Every year my Easter involves a major sailing competition. This year we are at the Olympic venue of Weymouth, and we are staying in one of the Olympic village houses, which are vry nice and up for sale Should I get one? Keep up with the action here.
You heard it here first. The next Americas Cup will be in AC45′s. Cool.
Mind you not cool if they do go ahead with the Honalulu Plan, but San Diego would be nice.
Daan Bakboord blogs (with the help of guest authors Menno Harzing and Rob Chou) about being confronted with the fact that in a new environment, Oracle eBS runs on https while the Oracle BI environment was still http. The steps in this blogs are followed to protect data-transport from/to OBIEE via the internet.
There are two parts described in the blog to accomplish this:
Part One – Configuration under Weblogic Console
Part Two – Configuration under OFMW Enterprise Manager
Kevin McGinley says, “In Part 1 of this post, I wrote about why you might want to add third-party visualization capabilities for OBIEE and gave a brief explanation how to setup one approach: calling java visualization engines. In this post, I’ll give a simple and a more advanced example of how to do this specifically in one of the engines: Flot. In Part 3, I’ll do the same for D3″
Cameron Lackpour warns, “Don’t take infrastructure advice from me. Ever. That begs the question, “Why are you reading a blog post on infrastructure by yr. obdnt. srvnt.”? Simply because tales of suffering, woe, and misadventure are always instructive and sometimes entertaining. Read below to know that when I write this I state the truth.”
This post (done on obiee 22.214.171.124.140114) describes how to change the the search default from “Starts” to “Contains” and un-check the Match Case mark (as default).This week 2 different customers requested the same: changing the search default to “Contains” with Match Case not marked.”
Brendan Tierney begins by saying, “This blog post is a follow up to comment on a previous blog post and to some emails. Basically the people are asking about some messages they get when they open the Oracle Data Miner tool, that is part of SQL Developer. If you are just using the SQL and PL/SQL functions in the database then you do not have to worried about Oracle Text. You will receive no warning message. But if you use the Oracle Data Miner tool you will get a warning message.” Read on for further details.
In the second part of the series, Andrew Fagence explains how to develop and deploy a custom style and message. He says, “There are many more combinations to try in terms of colours, fonts, other logo’s… The possibilities of customising OBIEE 11g to your companies needs are endless!”
Kent Graziano says, “This question came up at the recent World Wide Data Vault Consortium. Seems there are still many folks who build a data warehouse (or data mart) that do not include FKs in the database.”
He gives his main three reasons why you should include FK constraints in your Oracle data warehouse database as:
The Oracle optimizer uses the constraints to make better decisions on join paths.
Your Data Modeling and BI tools can read the FKs from the data dictionary to create correct joins in the meta data of the tool (SDDM, Erwin, OBIEE, Cognos, Bus Objects can all do this).
It is a good QA check on your ETL. (Yeah, I know… the ETL code is perfect and checks all that stuff, bla, bla, bla)
“March 2014 turned out to be a banner month for the team working on Oracle R Enterprise, Oracle R Distribution, and Oracle R Advanced Analytics for Hadoop.” See the Oracle R Technologies page here and watch “StubHub Creates a Safe Marketplace with Oracle Advanced Analytics”
StubHub uses Oracle Advanced Analytics to understand its customers in its online marketplace. Analysis times are much shorter, setup was fast and easy, and data scientists like the integration of R with the data warehouse.
Arun Kumar writes, “When creating a BI Publisher report from a BIP data model, we can add prompts on the report directly to have interactivity on the report. This is specifically useful if you end up creating a BIP report when all required field are not available in the Subject Area, and the report is more like a one-of report (not requiring any further Ad-Hoc analysis). The report and prompts work well when accessed from a catalog directly. But when you try to add the same BIP report to a dashboard page, it does not show the prompts for some reason.”
He then explores in his post, two workarounds for this problem.
Pravin Khadakkar states, “The standard installation of OBIEE 11g would configure software components to default ports. These ports may be different if it is chosen manually during installation process. The problem arises when company plans to install multiple instances of Oracle Business Intelligence on a single computer; there is a need to decide on a port management strategy. There are two options; the first option is to allow Oracle Business Intelligence 11g Installer to assign the ports for each instance automatically while other option is to assign ports through a custom port configuration file (.ini).”
Keith Laker provides us with his top 10 list of guidelines for submitting proposals including:
* Make the title and abstract interesting – Your title and abstract must be easy to read and make sure you introduce your main idea as early as possible. Review the titles and abstracts from previous conferences as a guide. Ideally make the issue relevant to the delegates attending OWW, get to the point, and make sure it is easy to read.
Steve Yeung explores SmartLists in this blog. He concludes with, “The interesting part is that OBIEE doesn’t seem to support SmartList for some reason. Let me see what I can do to retrieve this list later on next week.”
This blog by Christian Berg says, “Sometimes it can happen that user profiles within a web catalog become corrupted for any number of reasons. In order for these user profiles to be correctly re-initialized, there’s more to be done than just drop /users/JohnDoe from the web catalog.
All in all there are three distinct places which need to be cleaned:
He then goes on to explain how to do this.
He asks us to note that this is a quick & dirty solution and he hasn’t fool-proofed it with any check like “does the folder exist” etc. so use it cautiously and at your own risk!!
Daan Bakboord writes, “If you read the Oracle Documentation for Oracle BIA (126.96.36.199), you could find the following; “Currency conversions are required because your business might have transactions involving multiple currencies. To create a meaningful report, you have to use a common currency.”
Oracle BIA stores amounts in the following currencies;
- Document Currency –> Currency of the actual Transaction (Can vary in a multinational organization)
- Local Currency –> Currency defined in the Ledger
- Global Currency –> Defined in the DAC
You can use a Global Currency if you want to report all the different Currencies in one Global Currency (eg. ‘EUR’, or ‘USD’). Oracle BIA for Oracle eBS is able to report in 3 different Global Currencies. If you use Oracle BIA for CRM, you are able to store an additional two Global Currencies. You define the Global Currencies in the DAC.”
