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Creating an External List in SharePoint by Using Business Data

16 minutes, 32 seconds


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In this interview, programming writer Norm Estabrook demonstrates how to create a model for the BDC service that returns information about contacts in a sample database, and displays the contacts in an external list. You can learn more in the corresponding Help topic.

Kathleen McGrath
Visual Studio User Education


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  • Frank DaskeSharePoint​Frank SharePoint​Frank

    A really great lesson - from the programmers point of view.


    If someone prefers a much faster and more simple out-of-the-box approach to pull external data into a SharePoint list in just minutes,
    I would suggest the Business Data List Connector (BDLC) found here:




    You can configure the connection directly in the custom SharePoint  list settings by entering a connection string, a select statement and primary keys(s) - if any. That's it, without any programming required.
    The list structure is automatically created, you can modify it later.



    A timer job is used to update changed external data in the SharePoint list. Only changed data is updated (if primary keys are given).

    That means, you can use list alerts and workflows, to start business actions in SharePoint, if external data records are changed.

    The solution works for SharePoint (any editions) and WSS. There is a completely free shareware version for download.


    Just try it out.


  • It maybe complicated but it is free. Smiley The http://www.layer2.de/en/products/pages/sharepoint-business-data-list-connector.aspx is not.

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