TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - SSIS Code Structure

  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

In Part 3 we look at creating our data source SSIS code structure.  Click here to review Part 1 and Part 2

Editor’s Note: This article is excerpted from chapter 5 of Extract, Transform, and Load with SQL Server Integration Services--with Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, and IBM DB2, by Thomas Snyder and Vedish Shah.

As our final step, we will prepare our package for reuse by copying the package to a location external to our SSIS solution.

For readers who may not be familiar with Visual Studio, I would like to do a quick review of the structure of the source code in a solution that will help you understand how we will prepare our package for reuse.

In Windows File Explorer, if you navigate to the location of your project, you will see the parent SSISBaseProject folder with a child SSISBaseProject folder (Figure 5.17).

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 1

Figure 17: Visual Studio source code structure

In the parent folder, there is a single file: SSISBaseProject.sln. In the child folder, there are five files:

  • dtsx
  • params
  • database
  • dtproj
  • dtproj.user

The .sln file is the solution file that Visual Studio uses to define the entire structure of the code used within Visual Studio, which could contain multiple projects.

The .dtsx file is the package file, which is what we will use as the base package for the rest of the projects. This file contains the SSIS code that we have set up so far. This will be the only file that we need to copy for the rest of our projects.

When you add a new or an existing Integration Services project to a solution, SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) creates the miscellaneous project files.

  • The *.dtproj file contains information about project configurations and items such as packages.
  • The *.dtproj.user file contains information about your preferences for working with the project.
  • The *.database file contains information that SSDT requires to open the Integration Services project.

Preparing for Reuse

In Windows File Explorer, navigate to a location that you would like to use for your future projects and create a new folder called BaseProject or whatever you’d like. This folder is where we will store our project.dtsx file, which we will rename to BaseProject.dtsx.

Open the SSISBaseProject in Visual Studio. Then select File > Save Copy of Package.dtsx As…. (Figure 5.18, part 2). Next select the target folder location that we created previously and specify the name as BaseProject.

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 2

Figure 5.18: Visual Studio: Save Copy

The result should be that we created a new file called BasePackage.dtsx within the newly created BaseProject folder. The preparation steps simply copied the package.dtsx file from your project folder into a different location, with the only difference being in the VersionGUID. This copied file will be much cleaner to use in future projects because we removed it from all the miscellaneous solution files that we will not be using.

Copy the Base Project

In the following chapters, we will start our SSIS development by creating a new SSIS project that will import the base package. These steps will be repeated as the first step in most of the following chapters.

  1. Open Visual
  2. Select File > New Project….
  3. Select Templates > Business Intelligence > Integration Services Project.
  4. Enter the name for your project and select the directory location to be

Once the new project is created, we will delete the default SSIS project and import the base project, as shown at the right side of the screen in Figure 5.19.

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 3

Figure 5.19: Deleting the default project package

Now that we have deleted the default package, we will now add the base package (Figure 5.20).

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 4

Figure 5.20: Adding an existing SSIS package

After opting to add the existing package, you will be presented with a screen (Figure 5.21) to select the location of the base package.

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 5

Figure 5.21: Selecting an existing SSIS package

Once you click OK after you selected the base project, you will see BasePackage.dtsx under the SSIS Packages in the Solution Explorer (Figure 5.22). This process copied the base package into your new SSIS solution.

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 6

Figure 5.22: New SSIS package created from the base package

We now have a new project, ready to go, which contains all the connection managers configured in the base project. If you double-click on the BasePackage.dtsx file you just added, it will open the project and you can see that your connection managers are now available for usage.

Creating a Package Template

The previous steps to copy the base project are completely legitimate, but to take it all the way home, let’s make a package template out of our base project. By creating a package template, you will be able to select your template from the new item menu.

To do this is simple enough: we will simply copy our base package into the SSIS package template folder. But before we do that, let’s rename our template to a user-friendly name (MCPress Database Agnostic Base.dtsx), as that will be what is displayed when you select it (Figure 5.23).

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 7

Figure 5.23: Renaming the base template package

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Note

Then copy our base template package into the SSIS package template:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 14.0\Common7\IDE\PrivateAssemblies\ProjectItems\DataTransformation Project\DataTransformationItems

When you initially create your new SSIS packages, the default package will be blank and can’t be changed. So simply create a new SSIS project as you normally would to start with your empty project (Figure 5.24).

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 9

Figure 5.24: Creating a new SSIS project to add a package template

Once the new project is created, right-click on your project in Solution Explorer, select Add, then New item….

You will now be able to see your custom package template available as an item to add, as shown in Figure 5.25.

TechTip: Data Source Base Project, Part 3 - Figure 10

Figure 5.25: Selecting your new custom package template

Once you’ve added your package template, you could delete the original project.dtsx and rename the MCPress Database Agnostic Base1.dtsx to match your project. Please note that when you add the package template, it actually copies the .dtsx file into your project, which means that you could update the package without impacting your reusable base package in the Visual Studio SSIS Package location.

I think this is convenient and will make life easier for us in the following chapters, to take advantage of reusing our connection manager efforts in this chapter.

However, if I wanted to be picky, I would have liked to have our custom package template available from the initial creation template menu. It also seems hacky when you manually place files in directories when you’re dealing with a Microsoft windows graphic-intensive tool without an import option for these templates, but that could possibly be a little enhancement in a future release.

Look for more tips from Tom's book in an upcoming issue of MC TNT. Can't wait?  Pick up your copy of Tom's book, Extract, Transform, and Load with SQL Server Integration Services at the MC Press Bookstore Today!


Thomas Snyder

Thomas Snyder has a diverse spectrum of programming experience encompassing IBM technologies, open source, Apple, and Microsoft and using these technologies with applications on the server, on the web, or on mobile devices.

Tom has more than 20 years' experience as a software developer in various environments, primarily in RPG, Java, C#, and PHP. He holds certifications in Java from Sun and PHP from Zend. Prior to software development, Tom worked as a hardware engineer at Intel. He is a proud United States Naval Veteran Submariner who served aboard the USS Whale SSN638 submarine.

Tom is the bestselling author of Advanced, Integrated RPG, which covers the latest programming techniques for RPG ILE and Java to use open-source technologies. His latest book, co-written with Vedish Shah, is Extract, Transform, and Load with SQL Server Integration Services.

Originally from and currently residing in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Tom is currently involved in a mobile application startup company, JoltRabbit LLC.

MC Press books written by Thomas Snyder available now on the MC Press Bookstore.

Advanced, Integrated RPG Advanced, Integrated RPG
See how to take advantage of the latest technologies from within existing RPG applications.
List Price $79.95

Now On Sale

Extract, Transform, and Load with SQL Server Integration Services Extract, Transform, and Load with SQL Server Integration Services
Learn how to implement Microsoft’s SQL Server Integration Services for business applications.
List Price $79.95

Now On Sale

More Articles By This Author


Support MC Press Online





  • White Paper: Node.js for Enterprise IBM i Modernization

    SB Profound WP 5539

    If your business is thinking about modernizing your legacy IBM i (also known as AS/400 or iSeries) applications, you will want to read this white paper first!

    Download this paper and learn how Node.js can ensure that you:
    - Modernize on-time and budget - no more lengthy, costly, disruptive app rewrites!
    - Retain your IBM i systems of record
    - Find and hire new development talent
    - Integrate new Node.js applications with your existing RPG, Java, .Net, and PHP apps
    - Extend your IBM i capabilties to include Watson API, Cloud, and Internet of Things

    Read Node.js for Enterprise IBM i Modernization Now!


  • Profound Logic Solution Guide

    SB Profound WP 5539More than ever, there is a demand for IT to deliver innovation.
    Your IBM i has been an essential part of your business operations for years. However, your organization may struggle to maintain the current system and implement new projects.
    The thousands of customers we've worked with and surveyed state that expectations regarding the digital footprint and vision of the companyare not aligned with the current IT environment.

    Get your copy of this important guide today!


  • 2022 IBM i Marketplace Survey Results

    Fortra2022 marks the eighth edition of the IBM i Marketplace Survey Results. Each year, Fortra captures data on how businesses use the IBM i platform and the IT and cybersecurity initiatives it supports.

    Over the years, this survey has become a true industry benchmark, revealing to readers the trends that are shaping and driving the market and providing insight into what the future may bring for this technology.

  • Brunswick bowls a perfect 300 with LANSA!

    FortraBrunswick is the leader in bowling products, services, and industry expertise for the development and renovation of new and existing bowling centers and mixed-use recreation facilities across the entertainment industry. However, the lifeblood of Brunswick’s capital equipment business was running on a 15-year-old software application written in Visual Basic 6 (VB6) with a SQL Server back-end. The application was at the end of its life and needed to be replaced.
    With the help of Visual LANSA, they found an easy-to-use, long-term platform that enabled their team to collaborate, innovate, and integrate with existing systems and databases within a single platform.
    Read the case study to learn how they achieved success and increased the speed of development by 30% with Visual LANSA.


