About defining ACL tables

ACL can read and interpret a wide variety of data sources. When you use the Data Definition Wizard to import data, or to connect to a data source, the result is always a new ACL table. Depending on the data source, the ACL table reads data from an ACL data file (.fil) automatically created during the import process, or directly from the data source. The maximum record length supported by a .fil file is 32 KB. Any record that exceeds 32 KB causes the import process to fail.

Each ACL table has a table layout and a default view, both of which are created automatically when you create the table. The table layout is a structured interpretation of the source data. It includes field definitions that specify how to display each field. It also contains information used to connect to the data source. The default view displays the structured data. It includes all the fields in the table, in the order they appear in the table layout, with their default settings. For more information, see The structure of ACL tables.

Table 1 lists the various data sources you can access with ACL products. It also indicates whether the resulting ACL table reads data from an ACL data file (.fil) or directly from the data source. This distinction is important because data in a .fil file is static and must be manually updated, whereas data sources that are accessed directly are updated with the most current information each time the ACL table is opened.

Table 1. Data source options

Data source

ACL

ACL Analytics Exchange Connector

ACL data file (.fil) created

File-based data sources

Adobe Acrobat

(.pdf)

Yes

Yes

Yes

ACCPAC master file

Yes

Yes

No

dBASE-compatible file

(.dbf)

Yes

Yes

No

Delimited text

(.csv or .txt)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Microsoft Access

(.mdb or .accdb)

Yes

No

Yes

Microsoft Excel

(.xls or .xlsx)

Yes

No

Yes

Print Image (Report)

(.txt)

Yes

Yes

Yes

SAP private file format/DART

(.dat)

Yes

Yes

Yes

XBRL

(.xml or .xbrl)

Yes

No

Yes

XML

(.xml)

Yes

No

Yes

ODBC

Yes

No

Yes

SAP (via Direct Link add-on)

Yes

No

No

External Definition

AS/400 FDF

(.fdf)

Yes

No

No

Cobol

(.cob)

Yes

No

No

PL/1

(.txt)

Yes

No

No

Direct database access

IBM DB2

No

Yes (via database profile)

No

Oracle

No

Yes (via database profile)

No

Microsoft SQL Server

No

Yes (via database profile)

No



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