Jeff Smith says, “Imagine you have 300 or so views, and within those views, are a bunch of business rules. Like, we’re going to calculate someone’s salary as their salary + their (commission percent * sales). Now imagine your views, and their columns, aren’t documented. They’re not documented in the data model, and they’re not documented via the column comments. Now imagine someone is asking you for a full accounting of these so they CAN be documented.”
Product Management have released the Statement of Direction for Oracle Business Intelligence Discoverer Tools. This document is available to download from My Oracle Support. It contains vital information about:
This blog by Brendan Tierney says, “In Oracle Data Miner you can use the Explore Node to gather an initial set of statistics for your dataset. As part of this you will also get a bar chart that shows the distributions of the values contained within each attribute.”
He says that the default bar chart is a little basic and he then goes through the steps in order to change the bar chart to 3D.
Pravin Khadakkar goes through a scenario where the customer is implementing BI Apps 7964 based on E-Business source system. The source system has been configured for two sets of business lines within a flagship company. One is retail while other one is around oil, which is very valid business scenario in modern businesses. The retail and oil business have different ledgers with different type of calendars.
He says, “this blog is an attempt to showcase the configuration which I have done to achieve multiple calendar implementations within single business analytics warehouse.”
He looks at Calendar Formats, Calendar Categories and Calendar Configuration.
Andrew Fagence says, “Within OBIEE 11g, it is possible to highly customise the appearance and the ‘look and feel’. This is because the UI (User Interface) within OBIEE 11g is compiled and generated from a script which can be edited. There are 3 main components which controls the appearance of the UI which are Styles, Skins and Messages.”
He then explores the difference between the three components. He goes on to explain how to modify and deploy custom skins. In the second part of the article,he says that he will explain how to deploy and configure custom styles and messages.
This blog by SQLdepbeta says, “I spoke with my DBA friend today who runs an Oracle data-warehouse that’s about 2 terabytes big, at an international bank. I asked him: “What are some typical problems that users, data analysts, and DB developers have, that make you want to pull your hair out?”
They say that in his friend’s experience, the vast majority of performance problems fall into the following categories:
1) Don’t call a function or use expressions on an indexed column
2) Analyze the tables you create
3) Break down your work into bite-sized SQL steps
4) Use Distinct only when needed
5) Create indexes
“Database Admins, developers, data analysts, and other users are all part of the same team. As with nearly every other situation in life, patience, communication, and education are often the keys to working together smoothly to achieve common goals.”
After exploring the comparisons, this post concludes by saying, “There is no perfect tool, it’s up to the individuals, from company visionaries to architects, from engineers and project managers to make things work perfectly. But knowing the limitation of each tools, I hope it can drive future improvement of these technologies, but more importantly, help the decision makers to make the right decision from the beginning.”
This week’s blog is dedicated to Jeff McQuigg, Senior Architect at KPI Partners
A little bit about Jeff:
He developed many of Siebel’s early Analytics v7.0 best practices & wrote part of the certification exam.
He has personally been involved with over 35+ OBI projects in every capacity (BI Architect, Data Modeling, RPD Metadata, Business Analyst, Report Developer, ETL Architect/Developer, Project Manager, Pre-Sales).
He is a BI & OBI Thought Leader:
Jeff frequently is an Oracle Open World Speaker.
He has developed OBI Deployment Methodology, deliverable templates and all Training programs with Metricsphere.
This blog from September 2013 states that Dimensional Hierarchies in OBIEE are used for a variety of important features. This post explores the fundamental reason for their existence and some specialized features that require their existence. But mostly he discusses the single most important thing to know about the RPD!
Jeff says in this blog from June that this is a very common RPD modeling question on IT Toolbox. The problem is stated something like this:
“I have 2 fact tables and 3 dimension tables. One of the dimension tables doesn’t work with Fact #2 while the other 2 dimension tables work with both facts. When I make a report with all 3 dimensions and both facts, Fact #2 is incorrect or missing.”
He then restates the problem using ‘good BI language.’ The blog post also features slides from a recent presentation of his.
This blog from October 2013 was featured as one of our ‘Blogs of the Weeks‘. In this blog post, Jeff demonstrates visually how circles can not be compared easily but in a vertical bar, comparison is visually better. He says to keep this in mind when dealing with comparisons using area based visuals.
In this September 2013 blog, Jeff announces that the project he bled and sweated over for nearly a whole year won KPI Partners the coveted Oracle Excellence Award for North American Specialized Partner of the Year in BI & EPM (formerly know as the Titan Award). He has also written a presentation that goes into further detail about the project.
He goes through the following areas of the project:
Technical Solution for making multiple hierarchies end user friendly, all folded in with advanced data security
This blog from December 2012 was another to be referred to in one of our weekly blog posts.
Jeff says, “I’ve been spending a lot of time recently working on performance tuning projects. Sometimes the BI apps are slow, sometimes it’s custom, sometimes it’s a mix. I’ve gotten the chance to see what works in both Oracle and SQL Server. My conclusion about both of these databases is that they are like a cat or dog that gets fooled when you play hide the ball; they aren’t very smart sometimes. The only way you can really truly ensure database engines, even modern advanced ones, do things the right way to is to make it as simple and easy for them to understand as possible.”
“All the best work on your Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition–based system will be wasted if users are frustrated with long response times for dashboards and reports. Learn from an Oracle ACE with more than 10 years of implementation experience what contributes to poor performance and what the best solutions are to improve the end user experience and user adoption. This session discusses the creation of a performance layer to make dashboards and reports run at high speed. Samples scripts and the necessary mapping into the Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition Repository are also reviewed, plus architect and project manager considerations. The context is Oracle Business Intelligence Applications 11g, but the concepts are equally valid for custom-built solutions.”
