Data Importer Updated

May 12, 2014

For those of you unfamiliar with it, the Data Importer is a Sitecore module on the Sitecore Marketplace. It's a tool that allows you to import data into Sitecore. It was originally built to import sites from existing websites by pulling from databases and into content items. It allows you the flexibility to handle each individual field in a row of data using a number of built-in conversion types but also allows you to extend the system by creating your own providers for data sources and adding your own field conversion types

I just wanted to write a quick post about the latest release. It's now on version 1.4. If/when you install the package make sure you do a merge on the system settings portion so your existing settings aren't wiped out. Also make sure you do an overwrite on the application content (core) or templates (master) because they need to be updated. If you're visual and prefer a video, I've posted one on YouTube explaining the latest changes. Otherwise, there three changes that comprise the update. 

First is that CSV file imports are now supported. There is a new template type and backing class to support this. To run an import on this type, you'd place the full file path in the query field of the import item and each "From What Field Name" field will be a zero-based index number indicating the column position. The files you're importing will have to live within the web application folder to prevent read permissions issues. 

The second change is a UI change. I've removed the application that manages the imports and instead moved that layout to a tab on the import item itself. This means you won't need to be logged into Desktop mode to use it and will hopefully make it a little more intuitive since you will be able to run the import with the item itself selected. 

The final change was from a user request for a feature to allow importing based on a schedule. To do this I've added a console application that can be called from scheduled tasks or elsewhere. I've also added a sample batch script under the sitecore modulesData Importscripts folder to show how you would call the executable and fire off the import. It's a small step but I can see that being a very useful feature going forward.