Cross domain access

WebPivotTable is a pure javascript front end component, we will always facing Same-origin Policy issue when we want to load some data files from other domains or connect to an OLAP server which served at different domain as well. To solve this Same-origin Policy issue, we need have a Cross domain access solution.

Same-origin Policy

Let us talk about what's Same-origin Policy first.

In computing, the **Same-origin Policy** is an important concept in the web application security model. Under the policy, a web browser permits scripts contained in a first web page to access data in a second web page, but only if both web pages have the same origin.

This same origin is very strict as it is the triple {protocol, host, port} for absolute URIs. Two URIs are considered as same origin only when they have same protocol, same host and same port. For example, if we want to checks against the URL , the outcome will be:

Compared URLOutcomeReason protocol, host and port protocol, host and port protocol, host and port port protocol host host (exact match required) host (exact match required)
After we integrate WebPivotTable into web page or web application, it will have a fixed domain. When we try to load some data files which sit on another domain as source data into WebPivotTable or when we try to connect to an OLAP server which site on another domain, we will face this Same-origin Policy issue and failed.

Cross-Origin Resource Sharing

Cross-Origin Resource Sharing(CORS) is a technique for relaxing the same-origin policy in order to solve Same-origin policy issue.

CORS is good but to be able use CORS, we need enable CORS on web server which provide resources first. For example, we need enable CORS on those web servers which have data files we want to load or enable CORS on OLAP server we want to connect to.
This usually is out of our control or can't be changed in reality.

Proxy Server

Proxy Server come to the rescue.

Same-origin Policy is a secure model only apply to Browsers, not apply to Server. At server side, we can request any resources on any other domains without worry about Same-origin policy. So if we can have a server as a proxy, this server will accept all requests from browser, then it proxy all these requests to real resources domain and proxy back all responses from real resources to browsers, issue solved.

This is exactly Proxy Server does. We packaged a server directory inside WebPivotTable download package. You can run a proxy server by following instruction in to set it up.

After proxy server running, we can use this server as our fileProxy and xmlaProxy in Server Options

Default Proxy Server

WebPivotTable default to use a public proxy server provided at so that you don't need to run your own server even if you have cross domian access requirement.

Cross domain access to OLAP server

For security reason, there is a Same Origin Policy in browsers. It means, web page of the application in web server (for example, web page which integrated WebPivotTable) can’t access other web server (for example, OLAP server) directly if there are not at the same domain. (Pay attention that same domain means the same ip address and same port.)

One of cross domain access solutions is using proxy. Proxy is a web service at web server which forwards the request from WebPivotTable to OLAP server, then forward response from OLAP server back to WePivotTable.

In our nodeJs web server, we provide a proxy service at http://web_URL/wpt/xmlaProxy , and the source code of this service is quite simple, you can see it at wpt.js file in root directory.