Netsuite ODBC (Open Database Connectivity)- The Benefits

Wow, we get to get technical this time. That’s a bit of a change from the usual stuff of late. We’re going to take a minute to talk about the Netsuite ODBC technology, what it means, and why it’s beneficial to you.

The problem is, things like Netsuite ODBC are overlooked by all but the technical people most of the time, due to obscurity making it seem unimportant and mysterious. Well, that’s how it goes often enough. That’s why I’m here, to demystify things and show them for the important things they are.

What is ODBC:

ODBC stands for open database connectivity. Basically, it’s a feature in a system where the internal databases are accessible to outside sources for read and sometimes write.

Basic databases not integrated into service platforms, such as central MySQL, MSSQL and JSON systems are inherently ODBC by nature, or else they wouldn’t work at all.

Misconceptions:

Once introduced to ODBC, non technology people often suspect it’s a security risk in a number of ways. One could be from mismanagement, the other from malicious intent. Either way, it was a legitimate concern, but it really isn’t now.

ODBC databases are quite secure, and have a series of checks in place to ensure only the proper services or domains are accessing them, and these precautions and criteria are programmable in most cases, this one included.

The Problems:

There are no problems with ODBC, but there are problems for it to solve. With integration procedures, or app development for things like Netsuite, an open database protocol makes it much easier for the apps to talk to Netsuite’s internal databases without a lot of slow layers between.

Along with this, migration between Netsuite and other data processing tools, and backing up and restoring to standard database modules and vice versa demands easy, standard database connectivity free of proprietary calls and hooks.

Solution:

ODBC compliance solves these problems, as while the internal structure of Netsuite’s data may be a bit proprietary in design, the protocols for connecting, indexing and querying are workable across the board on the machine level.

It’s basically the same way standardizing anything else benefits everything working predictably and well.

Caveats:

You still want to make sure your database security and naming conventions are managed properly so that any potential for malicious intent or accidental breakage. While ODBC protocols are very secure and meticulous about preventing this sort of thing, nothing is perfect. There’s a lot to be said for exercising caution and not getting too comfortable with automated security even in a case like this where it’s actually good.

But, beyond that, there’s really little needed in setting it up or using it, and little in the way of major concerns. All I really wanted to do here was point out what it is, the serious problems it solves, and the importance of appreciating those.

Ignoring the Netsuite ODBC system will overcomplicate all your processes, and slow them down too. You save yourself a lot of trouble and misery by getting to know this system and what it can do for you. Don’t worry, your tech people already know all about it, if you want to talk to someone.
 

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Brooke Nelson is the Lead Author & Editor of NetSweets. With more than 20,000 customers, NetSuite is a fascinating platform! It is the major player in ERP, CRM, and ecommerce.
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