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Setup and use the Data Publisher

Setup the Data Publisher

  • Make sure the jQuery DataTables and jQuery DataTables Responsive libraries are loaded ( Settings > WP Data Access > Data Publisher)
  • Grant access to tables you want to show on your web pages (Settings > WP Data Access > Front-End)
  • You can give non admin users access to the Data Publisher as well ( Settings > WP Data Access > Data Publisher)
  • Use shortcode ‘wpdataaccess’ to add your publication to a web page (How to use shortcode โ€˜wpdataaccessโ€™)

Create a publication

  • Navigate to: WP Data Access > Data Publisher
  • Select a database table (make sure you have granted access)
  • Select columns to be displayed or * to see all (use the select button to select available columns)
  • Select desired output (flat or responsive)
  • Select desired options for responsive output
  • Save publication
  • Test publication

Publish a publication

  • Copy your shortcode (click Show shortcode button)
  • Paste your shortcode into your post or page
  • Publish and test your post or page


Menu item WP Data Access > Manage Plugin was moved to Settings > WP Data Access


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32 Replies to “Setup and use the Data Publisher”

  1. I believe the WP Data Access plugin will enable me to achieve my requirements, but I have come up against a couple of issues. The data that I wish to display contains records of vehicle details, but some information is repeated so that I have included that in child tables. For example, the vehicle records include more than 100 vehicles, but there are only 4 different types of engine. Thus I have an “engine” field in the vehicles table, which equates to the “id” field in the engines table.

    In a Data Project, I can define the relationships, but I’m afraid the documentation doesn’t explain clearly to me how I can display the engine details in the vehicle row. The project appears in my WP dashboard, and I can see the data from the vehicles table. I have not yet found the documentation on how to publish the data from the project on a page which will be displayed in the browser.

    I have also looked at the Data Publisher. Here I can display the vehicle data table on a page, and click on the button to open a popup (or tooltip) that displays the full data record for one individual vehicle. This is precisely what I want – and something that I have not so far found in any other WP plugin. So thank you for that – it saves me some coding in PHP if I were to write my own code. But, the problem here is that I cannot see how to incorporate the child data – the engine data in my example.

    The data is all historical, and I have exported and imported the data from the previous version of the website, so the data tables are all setup and populated in WP. There will be no new data, so I don’t need to provide for data entry – so no need for user admin, etc. I just want to display the complete vehicle record with the associated data – the engine, as mentioned above – plus a couple of other features.

    Can you advise me? Thanks in advance for your help.

  2. Hi Nigel,

    If you don’t need to edit your table data, you don’t need the Data Projects tool. The main purpose of the Data Projects tool is data management. If you only need to query your data you are better of with the Data Publisher.

    To use the Data Publisher however, you need to set one additional step. While the Data Projects tool supports parent-child relations, the Data Publisher only supports straight tables. So I see your problem. The solution to solve this problem however is very simple. You just need to write a query that joins your tables correctly and then create a view for that query. Within the Data Publisher you can use a view just as you would use a table.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if I have not been clear enough or you need help otherwise.

    Best regards,

  3. Hello Peter,

    Thanks for your prompt and helpful response.

    I created the view in phpMyAdmin, and this works exactly as I require with the Data Publisher in your plugin. The records in my view have an ID field which I use to define the initial ordering of the records. As far as I can see, I need to include and display this ID field to ensure this sorting works as intended?

    One other minor question: can I change the title on the popup/tooltip with the details, so that it displays something more specific than “Row details”?

    Thanks again for your help.

    Best regards,


  4. Using version 3.0 of the plugin.
    I’m trying to publish data from an imported custom table to the front of the website.
    I can view the table and modify the table column settings in steps 1 and 2 of the publication process.
    However I can’t select the table in the data publisher – part of step 3.
    There is no “Manage Plugin” link in the WP Admin dashboard left column and no way I can find (so far) to set front-end/back-end settings.

    Something inadvertently left out of version 3 or changed and not reflected in the tutorials?

  5. Never Mind, I read the changelog and found what I need in the WP Dashboard Setting Menu.

  6. Hi Tracy,

    Sorry, I’m a bit behind with the documentation. The plugin settings menu was moved from the WP Data Access menu to the Settings menu.

    I added a note to the video and the page. Thank you for reminding me!

    Best regards,

  7. Hi Peter,

    Thanks for this plugin, which might come very close to what I intend to do with Datatables within my WP setup.
    However, I’m struggling a bit with the more advanced configuration of table options.
    In particular, I have a table with data that I want to render differently for each column.
    Let’s say I have a table “books” with a column “book_url”, which links to an external shop site – How would I render the stored URL as a HTML link with ?

  8. Hi Fabian,

    That’s the more complex stuff! ๐Ÿ™‚

    From what I understand from your requirement, the best solution might be to add a dynamic hyperlink to your table and add it to your publication. You can find the documentation here:

    Use the HTML column to add your own attribute to the link. Hope this helps…

    Best regards,

  9. Hi Peter,

    I would like to know, if there’s a possibility to allow front-end editing of published tables?
    or can I create some kind of form, where someone would add a new entry for a table and then this row is added to my tables i created with your plugin?
    Do you have a suggestion, how to implement this? Do I need another plugin?

