blackbaud FE NXT from Connect Cloud, provide user access to the connection, and create OData endpoints for the Blackbaud FE NXT data.

(Optional) Add a New Connect Cloud User

As needed, create Users to connect to Blackbaud FE NXT through Connect Cloud.

  1. Navigate to the Users page and click Invite Users
  2. Enter the new user's email address and click Send to invite the user
  3. You can review and edit users from the Users page

Add a Personal Access Token

If you are connecting from a service, application, platform, or framework that does not support OAuth authentication, you can create a Personal Access Token (PAT) to use for authentication. Best practices would dictate that you create a separate PAT for each service, to maintain granularity of access.

  1. Click on your username at the top right of the Connect Cloud app and click User Profile.
  2. On the User Profile page, scroll down to the Personal Access Tokens section and click Create PAT.
  3. Give your PAT a name and click Create.
  4. The personal access token is only visible at creation, so be sure to copy it and store it securely for future use.

Connect to Blackbaud FE NXT from Connect Cloud

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

  1. Log into Connect Cloud, click Connections and click Add Connection
  2. Select "Blackbaud FE NXT" from the Add Connection panel
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to Blackbaud FE NXT.

    Blackbaud Financial Edge NXT uses the OAuth authentication standard. To authenticate using OAuth, you will need to create an app to obtain the OAuthClientId, OAuthClientSecret, and CallbackURL connection properties.

    See the Getting Started guide in the CData driver documentation for more information.

  4. Click Create & Test
  5. Navigate to the Permissions tab in the Add Blackbaud FE NXT Connection page and update the User-based permissions.

Add Blackbaud FE NXT OData Endpoints in Connect Cloud

After connecting to Blackbaud FE NXT, create OData Endpoints for the desired table(s).

  1. Navigate to the OData page and click Add to create new OData endpoints
  2. Select the Blackbaud FE NXT connection (e.g. FinancialEdgeNXT1) and click Next
  3. Select the table(s) you wish to work with and click Confirm

With the connection and OData endpoints configured, you are ready to connect to Blackbaud FE NXT data from Salesforce Connect.

Connect to Blackbaud FE NXT Data as an External Data Sources

Follow the steps below to connect to the feed produced by Connect Cloud.

  1. Log into Salesforce and click Setup -> Integrations -> External Data Sources.
  2. Click Now External Data Sources.
  3. Enter values for the following properties:
    • External Data Sources: Enter a label to be used in list views and reports.
    • Name: Enter a unique identifier.
    • Type: Select the option "Salesforce Connect: OData 4.0".
    • URL: Enter the URL to the OData endpoint of Connect Cloud: https://cloud.cdata.com/api/odata/service
  4. Select the Writable External Objects option.
  5. Select JSON in the Format menu.
  6. In the Authentication section, set the following properties:
    • Identity Type: If all members of your organization will use the same credentials to access Connect Cloud, select "Named Principal". If the members of your organization will connect with their own credentials, select "Per User".
    • Authentication Protocol: Select Password Authentication to use basic authentication.
    • Certificate: Enter or browse to the certificate to be used to encrypt and authenticate communications from Salesforce to your server.
    • Username: Enter a CData Connect Cloud username (e.g. user@mydomain.com.
    • Password: Enter the user's PAT.

Synchronize Blackbaud FE NXT Objects

After you have created the external data source, follow the steps below to create Blackbaud FE NXT external objects that reflect any changes in the data source. You will synchronize the definitions for the Blackbaud FE NXT external objects with the definitions for Blackbaud FE NXT tables.

  1. Click the link for the external data source you created.
  2. Click Validate and Scan.
  3. Select the Blackbaud FE NXT tables you want to work with as external objects.

Access Blackbaud FE NXT Data as Salesforce Objects

After adding Blackbaud FE NXT data as an external data source and syncing Blackbaud FE NXT tables as external objects, you can use the external Blackbaud FE NXT objects just as you would standard Salesforce objects.

  • Create a new tab with a filter list view:

  • Create reports of external objects:

  • Create, update, and delete Blackbaud FE NXT objects from the Salesforce dashboard:

Simplified Access to Blackbaud FE NXT Data from Cloud Applications

At this point, you have a direct, cloud-to-cloud connection to live Blackbaud FE NXT data from Salesforce. For more information on gaining simplified access to data from more than 100 SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources in cloud applications like Salesforce, refer to our Connect Cloud page.