  • Progressive Web Apps: Create a Universal Experience Across All Devices

    LANSAProgressive Web Apps allow you to reach anyone, anywhere, and on any device with a single unified codebase. This means that your applications—regardless of browser, device, or platform—instantly become more reliable and consistent. They are the present and future of application development, and more and more businesses are catching on.
    Download this whitepaper and learn:

    • How PWAs support fast application development and streamline DevOps
    • How to give your business a competitive edge using PWAs
    • What makes progressive web apps so versatile, both online and offline



  • The Power of Coding in a Low-Code Solution

    LANSAWhen it comes to creating your business applications, there are hundreds of coding platforms and programming languages to choose from. These options range from very complex traditional programming languages to Low-Code platforms where sometimes no traditional coding experience is needed.
    Download our whitepaper, The Power of Writing Code in a Low-Code Solution, and:

    • Discover the benefits of Low-code's quick application creation
    • Understand the differences in model-based and language-based Low-Code platforms
    • Explore the strengths of LANSA's Low-Code Solution to Low-Code’s biggest drawbacks



  • Why Migrate When You Can Modernize?

    LANSABusiness users want new applications now. Market and regulatory pressures require faster application updates and delivery into production. Your IBM i developers may be approaching retirement, and you see no sure way to fill their positions with experienced developers. In addition, you may be caught between maintaining your existing applications and the uncertainty of moving to something new.
    In this white paper, you’ll learn how to think of these issues as opportunities rather than problems. We’ll explore motivations to migrate or modernize, their risks and considerations you should be aware of before embarking on a (migration or modernization) project.
    Lastly, we’ll discuss how modernizing IBM i applications with optimized business workflows, integration with other technologies and new mobile and web user interfaces will enable IT – and the business – to experience time-added value and much more.


  • UPDATED: Developer Kit: Making a Business Case for Modernization and Beyond

    Profound Logic Software, Inc.Having trouble getting management approval for modernization projects? The problem may be you're not speaking enough "business" to them.

    This Developer Kit provides you study-backed data and a ready-to-use business case template to help get your very next development project approved!

  • What to Do When Your AS/400 Talent Retires

    FortraIT managers hoping to find new IBM i talent are discovering that the pool of experienced RPG programmers and operators or administrators is small.

    This guide offers strategies and software suggestions to help you plan IT staffing and resources and smooth the transition after your AS/400 talent retires. Read on to learn:

    • Why IBM i skills depletion is a top concern
    • How leading organizations are coping
    • Where automation will make the biggest impact


  • Node.js on IBM i Webinar Series Pt. 2: Setting Up Your Development Tools

    Profound Logic Software, Inc.Have you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application. In Part 2, Brian May teaches you the different tooling options available for writing code, debugging, and using Git for version control. Attend this webinar to learn:

    • Different tools to develop Node.js applications on IBM i
    • Debugging Node.js
    • The basics of Git and tools to help those new to it
    • Using as a pre-built development environment



  • Expert Tips for IBM i Security: Beyond the Basics

    SB PowerTech WC GenericIn this session, IBM i security expert Robin Tatam provides a quick recap of IBM i security basics and guides you through some advanced cybersecurity techniques that can help you take data protection to the next level. Robin will cover:

    • Reducing the risk posed by special authorities
    • Establishing object-level security
    • Overseeing user actions and data access

    Don't miss this chance to take your knowledge of IBM i security beyond the basics.



  • 5 IBM i Security Quick Wins

    SB PowerTech WC GenericIn today’s threat landscape, upper management is laser-focused on cybersecurity. You need to make progress in securing your systems—and make it fast.
    There’s no shortage of actions you could take, but what tactics will actually deliver the results you need? And how can you find a security strategy that fits your budget and time constraints?
    Join top IBM i security expert Robin Tatam as he outlines the five fastest and most impactful changes you can make to strengthen IBM i security this year.
    Your system didn’t become unsecure overnight and you won’t be able to turn it around overnight either. But quick wins are possible with IBM i security, and Robin Tatam will show you how to achieve them.

  • Security Bulletin: Malware Infection Discovered on IBM i Server!

    SB PowerTech WC GenericMalicious programs can bring entire businesses to their knees—and IBM i shops are not immune. It’s critical to grasp the true impact malware can have on IBM i and the network that connects to it. Attend this webinar to gain a thorough understanding of the relationships between:

    • Viruses, native objects, and the integrated file system (IFS)
    • Power Systems and Windows-based viruses and malware
    • PC-based anti-virus scanning versus native IBM i scanning

    There are a number of ways you can minimize your exposure to viruses. IBM i security expert Sandi Moore explains the facts, including how to ensure you're fully protected and compliant with regulations such as PCI.



