Use the CData ODBC Driver for XML in MicroStrategy Desktop

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XML ODBC Driver

The XML ODBC Driver is a powerful tool that allows you to connect with live XML data stores, directly from any applications that support ODBC connectivity.

Access XML data like you would any standard database - read, write, and update etc. through a standard ODBC Driver interface.



Connect to XML data in MicroStrategy Desktop using the CData ODBC Driver for XML.

MicroStrategy is an analytics and mobility platform that enables data-driven innovation. When paired with the CData ODBC Driver for XML, you gain database-like access to live XML data from MicroStrategy, expanding your reporting and analytics capabilities. In this article, we walk through adding XML as a data source in MicroStrategy Desktop and creating a simple visualization of XML data.

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

Connect to XML as an ODBC Data Source

Information for connecting to XML follows, along with different instructions for configuring a DSN in Windows and Linux environments.

See the Getting Started chapter in the data provider documentation to authenticate to your data source: The data provider models XML APIs as bidirectional database tables and XML files as read-only views (local files, files stored on popular cloud services, and FTP servers). The major authentication schemes are supported, including HTTP Basic, Digest, NTLM, OAuth, and FTP. See the Getting Started chapter in the data provider documentation for authentication guides.

After setting the URI and providing any authentication values, set DataModel to more closely match the data representation to the structure of your data.

The DataModel property is the controlling property over how your data is represented into tables and toggles the following basic configurations.

  • Document (default): Model a top-level, document view of your XML data. The data provider returns nested elements as aggregates of data.
  • FlattenedDocuments: Implicitly join nested documents and their parents into a single table.
  • Relational: Return individual, related tables from hierarchical data. The tables contain a primary key and a foreign key that links to the parent document.

See the Modeling XML Data chapter for more information on configuring the relational representation. You will also find the sample data used in the following examples. The data includes entries for people, the cars they own, and various maintenance services performed on those cars.

When you configure the DSN, 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.

Windows

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.

Linux

If you are installing the CData ODBC Driver for XML in a Linux environment, the driver installation predefines a system DSN. You can modify the DSN by editing the system data sources file (/etc/odbc.ini) and defining the required connection properties.

/etc/odbc.ini

[CData XML Sys] Driver = CData ODBC Driver for XML Description = My Description URI = C:/people.xml DataModel = Relational

For specific information on using these configuration files, please refer to the help documentation (installed and found online).

Connect to and Visualize XML Data using MicroStrategy Desktop

In addition to connecting XML in MicroStrategy enterprise products, you can connect to XML in MicroStrategy Desktop. Follow the steps below to add XML data as a dataset and create visualizations and reports of XML data.

  1. Open MicroStrategy Desktop and create a new dossier.
  2. In the datasets panel, click New Data, select Databases, and select Type a Query as the Import Option.
  3. Add a new data source and choose DSN data sources.
  4. Choose the DSN you previously configured (likely CData XML Sys) and select Generic DBMS in the Version menu.
  5. Set the User and Password properties for the DSN (or use placeholder values) and name the data source.
  6. Select the new database instance to view the tables. You may need to manually click the search icon in the Available Tables section to see the tables.
  7. Create a SQL query for the XML data (see below) and click Execute SQL to test the query. SELECT * FROM people NOTE: Since we create a live connection, we can execute a SELECT * query and utilize the filtering and aggregation features native to the MicroStrategy products.
  8. Click Finish and choose to connect live.
  9. Choose a visualization, choose fields to display (data types are discovered automatically through dynamic metadata discovery) and apply any filters to create a new visualization of XML data. Where possible, the complex queries generated by the filters and aggregations will be pushed down to XML, while any unsupported operations (which can include SQL functions and JOIN operations) will be managed client-side by the CData SQL Engine embedded in the driver.
  10. Once you are finished configuring the dossier, click File -> Save.

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