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Connecting to external data sources
Through Data modeling in Bizagi, we define and create entities, attributes and relationships directly in the local process' data model (at Bizagi's database).
When doing this, Bizagi will also offers two powerful integration mechanisms that allows you to directly integrate existing data sources into Bizagi's data model.
These two mechanisms are known in Bizagi as Data Replication and Data Virtualization, which are data-level integration features presenting powerful benefits, such as the possibility to reuse and easily connect with external data models and their information.
The major concept is that Bizagi will handle synchronization of such information and encapsulate this management, so that this is transparent for both Bizagi Studio users (e.g, when defining rules or the UI), or for the end users. This means that they will not need to know about the data source of such information, or do anything in special/additional when external data sources are integrated.
When to use them?
These mechanisms are especially useful in scenarios in which we want to integrate to Bizagi, any repositories in our corporate systems (e.g, using the information which is already in a CRM, ERP, legacy system, etc) and by leveraging reusable objects in Bizagi business process definitions.
Though such approach is best for legacy systems or application in which there are is no service oriented design, the following image illustrates how this mechanism is useful in many scenarios.
For our Automation Service offer, Data Virtualization and Data Replication are supported using SQL Server and SQL Azure databases.
Data Virtualization and Data Replication architecture
This section provides an illustration and briefly describes the differences when using Data Virtualization or Data Replication.
•Data Replication: Used to only get information from an external data source and into Bizagi (read-only), which can be programmed periodically as a background task.
For more information refer to Data Replication.
•Data Virtualization: For a two-way communication that both gets information from, and updates information to, an external data source (Bizagi reads and writes), at runtime (on-demand).
For more information refer to Data Virtualization,
An important aspect that distinguishes the two options above is that each applies to a different type of Entities (parameter or master entities, respectively).
For more information about the types of entities in Bizagi, refer to Entity types.
To view best practices oriented to the use of Data Virtualization and Data Replication, refer to Guidelines when integrating data.