Working with Internal and External Data in SharePoint 2010

By Paul Olenick

At its highest level, SharePoint data falls into one of two categories: internal or external. This chapter covers tools, options, and considerations for accessing, surfacing, and manipulating data in various scenarios.

Although many core concepts remain the same, the story around working with data has improved significantly in SharePoint 2010. Lists have been enhanced in the areas of relationships and validation, and managing large lists (a known pain point in previous versions) has become easier with query throttling. The Business Data Catalog (BDC) has been overhauled, and introduces new concepts such as the external list, which allows end users to interact with external data as if it was internal (including the capability to write back to the data source).

SharePoint developers will be pleased to learn about amazing new features in SharePoint 2010 such as multiple APIs to accommodate just about any programming scenario, additional events to hook in to for firing their custom code, and support for LINQ. SharePoint 2010 (and supporting technologies) allow architects to plan for special considerations as well, such as working with data in the cloud, and working with SharePoint data while offline.

These enhancements (along with many others) represent a massive improvement in the experience of working with SharePoint data. They provide the architect with an even more robust set of tools to continue creating ...

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