Who is using the Aras SQL 'Federation ItemType Sample v3-1' and can share experience?

Hi community,

Does anyone of you use the 'Federation ItemType Sample v3-1'? 
It´s a sample project that can be used to access external SQL database data via federation more easily. It basically contains a configuring ItemType that helps to setup the SQL connection faster, so you don´t have to code anything. As far as I know it´s only available for subscribers, but I think also free-users that don´t use this project can benefit from this discussion. The basic concepts of federation are always the same.

I really like the project, cause it´s well designed and works fast and reliable. The project is a excellent foundation for federation. But form my POV there are still a lot of useful features missing (or simply weren´t implemented yet).

I am looking for people who also use the project and have some experience with it. Maybe you even have enhanced the feature and want to exchange your ideas? I have done a couple of customization and would be happy to exchange them with other users!

Enhancement that I have done myself:

  • Keyed_name support for federated items (by default they just can show the id). Very useful, also my implementation is a bit of a dirty hack. So I am looking for way to solve this one a more professional way.
  • Changed existing search mode to support wildcard search in item keyed_name (it´s an extension to the keyed_name support above)
  • Support for integer search modes like  >, <, <=, >= . By default you just can search for 'eq' and 'like' values. 
  • Support for maxResults, pageSize in the grid . This way users get better feedback when you have restricted the number of returned results
  • Bug fix that prevents MPP to crash when you use a federated relationship in ItemType 'Part'. 
  • Bug fix to prevent item Preview crash when you use a federated relationship

Enhancement or knowledge that I am looking for:

  • Support for 'sort accross pages'
  • Date Range search mode
  • Enhancement regarding security, e.g. add some kind of permission system.
  • The current Aras project seems to contain a lot of fields and functions that are just placeholders for future features. Or maybe I just don´t know how to use them?
  • Ideas for enhancements or alternative concepts to do this kind of federation
  • Of course also general feedback is helpful:
  • Do you use the feature? If yes, how? Just for simply display of external data, or do you mix-n-merge?
  • What is your experience regarding federation? Maybe you also know some bugs that occur in certain scenarios that I haven´t noticed so far? 

If you don´t use the project cause you´re not a subscriber you are also invited to join the discussion! If you are familiar with federation, you maybe also know some way to improve the display and work with external data. I assume similar pitfalls as in the project occur when you write your federation code by yourself. So most of the questions and enhancements should also be relevant for users who use a different concept

Would be happy to connect and hear your experience! Every input welcomed! Many thanks already!


  • How do you access the Federation ItemType Sample v3-1? I tried a search for it here and looking in the subscriber portal and am not seeing it. 

  • Hi Jen,

    I didn´t get the solution from the subscriber portal. Aras support sent it to me after I asked for some Federation samples for ERP connection. I can look up the ticket number if needed.

    Ask support if they can send you the package or maybe even have a modernized variant. 

    Please note that this one is not an official Aras application, it´s officially labeled as sample code. But I still like the project and even use it in production. But I enhanced it in many comers and there are still a couple of topics that I want to improve. 

    My first post above form 1 year ago is still quite up-to-date! So I would be happy about any one that uses the project!

    Best regards


  • We have a ton of federated items but I feel like we are doing it in a very ancient way compared to what you describe here. Thanks, I will definitely reach out. 

  • Bummer, they said they don't have it anymore.... they sent me a few methods but they were very basic.  We've got probably a dozen federated items and the support methods are so complicated. I was really hoping there was a better way. 

  • Hahaha. Sure, they lost it "by accident" while moving to the new building. WinkEven the original developer still works there!

    To defend support, I understand why they don´t want to share it anymore:

    - It´s based on Innovator 11 or older
    - It was really just a sample project.
    - It´s maybe risky regarding security and performance
    - They don´t have the people to support it, cause you definitely will have questions
    - You are more encouraged to use a professional connector
    - Since a while they work on more advanced federation solutions. You can the Federation Service is on the roadmap

    Here´s a screenshot of the old sample project:

    It´s a independent ItemType that you use in combination with a included generic “onGet” Method. It´s no big problem to remove the solution as soon there is a better one available.

    I don´t use the project for all federation use cases. I have a custom variant that is optimized for speed and some others for add/update/delete.

    I cannot send the package to you cause I don´t own this project. But I could send it back to Aras or share it with you when I got permission. It would be a big help to have the option to work with other users on this one.

    The shown federation concept is a sample project, we are aware of this. Sure there are better options upcoming, but why wait for the best solution in the future, when you can have the 2nd or 3rd best solution now. This is why the forum exists. I miss the old community spirit where people were more experimental.

  • Hi,

    I right now play around with Release 2023 and noticed that Aras changed a view things regarding "Federation" in this release. This version has an additional "Federated" flag in the ItemType properties. Not sure if this has a real technical impact or is just a way to "highlight" federated property in a better way.

    In my I12 you still can set DataType to "Federated" and there is no additional flag. Technically using DataType "Federation" never had some real technical impact, despite the quick erase of the existing db values.

    Not sure, I haven´t tested federation yet in Release 2023. But this is maybe an additional reason the mentioned project is not promoted by Aras anymore.

    You said you used Federation for many tasks. Have you noticed differences regarding the used Method when using Innovator 12 vs. Innovator 14? Of course only when you already work on a newer release... :)

    Best regards


  • hahha... oh no... we are still on 11 SP 12 :( 

    But we have looked at the latest release a bit and the new federated flags which I like a lot - I have properties that are federated Item Types for example and we have really had to hack that to make it work because we couldn't set the property type as "Item". If we set the data source in the DB (because you can't set it in the UI if it's federated) everything works beautifully - same things with lists.   So I am a big fan of this change and am very much looking forward to when we can upgrade. 

  • Yes, the new federated flag makes sense! I right now use 'Federated' as type for regular string/integer properties, but 'Item' for federated items. It works, but is confusing. 

    I think Aras added this one as first modification for their own upcoming federation service. But I don´t think we will see it this year. I expect they want to cover REST and SQL and probably plan to provide a lot UI to make it simple for users. Will take them some time to cover everything.

    My federated dataset with above sample project currently looks like this.

    Search bar works mostly like usual. Items are clickable. We can link the federated data to other items cause they have static id. But I still weren´t able to make all of the paging buttons work as normal. Especially the counter for amount of found pages and items is still missing. It´s not high priority, but it would be a nice addition.