The scenarios can differ on the following criteria: (i) sources and targets, and (ii) complexity of mappings. Different data structures can be used as sources and targets: e.g., XML Schema, an XML file with an assigned schema, databases etc. To find out more about the acceptable formats of sources and targets, see Mapping: Sources and Targets.
The complexity of mapping designs is illustrated in but not limited to the following scenarios:
•Mapping one source to one target. For more information about this type of mapping, see Tutorial 1.
•Merging multiple data sources into one target. For more information, see Tutorial 2.
•Filtering the data in such a way that only a subset of this data is mapped to the target file. See Tutorial 3.
•Mapping the structure and content of the source to the target file. See Tutorial 4.
Regardless of the technology you work with, MapForce typically determines automatically the structure of your data or suggests supplying a schema for your data. MapForce can also generate schemas from a sample instance file. For example, if you have an XML instance file but no schema definition, MapForce can generate it for you. Thus, MapForce makes the data inside the XML file available for mapping to other files or formats. To find out more about the basic terms and features of MapForce, see Basic Tasks and User Interface Overview.
For easier access and management, you can organize your data mapping designs into mapping projects. This feature is available for MapForce Professional and Enterprise editions. In addition to generating code for individual mappings within the project, you can generate program code from entire projects.
In MapForce, you can completely customize not only the look and feel of the development environment, but also various settings related to each technology and mapping component type. For example:
•When mapping to or from XML, you can choose (i) whether to include a schema reference, or (ii) whether the XML declaration must be suppressed in the output XML files. You can also choose the encoding of the generated files (for example, UTF-8).
•When mapping to or from databases, you can define settings such as the time-out period for executing database statements. It is also possible to choose whether MapForce should use database transactions, or whether it should strip the database schema name from table names when it generates code.
•In the case of XBRL, you can select the structure views that MapForce should display: the Presentation and definition linkbases view, the Table Linkbase view, or the All concepts view.
The examples below illustrate mapping designs that use the same (Example 1) and different (Example 2) types of source and target structures. Both mapping examples are simple in that only one source and one target are used.
MapForce allows designing all mapping transformations visually. For example, in the case of XML, you can connect any element and attribute in an XML file to an element or attribute of another XML file. Thus, you instruct MapForce to read the data from the source element (or attribute) and write it to the target element (or attribute). The transformation of one XML file into another XML file is illustrated below:
When you work with databases in MapForce Professional or Enterprise editions, you can see any database column in the MapForce mapping area and map data to or from it by making visual connections. As with other Altova MissionKit products, when you set up a database connection from MapForce, you can flexibly choose a database driver and a connection type (ADO, ADO.NET, ODBC, or JDBC) depending on your existing infrastructure and data mapping needs. Additionally, you can visually build SQL queries, use stored procedures or query a database directly (support depends on the database type, edition and driver). An example of data transformation from a database into an XML file is given below: