This article describes using ODBC Connection strings in ETL Tools
What is ODBC?

ODBC stands for Open DataBase Connectivity, a standard database access method developed by Microsoft Corporation.

It makes it possible to access any data from any application, regardless of which database management system (DBMS) is handling the data. ODBC manages this by inserting a middle layer, called a database driver, between an application and the DBMS.

The purpose of this layer is to translate the application's data queries into commands that the DBMS understands. For this to work, both the application and the DBMS must be ODBC-compliant -- that is, the application must be capable of issuing ODBC commands and the DBMS must be capable of responding to them.

What is a DSN?

A DSN (Data Source Name) is an identifier which defines a data source for an ODBC driver.

For example, DSN for MS SQL Server would consist of:

  • Database name
  • Server name
  • User Name
  • Password
The Problem

This information is stored in windows registry and this fact introduces additional work for system administrators. Imagine the following situation you have CRM application and you use ODBC DSN to connect to it. It means that on every PC the Administrator must create ODBC DSN manually. The problem becomes worse if you have a lot of different databases and a large amount of users.

The Solution

One of the benefits of using DB Software Laboratory ETL tools is the support for ODBC connection strings.

Using the ODBC connection string gives you the ability to connect to the database without creating an ODBC DSN.

For example to connect to MS SQL Server 2008 you may use the following connection string.

Driver={SQL Server Native Client 10.0};Server=myServerAddress;Database=myDataBase;Uid=myUsername;Pwd=myPassword;

Advanced ETL Processor Data Reader using ODBC DSN

Advanced ETL Processor Data Reader using Connection String

You may find more information about connection strings at