  • Encryption on IBM i Simplified

    SB PowerTech WC GenericDB2 Field Procedures (FieldProcs) were introduced in IBM i 7.1 and have greatly simplified encryption, often without requiring any application changes. Now you can quickly encrypt sensitive data on the IBM i including PII, PCI, PHI data in your physical files and tables.
    Watch this webinar to learn how you can quickly implement encryption on the IBM i. During the webinar, security expert Robin Tatam will show you how to:

    • Use Field Procedures to automate encryption and decryption
    • Restrict and mask field level access by user or group
    • Meet compliance requirements with effective key management and audit trails


  • Lessons Learned from IBM i Cyber Attacks

    SB PowerTech WC GenericDespite the many options IBM has provided to protect your systems and data, many organizations still struggle to apply appropriate security controls.
    In this webinar, you'll get insight into how the criminals accessed these systems, the fallout from these attacks, and how the incidents could have been avoided by following security best practices.

    • Learn which security gaps cyber criminals love most
    • Find out how other IBM i organizations have fallen victim
    • Get the details on policies and processes you can implement to protect your organization, even when staff works from home

    You will learn the steps you can take to avoid the mistakes made in these examples, as well as other inadequate and misconfigured settings that put businesses at risk.



  • The Power of Coding in a Low-Code Solution

    SB PowerTech WC GenericWhen it comes to creating your business applications, there are hundreds of coding platforms and programming languages to choose from. These options range from very complex traditional programming languages to Low-Code platforms where sometimes no traditional coding experience is needed.
    Download our whitepaper, The Power of Writing Code in a Low-Code Solution, and:

    • Discover the benefits of Low-code's quick application creation
    • Understand the differences in model-based and language-based Low-Code platforms
    • Explore the strengths of LANSA's Low-Code Solution to Low-Code’s biggest drawbacks



  • Node Webinar Series Pt. 1: The World of Node.js on IBM i

    SB Profound WC GenericHave you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application.
    Part 1 will teach you what Node.js is, why it's a great option for IBM i shops, and how to take advantage of the ecosystem surrounding Node.
    In addition to background information, our Director of Product Development Scott Klement will demonstrate applications that take advantage of the Node Package Manager (npm).
    Watch Now.

  • The Biggest Mistakes in IBM i Security

    SB Profound WC Generic The Biggest Mistakes in IBM i Security
    Here’s the harsh reality: cybersecurity pros have to get their jobs right every single day, while an attacker only has to succeed once to do incredible damage.
    Whether that’s thousands of exposed records, millions of dollars in fines and legal fees, or diminished share value, it’s easy to judge organizations that fall victim. IBM i enjoys an enviable reputation for security, but no system is impervious to mistakes.
    Join this webinar to learn about the biggest errors made when securing a Power Systems server.
    This knowledge is critical for ensuring integrity of your application data and preventing you from becoming the next Equifax. It’s also essential for complying with all formal regulations, including SOX, PCI, GDPR, and HIPAA
    Watch Now.

  • Comply in 5! Well, actually UNDER 5 minutes!!

    SB CYBRA PPL 5382

    TRY the one package that solves all your document design and printing challenges on all your platforms.

    Produce bar code labels, electronic forms, ad hoc reports, and RFID tags – without programming! MarkMagic is the only document design and print solution that combines report writing, WYSIWYG label and forms design, and conditional printing in one integrated product.

    Request your trial now!

  • Backup and Recovery on IBM i: Your Strategy for the Unexpected

    FortraRobot automates the routine tasks of iSeries backup and recovery, saving you time and money and making the process safer and more reliable. Automate your backups with the Robot Backup and Recovery Solution. Key features include:
    - Simplified backup procedures
    - Easy data encryption
    - Save media management
    - Guided restoration
    - Seamless product integration
    Make sure your data survives when catastrophe hits. Try the Robot Backup and Recovery Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • Manage IBM i Messages by Exception with Robot

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413Managing messages on your IBM i can be more than a full-time job if you have to do it manually. How can you be sure you won’t miss important system events?
    Automate your message center with the Robot Message Management Solution. Key features include:
    - Automated message management
    - Tailored notifications and automatic escalation
    - System-wide control of your IBM i partitions
    - Two-way system notifications from your mobile device
    - Seamless product integration
    Try the Robot Message Management Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • Easiest Way to Save Money? Stop Printing IBM i Reports

    FortraRobot automates report bursting, distribution, bundling, and archiving, and offers secure, selective online report viewing.
    Manage your reports with the Robot Report Management Solution. Key features include:

    - Automated report distribution
    - View online without delay
    - Browser interface to make notes
    - Custom retention capabilities
    - Seamless product integration
    Rerun another report? Never again. Try the Robot Report Management Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • Hassle-Free IBM i Operations around the Clock

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413For over 30 years, Robot has been a leader in systems management for IBM i.
    Manage your job schedule with the Robot Job Scheduling Solution. Key features include:
    - Automated batch, interactive, and cross-platform scheduling
    - Event-driven dependency processing
    - Centralized monitoring and reporting
    - Audit log and ready-to-use reports
    - Seamless product integration
    Scale your software, not your staff. Try the Robot Job Scheduling Solution FREE for 30 days.