salesforce.com data access from External Applications
Globe Software (Atlas reporting tool) has the following question - "If there is a way for Globe to connect directly to the Oracle database under Salesforce.com/ServiceMax this could be a near term solution for Kodak Alaris. If it requires connecting through API’s this is a more complicated thing to deliver. Please advise."
I saw OAUTH, which uses APIs, but wanted to reach out to a larger audience on options.
Re: salesforce.com data access from External Applications
There is not a mechanism to connect directly to the database that I am aware of, the API's provide that integration layer. Pretty much every integration vendor is going to have a connector to Salesforce to access the data including our partners Jitterbit and recent addition Cloud Elements, and soon to be Informatica. However, if you want something more lightweight there are reporting tools specifically built for Salesforce that abstract the API's in to a SQL type language and there is even a connector for Excel (https://developer.salesforce.com/page/Force.com_Excel_Connector).