    Thank you very much for your efficient support!
    Best regards,

      1. Hi Peter,

        thank you! The video looks promising. I’m going to try this tomorrow.

        Have a nice day!

  10. Any tips for getting my remote database table (rdb) to appear in the Data Publisher page? As of right now, it just says โ€œNo Dataโ€. I am the administrator on the wordpress site and have selected the ‘administrator’ role in the Data Publisher Tool Access settings. The table is connected correctly and appears in the Data Explorer.

    Feel free to delete my previous comment, prematurely hit the enter key! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Have you granted access to your remote table? Please follow these steps:
      – Go to Settings menu
      – Submenu WP Data Access
      – Tab Front-End
      – Select your remote database from the list
      – Click on the remote tables to which you want to grant access
      – Save your settings
      Let me know if this solve your problem…

  11. Hi,
    in Data Publisher -> “Table Name”

    How can I use more than one existed “Table” that allowed me to customize the published data columns ?

    if not possible ..

    Can I design my own table columns that imported from other tables already existed?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Sultan,

      Looks like you want to join tables? You can create a view and use your view instead of a table. This works in the Data Publisher as well as Data Projects (in Data Projects you cannot make the view updatable).

      Let me know if I misunderstood your question,

  12. Hi Peter –
    I am looking for a solution for my backend SQL database that allows for an expanded search feature eg name, surname, start_date, end_date. Based on the search criteria that the user enters, the results from the SQL database are then returned.
    Does your excellent WP Data Access plugin allow for changing the search feature? I can see on your videos there is only ever one search field.
    Many thanks in advance

    1. Welcome TMS! ๐Ÿ™‚

      The plugin supports only one search column and standard searching. An alternative search extension is written by Charles Godwin. You can download it from here:

      Alternatively, you can buy the full text search pro extension which supports full text search for InnoDB and MyISAM tables, and searching specific columns. The extension can also generate listboxes for specific columns containing available column values only. The extension will be available in June 2020.

      Best regards,

      1. Hi Peter –
        Thank you very much for taking the time to reply to my question.
        It is much appreciated.

  13. Hi,
    How to make the table mobile responsive?
    I created the table using WP Data Access Plugin but my table not looking good over mobile devices.
    can you please help me in that?

    1. Hi Pooja,

      Please set output to responsive and number of columns to 0. This will make your table response.

      Hope this helps,

        1. If your publication fits on a page, you will see no icons. Icons only appear if not all columns can be shown.

          Good luck,

  14. Hi Peter,
    Excellent plugin and great documentation.
    I need the plugin to allow visitors to search for a Cargo Control # and if the # is on our remote database should display the relevant table.
    So far it does work in my admin backend data Publisher, I created the publication and tested, straight out of the box it does show me all the records in the specific table, I added a WHERE clause (Where ccn like ‘1234567890123’ and when teste it does display the correct table row.
    I have a problem displaying it on the web page, copied the shortcode in the page (in a text box), made sure the plugin Front-end Table access is granted, but when test the web page I can see the shortcode, not the result.
    I tried without the Where clause same result.
    Is there anything else I need to check?

  15. Hi Peter,
    Posted here a question, but I don’t see it anymore, hope you can still help me: data publisher table works in test mode, not showing on front-end shortcode, table access is granted and shortcode [wpdataaccess] is allowed in pages and posts. I want to be able to allow a visitor to search for CCN# in one page and display the table search results on another page, but can’t see my Data Publisher table on web page even without a search

  16. Hi Joseph,

    Sorry for the delay! There is a lot of spam, so I’m reviewing all comments before accepting them.

    I think your problem is the result of a bug in version 4.0.0. Should be solved when you update to version 4.0.1.

    Hope this helps!

    Best regards,

  17. Hi Peter,
    Trying to get to grips with your plugin at the mo. Loving it!
    Following your youtube guides and hit a stumble.
    The video ‘Add WordPress media library screen to database columns’ references tools in the tab ‘Manage Media’ in Settings.
    This tab is missing for me. Is it removed, moved or part of the Upgrade Package?

  18. Hello Peter,

    An amazing achievement to add such ability to WordPress websites. It has taken a while to get my head around it though! It is not entirely clear that Queries in Query builder cannot, it seems, be used directly in Publisher. Is this correct? It would make a big difference it they could!

    My requirement is to have some single numbers, such as number of records in a table or sum of a numeric field, on a dashboard.
    SELECT sum(subs_paid)
    FROM database_subspaid
    WHERE subspaid_curr_yr_flag=1

    I think I need to ‘publish’ the 4 columns I need and use the
    wpdataaccess short code to filter (instead of WHERE) but how do I include the sum() or count()?

    Or do I need to create a view containing all the totals and then use the shortcode to display them? (Presumably I could use Query Builder to do this?)

    Many thanks

  19. Thank you Andrew! You kind words mean a lot.

    Sorry for my late reply. I was on holiday.

    Queries saved in the Query Builder cannot be used elsewhere with the current release. A premium feature is planned to allow plugin users to use the Query Builder for publications, unattended batches and something completely new… ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope to start working on this new feature after the summer.

    Using a view in your publication is a good suggestion for free and premium users to use SQL functions in your select statements. That will work.

    Hope this helps,

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