Download the pdf from the above link.
Webinar: A Mix of Art & Science: How to Achieve High Performance Business Intelligence
Business Intelligence as we know it may be changing, and that very good news, because it means much more work.
Upgrades, installing new tech, new Fusion, New OTBI, new hardware, new ETL, new Bigger Data – All very good news for the eager to learn OBIEE consultant.
Keep Moving. Keep learning. Keep reading these blogs….
This post says, ” Learn how Active Data Guard will make your investment in a standby environment worthwhile via real time queries while applying the archived logs, converting the physical standby database to snapshot standby, and a host of new improvements in infrastructure.”
Arup Nanda says, “In this multipart series, learn how important new features such as Database Replay, Flashback Data Archive, Edition-based Redefinition, and SecureFiles work via simple, actionable how-to’s and sample code.”
Christian Screen explores Collaborative BI, which he defines as ‘the means to communicate persisting knowledge and provide feedback within Business Intelligence systems in order to collectively make better business decisions.’
He apologises for the length of the post, as he didn’t have time to make it shorter! Well worth taking the time to read.
Arun Kumar says. “If you have a field in physical table which is of type DateTime, but you want to display it as only date in the report, then you this can be converted.” He then goes on to explore the two ways of doing this.
The last three years have been hard work. Working on a very challenging project, whilst writing the OBIEE 11g book, kept me busy to say the least.
We recently went live with a huge HR Analytics 11g implementation, which went very well and is actively used by hundreds of users on a daily basis, but it did highlighted the strengths and weaknesses of the 11g version. Oracle support were kept very busy, and the one thing I learnt was to have an active patching strategy. Although ‘patch’ is a loose term when the patch is 3Gb in size.
Anyway, it’s live and so it’s time to find the next project. So, if you have a project that needs a senior OBIEE expert, please get in touch (firstname.lastname@example.org). I have high level security clearance and can travel any distance.
This blog by DataWarehouse Concepts, says that before 11g, there was no option to make an index visible or invisible. We can check on an indexes visibility by checking the visibility column from the data dictionary view DBA_INDEXES.
The blog then tells us both how to create invisible indexes and also discusses why we need Invisible Indexes.
This blog by Gokhan Atil gives us 6 tips on how to do this. Then he talks us through what to do If the configuration step fails. He says that you can find configuration logs in Oracle Inventory installation logs and posted a link to an OTN video.
Paul Cannon posts this 3 Sixty Analytics blog as he has recently been asked how to set the background of a chart in BI Publisher to a gradient colour when using the Word Template builder. This blog goes through the whole process, step by step.
This appliance is for testing and educational purposes only; it is unsupported and not to be used in production. Oracle BigDataLite Virtual Machine provides an integrated environment to help you get started with the Oracle Big Data platform. Download it from here.
In this post, they walk through Alice in Wonderland’s looking glass and do a “Hello World” example for Oracle SQL Connector for HDFS.
This post was to get a toy example working with a single data file. The next post will focus on how to tune OSCH for large data sets living in HDFS and exploit Oracle Parallel query infrastructure for high performance loads. They will also discuss the pros and cons of using OSCH versus OLH.
In the previous post, they discussed a “Hello World” example for OSCH focusing on the mechanics of getting a toy end-to-end example working. In this post, they talk about how to make it work for big data loads. The next lesson will talk about Oracle Data Pump files generated by OLH, and loaded using OSCH. It will also outline the pros and cons of using various load methods. This will be followed up with a final tutorial lesson focusing on how to optimize OLH and OSCH for use on Oracle’s engineered systems: specifically Exadata and the BDA.
Most of these have been related to explaining the basic concepts and along with some specific use cases. In this post, he reviews some of the internal performance tests run during the development of this feature. In part 3 of the series of podcasts, he covered a number of use cases for SQL pattern matching such as: stock market analysis, tracking governance-compliance, call service quality and sessionization.
In part 3, Ajay Sreedharan says, “In my previous post on Geospatial Analytics in OBIEE, I had talked about shapefiles, and how shapefiles could be imported using Map Builder. As mentioned earlier, the shapefiles contain the positional/geographic information. Once we have loaded this geographic information in to the spatial database, we need a map/spatial engine to process this information for use in tools like Oracle BI. This is what Oracle Mapviewer is for.”
In his next blog, he will talk about how we could put to use all these (layers, background maps, etc.) in OBIEE and create map based visualizations.
Kashinathan says, “We can use the log viewer utility nQLogViewer to view the query log. Each entry in the query log is tagged with the user ID, session ID and request ID.The User ID will have the details of the user who issued the query, the session ID will have the details of the session in which the query was initiated, and the request ID will have the individual query.” Read the full blog post for instructions.
Pravin Khadakkar explores the tools to Improve Performance of Hive Queries. He says, “I believe for Hive Queries Exalytics might be a better option.” He shows us the following example from the Oracle published document:
In Part 3 of a series of blog posts, after going through the case study, Bojie He says, “There are two main pieces of the puzzles according to me:
1. Users will probably document their request in the form of spreadsheet and upload it somewhere.
2. Manually creating of all these user_1s in OBIEE will be a nightmare.
Having said all that, I think I have come to as far as I can come with this solution. It’s not a perfect solution, in fact, it may be a terrible solution in someone’s eyes, but it does work to some extent. Maybe Oracle has plans for this type of requirements in their future products.”
Kashinathan discusses how ‘Virtual Column’ is one of the new features introduced in Oracle 11g. He explores two examples of how to create a virtual column in a table. Kashinathan gives us some important Points on Virtual Columns:
All columns in the virtual column, should belong to the same table on which we are creating the virtual column
We cannot do any update or DML’s on Virtual column.
Virtual column expression can’t reference any other virtual column.
