You can use Dataceptor to access information in your Dynamics NAV database.
Recent versions of Dynamics NAV runs on Microsoft SQL Server. Older versions can run on either Microsoft SQL Server or the native database engine. Both database types allows access to data through an ODBC interface.
Dynamics NAV on Microsoft SQL Server
When you run NAV on SQL then you can use the ODBC driver for MS SQL. This driver is often installed on your computer already. This ODBC driver is relatively fast and very stable because if it's widespread use. However, it does not support calculated fields the way the native ODBC driver does. If you want to present data from calculated fields, you have to create views in your database or in the custom views file and access those views from your form designer in Dataceptor. This means that you can show calculated values but it is not as elegant as with the native driver for the native database.
Dynamics NAV on Native Database
The native database engine is shipped with a native ODBC driver. In the past this driver was called C/ODBC and NODBC. Normally this is not installed with a default installation of NAV. You have to install it manually from the installation media.
One clear advantage of the native ODBC driver is the support for calculated fields in the database. When you browse the tables for fields you will see the calculated fields listed. This is not the case for NAV on Microsoft SQL Server.
When the Dataceptor is running on a connection to the Native database, you can use the NAV authentication of users. This means that you can use the users and passwords that you have in NAV to control access to the web site. It can also use all the roles defined in NAV as user groups. Having NAV authenticate the users is the default behavior when running on a Native database. You can disable the NAV authentication in case you want to control it manually through the normal administration interface.
Disable NAV Authentication
The NAV authentication can be disabled if you do not want to use it. To do that, you open the context.xml file in the program folder and change the value of the node /Context/Users/Method to Application instead of the default value Detect.
NAV Authentication with User Filters
When using the NAV authentication, you can still use the User Macros feature. Filter values must be defined in a custom table in NAV. By default the Dataceptor will look for a table named User Filter with a primary key field named User ID. All the fields you create in this table can be used as user filters. You can create as many fields as you like.
Please keep in mind that even though the users can be authenticated by NAV it does not mean that the permissions are carried over as well. NAV is accessed using ODBC and this connection is set up with a specific user account. Table rights are based on the permissions for this user. Users or roles must be applied to Dataceptor forms to limit access to data.