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Pentaho Documentation

Specify Data Connections for the Pentaho Server

For business analytics, you can use the Pentaho User Console to define the connection to where you store data. We support accessing data stored in the following ways:

  • Comma separated values (CSV) files or any file that can be converted to CSV, such as spreadsheets, XML, or other semi-structured or tabular data file. To work with .csv file, you only need to know the location of the files. Use .csv files if you are evaluating Pentaho or you want to get started quickly.
  • JDBC drivers to help with database connections.

In Pentaho Data Integration (PDI), you can make connections in each job and transformation through an input step. Although users can create connections themselves, it is best to set up shared connections for your users so that they can simply select the connection they need from a list. We help you download the correct JDBC drivers, choose the connection type, and then create the connection.   

JDBC Database Connections

To connect to databases, install the driver for your database, as well as define the access protocol and settings now. You can choose from these access protocols:

  • Native (JDBC): This is a commonly used access protocol. Please see details in the Database Access Protocol Decision Table to ensure you make an informed choice.
  • JNDI: This also is a commonly used access type. Please see details in the Database Access Protocol Decision Table to ensure you make an informed choice.
  • ODBC: We do not support ODBC, but we make it available in case you need it. If you must use ODBC, contact Pentaho Support to ensure you are successful.
  • OCI: If you are connecting to an Oracle database, click this link to install the appropriate OCI driver and add the OCI connection now.
Table 1. Database Access Protocol Decision Table
Explore Considerations Choose Options
Native (JDBC) JNDI
Summary

Native (JDBC) connections are the easiest way to get going quickly. You specify the connection information in PUC. The connections are controlled by the Pentaho Server.

If the connection information changes, you change it in PUC for each connection you have defined.

JNDI connections are maintained in the application server, offering more advanced configuration options. One typical use case is you may want to hide security credentials from administrators of the Pentaho system. You specify the connection information by editing the context.xml file and selecting JNDI as the access type in PUC.

If the connection information changes, you change the context.xml file.

Expertise Knowledge of the JDBC driver and options for your RDBMS Knowledge of Tomcat or JBoss JNDI connection procedures and options
Recommendation Use for the Pentaho Trial Download and evaluation. Use for production, when the work environment is distributed in a network, or if you want to hide security credentials from Pentaho administrators.

To learn how to set up data connections, see the articles below: