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Use the CData JDBC Driver for USPS in MicroStrategy

Connect to USPS data in MicroStrategy Developer using the CData JDBC Driver for USPS.

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

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

Connect to USPS in MicroStrategy Developer

You can connect to USPS in MicroStrategy Developer by adding a database instance based on the CData JDBC Driver for USPS.* Before you begin, you will need to install the JDBC Driver for USPS on the machine hosting the MicroStrategy Intelligence Server that your instance of MicroStrategy Developer is connected to.

  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, setting the user and password for USPS.
  5. On the Advanced tab for the connection wizard, set the additional connection string parameters as follows.
    • Add the JDBC keyword to the connection string.
    • Set MSTR_JDBC_JAR_FOLDER to the path of the directory containing the JAR file for the JDBC driver. (C:\Program Files\CData JDBC Driver for USPS\lib\ on Windows.)
    • Set DRIVER to cdata.jdbc.usps.USPSDriver, the driver class.
    • Set URL to the JDBC URL for the USPS driver, which contains the necessary connection properties.

      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.

      Built-in Connection String Designer

      For assistance in constructing the JDBC URL, use the connection string designer built into the USPS JDBC Driver. Either double-click the JAR file or execute the jar file from the command-line.

      java -jar cdata.jdbc.usps.jar

      Fill in the connection properties and copy the connection string to the clipboard.

      When you configure the JDBC URL, 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.

    Typical additional connection string properties follow:

    JDBC;MSTR_JDBC_JAR_FOLDER=PATH\TO\JAR\;DRIVER=cdata.jdbc.usps.USPSDriver;URL={jdbc:usps:PostageProvider=ENDICIA; RequestId=12345; Password='abcdefghijklmnopqr'; AccountNumber='12A3B4C'};
  6. Ensure that you have not selected an ODBC data source (this will trigger MicroStrategy to use the additional connection string parameters to build the database instance) and click OK.
  7. Click OK to close the database instance wizard.
  8. In the Project Source, right-click the project and open the Project configuration.
  9. Navigate to Database Instances, select the newly created database instance, and click OK.
  10. 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 USPS data from the Warehouse Catalog and Data Import.

Connect to USPS Data from the Warehouse Catalog

Once you have created a database instance based on the JDBC Driver for USPS, 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 * 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.

Using the CData JDBC Driver for USPS in MicroStrategy, you can easily create robust visualizations and reports on USPS data. Read our other articles on connecting to USPS in MictroStrategy Web and connecting to USPS in MicroStrategy Desktop for more information.


Note: Connecting using a JDBC Driver requires a 3- or 4-Tier Architecture.