Indexes and constraints can be created on virtual columns; also they can be used as partition key
Virtual columns reduce the use of views and derived columns
Christian Berg blogs about How to change a part of the GUI of OBIEE? He says “I’m doing these changes quick and dirty to make them instantly visible. The proper way is to create and deploy your own style + skin package within which you do those changes.”
Benjamin Perez-Goytia says, ” This article presents a modified version of the ODI load knowledge module called LKM Oracle to Oracle (datapump). The ODI load knowledge module (LKM) presented in this article has been enhanced with additional options and steps to take advantage of the best features of Oracle Data Pump and Oracle External Tables. Some of the enhancements include data compression, server to server file transport, threads control, and the use of Oracle Optimizer Hints. This article shows how to configure and use this knowledge module.”
He then goes through:
Using Oracle Data Pump in Oracle Data Integrator (ODI)
Overview: LKM Oracle to Oracle Datapump Plus
Load Knowledge Module (LKM) Options
Configuring your Environment to Work with Oracle Data Pump - There are 3 areas where configuration is required: the source data server, the target data server, and the ODI studio.
Configuring Your Database Link for File-Transfer Operations
How does LKM Oracle to Oracle Datapump Plus work? – There are 5 main steps.
Understanding the Code Generated by the Knowledge Module
Kent Graziano says, “One of the standards I recommend in my book ‘Check List for Doing Data Model Design Reviews’ is to use colour in your diagrams to visually differentiate types of entities or tables. As luck would have it, Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler has a feature that makes this very easy. It is Classification Types.” His bonus tip is: If, like me, you want to be consistent across all your designs with the types and colors, I just figured out I can hack the dl_settings.xml file to copy my classification type customizations from one design to another. Just be sure to exit and then restart SDDM after you update the file for it to take effect.
The Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) 188.8.131.52.140114 is now available to download via My Oracle Support | Patches & Updates. Follow the links for the single bundle patch (Patch 17886497) and the Dynamic Monitoring Service patch (Patch 16569379). Also available – Document entitled “OBIEE 11g 184.108.40.206.140114 Bundle Patch is Available for OBIEE and Exalytics” ([Doc ID 1614076.1])
Using Oracle Business Intelligence Mobile, you can view, analyze and act on all your analyses, dashboards, scorecards, reports, alerts and notifications on the go.
Oracle Business Intelligence Mobile allows you to drill down reports, apply prompts to filter your data, view interactive formats on geo-spatial visualizations, view and interact with Dashboards, KPIs and Scorecards.
You can save your analyses and Dashboards for offline viewing, and refresh them when online again; thus providing always-available access to the data you need.
This app is compatible with Oracle Business Intelligence 11g, version 220.127.116.11.2BP1 and above.
Bryan Pierce of Perceptual Edge writes a piece regarding a graph selected by Bill Gates to be included in a recent edition of Wired Magazine that he guest edited. He explained why he included the graph as follows:”I love this graph because it shows that while the number of people dying from communicable diseases is still far too high, those numbers continue to come down. In fact, fewer kids are dying, more kids are going to school and more diseases are on their way to being eliminated. But there remains much to do to cut down the deaths in that yellow block even more dramatically. We have the solutions. But we need to keep up the support where they’re being deployed, and pressure to get them into places where they’re desperately needed.”
But how well does the graph tell this story? Read this post for his analysis.
Bojie He says, “Recently my team has implemented data level security and object level security in OBIEE 11G for a client who is selling their data to external customers. The requirement is very quintessential of any BI Project and the implementation process is trivial. Therefore, I have decided to detail the process, which I think can be very beneficial to any future security implementation.”
This post by Pravin Khadakkar answers the Customer Question “The customer would like to make drop down list box default to latest data value available in the list. There is a hidden request which points towards the transactional data availability rather than dimensional values. For e.g. there is a global filter list box defined on Date column, by default the list should shown all date values available irrespective of transactional data is available or not. So there are two different requests we are talking here, the first one to restrict list of dimensional attribute based on transactional data available and then take the latest at default.”
This blog is an attempt to show how this customer request can be fulfilled by using SQL’s within global filter definition. It is made more interesting when subject area has more than one logical fact.
Ajay Sreedharan firstly goes through the 8 steps in the shapefile import process. Then we can go to the database and query the spatial table. In his next post, he will be discussing Oracle Map Viewer and how Oracle BI is finally plugged in to the equation.
Arun Kumar lists the top OBIEE upgrade strategies and consideration, not necessarily in any specific order, as the order of significance would depend upon individual implementation scenarios. He then goes on to say, “In addition to the above considerations, while upgrading, you might want to take advantage of new features of the target version, for example mobile platform support in 11g, like iPads i.e. iOS mobile devices. Android fans no need to be broken hearted yet, as OBIEE has plans for android support in its pipeline.”
This week on LinkedIn
Ujjal Das shared a link to a free magazine. Subscribe for free by following the instructions on the link.
Whilst Addidici are not allowed to talk about their current (Military) installation activity, I do like to share what I have been reading each week.
A few years back I installed 10 OBIEE 10g environments on a box (10 env on 8 boxes actually), which was very simple to do. With 11g the challenge was greater, but it still can be done. No need for multiple VM’s. OBIEE News is out!
In Vishal’s blog, he defines a ReForm as “an amalgum of Reports and Forms that has the DNA of both.” The discussion in this blog not only presents a ReForm but also demonstrates the enormous benefits of using JQuery in APEX report development. In this post, he discusses the process needed to create a ReForm (Report cum Tabular Form) and also see the process of controlling the data cells for superior reporting.
Pravin says in this blog post: “OBIEE 11g offers number options on the way that right-click interactions are handled in views. To configure various options that change the way that right-click interactions are handled in views for an analysis at runtime. The elements in the instanceconfig.xml file specify the default settings for a new or upgraded analysis. One can edit the properties of an analysis in Presentation Services to modify how the analysis handles right-click interactions in views.” Read the whole blog for more details.
