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How do you get two databases talking to one another

Tomorrow I'm giving a presentation and at one point I'm anticipating a questions as far as how to get my database and theirs talking to one another at the end of the day.

In the past, my only response would be to provide an option in the administrative suite which would allow the administrator to download a csv file reflecting that day's activity that could then be imported into the other database.

Is that enough or what sort of options / expectations should I be anticipating so I can sound intelligent?


I realize it depends on the database then I'm needing to communicate with. But if I'm working with MySQL, can I export that data from a csv file and presume that the techs on the other side will have enough to work with?
2 Solutions
Yes you can export that data, or you can also build an API so that third parties can query your system anytime without giving them a direct database connection.
Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3]Billing EngineerCommented:
let's put it like this, in "layman's terms": databases don't talk.

they can only answer questions by either returning data for questions that are named "SELECT this or that", or returning "ok" or "not ok: error xxxx" for questions like "may I INSERT, DELETE or UPDATE this record/data into tables, please".

so, when you speak about getting databases to "talk" to each other, you need to have something between the 2 databases that ask those questions.
exporting data from one, importing data to the other.

and yes, most database engines have tools to simplify the "talk" for importing / exporting.

if you have mssql server, for example, it can connect directly to other database using odbc or oledb, including oracle, mysql etc .
so, mssql engine can even import "directly" from such a linked server.
brucegustAuthor Commented:
So, here's what I'm going to recommend: I'll build an API that allows the administrators to go in and query the database, the resulting screen / csv file has the info they're looking for according to the fields / field names they need in order to be able to import that information into their database.

They can either export a csv file, or they can provide me a connection to their database and I insert it into their database directly from my API.


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