Linking SQL database on Azure to Visio via SharePoint Online

My last post was entitled Linking SQL database on Azure to Visio (see, but that was only half the solution I wanted to present because I was having issues with linking my SQL database on Azure to my SharePoint Online. So, I enlisted my friend and colleague, Nick Ajderian, who looked into it and wrote the following blog article : . Well, I still failed, until I realised a subtle error that I was making …

In my previous article, I showed how to connect directly to the SQL database on Azure by using the Data Connection Wizard, where I entered the Server name with the “, 1433” suffix in order to address the port. Well, when I kept on entering the same server name in the SQL Server Connection dialog for the new connection in the Data Source Explorer for a External Content Type in SharePoint Designer, everything was looking fine because I could expand the connection to view the tables and create the operations. I could even create the External List okay, but I could not view any records in it, and kept getting a connection error. I was getting very frustrated until I dropped the “, 1433”, then everything worked!

Here is my Floors table from my SQL database on Azure in SharePoint Online:


So, now I can select this list, as a Microsoft SharePoint Foundation List, using Link Data to Shapes in Visio:

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Linking SQL database on Azure to Visio

Microsoft Visio has many data sources available for Link Data to Shapes, and one of those is SQL Server. Microsoft Azure is increasingly becoming a low-cost, and always available, choice for hosting all sorts of data, and applications, so I thought I would document how easy it is to setup a SQL database on Azure for use with Visio.

Creating the SQL database on Azure

First, you need register for an Azure subscription, and then create a SQL database on a server in a suitable location.

Create Azure Sql database

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