Here, M & S Consulting talk us through the steps to create a run button on the dashboard. In the first part of the exercise, they talk about setting up the analysis and in the second part, set up the prompt for it.
In this post, Mark Rittman writes about: “Creating an Initial Business Intelligence Mobile App” and “Publishing Your App to the Mobile App Store.” He also links to useful documentation including User’s Guide for Oracle Business Intelligence Mobile App Designer 11g Release 1 (11.1.1), also watch videos on how to create a mobile BI app and use key designer features, explore tutorials, review collateral, and interact with social media.
Here Sunil says: “Recently came across a situation in which someone, due to some security issue, wanted to bypass OBIEE’s default ports. After looking at multiple places, I could put all information together. I thought it would be a great share.” View the post here.
This post is an extension of M and S Consulting’s last blog post about filters and selection steps. In this one, they focus their attention on writing logical SQL statements to help write more flexible ways to limit data writing case statements.
“With the political problems hovering around the launch of The Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) now seemingly left behind, the biggest threat to the Affordable Care Act is now a technical one.” This post by KPI Partners explores this in more detail.
Another post by KPI Partners where Jeremiah Johnson says “Business intelligence (BI) provides great insight into how a business is being run, as well as which aspects of the business are succeeding and which are failing. A properly implemented BI system can provide a comprehensive breakdown of sales, and allows managers to react to an ever-shifting market. However, smaller and mid-sized businesses tend to get the short end of the stick when it comes to business intelligence, as most of the hardware and software for effective business intelligence was too expensive for smaller organizations.”
“By adding comments in OBIEE users are able to provide their feedback on the decision making system of the enterprise. Commenting on a dashboard or annotating a cell with feedback or other descriptive details can provide a great way to corroborate information or provide persisting perspectives. This commentary can then be viewed by other users who have access to the BI system. Ultimately the goal of adding commentary in OBIEE is to have a system for persisting feedback, creating a call to action, and recognizing the BI System’s most prolific users. This is the basic concept of collective intelligence in Business Intelligence referred to as Collaborative BI.”
This post comprises of:
- Custom Build a Solution for Adding Comments in OBIEE
- What to know and What to ask for in a custom commenting solution
- Oracle APEX as a Solution for Adding Comments in OBIEE
- OBIEE Action Framework as a Solution for Adding Comments in OBIEE
- OBIEE BITeamwork Collaborative BI Solution for Adding Comments in OBIEE
Champagne spray and hugs all around as ORACLE TEAM USA celebrated victory in the 34th America’s Cup.
This week on LinkedIn
We run a group on LinkedIn for Oracle Business Intelligence consultants, from large consultancies to independents. It is aimed at users and developers of OBI, including Siebel Analytics. Over 7,000 members so far (and growing!), each one vetted to ensure they have a genuine interest in OBI. Sorry no agencies and no general networkers.
The group is used for sharing information on Oracle BI, including events, news and social gatherings.
In Ben Mackin’s blog, ‘Adventures in OBIEE’, it states that “with OBIEE 11g, RPD deployments are now handled through Weblogic, so we need to take some additional steps. Luckily these can be easily scripted thanks to WLST.”
He then goes through the steps. Read the whole blog for more details.
In this post by Shwetank Sheel, he says “I recently got a request from a colleague to help them with scheduling some reports for delivery, with the destination being a unix machine folder. I am aware that iBots can call a Java Program to write to a disk, and that BI Publisher’s scheduling engine can directly write to the disk, but I did not want to delve into any large lines of code nor even use the OBIEE scheduling. I wanted to see how I can make it a purely pull job from the unix machine side. To this end, I wrote a shell script to accomplish this.”
In this blog, Bojie says that BI Publisher was originally a different application, which is now part of OBIEE. The best way to put it is, BI Publisher is another technology that has been integrated with OBIEE, so now the two are both parts of Oracle Business Intelligence. He then goes on to explain the difference between the two of them.
At Oracle OpenWorld 2013, a host of customers went on camera to discuss Oracle Business Analytics solutions and how they are using them to strategize and plan, optimize business operations, and capture new market opportunities. This page summarises five of the best and links to the YouTube channel which lists the rest.
In November 2013, Oracle launched Oracle Big Data Appliance X4-2, which delivers the entire Cloudera Enterprise technology stack and 33 percent more storage capacity for a total of 864 terabytes per rack—plus comprehensive security capabilities including authentication, authorization, and auditing.
Oracle Big Data Appliance X4-2 is a comprehensive and secure engineered system optimized to run Cloudera’s entire platform for big data, Cloudera Enterprise, at a low overall total cost of ownership. To meet diverse computing requirements, it includes:
Now that many organisations are moving to the BYOD philosophy (bring your own devices), security for phones and tablets accessing company sensitive information is of paramount importance. In this article, he interviews Brian MacDonald, Principal Product Manager for Oracle Business Intelligence (BI) Mobile Products, about this subject, and he shares some wonderful insights about how the Oracle Mobile Security Tool Kit is addressing mobile security.
This post by Praveen Reddy lists some direct links to various OBIEE User and Administration functions. These can be useful to know for efficiency and at times can also be useful for debugging security.
This post by Jean-Pierre Dijcks covers Software Focus, Hardware Update and Software Details about the 3rd generation Big Data Appliance.
The focus for this release is:
Comprehensive and Open – Big Data Appliance now includes all Cloudera Software, including Back-up and Disaster Recovery (BDR), Search, Impala, Navigator as well as the previously included components (like CDH, HBase and Cloudera Manager) and Oracle NoSQL Database (CE or EE).
