SharePoint Office 365 and External Data – FAQ

  1. How is the External Data Connector licensed?

    We are offering a free 30-day trial edition that can integrate data from external data source to a single site collection. The full version is a per user license. A license is required for each user using the software.

  2. Can External Data Connector be installed and run from a client machine?

    Yes, External Data Connector can be installed and run from a Windows 8.1 / 8 / 7 desktop with .NET Framework 4.0 or higher. Read System Requirements section for more information.

  3. Can I connect to a remote SharePoint server or Office 365 site using External Data Connector?

    Yes, you can connect to a remote Microsoft SharePoint 2013 / Microsoft SharePoint 2010 server within your local network or an Office 365 site by specifying the required user credentials.

  4. Does External Data Connector support 64-bit platform?

    Yes, External Data Connector supports both 32-bit and 64-bit platforms. You can use same setup file to install External Data Connector main application in both architectures (32-bit or 64-bit platforms).

  5. What authentication methods are supported in External Data Connector?

    The current version of External Data Connector supports Windows authentication, Forms authentication, Cloud Based Identity and Federated Identity.

  6. Does External Data Connector work with SharePoint Online in Office 365? How does it work?

    Yes, External Data Connector supports SharePoint Online in Office 365 seamlessly. External Data Connector supports both Cloud Identity and Federated Identity to connect to Office 365 based SharePoint sites. There is no feature restriction or limitation in External Data Connector to integrate with Online SharePoint sites.

    • You can provide the cloud identity user name and password using the option Office 365 Cloud Based Identity available in the task wizard.
    • To use federated identity, select Federated Authentication option provided in the task wizard. Please read the help document for more information.
  7. What are the Data Sources supported by External Data Connector?

    External Data Connector supports SQL Server, MS Access, Oracle and any ODBC compliant database, file sources such as XLSX and CSV and also an existing SharePoint list.

  8. How can I merge multiple tables from data source and integrate the result-set with a SharePoint list?

    Using the Query Builder tool, multiple tables can be merged by specifying JOIN conditions and Query generated from the Query Builder can be used to integrate result-set with the SharePoint list.

  9. Can I use Database Views to integrate with SharePoint list instead of tables?

    Yes, Database views can be used to integrate with SharePoint list. There are no restrictions in using Database views. Even Views and Tables can be merged to form a result-set.

  10. Is there any way to automatically synchronize items in SharePoint list in subsequent runs?

    Yes, while selecting the destination SharePoint list, there will be an option to synchronize automatically. On synchronization, External Data Connector will automatically delete items in SharePoint list which are not present in the data source. Currently, External Data Connector supports only one-way synchronization (that is, from the data source to SharePoint Lists). Two-way synchronization will be supported in the next major release.

  11. What are the file formats supported to publish data to a SharePoint library?

    External Data Connector supports CSV, XLSX and HTML file formats to publish data as a file to Document library.

  12. What are the permissions required to use External Data Connector?

    The following permissions must be enabled to use External Data Connector:

    • In Database – Read permission to read data from a Database.
    • In SharePoint – Add Items, Edit Items, Delete Items and View Items.
  13. What is the use of reference column obtained in column mapping step?

    Reference column is needed to avoid adding duplicate items in a SharePoint list. So it is mandatory to select at least one reference column. External Data Connector will read the reference column value, query them against the list and if the item exists in the list, action specified in the list item settings will be performed (Skip, Update, Overwrite or Add).

  14. Can I integrate the data with a new SharePoint list instead of an existing one?

    Yes, you can select Create a new list option while providing list details in task wizard. External Data Connector can also create columns for you in the newly created list if the column details are provided or Auto Mapping is selected in the Column mapping step.

  15. What about security while saving user account details like username and password for scheduled tasks?

    The user account will be created as a user profile in Windows Stored User Names and Passwords applet. The stored user profile is a generic credential which can be used by External Data Connector application only. The credential information is stored securely in a 256 bit encrypted format in Windows Stored User Names and Passwords applet. See relevant section in help document for more information.

  16. How to synchronize on demand instead of a schedule synchronization?

    You can create a Run now task using the task wizard, and run the task whenever the synchronization is required.

  17. Why does External Data Connector require Exchange impersonation?

    External Data Connector requires an impersonated account to connect to the Exchange Server and retrieve resource information (mail items and attachments in mailboxes) stored in Exchange Information Store.

  18. Which Exchange Server versions does External Data Connector supports as Data Source?

    External Data Connector supports Exchange Server 2013 / 2010 / 2007 and also Office 365 Exchange online.

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