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Data import configurator

Easily import Excel or BMEcat files from suppliers

crossbase provides a graphical interface to analyze the structure of Excel and BMEcat files and to map columns to database fields. Transformation rules can be used for fully automatic conversions. These settings can be saved and reapplied to similar files.

Configuration of BMEcat and Excel imports

To import BMEcat files, they are validated and converted into Excel format. Then, the content of BMEcat can be processed with the data import manager. There are two methods for preparing Excel files:

  • The Excel files are prepared for the standard import format of crossbase. This is done by adding columns and column headings. This method is especially useful if the structure of the Excel file is not predefined.
  • A field mapping is created by means of the a graphical interface. It can then be used again for similar Excel files.

In general, almost all data that can be entered into the crossbase database via the user interface can also be imported via Excel files. A great advantage is that this can be done by the users themselves without the need for assistance.

Graphical field mapping

When opening an Excel file, the column headers and the first data row are displayed. In the simplest case of mapping, a column with the item number is selected. Subsequently, additional columns can be assigned to specific information types.
The import profile can be saved and the import can be repeated. If field contents have to be adapted individually, transformation rules are used. These allow the removal, replacement or addition of characters and conversion using calculation rules and concatenations.

Carrying out the import

Validation is performed during data import. This checks whether the data type, number format and value range are correct and whether text markups are XML-compliant.
If new items or product groups are imported, they can first be created in a folder and then classified in more detail later. The result is summarized in a log file. In case of errors, an e-mail notification can be triggered.

Simulation of data imports

Typically, larger data imports are first imported into a test system and the result is roughly checked. This is cumbersome and inaccurate. Therefore, crossbase offers a simulation with machine testing capabilities. A detailed error log supports the correction of data errors. Partial import of data is also supported.

Functionality

Field mapping
A column to be imported represents a field to be defined in the database. It is assigned to a structure and a level. For example, it is possible to import the content of the cells of a column into the product structure on the Product Group or Item level.

Information types
The content to be imported can be classified, for example as characteristics (weight, dimension, material, ...), prices (gross price, net price, ...), texts (short text, description, application, ...), illustrations (product photo, drawing, ...) and product relations (accessories, spare part, ...)

Transformation rules
The content of a column can be edited according to certain rules (e.g. replacing, deleting or adding text parts as well as converting numbers using formulas).

Import profiles
Different parameters can be recorded.

Automation
Import can be done automatically. To do this, some parameters can be be configured, such as connection data, the source directory with files and target directory for the log file. 

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