Before you can get started with designing a virtual data model, you must have a staging directory and deployment directory defined in cluster settings. To specify the staging and deployment directory, go to Server Explorer, right click on the cluster database and select Cluster Settings.
Creating a Virtualization Project
It is recommended to create a Virtual Data Model as part of a Virtualization Project. A Virtualization Project comprises of virtual data models, connections, schedules, and parameters.
To create a Virtualization Project, go to Project, choose New, and click on Virtualization Project.
Create the folder where you want to save your project, specify the project’s name, and click Save. This will open up a new window, named Project Explorer. To add a Virtual Data Model, right-click on Virtual Data Models and select Add New Virtual Data Model. You can also click on Add New Item and then select Virtual Data Model.
Adding Entities to a Virtual Data Model
You can populate your virtual data model by dragging and dropping entities from the Sources section of the toolbox onto the designer.
If you are using a database source, you can also use the Data Source Browser to easily navigate all the available database sources and their structure.
To view the complete list of data sources supported in Astera Data Virtualization, please download the solution brief.
Creating and Editing Entity Relationships
Building entity relationships is essential to define how records will be related to each other in the virtual database. Astera Data Virtualization allows users to create both one-to-one and one-to-many relationships between multiple entities.
To create relationships between entities, click on the Link nodes to create reference relationships in data model command in the toolbar. Drag and drop the cursor from one entity to another to create a connection between them. This will open a new window where you can modify relationship type and cardinality, define an alias, and specify the Lookup Field.
Enabling Caching for Entities
To enhance query performance and reduce the number of calls made to the source system, users can enable caching for all or selected entities in Astera Data Virtualization.
To enable caching for all entities in a Virtual Data Model, select the Enable caching for all the entities command from the toolbar. This will apply default cache settings by using the first schedule in the project for all the entities. Users may change it by opening cache properties or using the Set Cache Schedule command in the right-click menu.
If you want to enable caching for selected entities only, right click on an entity and select Cache Enabled.
Enabling caching will enable the Cache Properties command. To edit Cache Properties for an entity, right-click on an entity and select Cache Properties. In Cache Properties, you can edit Cache Table name and schema, cache schedule, cache entity layout, and also enable incremental loading.
To get detailed information about caching, read Caching in Astera Data Virtualization.
Verifying a Data Virtualization Project
Once you have created an ER diagram and enabled caching for the required entities, you can save and verify your Virtual Data Model. The Verification option helps you identify if there are any errors in your virtual data model before actually deploying it.