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Connect to Epicor ERP as an External Data Source using PolyBase

Use the CData ODBC Driver for Epicor ERP and PolyBase to create an external data source in SQL Server 2019 with access to live Epicor ERP data.

PolyBase for SQL Server allows you to query external data by using the same Transact-SQL syntax used to query a database table. When paired with the CData ODBC Driver for Epicor ERP, you get access to your Epicor ERP data directly alongside your SQL Server data. This article walks through creating an external data source and external tables to grant access to live Epicor ERP data using T-SQL queries.

The CData ODBC drivers offer unmatched performance for interacting with live Epicor ERP data using PolyBase due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from SQL Server to Epicor ERP, the driver pushes down supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to Epicor ERP and utilizes the embedded SQL engine to process unsupported operations (often SQL functions and JOIN operations) client-side. And with PolyBase, you can also join SQL Server data with Epicor ERP data, using a single query to pull data from distributed sources.

Connect to Epicor ERP

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. To create an external data source in SQL Server using PolyBase, configure a System DSN (CData Epicor ERP Sys is created automatically).

To successfully connect to your ERP instance, you must specify the following connection properties:

  • Url:the URL of the server hosting your ERP instance. For example, https://myserver.EpicorSaaS.com
  • ERPInstance: the name of your ERP instance.
  • User: the username of your account.
  • Password: the password of your account.
  • Service: the service you want to retrieve data from. For example, BaqSvc.

In addition, you may also set the optional connection properties:

  • ApiKey: An optional key that may be required for connection to some services depending on your account configuration.
  • ApiVersion: Defaults to v1. May be set to v2 to use the newer Epicor API.
  • Company: Required if you set the ApiVersion to v2.

Click "Test Connection" to ensure that the DSN is connected to Epicor ERP properly. Navigate to the Tables tab to review the table definitions for Epicor ERP.

Create an External Data Source for Epicor ERP Data

After configuring the connection, you need to create a master encryption key and a credential database for the external data source.

Creating a Master Encryption Key

Execute the following SQL command to create a new master key, 'ENCRYPTION,' to encrypt the credentials for the external data source.

CREATE MASTER KEY ENCRYPTION BY PASSWORD = 'password';

Creating a Credential Database

Execute the following SQL command to create credentials for the external data source connected to Epicor ERP data.

NOTE: IDENTITY and SECRET correspond with the User and Password properties for Epicor ERP.

CREATE DATABASE SCOPED CREDENTIAL epicorerp_creds
WITH IDENTITY = 'username', SECRET = 'password';

Create an External Data Source for Epicor ERP

Execute the following SQL command to create an external data source for Epicor ERP with PolyBase, using the DSN and credentials configured earlier.

For Epicor ERP, set SERVERNAME to 'localhost' or '127.0.0.1' and leave PORT empty. PUSHDOWN is set to ON by default, meaning the ODBC Driver can leverage server-side processing for complex queries.

CREATE EXTERNAL DATA SOURCE cdata_epicorerp_source
WITH ( 
  LOCATION = 'odbc://SERVERNAME[:PORT]',
  CONNECTION_OPTIONS = 'DSN=CData Epicor ERP Sys',
  -- PUSHDOWN = ON | OFF,
  CREDENTIAL = epicorerp_creds
);

Create External Tables for Epicor ERP

After creating the external data source, use CREATE EXTERNAL TABLE statements to link to Epicor ERP data from your SQL Server instance. The table column definitions must match those exposed by the CData ODBC Driver for Epicor ERP. You can refer to the Tables tab of the DSN Configuration Wizard to see the table definition.

Sample CREATE TABLE Statement

The statement to create an external table based on a Epicor ERP Customers would look similar to the following:

CREATE EXTERNAL TABLE Customers(
  CustNum [nvarchar](255) NULL,
  Company [nvarchar](255) NULL,
  ...
) WITH ( 
  LOCATION='Customers',
  DATA_SOURCE=cdata_epicorerp_source
);

Having created external tables for Epicor ERP in your SQL Server instance, you are now able to query local and remote data simultaneously. Thanks to built-in query processing in the CData ODBC Driver, you know that as much query processing as possible is being pushed to Epicor ERP, freeing up local resources and computing power. Download a free, 30-day trial of the ODBC Driver for Epicor ERP and start working with live Epicor ERP data alongside your SQL Server data today.