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MIS Systems Thread, Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base in Technical; People mentioned that you can script data extraction in CMIS. I was wondering if it possible to do the same ...
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    Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    People mentioned that you can script data extraction in CMIS.

    I was wondering if it possible to do the same with SIMS.net

    I've heard mention of a plug-in (business object?) to allow third-parties (e.g. BromCom) to connect to the SIMS db

    Is it availible schools, preferably at no cost, for developing internal apps?

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    what format is the sims.net database ( I am guessing SQL and then ms access on the local client machines ? )

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    I think it costs big bucks.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    You'll need a "developer's license", as capita calls it, which will set you back about £5,000. Even though it's the school's data stored on the school's hard disk.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Quote Originally Posted by webman
    You'll need a "developer's license", as capita calls it, which will set you back about £5,000. Even though it's the school's data stored on the school's hard disk.
    It is but you would need to have access to Capita's twinkies and bits to make your little application do what you want it to.

    Oooohhhh. That was my first post here.


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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    I think you will find that any school can use the Third party Software development kit at no charge. This allows you to read dynamically read data from SIMS.net using the reporting engine and extended data dictionary. We have used it to populate our home grown systems and it works a treat. All that is required is you contact your local SIMS support team for a copy of the documentation.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Quote Originally Posted by StArbiter
    I think you will find that any school can use the Third party Software development kit at no charge. This allows you to read dynamically read data from SIMS.net using the reporting engine and extended data dictionary. We have used it to populate our home grown systems and it works a treat. All that is required is you contact your local SIMS support team for a copy of the documentation.
    Local support unit? I wonder what the arrangements would be for a Capita directly supported school?

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    contact your account manager ?

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    To expand slightly. If a company wants to interface to SIMS, we charge £5000 for a copy of SIMS so that they can develop their interfaces etc. A school with a licenced copy of SIMS can develop export routinues for their own use and can sell their work to others without any licencing fees from us. If a third party writes back to SIMS we do licence that on a per school basis - this is because any company that uses our Buiness Objects is supported by our helpdesk and this costs!

    Your LA or SIMS Account Manager should be able to help.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Going right back to the start of the thread, how can you script data extraction from CMIS? Ive not found anything on this yet?

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Thanks Phil, that's good news.

    Quote Originally Posted by PhilNeal
    A school with a licenced copy of SIMS can develop export routinues for their own use and can sell their work to others without any licencing fees from us.
    What specifically would we need to ask for to go about doing this - the 'Third Party Software development kit' that was mentioned by StArbiter?

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Yes the Third Party SDK is the best tool.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Thanks.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Well I've managed to get hold of the 'SDK' and extract some data from the SIMS DB.

    I wouldn't say it was really programatic extraction per se. The SDK doesn't give details of any lowel level SQL APIs. There's no access to the fabled 'Business Object'. There's no simple ActiveX object to tack your VBS scripts on to.

    What you get are two command line tools. CommandReporter.exe which runs a report and outputs the data to the console or to a file and CommandReportImporter.exe which is used for importing report definitions.

    In order to run the tools you need to supply a valid SIMS.net username and password in clear text.

    The report to be run must be one either created by the user whose SIMS account will be used to run the commandReport tool or one imported using
    commandReportImporter.

    This means you can't use all the reports in the SIMS.net report GUI.
    Bonkers! 8O

    As mentioned above there is no RPC or COM based APIs. Everything is done by piping or file redirection. Whatever program you pipe to must be able to understand XML. The first 20 lines of the output is the XML schema and then followed by inidividual report records.

    The SDK gives piping examples using C#, VB.Net and Delphi. I use the term piping loosely to mean passing data via standard output. What actually happens in these examples is that a subprocess is launched to run commandReporter.exe and the output is sucked into an XML file object in memory.

    If you choose to redirect output to a file then you have a choice to output to CSV, XML and RTF. The output type must set in the report definition and not at run time.

    In summary, we have progress of a sort. You won't have to start SIMS.net to produce a CSV for updating domain or VLE account. It's not as nice as having a COM object you can make things relatively automated by piping and file redirection.

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    Re: Programatic data extraction from SIMS.net Data Base

    Quote Originally Posted by danIT
    Going right back to the start of the thread, how can you script data extraction from CMIS? Ive not found anything on this yet?
    If by scripting you mean SQL, then it's a simple matter of connecting to the database with your favorite programming language and firing SQL scripts at it. I've done this for over 6years, and have found it to be pretty easy to find your way around if you use the data transfer functionality in CMIS to export the entire database into csv files which you can then grep for what your looking for.

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