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SharePoint Saturday The Conference DC - How the bcs saved my marriage


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SharePoint Saturday The Conference DC - How the bcs saved my marriage

  1. 1. How The BCS Saved My MarriageLiam ClearySenior Solution Architect | SharePoint MVP
  2. 2. Disclaimer • I didn’t come up with the title of this session  • If the internet fails the demos may be none existent • If I speak too quick, I apologise • I like PowerPoint animations!! 
  3. 3. About Me• Solution Architect @ SusQtech (Winchester, VA)• SharePoint MVP since 2007• Working with SharePoint since 2002• Worked on all kinds of projects • Internet • Intranet • Extranet • Anything SharePoint Really• Involved in Architecture, Deployment, Customization and Development of SharePoint
  4. 4. You can teach a student a lesson fora day; but if you can teach him / herto learn by creating curiosity, theywill continue the learning processas long as they live.Clay P. Bedford
  5. 5. I am hoping for a different kind of Curiosity today 
  6. 6. Topics• What is the BCS?• Why do we have it?• How can you use it?• What can it do for you?• Is it worth the effort?• Gotchas• DEMOS• How did the BCS save my marriage?
  7. 7. What is the BCS?• BCS Stands for Business Connectivity Services • Middle-Tier data layer • Consumes base SQL, WCF and core .NET Assembly • New version of BDC that was in SharePoint 2007 • Combines old BDC technology • Ability to surface LOB data directly into SharePoint • Allows for basic CRUD operations • Built in Web Parts (Enterprise Only)
  8. 8. Why do we have BCS?• Vision of Microsoft for Consuming data into Presentation Platforms • Wanted to allow users to show LOB data easily • Allow for complex UI to be built easily from LOB data • Allow search to expose and index LOB applications • Single Presentation layer for all LOB data • View of a single customer / object • Graphical Presentation of LOB data easily • Easy Office integration with LOB data
  9. 9. How do you use it?• SharePoint Designer• SharePoint Designer• SharePoint Designer• Just kidding, but seriously SharePoint Designer • SharePoint UI once provisioned • Visual Studio Deployed Solutions • Custom external applications
  10. 10. Steps to Usage• Ensure you have a way to access your data• Provision BCS connectivity via SharePoint Designer • Create Data Connections • Create External Content Types • Create External Lists• Consume using OOTB Web Parts• Custom Components
  11. 11. DEMOSharePoint Designer Data ConnectionsSharePoint Designer External Content TypeSharePoint Designer External List
  12. 12. What can it do for you?• Standardized view of external LOB Data • List View • Views • Web Parts • Search• Custom Page actions on retrieved LOB Data• Associate to Content Types • Attach to documents • List Items• Build web based UI for LOB Data easily
  13. 13. DEMOBusiness Connectivity Web PartsVisual Studio Solution
  14. 14. It is worth the effort?• Yes, Maybe, Yes and Maybe • Complex upfront work • Needs to be designed correctly • Security needs to be considered• Rating: 7/10 • Doesnt’t quite do what it says on the box• Current projects are using BCS exclusively to present backend Data• Invest in Data Layer to extrapolate your data to something that BCS can consume
  15. 15. Gotchas!!• Can’t just connect anything to it and expect it to work• Write back is complicated and requires some custom development• Filtering can be cumbersome• Security, Security and Security, oh yeah Permissions• User Profile Sync can be complicated with BCS• Be careful what you search within BCS• Anonymous Access = Manual Configuration / Deployment• Ultimately you will need Visual Studio and know XML
  16. 16. How did the BCS save mymarriage?• Didn’t have to write any custom code• Easy to deploy remotely using SharePoint Designer• Able to track my wifes spending via SharePoint and BCS • PowerPoint presentation to wife on spending habits • Trend analysis using Excel Services and BCS • SharePoint Alerts setup on BCS Data – warning of spending limits reached • Search used to find transactions • Custom Search Actions used to drill further into data and see what the transaction was for • Integration using jQuery to auto block spending• Completely made up, but the reality is that simple, this could be done, as long as the data feed is available this is achievable
  17. 17. Thank You• Personal Email:• Work:• Twitter: @helloitsliam• Blog: