Table sharing

In an LN installation with multiple companies, you can require two or more companies to share tables to meet a particular business requirement. For example, if several of your companies purchase items from the same suppliers, these companies can share the business-partner table.

Purpose

Table sharing has the following advantages:

  • The data that is entered is available in all other companies. The required work for data entry is reduced.
  • Consistency of data is ensured between companies.

Table sharing can have the following disadvantages:

  • Table sharing can cause errors if set up incorrectly.
  • Table sharing can lead to very larges tables, which can reduce performance.
  • If the table sharing is achieved by using data replication, you must perform regular replication actions.

Methods

You can apply one of the following two methods of table sharing:

  • table sharing- data is effectively maintained in one location; changes are instantaneously visible in all companies.
  • data replication- data is maintained separately in several companies; changes in one company are effective in other companies after replication.

Two types of data replication exist.

  • Continuous replication by using a messaging system. You can use LN Business Adapter to achieve continuous replication. Continuous replication is not further discussed here.
  • batch-oriented replication.

You can also organize your work process to copy the data modifications in one company manually to the other companies. That is suitable for slowly-changing, static data, such as language codes and country codes.

Table references

The table-sharing configuration must take the table references into account. Otherwise, the referential integrity can be damaged.

The consequences of a table reference depend on the table reference's Reference Mode.

  • If table A has a field that refers to table B, and the Reference Mode is Mandatory, then this rule applies:

    • If two companies share table A, they must also share table B.
  • If a table A has a field that refers to table B, and the reference mode is Mandatory unless empty, then this rule applies:

    • If two companies share table A, they must also share table B, unless the referring field is always left empty.
  • If the Reference Mode is Non Mandatory, no additional restrictions apply.

Example

The Items - General table has a Country of Origin field, that has a reference to the Countries table with the Reference Mode set to Mandatory unless empty.

Suppose the Items - General table is shared between company 100 and 200, and the Countries table is not shared. If you insert a new country code in company 100, and you insert that country code in the Country of Origin field for an item, you will get a reference error if you look at the same item in company 200. If you view the item in company 200, the item's country of origin displays as "*****". If you use the item, a fatal error occurs. To prevent this, the Countries table must also be shared or keep the Country of Origin field empty.

For more information on table sharing, see the Infor LN User Guide for Table Sharing.