Lower TCO then DIY Hadoop Systems
Simplified Operations while providing an open platform for the organization
Comprehensive security including the new Audit Vault and Database Firewall software, Apache Sentry and Kerberos configured out-of-the-box
This post says “If you are running Oracle BI on an Exalytics machine, you can use Summary Advisor to identify the aggregates that will increase query performance.” The post links to the Oracle Learning Library where a tutorial will explain further.
In this post, Paul McGarrick shares some of the interesting reads he has come across. This includes a post from Jeff McQuigg, a presentation from Peak Indicators and an Oracle White Paper.on My Oracle Support
In this blog post by Mark Rittman, he states to set up our own Hadoop cluster, there are a few options:
1. Get hold of a bunch of physical servers (maybe, old PCs or blade servers), install Linux and Hadoop on them, and then do the configuration and setup manually.
2. Buy a preconfigured solution – Oracle’s Big Data Appliance, for example, which has all the software pre-installed along with connectivity to ODI, Oracle Database etc
3. Spin-up a bunch of servers in the Cloud, or
4. Spin-up a bunch of Linux VMs, for example using VirtualBox or VMWare Fusion/Workstation
He explores this further in the post which can be read here.
In another post by Mark Rittman, he claims the reason we should be interested in Hadoop is because “Hadoop is the classic disruptive technology – cheap, and starting-off with far less functionality than regular, relational databases – but it’s improving fast, and as BI&DW developers it offers the potential of both massive benefits – significantly lower TCO for basic DW work, and support for lots of modern, internet-scale use-cases – and threats – in that if we don’t understand it and see how it can benefit our customers and end-users, we risk being left-behind as technology moves on.”
In this blog, Tarik Bouaziz discusses circumstances that require installing OHS with OBIEE such as:
1- OBIEE Performance Tuning
2- When deploying OBIEE 11g content outside an organization (firewall): this requires placing Oracle HTTP Server (OHS) into the DMZ side firewall (opening port 7777 for non SSL, port 4443 for SSL) and then redirecting calls to OBIEE installed inside the firewall/LAN using a secured port such as 9704
3- OBIEE URL Rewriting (configuring OBIEE 11g to use port 80): A detailed document will be posted in the near future on this topic.
This blog highlights the steps to install and configure OHS with OBIEE11g.
This blog post discusses security issues surrounding the new player – Mobile BI – and how to address this, the conclusion being, “Mobile BI will significantly expand the population of BI users and the decision makers from your company will want to use mobile devices to access corporate BI data from any place. Now you need to ensure that the current BI environment supports these demands without forgetting terms such as performance and security, an Oracle HTTP Server Web Tier installed within the DMZ firewall will help you to achieve the best results.”
Sunil S Ranka says, “Recently while upgrading the Exalytics box from PS1 to PS3 for OBIEE 18.104.22.168 patch-set, one of the requirements was to upgrade firmware and to complete the firmware we needed ILOM address. During the upgrade, the team found out the default ILOM IP was not working and there was a change in the ILOM ip address. To confirm the ip address, we used below command, thanks to Oracle Support to prompt reply . Thought would be a good piece of information as most of the existing Exalytics customers are going through the upgrade.”
Aravind Sai Ram posted, “Hello Friends, I am looking for a solution to perform Load Test on OBIEE Dashboards / Reports (Version 10) using any script or free load test tools / applications .
Scenario is :
> Login to OBIEE
> Apply load by ramping up the users on a specific dashboard / report
> Record the performance counters such as ‘Time taken for a report to retrieve the results’
and counters like Memory utilization, Load capability of BI Server
Can someone please help me in achieving this ?
In this blog post by M & S Consulting, there are detailed instructions and screenshots of how to format a field globally in 11g. They say, “Having to format the field each time that a user wants to use it becomes quite burdensome and gives a developer more room for error if they are formatting the field each time it is used. The saying “work smarter, not harder” comes to mind with this solution.”
Robin Moffat in his third article in his two-article set of posts on extending the monitoring of OBIEE within EM12c. It comes after a brief interlude discussing Metric Extensions as an alternative using Service Tests to look at Usage Tracking data.
He talks us through
The JMeter test script
Running JMeter from the command line
Making the script available to run on EM12c server
Building the JMeter EM12c Service Test
Measuring response times from additional locations
This blog displays a vacancy for a qualified OBIEE Architect / Developer. In this role you will be responsible for building out the OBIEE infrastructure. You will be required to design and implement new reporting meta data repositories and will also be instrumental in developing reports against those meta data repositories. See the blog post for full details.
In this blog by Srinivasan Software Solutions Pvt Ltd, SAML is described as a way of conveying identity information across systems. The writer describes a scenario where a situation required OBIEE 11g integration into SAML 2.0 SSO.
The post examines what can be done (and how) if this occurs.
This blog advises that when upgrading existing customized installations of OBIEE to 22.214.171.124, one thing that you may run into is a subtle change in the usage of the vanilla style and skin of the application.
Dr OBI says, “For the manager, it’s important to understand the RELATIVE impact of software development challenges, when you’re delivering solutions driven by software. Why the problem is easy or why it is hard, has a profound impact on programme planning and budgets. This can greatly increase cost for enterprise programmes, increasing the cash burn rate…”
Paul McGarrick states “When using Oracle BI Applications there is often the need to invalidate OBIEE’s query cache once new data has been loaded into the Data Warehouse to prevent users from seeing stale data in the reports. Perhaps the simplest and most elegant method to do this is to make use of the standard Event Polling Table mechanism.”
He then goes on to say there are three ways to do this:
1. Editing each Informatica Workflow to include post-ETL SQL insert statements
2. Configuration of new tasks within the DAC to handle inserts
3. Triggers in the database (Oracle only) to automate the inserts
He focuses on Method 3 in this blog. Read the blog here.
In this OBIEE Developer Blog, The question “Is there a way to display a list of dashboards based on permissions?” is answered. The writer gives credit to MTache who posted the Java Script on the OTN Forums.
