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I am trying to update the Manager and Profile Picture properties for the UPS from SQL. The problem is that these two fields are stored as text in SQL but SharePoint expects a Person field and URL respectively. Has anyone been able to find a workaround to this?

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How are you trying to update profile data? Via the object model or via the BCS? – Thomas Vochten Jan 17 '13 at 14:56
Sorry for the late response. I am trying to do it via BCS. I have created and External Content Type that is pulls the data from SQL and added to my synchronisation connections. I can map fields like First Name, Last Name, Email Address etc without a problem but having a problem with the Manager and Picture fields. It appeats you cannot map text fields to these two? – threela Jan 23 '13 at 7:55

As Thomas indicates this is commonly done either by Creating a connection that imports the data from a BCS connection tied to a foriegn key like email address or account name. If coding is you thing you can use the SharePoint Object model to update the User Profile Properties my instantiating a UserProfileManager and then setting the properties. Either way you should never (ever) go directly to the SQL database.

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Sorry, I did not explain myself well. I am not doing it directly from SQL. I am using BCS. The problem comes when I try to map my Manager field (which is a text field in the External Content Type) to the Manager Property in UPS. – threela Jan 23 '13 at 7:58

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