Use the CData ODBC Driver for JSON in MicroStrategy

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JSON ODBC Driver

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

Access JSON services like you would any standard database - read, write, and update etc. through a standard ODBC Driver interface.



Connect to JSON services in MicroStrategy Developer using the CData ODBC Driver for JSON.

MicroStrategy is an analytics and mobility platform that enables data-driven innovation. When you pair MicroStrategy with the CData ODBC Driver for JSON, you gain database-like access to live JSON services from MicroStrategy, expanding your reporting and analytics capabilities. In this article, we walk through creating a database instance for JSON in MicroStrategy Developer and creating a Warehouse Catalog based on JSON services.

The CData ODBC Driver offers unmatched performance for interacting with live JSON services in MicroStrategy due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from MicroStrategy to JSON, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to JSON 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 JSON services using native MicroStrategy data types.

Connect to JSON as an ODBC Data Source

Information for connecting to JSON follows, along with different instructions for configuring a DSN in Windows and Linux environments (the ODBC Driver for JSON must be installed on the machine hosting the connected MicroStrategy Intelligence Server).

See the Getting Started chapter in the data provider documentation to authenticate to your data source: The data provider models JSON APIs as bidirectional database tables and JSON files as read-only views (local files, files stored on popular cloud services, and FTP servers). The major authentication schemes are supported, including HTTP Basic, Digest, NTLM, OAuth, and FTP. See the Getting Started chapter in the data provider documentation for authentication guides.

After setting the URI and providing any authentication values, set DataModel to more closely match the data representation to the structure of your data.

The DataModel property is the controlling property over how your data is represented into tables and toggles the following basic configurations.

  • Document (default): Model a top-level, document view of your JSON data. The data provider returns nested elements as aggregates of data.
  • FlattenedDocuments: Implicitly join nested documents and their parents into a single table.
  • Relational: Return individual, related tables from hierarchical data. The tables contain a primary key and a foreign key that links to the parent document.

See the Modeling JSON Data chapter for more information on configuring the relational representation. You will also find the sample data used in the following examples. The data includes entries for people, the cars they own, and various maintenance services performed on those cars.

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 JSON 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 JSON Sys] Driver = CData ODBC Driver for JSON Description = My Description URI = C:/people.json DataModel = Relational

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

Create a JSON Database Instance in MicroStrategy Developer

You can connect to JSON in MicroStrategy Developer by adding a database instance based on the CData ODBC Driver for JSON.*

  1. Open MicroStrategy Developer and select a Project Source.
  2. Navigate to Administration -> Configuration Managers -> Database Instances and right-click to add a new instance.
  3. Name the instance, select Generic DBMS as the database connection type, and create a new database connection.
  4. In the database connection wizard, name the connection and create a new Database Login name, using filler values for the user and password.
  5. Select the DSN that you configured earlier as the ODBC data source (i.e., CData JSON Sys).
  6. Select the newly created database connection.
  7. In the Project Source, right-click the project and open the Project configuration.
  8. Navigate to Database Instances and select the newly created database instance.
  9. Close MicroStrategy Developer and restart the connected MicroStrategy Intelligence Server to complete the database instance creation.

With the database instance configured, you will now be able to connect to JSON services from the Warehouse Catalog and Data Import.

Connect to JSON Services from the Warehouse Catalog

Once you have created a database instance based on the ODBC Driver for JSON, you can connect to data from the Warehouse Catalog.

  1. Select your project and click Schema -> Warehouse Catalog.
  2. In the Read Settings for the Catalog, click Settings and set the queries to retrieve the schema:
    • To retrieve the list of tables, use the following query:
      SELECT 
        CatalogName NAME_SPACE,
        TableName TAB_NAME 
      FROM 
        SYS_TABLES
              
    • To retrieve the list of columns for selected tables, use the following query:
      SELECT DISTINCT 
        CatalogName NAME_SPACE, 
        TableName TAB_NAME, 
        ColumnName COL_NAME, 
        DataTypeName DATA_TYPE, 
        Length DATA_LEN, 
        NumericPrecision DATA_PREC, 
        NumericScale DATA_SCALE 
      FROM 
        SYS_TABLECOLUMNS 
      WHERE 
        TableName IN (#TABLE_LIST#) 
      ORDER BY
        1,2,3
              
  3. Select tables to be used in the project.

If you are interested in connecting to JSON from other MicroStrategy products, you can read about connecting from MicroStrategy Web and connecting from MicroStrategy Desktop.


Note: connecting using a ODBC driver requires a 3- or 4-tier architecture.