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Build MVC Applications with Connectivity to Sage US Data

This article shows how to use only the Entity Framework and the CData ADO.NET provider to access Sage US from an ASP.NET MVC application.

This article shows how to use wizards in Visual Studio to drop the CData ADO.NET Provider for Sage US into a simple MVC (model, view, controller) project.

Create the Entity Framework Model

Follow the steps below to save connection properties and map tables to entities in the data model.

  1. Create a new MVC project in Visual Studio. In this example, the project name is MvcSage50USApp.
  2. If you are using Entity Framework 6, you will need to take the preliminary step of registering the Sage US Entity Framework provider for your project. See the "LINQ and Entity Framework" chapter in the help documentation for a guide.

    Note that MVC 3 scaffolding and MVC 4 scaffolding do not support Entity Framework 6. You can use your scaffolding with Entity Framework 6 by upgrading to the latest version of MVC.

  3. To add the .edmx file from the designer, right-click your Models folder and click Add New Item. Select ADO.NET Entity Data Model, name the model, and click Add. In this example, the name of the model is Sage50USModel.
  4. In the Entity Data Model wizard, select the option 'EF Designer from database'. The Entity Data Model wizard is displayed.
  5. Click New Connection. Select CData Sage US Data Source in the dialog that is displayed.
  6. Specify the required connection string properties.

    The Application Id and Company Name connection string options are required to connect to Sage as a data source. You can obtain an Application Id by contacting Sage directly to request access to the Sage 50 SDK.

    Sage must be installed on the machine. The Sage.Peachtree.API.dll and Sage.Peachtree.API.Resolver.dll assemblies are required. These assemblies are installed with Sage in C:\Program Files\Sage\Peachtree\API\. Additionally, the Sage SDK requires .NET Framework 4.0 and is only compatible with 32-bit applications. To use the Sage SDK in Visual Studio, set the Platform Target property to "x86" in Project -> Properties -> Build.

    You must authorize the application to access company data: To authorize your application to access Sage, restart the Sage application, open the company you want to access, and connect with your application. You will then be prompted to set access permissions for the application in the resulting dialog.

    While the compiled executable will require authorization only once, during development you may need to follow this process to reauthorize a new build. To avoid restarting the Sage application when developing with Visual Studio, click Build -> Configuration Manager and uncheck "Build" for your project.

    A typical connection string is below:

    ApplicationId=8dfafu4V4ODmh1fM0xx;CompanyName=Bellwether Garden Supply - Premium;
  7. Name the connection and select whether to include sensitive information, such as connection credentials, in the connection string. For simplicity, this example saves sensitive information in Web.config. The connection settings are saved as Sage50USEntities.

  8. Select the tables and views you need. In this example, Customer is imported. Also, the option to pluralize object names is deselected in this example. Click Finish to create the .edmx file.
  9. Build your project to complete this step.

Scaffold the Controller and Views

After creating the model and building the project, you can use ASP.NET Scaffolding wizards to create the controller and the views.

  1. In Solution Explorer, right-click the controllers folder and click Add -> Controller. Select MVC 5 Controller with views, using Entity Framework.
  2. In the Add Controller dialog that is then displayed, select the following options:

    • Model class: Select a table you imported; for example, Customer.
    • Data context class: Select your context class.
  3. Leave the default values for the other fields.

You can now access the list of Customer records at http://MySite/Customer. Next to each record are links to edit, delete, and see more information. You can also create new Customer records. With every state change the site picks up any data changes.