About the Data Definition Wizard

The Data Definition Wizard is a component of the ACL user interface that you use to define ACL tables. It provides a standard way to access a wide variety of data sources. The basic process for defining an ACL table from a data source is consistent, but depending on the type of data source some of the required steps may be completed automatically by ACL. For example, you do not need to provide any information about fields for dBASE-compatible files because ACL can read this information directly from the file.

Whenever possible, the Data Definition Wizard uses one of the following methods to automatically identify the information required to define a table:

The data definition process is more involved for complex files that do not contain any layout information. In these cases, the Data Definition Wizard prompts you to provide the required information in a series of pages.

By default, the Data Definition Wizard is automatically displayed when you create a new project, and when you add a new ACL table to a project (File > New > Table).

The Data Definition Wizard divides the data definition process into the following stages:

  1. Select Platform – If integration with ACL Server is enabled, the first page in the wizard allows you to specify whether you will use ACL, or ACL in conjunction with ACL Server, to define the data source. If Enable ACL Server integration is deselected in the Options dialog box, this page of the wizard is not displayed.

  2. Select Data – In this stage, you specify how to access the data source: using a file, an ODBC connection, or a database profile.

  3. Identify Properties – Depending on the type of access method you selected, you may be prompted to verify or provide information about the data source, including the character set the file is encoded with, the type of file, whether the file is fixed length or variable length, and the record length (if applicable).

  4. Define Fields/Records – Depending on the type of data source selected, you may be prompted to specify the records and fields in the data source that will be used to create the ACL table layout.

  5. Edit Field Properties – In this stage, you can modify field names and the data types identified by the wizard, and identify any fields that should be excluded from the ACL table layout.

  6. Finish – The final page of the wizard provides a summary of the table definition that you can use to verify your selections.

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