New Book: Integrating SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform 4.x with SAP NetWeaver

Posted by on Jan 1, 2012

SAP Press recently released Integrating SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform 4.x with SAP NetWeaver by Ingo Hilgefort. This book is the successor to the 2009 Integrating SAP Business Objects XI 3.1 BI Tools with SAP NetWeaver and is now updated with content on the latest SAP BusinessObjects 4 (BI4) release.

In this book Hilgefort explains how we can setup the (new) BI4 platform on top of a SAP BW or SAP ECC environment. He does this by covering the complete implementation cycle: First he goes through the installation steps for the SAP BusinessObjects server and client tools (Crystal Reports, Dashboards, Live Office, Analysis and the BI Platform Client tools like the Universe Designer and the Information Design Tool). This is done in a very detailed step-by-step manner, discussing every installer screen that will appear in the process. This really is very helpful the first time you have to do this! This extremely detailed approach is followed throughout the whole book.

Each front-end tool has a chapter dedicated to it in which the several data connectivity scenarios are discussed for the specific tool. These chapters all have the following approach: First all possible connectivity options are discussed. As you can see the overview figure for SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards (Xcelsius) now really has become art. 🙂

 

Next the supported and unsupported SAP BW elements are shown in a table for each connectivity option. Also a metadata mapping is given for the BEx Query elements, showing for example how a navigational attribute or variable is treated by the front-end tool. I also like the translations of the terms used in SAP BusinessObjects, like Key figure becomes Measure and Variable is called Prompt. All these overviews make things very clear.

To get you started these chapters all have a Create your first report section, that shows you step-by-step how you can create a simple report with each tool and how to set up the several connections. Again, a lot of screenshots are used here so even if you haven’t worked with some of the tools yet, you will learn fast on how to configure the data connection. Good stuff!

Live Office and BI Web Services (QaaWS) haven’t been forgotten. There roles have become less important with the new connectivity options in BI4 but they can still be used. Hilgefort discusses this situation and shows how to use them in combination with Dashboards. The book finishes with chapters on report publications and SAP Portal integration, which makes this book very very complete.

Just like all the other books written by Ingo Hilgefort you really should pick up this one! Not only as a reference guide but also to go through the step-by-step sections to get a good understanding of the several connectivity options when integration BI4 with SAP. Also make sure you check his site/blog which is totally dedicated to the SAP BI integration subject.

Posted in: Books, Knowledge sharing, New technology, SAP BusinessObjects, SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards, SAP BW

Bye bye Xcelsius, Hello SAP Crystal Solutions?

Bye bye Xcelsius, Hello SAP Crystal Solutions?
Posted by on May 24, 2010

Last week SAP introduced a new product name for its reporting and dashboarding tooling portfolio: SAP Crystal Solutions. Unfortunately the Xcelsius brand name will completely disappear. Xcelsius Present will be SAP Crystal Presentation Design and Xcelsius Engage should be called SAP Crystal Dashboard Design Personal Edition from now on.

Uh right. Why didn’t they just name it SAP Crystal Xcelsius?

In the table below an overview of the old and new names is shown:

Old Name

New Name

Crystal Reports SAP Crystal Reports
Crystal Reports for Visual Studio 2010 SAP Crystal Reports for Visual Studio 2010
Crystal Reports for Eclipse SAP Crystal Reports for Eclipse
Crystal Reports Viewer SAP Crystal Reports viewer
Crystal Reports Server SAP Crystal Reports Server
Crystal Reports Visual Advantage SAP Crystal Reports Dashboard Design package
Crystal Reports Developer Advantage SAP Crystal Reports runtime server license
Xcelsius Present SAP Crystal Presentation Design
Xcelsius Engage SAP Crystal Dashboard Design, personal edition

Get more information from this blog.

Posted in: SAP, SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards, Xcelsius

Webinar: SAP BW/BO integration best practices

Webinar: SAP BW/BO integration best practices
Posted by on Dec 10, 2009

Last night SAP presented a webinar on integration SAP BusinessObjects BI with SAP Netweaver BW. The webinar included best practices on tool selection, report development approach, architectural choices and performance optimization. The upcoming enhancements in the BOE/BW stack were discussed and an overview of successful scenarios was given.

You can now rewatch the webinar here and download the presentation here. In the remainder of this post I dropped the webinar agenda and some interesting slides.

Read More

Posted in: Knowledge sharing

SAP Constellation/12Sprints and Kona

SAP Constellation/12Sprints and Kona
Posted by on Dec 3, 2009

Wow, seems like SAP is going to launch some very cool stuff in 2010: Constellation/12Sprints and Koda (all codenames). What can we tell about these two tools? Well, not very much yet. There are some articles on the internet and a short demonstration video which gives us some clues. You can watch the video below.

Constellation seems to be some sort of collaborative workspace, that allows its users to share data, discuss it and make decisions together. To me this idea looks a bit like Google Wave, but now tailored to the decision making processes within enterprises.

This is what SAP says about Constellation:

Imagine a virtual war room
It’s not just a place where things get discussed. It’s where things get done. 
Invite the right people. Bring in the pertinent data. And choose the most informed course of action with the help of pre-defined, interactive decision-making tools. It’s all built in. Everything you need to get everyone on the same page — finally under one roof.

At 12Sprints.com you can sign-up to get access to the beta.

Kona is a web-based business intelligence platform/tool, which gives you access to dashboards and reports with drill-down functionality. Also the SAP BusinessObjects Explorer will be a part of Kona. Data and graphs from Kona can be exported to Constellation.

This leaves me with a some questions:
– Why introduce two separate platforms and not one integrated platform?
– How open will these platforms be? Can we make our own Robots/Gadgets?
– What about Crystal Reports, Web Intelligence, Xcelsius and Pioneer? Will they also be integrated in Kona?
– And hey, what about the BusinessObjects InfoView portal environment? Will it be ditched?

12sprints

Posted in: Preview