Matt Bradley discusses different deployment options for Oracle EPM. Cloud services (SaaS), managed services, on-premise, off-premise all have their merits, and organizations need flexibility to easily move between them as their companies evolve.
In David Peake’s blog, he asks “What are the Long-term prospects for Oracle Application Express?”
He says that the simple answer is that Oracle is committed to the ongoing development and support of Application Express. Oracle itself utilizes Application Express extensively to meet business requirements and improve business processes.
In his conclusion, he says “I can’t guarantee that Oracle Application Express will always continue to have the incredible popularity, inside and outside Oracle, which it enjoys today. However, the above should give you confidence that Application Express has a very solid and promising future, and that Oracle will continue to invest in the tool’s ongoing development.”
In this blog post, Jeff McQuigg demonstrates visually how circles can not be compared easily but in a vertical bar, comparison is visually better. He says to keep this in mind when dealing with comparisons using area based visuals.
Here, Matthias Kietze discusses how to create application roles automatically. He states, “Sometimes it is necessary to create application roles in Enterprise Manager via script. This is not very difficult.” Then he talks us through how to do this.
In this article, ClearPeaks look at how to set up the command line access to the DAC server and how to use the commands available. Finally, they explore how to create a script that automatically restarts an ETL execution if it has failed.
The Sample Application (SampleApp) for Oracle Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition is a comprehensive collection of examples designed to demonstrate Oracle BI capabilities and design best practices.
Also, includes a link to YouTube BI Tech Demos and a video to show how to download all image files at once.
In Kevin McGinley’s blog, he investigates comparing performance using a union query. He states that this is not really new functionality, but a technique he used many years ago. A recent conversation prompted him to post it. Hopefully, it will come in useful!
The latest new version “SampleApp” V309R2 BI and EPM VM is now available for download by partners from OTN here. This includes a wealth of examples and how-to demonstrations, as well as examples for the new BI Mobile Application Designer, 19 “Apps” and more local data-models.
Also, watch the video – How to download all virtual appliance files at once
In this post, Christian Screen explains how this tutorial was developed so that anyone with a basic understanding of the Oracle Business Intelligence (OBI) development lifecycle can learn how to configure the Oracle Business Intelligence 11g (126.96.36.199) metadata repository for development using the new MDS XML source control management functionality. Read the full tutorial here.
Arun Kumar discusses the Top 10 Costly Mistakes for Business Intelligence / OBIEE Implementation Projects of which two are ‘Not setting the expectations right with users and senior management’ and ‘Going for BI Apps and assuming all out of the box reports will be ready and used by business’. Read all ten mistakes in the post.
Here, Peter Lorenzen talks about what APEX is, discusses application development, reports, charts, MS Excel Integration, User Interface and so on. Well worth a read – to both those new to APEX and those more familiar.
Victor Fagundo, in ORACLENERD, discussed the problem of while calculated items in OBIEE are easy and flexible, they do have one important drawback: they take on the data and display formatting of the fact column they are calculated against.
He discussed 3 possible and common solutions:
Use HTML formatting tricks to “hide” trigger text in the results, then conditionally format off those triggers.
Convert the pivot table to a regular table with some complex column formulas.
Convert the calculated result to text and manually add your formatting characters.
He then explained another solution – read the blog here.
In his blog of September 10th, Jeff McQuigg states the Single Most Important Thing to Know About the OBI RPD is Dimensional Hierarchies. He advises to follow three simple rules a) get into the habit of doing it correctly from the beginning, b) make sure that the stuff you build works, c) be prepared for when your RPD grows much larger – pay a dollar now or 10 later.
Have you ever sailed faster than the wind?
Challenge yourself and your friends by helming Oracle Team USA 17, the defender of the 34th America’s Cup! Download the Oracle Team USA game for Android or iOS now!
The 34th America’s Cup officially opened on the 4th of July – Independence Day. Crowds filled the new AC Park on a warm, sunny day in San Francisco as ORACLE TEAM USA was introduced during the Opening Ceremony. The celebration also included cultural performances from all four competing nations – the U.S. was represented by the Recycled Percussion troupe. Watch a fantastic YouTube video and read an article here.
Oracle BI Technology tweeted: “A new version of the BI Mobile HD app is available on the App Store. iPhone & iPad, iOS 6 & above. OBIEE 188.8.131.52.2BP1 and above.”
This week on LinkedIn
Ian Bristow posted “Upgrade SmartView if You have Applied the OBIEE 184.108.40.206.1 Patch Set – If you have applied the OBIEE 220.127.116.11.1 patch set, it is incompatible with the versions of SmartView provided with OBIEE 18.104.22.168.0. You need to download and install SmartView 22.214.171.124, which is available on OTN” Get the downloads here.
Last Sunday (30th June), saw the opening of the new series of Top Gear with Jeremy Clarkson racing the fastest car in the world (a hire car!) against James May who was onboard with Sir Ben Ainslie on an Oracle Racing AC72. Read more about it here and watch it on the iplayer.
Few components of the AC72 class are getting as much attention as rudder wings, the large lifting foils attached to the bottom of the catamaran’s steering rudders. Tom Slingsby walks through the basics, and explains a bit about how ORACLE TEAM USA has been using them in their continued development leading up to the America’s Cup defense in September. Watch the youtube video here.
Sanjeev Y asked “Need help : client needs to post message online, so that obiee users in advance can see the message on obiee dashboard..message e.g : “obiee server will get down in one hour “ Click here to help him!
ORACLE TEAM USA AC72 Boat 2 – All Signals Go – view the Youtube video here.
On the final day of racing at the America’s Cup World Series in Naples, Italy, ORACLE TEAM USA won the match race championship. Skipper Tom Slingsby and crew also finished second in the fleet racing, giving ORACLE TEAM USA a second consecutive ACWS second championship. Watch it here.
