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Connect to UPS as an External Data Source using PolyBase

Use the CData ODBC Driver for UPS and PolyBase to create an external data source in SQL Server 2019 with access to live UPS 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 UPS, you get access to your UPS data directly alongside your SQL Server data. This article walks through creating an external data source and external tables to grant access to live UPS data using T-SQL queries.

The CData ODBC drivers offer unmatched performance for interacting with live UPS data using PolyBase due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from SQL Server to UPS, the driver pushes down supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to UPS 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 UPS data, using a single query to pull data from distributed sources.

Connect to UPS

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 UPS Sys is created automatically).

The driver uses five pieces of information in order to authenticate its actions with the UPS service.

  • Server: This controls the URL where the requests should be sent. Common testing options for this are: https://wwwcie.ups.com/ups.app/xml and https://wwwcie.ups.com/webservices
  • AccessKey: This is an identifier that is required to connect to a UPS Server. This value will be provided to you by UPS after registration.
  • UserId: This value is used for logging into UPS. This value is the one you chose to login with when registering for service with UPS.
  • Password: This value is used for logging into UPS. This value is the one you chose to login with when registering for service with UPS.
  • AccountNumber: This is a valid 6-digit or 10-digit UPS account number.
  • PrintLabelLocation: This property is required if one intends to use the GenerateLabels or GenerateReturnLabels stored procedures. This should be set to the folder location where generated labels should be stored.

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

Create an External Data Source for UPS 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 UPS data.

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

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

Create an External Data Source for UPS

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

PUSHDOWN is set to ON by default, meaning the ODBC Driver can leverage server-side processing for complex queries.

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

Create External Tables for UPS

After creating the external data source, use CREATE EXTERNAL TABLE statements to link to UPS data from your SQL Server instance. The table column definitions must match those exposed by the CData ODBC Driver for UPS. 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 UPS Senders would look similar to the following:

CREATE EXTERNAL TABLE Senders(
  FirstName [nvarchar](255) NULL,
  Phone [nvarchar](255) NULL,
  ...
) WITH ( 
  LOCATION='Senders',
  DATA_SOURCE=cdata_ups_source
);

Having created external tables for UPS 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 UPS, freeing up local resources and computing power. Download a free, 30-day trial of the ODBC Driver for UPS and start working with live UPS data alongside your SQL Server data today.