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Protecting Coursedog Data From 'Empty Data' Scenarios

Always set 'Should Coursedog allow empty datasets' to NO as shown below for all entities (courses, sections, terms, departments etc.) in your Merge Settings screen.

This will safeguard the data in your Coursedog system from being deleted in the extremely rare scenario where 'no data' is returned by the integration.

  • If set to NO, then if an empty data response is returned from the SIS the integration will abort and nothing will be changed on either the SIS or Coursedog side.
  • If set to YES then an empty data response will be accepted by Coursedog and all data for that entity will be deleted from the Coursedog database.

The above noted setting should always be set to NO, especially in production integration scenarios.

When would we ever set it to YES?

  • Never in the Merge Settings screen
  • Occasionally but deliberately and intentionally in the Execute Merge screen

There are few scenarios where we would want an empty data response to wipe the data in the Coursedog database, however, these should be rare and intentional, for example, if there is test or sample data in the Coursedog DB and we want it eliminated.   In all such cases it is expected that the Merge Setting would remain set to NO as shown above but that a manual 'Execute Merge' would set it to YES for that run only.

When set to NO and an empty data set is returned the merge report will look like this:

  • Note that 'No Data' is shown in the 'Fetch SIS Data' step in the red box below
  • Note that all subsequent steps are shown as 'Not run' in blue below which means they were not executed due to the setting having been set to NO.

When set to YES and an empty data set is returned the merge report will look like the following

  • It will proceed to run the verify step, merge the empty data into Coursedog, sync to the SIS etc. and thereby wipe any data in the Coursedog system and if for sections or relationships 'Sync Coursedog Updates with SIS' is enabled would post the empty data back to the SIS as well

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