We are encountering a problem because of discrepancies between the OWB metadata and OBIU DB tables created during installation. This manifests when deploying base objects, such as CF_FO, from OWB, version 10g, to OBIU, version 2.3.2, the error we get is DIMENSION KEY invalid identifier.
Finally, the BI Teamwork Collaborative BI Tool has arrived! Watch a video demo!
This tool allows users to:
add dashboard comments
create pivotal table cell annotations
manage functionality by setting privileges and constraints
The community version can be downloaded for free here. Installation takes under five minutes.
BI Teamwork is a seamless extension of the Oracle BI framework and is the first plug-in for Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition. It adds accountability, collective means for decision making and alerting and maintenance features. The current release (BITeamwork 1.8) supports several language, including German and French.
Fun on Foils – Hear from the ORACLE TEAM USA crew what it’s like to fly their AC72 “17″ on foils, sometimes at speeds of over 40 knots, and experience the sensational acceleration from onboard. Watch the Youtube video here.
Happy birthday to sailor Darren Bundock – the best present ever – helming a AC72!
‘Error failed to find div obj by name (invisible layer-1)’
“I tried to develop some dashboards in OBIEE 10G.
Upon selecting any text or link option, am being thrown this error.
I couldn’t click either OK or cancel, since both these throw the above said error.
can someone help me in this regard?” Richard Rankin replied “Can you provide more information? Is this the complete error verbatim? Are you using any tools? If so which ones and their versions? Are you using HTML5 or Flash?”
The LinkedIn group is continuing to grow both in number and activity and valuable content is being shared amongst its members. I thought it would be helpful to begin to share some of the week’s activities from both Twitter and the LinkedIn Oracle Business Intelligence group here.
The next Oracle BIWA Summit, organized by the leading Oracle Special Interest Group (SIG) for Business Intelligence, Data Warehousing and Analytics professionals, will be held on Jan 9,10 2013, at The Oracle HQ Sofitel Hotel, in Redwood City, California, USA.
The Oracle BIWA Summit brings together Oracle ACE experts, customers who are currently using or planning to use Oracle BI, Warehousing and Analytics products and technologies, partners and Oracle Product Managers, Support Personnel and Development Managers.
Everything and everyone that you will need to be successful in your Oracle “BIWA” implementations will be at the Oracle BIWA Summit, Jan 9-10, 2013.
Having had a great trip last month I am not sure I can afford to fly over again to “San Fran”, but then again, can I afford not to go!
On a British Airways flight today, to Italy as it happens, I noted in the Financial Times that Sony is scaling back its television production and focusing on other consumer areas such as touch screen production and games. Also in the news this week was the sacking by UBS of 10,000 staff and its withdrawal from Investment Banking.
Another article on page 16 of the Financial Times talked of falling profits at Marks and Spencer and strategic questions about super-market Sainsburys.
What these companies have in common is this; their approach to quality and to price. My British Airways flight is more expensive than Easyjet, my Sony TV was 100 quid more than the average and the food at M&S is way more expensive than the competition. Sainsburys have historically tried to position itself at the higher cost end but struggles with itself in that strategy. My FT paper was £3.00 but the Daily Mail was only £1.00.
The big questions for us as consumers is can we afford to pay more? And if so, is it worth paying more? On my flight, is my seat better than Easyjet?, is the free food worth having, is check in and boarding better? Can I afford the M&S sandwich for lunch? Is it better than Tesco?
These same questions need to be asked by companies buying Oracle Business Intelligence consulting services. You could buy your OBIEE implementation from a low cost provider, one that charges a lower daily rate, or you could buy a premium service from a specialist consultancy.
The choices in the UK are between a consulting firm or use of independent consultants (contractors we call them).
A cheap contractor will start around 300 per day rising to 1000 for the very best. A cheap outsource consultancy will start around 500 per day rising to 2000 for the most expensive.
So, does more expensive mean better quality? Generally I will say yes, but be very careful. Some consultancies ( I won’t name them but you will know who they are) charge higher rates because of their reputation and their successful sales force. However, the person that arrives is not necessarily a premium OBIEE consultant. I know of many instances where a consultant was being charged to the client at 1,500 per day but they had NEVER implemented OBIEE or OBIA before. Three consultants at a recent engagement could not even install OBIEE 10g, and yet were getting charged in at over 800 per day each!
The problem I have with inexperienced consultants is that they implement the system in a bad way, often leaving the customer disappointed. This has two obvious effects and one not so obvious:
If the client notices the poor implementation, either the client hates OBIEE/OBIA because it doesn’t do what they were promised, and funding is cut, or someone is brought in to rescue the project costing the client much more than budget.
The not-so-obvious effect is that the customer gets a poor product that runs slower than it should, or is not easy to upgrade. They may not be unhappy, but will also not be wowed by the fantastic system that saves them lots of money and enables better productivity. The net effect of a poor implementation is higher cost (rework/expensive upgrade/lost opportunities).
The effect of a great implementation is that the customer pays less, yes, it’s more up front but pays out less in the long run, And more importantly they will realise huge savings in their internal systems.
My guess is that the underlying cause of going for cheap is that the IT director is given a spend budget. If they were also charged with operational cost savings through the use of OBIEE they would certainly consider better quality consultants.
Of course the biggest challenge is to figure out if you are hiring a quality consultant. Who can you trust? The agent? The salesman from the consultancy? Is it possible to interview someone and assess their skills with internal resources?
It’s not easy, but there are things you can check.
1) Linked In – What is their background, how many OBIEE/OBIA projects, what was their ACTUAL role, and what recommendations are people getting.
2) Independent verification – Get other OBIEE experts to comment on the skills level.
3) Customer references – Ask the previous project managers and client for their view of the work done.
4) Blogs – Read their blog and see if they are original and technical enough for you.
(If you want a second opinion, please feel free to contact me)