Rapidly Develop Sage US-Driven Apps with Active Query Builder

Leverage the Active Query Builder SQL interface builder and the ease of .NET data access to create data-driven WinForms and ASP.NET apps.

Write standard .NET to expose Sage US data through an SQL interface: Active Query Builder helps developers write SQL interfaces; the CData ODBC Driver for Sage US enables standards-based access to Sage US. This integration uses the Microsoft ADO.NET Provider for ODBC as a bridge between the ODBC Driver and the Active Query Builder objects to build a visual SQL composer.

Connect to Sage US 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.

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.

Use SQL to Interact with Sage US

Follow the steps below to create a WinForms visual query builder.

  1. In a new Windows Forms project, drag the QueryBuilder from the Toolbox onto the form.
  2. Add a reference to ActiveQueryBuilder.ODBCMetadataProvider.
  3. Add an OdbcConnection and set the connection string to the DSN that you created in the first section. OdbcConnection connection = new OdbcConnection(); connection.ConnectionString = "DSN=Sage50US"
  4. Initialize ODBCMetadataProvider and GeneralSyntaxProvider instances and set the Connection property of the ODBCMetadataProvider object to the OdbcConnection. GenericSyntaxProvider syntaxProvider = new GenericSyntaxProvider(); ODBCMetadataProvider metadataProvider = new ODBCMetadataProvider(); metadataProvider.Connection = connection;
  5. Set the corresponding MetadataProvider and SyntaxProvider properties of the QueryBuilder object. queryBuilder1.MetadataProvider = metadataProvider; queryBuilder1.SyntaxProvider = syntaxProvider;
  6. Call the InitiatelizeDatabaseSchemaTree method of the QueryBuilder class to retrieve Sage US metadata and generate a tree view of Sage US tables. queryBuilder1.InitializeDatabaseSchemaTree();
  7. After creating the QueryBuilder, connect it to a TextBox or, as we use, the ActiveQueryBuilder SQLTextEditor: Drag and drop an SQLTextEditor onto the designer.

  8. Add the following code to the Validating event for the SQLTextEditor: private void sqlTextEditor1_Validating(object sender, CancelEventArgs e) { try { // Update the query builder with manually edited query text: queryBuilder1.SQL = sqlTextEditor1.Text; } catch (SQLParsingException ex) { e.Cancel = true; // Set caret to error position sqlTextEditor1.SelectionStart = ex.ErrorPos.pos; // Report error MessageBox.Show(ex.Message, "Parsing error"); } }
  9. Add the following to the SQLUpdated event: private void queryBuilder1_SQLUpdated(object sender, EventArgs e) { sqlTextEditor1.Text = queryBuilder1.FormattedSQL; }
  10. You can now build queries visually: Double-click a table in the Columns Pane Area and an entity/relationship diagram is displayed in the Query Building Area. Columns that you select in the diagram are added to the query.