Create USPS-Connected Business Apps in AppSheet

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CData Connect



Use CData Connect Cloud to connect to USPS from AppSheet and build custom business apps using live USPS data.

AppSheet provides a no-code development platform for application software, which allows users to create mobile, tablet, and web applications. When paired with CData Connect Cloud, you get instant, cloud-to-cloud access to USPS data for business applications. This article shows how to create a virtual database for USPS in Connect Cloud and build a simple app from USPS data in AppSheet.

CData Connect Cloud provides a pure MySQL, cloud-to-cloud interface for USPS, allowing you to build reports from live USPS data in AppSheet — without replicating the data to a natively supported database. As you create applications to work with data, AppSheet generates SQL queries to gather data. Using optimized data processing out of the box, CData Connect Cloud pushes all supported SQL operations (filters, JOINs, etc.) directly to USPS, leveraging server-side processing to quickly return the requested USPS data.

Create a Virtual MySQL Database for USPS Data

CData Connect Cloud uses a straightforward, point-and-click interface to connect to data sources and generate APIs.

  1. Log into Connect Cloud and click Databases.
  2. Select "USPS" from Available Data Sources.
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to USPS.

    To authenticate with USPS, set the following connection properties.

    • PostageProvider: The postage provider to use to process requests. Available options are ENDICIA and STAMPS. If unspecified, this property will default to ENDICIA.
    • UseSandbox: This controls whether live or test requests are sent to the production or sandbox servers. If set to true, the Password, AccountNumber, and StampsUserId properties are ignored.
    • StampsUserId: This value is used for logging into authentication to the Stamps servers. This value is not applicable for Endicia and is optional if UseSandbox is true.
    • Password: This value is used for logging into Endicia and Stamps servers. If the postage provider is Endicia, this will be the pass phrase associated with your postage account. It is optional if UseSandbox is true.
    • AccountNumber: The shipper's account number. It is optional if UseSandbox is true.
    • PrintLabelLocation: This property is required to use the GenerateLabels or GenerateReturnLabels stored procedures. This should be set to the folder location where generated labels should be stored.

    The Cache Database

    Many of the useful task available from USPS require a lot of data. To ensure this data is easy to input and recall later, utilize a cache database to make requests. Set the cache connection properties in order to use the cache:

    • CacheLocation: The path to the cache location, for which a connection will be configured with the default cache provider. For example, C:\users\username\documents\uspscache

    As an alternative to CacheLocation, set the combination of CacheConnection and CacheProvider to configure a cache connection using a provider separate from the default.

  4. Click Test Database.
  5. Click Privileges -> Add and add the new user (or an existing user) with the appropriate permissions.

With the virtual database created, you are ready to connect to USPS data from AppSheet.

Connect to USPS in AppSheet

The steps below outline connecting to CData Connect Cloud from AppSheet to create a new USPS data source.

  1. Log into AppSheet
  2. Click "My account" in the menu
  3. Click the Sources tab and add a new data source
  4. Select Cloud Database and set the connection information
    • Type: MySQL
    • Server: the endpoint for your instance, including port, for example, myinstance.cdatacloud.net:3306
    • Database: the virtual database, for example, USPS1
    • Username: a Connect Cloud user with permissions for the database
    • Password: the password for the above Connect Cloud user
    • SSL: Require SSL
  5. Click "Test Connection"
  6. Click "Authorize Access"

Create an App

Once you create the data source for USPS, you can start building apps on USPS data. Start by clicking "My apps" in the menu.

  1. Click to create a new app and select "Start with your own data"
  2. Name the app and select an appropriate category, based on your data
  3. Select the newly created data source (e.g., database-1)
  4. Select the table or view with the data you want

At this point, you can configure the design of your app, selecting which columns from the selected table to display, use as labels, and more. Preview the app in the preview panel and then publish or share it when ready.

To get SQL data access to 200+ SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources directly from your cloud applications, try the CData Connect Cloud.