Gmail Reporting and Star Schemas in OBIEE

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Gmail ODBC Driver

The Gmail ODBC Driver is a powerful tool that allows you to connect with live Internet E-mail (Gmail), directly from any applications that support ODBC connectivity.

Access Gmail folders and message data like you would a database - read, write, and send E-mails through a standard ODBC Driver interface.



Create a star schema that shows perspectives on Gmail facts in real time.

The CData ODBC Driver for Gmail is a standard database driver that can integrate real-time access to Gmail data into your data warehouse or directly into your reporting tool. This article shows how to bypass the data warehouse and import operational Gmail data into Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE).

See the knowledge base for ODBC integrations with ETL tools like Informatica PowerCenter. For an ETL solution into Oracle Warehouse Builder, use the driver with the Oracle ODBC Gateway to Access Gmail Data as a Remote Oracle Database.

Connect to Gmail as an ODBC Data Source

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.

There are two ways to authenticate to Gmail. Before selecting one, first ensure that you have enabled IMAP access in your Gmail account settings. See the "Connecting to Gmail" section under "Getting Started" in the installed documentation for a guide.

The User and Password properties, under the Authentication section, can be set to valid Gmail user credentials.

Alternatively, instead of providing the Password, you can use the OAuth authentication standard. To access Google APIs on behalf on individual users, you can use the embedded credentials or you can register your own OAuth app.

OAuth also enables you to use a service account to connect on behalf of users in a Google Apps domain. To authenticate with a service account, you will need to register an application to obtain the OAuth JWT values.

In addition to the OAuth values, you will need to provide the User. See the "Getting Started" chapter in the help documentation for a guide to using OAuth.

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.

Import Gmail Metadata

Follow the steps below to use the OBIEE Client Tools to import Gmail metadata into an OBIEE repository. You can then integrate Gmail data into your business models.

  1. Open the Administration Tool and click File -> New Repository.

  2. In the Connection Type menu, select ODBC 3.5 and select the CData DSN.
  3. Select the metadata types you want to import under the Relational Sources option and then select Gmail tables.
You can now create star schemas based on Gmail tables: