Advanced Development Using OBIEE Plus

Mark Rittman, Director, Rittman Mead Consulting ODTUG Kaleidoscope 2008, New Orleans
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Who Am I?
• Oracle BI&W Architecture and Development Specialist • Co-Founder of Rittman Mead Consulting ‣ Oracle BI&W Project Delivery Specialists • 10+ years with Discoverer, OWB etc • Oracle ACE Director, ACE of the Year 2005 • Writer for OTN and Oracle Magazine • Longest-running Oracle blog ‣ http://www.rittmanmead.com/blog • Chair of UKOUG BIRT SIG • Co-Chair of ODTUG BI&DW SIG • Speaker at IOUG and BIWA events

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Rittman Mead Consulting
• • • • • Oracle BI&DW Project Specialists Consulting, Training, Support Works with you to ensure OBIEE project success Small, focused team OWB, Oracle BI, DW technical specialists • Clients in the UK, Europe, USA

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Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition

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Hot-Pluggable and Standards-Based

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Connectivity to Most Applications and Data Sources
• • • • • • Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition is a “federated query server” Connectivity to Oracle, MS SQL Server, Sybase, IBM DB2, Teradata etc MS AS, Essbase, Oracle OLAP Files, XML Microsoft Excel etc

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Common Enterprise Information Model
• • • • Enables consistency, security, reuse, flexibility Role-based views of the organization Single metadata model of the business Consistent definition of business measures, metrics, calculations • Drill paths, summaries, security • Model once, deploy anywhere • Across any data source

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Pervasive Information Access through a Unified BI Foundation

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This Morning’s Agenda
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Techniques to develop the Common Enterprise Information Model Creating a Logical Star Schema from a Normalized Model Adding Additional Data Sources (Federated Queries) Fragmentation (Partitioned Measures) Time-Series Analysis Adding Row-Level and Subject-Area Security Aggregate Persistence (Level-Based Measures) Cache Management

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OBIEE 10.1.3.2 Architecture
Web Server (IIS, Tomcat, Websphere, iPlanet)
SAW Bridge (J2EE/ISAPI) XML, HTML, XLS, PDF, TXT over HTTP/HTTPS

Web Browser
Javascript for Usability & Interactivity

Oracle BI Publisher
Delivery Server Layout Interfaces XSL Data Logic

Oracle BI Presentation Services
SOAP Web Services, XML and URL Interface Oracle Interactive Dashboards Oracle Answers

TCP/IP (SSL) Web Catalog Service XML Framework

User Profiling, Security and Session Mngmt Cache Services (Web) & Connection Mngmt

HTML, SOAP over HTTP/HTTPS

External Applications and Portals

ODBC over TCP/IP (SSL)

Oracle Delivers Server
Scheduling/Event Services Agent Execution Logic Device Adaptive Content

TCP/IP (SSL)

Oracle BI Server
Logical SQL ODBC/JDBC (Logical Business Model)

Session Management Intelligent Request Generation

Metadata Interchange

Load Balancer

Oracle BI Cluster Controller

Logical Request Generation Cache Services Navigator Multi-Pass / Sub-Request Logic Fragmentation Optimization Aggregate Navigator Optimized Query Rewrites Execution Engine

Oracle BI Administration
Metadata Management Services Multi-User Development Services Metadata Documentation Services Server Management Services

Externalized Authentication LDAP DB Authentication Custom Authenticator

Data Source Adapters
ODBC, CLI, OCI, XML, MDX Analytical and Operational Data Sources

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System / Perf Monitoring

Security Services

Query Govern. Query Govern.

Oracle BI Server
• Calculation and Data Integration Engine ‣ “Virtual Data Warehouse” ‣ Allows reporting across multiple sources ‣ Data accessed though metadata layer • Connects to RDBMS and OLAP data ‣ Oracle Database (including Oracle OLAP) ‣ IBM DB2 ‣ Microsoft SQL Server ‣ Teradata ‣ Microsoft Analysis Services (OLAP) ‣ SAP BW 'info cubes' • Security, Summary Management • Translates incoming “logical SQL”
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Oracle BI Administration
• MS Windows application for managing BI Server • Creates and manages Common Enterprise Information Model ‣ Physical, logical and presentation layers • Manage other aspects of BI Server ‣ Security Oracle BI Administration ‣ Scheduler (Delivers server) ‣ Jobs ‣ Joins Metadata Management Services ‣ Marketing Multi-User Development Services ‣ Sessions ‣ Cache Metadata Documentation Services • Utilities and Tools Server Management Services • Connect to BI Server via ODBC DSN
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Core BI Server Functionality
• • • • Data Integration through Business Model View Calculation and analytical engine Support for RDBMS and OLAP data sources Intelligent Request Generation and Optimized Data Access • Security and Data Scoping • ODBC Interface out, native RDBMS and OLAP interfaces in • Clustering, replication, support for Windows and Unix/Linux hosts, 32-bit and 64-bit

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Data Access
• Reporting data may be sourced from multiple databases, applications ‣ Oracle Database (including Oracle OLAP) ‣ IBM DB2 ‣ Microsoft SQL Server ‣ Teradata ‣ Microsoft Analysis Services (OLAP) ‣ SAP BW 'info cubes' ‣ SAP, Peoplesoft, Siebel, E-Business Suite • Oracle BI Server joins this source data together and presents a logical business model ‣ Facts ‣ Dimensions
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Customer

Common Enterprise Information Model
• Metadata layer for OBIEE tools • Three layers of metadata ‣ Physical layer, connections to sources ‣ Logical layer, denormalized facts and dimensions ‣ Presentation layer, “report-centric” folders • Maintained using BI Administrator • Model is the “center” of the OBIEE universe

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Data Modeling using Oracle BI Server
• Design goal for the BI Server metadata layer is to create a Star Schema ‣ Fact tables ‣ Dimension tables ‣ Drill paths • Source data can either be pre-integrated (data mart, data warehouse) or integrated using the BI Server (“federated”) ‣ Federated can be faster to deliver (report in place) - Assumes data sources share common key values ‣ Data marts are simpler and faster to query • MDX (OLAP, Multi-dimensional) data is converted into RDBMS row-sets • Logical layer is main integration point • Presentation layer allows “report centric” folders
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Information Model Layers
• Physical Layer contains connections, physical tables ‣ Connections start as ODBC, switch to native (OCI etc) ‣ Primary keys and foreign keys • Logical layer is where the data is integrated ‣ Logical fact tables, logical dimension tables ‣ Dimensions ‣ Calculations ‣ Complex joins to define relationships • Presentation layer is where data is presented ‣ Can be a simple copy of the logical layer ‣ Or can be made more personalized ‣ Report centric

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Star Schema Design Approach
• Classic “Kimball” approach • Fact tables contain measures, and joins to dimensions ‣ No attributes except for degenerate dimensions ‣ Leave IDs in, remove in Presentation layer • Dimension tables contain lookup data ‣ Customer, Product, Time etc ‣ Dimensions can however be facts - Use alias tables to disambiguate • Dimension objects define drill path ‣ Multiple hierarchies supported ‣ Ragged hierarchies possible (see later) ‣ Time dimensions enable time-series queries

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“Model First” Development
• • • • Business Model is centre of the OBIEE “universe” First element of design that is produced Integrated view of the organization’s data Option 1: Star with model first, then map on physical sources ‣ “purest” approach, uses theoretical model as basis ‣ Tricky to get joins and integration working ‣ Lots of manual logical table and column definition steps • Option 2: Produce model on paper, then construct it using elements of physical model ‣ Quicker and faster, just drag and drop ‣ May end up with redundant columns ‣ Still needs a design phase at the start

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Sample Business Model

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Data Modeling Workflow Steps
1. Define logical model (on paper or using BI Administrator) 2. Import physical data sources & define primary and foreign keys 3. Map logical model to physical model 4. Create initial calculations 5. Create dimensions 6. Rename and tidy-up logical model 7. Create initial presentation model 8. Create complex calculations, time dimensions etc 9. Add additional columns to presentation model

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Seminar Reporting Scenario
• Global Company has a data warehouse, containing order and customer data • Requirement is to take the existing warehouse (normalized) and turn it into a star schema (denormalized) • For now, OBIEE will be used to map the data

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Step 1: Create Logical Layer
• Firstly, create new logical model • Then create logical tables and columns ‣ Either create from scratch, then connect to physical (best practice) ‣ Or define by dragging and dropping physical tables • Start from fact table and work outward to the dimensions • Do one fact/dimension combination first • Then add more facts • ... and more dimensions • Add details on datatypes etc later on

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Demonstration
Creating the Logical Model

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Step 2: Create Physical Layer
• Define ODBC connection from client or server to database ‣ ODBC only needed to define initial connection, import metadata ‣ Native connection (OCI etc) takes over from then • Import tables, views, keys etc from data source • Define keys, foreign keys if needed • Update row counts • Define table aliases

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Physical Join Types
• If source data has foreign key joins, they will be imported • If not, they can be defined in the physical model • Two types of join ‣ Foreign key joins (e.g. CUSTID = CUSTID) - 1:N joins only ‣ Complex joins (TRAN_DATE between STARTDATEID and ENDDATEID) - also supports 1:1, O:1, 1:O etc • Important to create physical joins before importing in to logical layer ‣ Logical joins rely on physical joins to define paths ‣ Makes life a lot simpler • Create joins using Join Manager,
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Demonstration
Creating the Physical Model

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Step 3: Mapping the Logical Model to the Physical Model(s)
• Once you have your logical model and one or more physical models, you can map them together ‣ The simpler the mapping, the better • Drag and drop physical columns on to the logical model • Logical model will inherit physical data types

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Logical Table Sources
• Logical tables can have more than one physical source • Can create >1 Logical Table Source ‣ BI Server creates two physical queries ‣ Useful when mapping data from different levels ‣ and when using “fragmentation” • Each Logical table source can have >1 table mapped ‣ BI server creates one query per LTS, joining as per physical foreign key joins ‣ Used when you need columns from other joined tables in your logical table (join only happens if additional columns requested)
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Consider Where to Join Data
• Again, consider where to integrate and join data • Whilst the BI Server can join data, it may be faster to load into a data mart ‣ ETL tools can integrate data at time of load ‣ Denormalized data structures can be faster than joining at report time ‣ Indexing, Summary Management, Query Optimization • Creating a data warehouse still is the optimal solution ‣ BIEE data source joining features are most appropriate when bringing new data in that’s not yet in the data warehouse

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Logical Join Types
• Logical tables are by default not joined • Logical layer supports both foreign key and complex joins • Foreign key joins not recommended ‣ Restrict choices that BI server can make over join paths ‣ Only there for backward compatibility • Complex joins are preferred ‣ Indicates relationship between tables ‣ Allows BI Server to determine best join path - Useful when more than one Logical Table Source
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Demonstration
Mapping the Logical Model

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Step 4: Create Initial Calculations
• Calculations are created as additional logical columns • Sit alongside existing logical columns derived from physical layer • Calculations can also be created within report

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OBIEE SQL and the Expression Editor
• Calculations within the repository are defined using the Expression Editor • Uses OBIEE SQL Syntax • Reference functions, expressions, logical columns, constants, variables • Same SQL syntax across all supported databases • Ability to pass-through function calls using EVALUATE function

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Create Calculations in the Optimal Location
• Whilst the BI Server can create calculations, it may be more appropriate to do this in the underlying database ‣ Oracle Database analytic functions (LAG, LEAD, RANK etc) ‣ Oracle Database OLAP functions (time-series, forecast, allocation) • Use the available architecture efficiently ‣ Perform calculations as close to the source data as possible ‣ Use dedicated OLAP technology if available ‣ Use BI Server to provide features not found in the sources • Just because the BI Server can do something, doesn’t mean it should do something

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Step 5: Create Dimensions and Hierarchies
• Dimensions define hierarchical relationships between columns ‣ Also used when defining level-based measures and summaries • Level-based, starts with Grand Total level ‣ One-way export out to Oracle dimensions (DDL) also possible • Enables hyperlinks on columns within dimension levels ‣ Drill-down through the hierarchy ‣ No drill-up or drill to related (yet)

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Multiple Hierarchies and Ragged / Unbalanced Hierarchies
• Dimensions with multiple hierarchies are possible ‣ All hierarchies must share common top and bottom levels • Ragged hierarchies, unbalanced hierarchies only supported for multi-dimensional data sources ‣ MS Analysis Services, SAP BW, Oracle Hyperion Essbase ‣ For relational, need to balance hierarchy beforehand

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Demonstration
Creating Dimensions

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Step 6: Renaming and Tidying Logical Model
• If logical model was created through dragging-and-dropping physical objects, logical table and column names may be CAPITALIZED or HAVE_UNDERSCORES_IN_NAME • Utilities accessing from Tools menu can be used to tidy up names ‣ Many other useful utilities as well

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Step 7: Create Initial Presentation Models
• Business models themselves are not visible to users ‣ Users see presentation models whose columns are defined in business models. ‣ Appear as “subject areas” in the Oracle BI Answers ‣ Appear as “databases” to client tools using ODBC • Can create multiple Presentation Catalogs from single Logical Model

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Step 8: Creating Time Dimension and Time-Series Calculations
• OBIEE 10.1.3.2 supports limited time-series functions • AGO – value of a measure x months, quarters, years ago
AGO(Videostore."Sales fact view".Sales, Videostore.TimesDim."Month", 1)

• TODATE – value of a measure to the end of a month, quarter, year
AGO(Videostore."Sales fact view".Sales, Videostore.TimesDim."Quarter", 1)

• Requires at least one “time dimension” in the metadata layer ‣ Requires at least one or more Chronological keys ‣ Monotonically increasing value (DAY etc)

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The Calculation Wizard
• Wizard that generates share, percentage change etc calculations • Useful in conjunction with Time Dimension ‣ % Change since last month ‣ Change since last month etc ‣ Index ‣ Percent • Wraps ISNULL around calcs

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Demonstration
Creating Time-Series Calculations

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Reporting Across Multiple Data Sources
• • • • OBIEE can combine and join data from multiple data sources Data is retrieved in separate SQL, MDX calls and joined using the BI Server Allows you to perform federated queries Watch out for performance though ‣ End goal should be to eventually move reporting data to a data warehouse

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Federated Query Scenario
• Additional data exists in an Excel spreadsheet • Contains quotas, plus information on products and dates • Quotas are at the product category and month level ‣ Existing data is at the product and day level • Requirement is to join data, but only show quotas the relevant level

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Joining A Second Data Source : Step 1
• Import the new schema into the physical model, ensure FK and PK constraints are set

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Joining A Second Data Source : Step 2
• Use the Join Manager, or Physical Model Diagrammer, to create joins between tables in the two schemas

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Joining A Second Data Source : Step 3
• Add the new dimension tables as additional logical table sources to the exisiting logical dimension tables • Set the dimension hierarchy level at which they are applicable

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Joining A Second Data Source : Step 4
• Add the additional measures to the fact table • Set the dimension levels at which the measures become relevant

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Demonstration
Adding an Additional Data Source

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The Oracle BI Server Cache
• • • • Stores local copy of data that is requested Can be pre-seeded by iBots (agents) Off by default, enabled using NQSConfig.ini file Requires that you put a cache management strategy in place ‣ Particularly suited to DW environments ‣ Cache is not aware of when data becomes “stale”

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Turning on Caching
• Caching is not enabled by default • Enabled by editing NQSConfig.INI • Can set additional cache options ‣ Where cache data is stored ‣ Max size of cache (>2GB) ‣ Max entries ‣ Whether it holds aggregations ‣ etc

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Cache Administration
• Cache usage can be monitored from the Cache Manager • Caching can be enabled at a physical table level ‣ Whether cacheable or not ‣ Cache persistence time

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Aggregation and Level-Based Measures
• By default, logical columns (measures) are mapped to lowest-level, detail-level source data ‣ Oracle BI Server provides aggregation as needed, shipped back to RDBMS • Additional, summary data sources can however be introduced to logical model ‣ Plug in summary tables, data from OLAP servers • Depends on dimensions having been defined ‣ Oracle BI Server knows that summary table can return data faster • An alternative to query rewrite and MVs ‣ Useful when aggregating federated data

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Adding Summary Data to the Logical Model
• Summary data is added as an additional Logical Table Source • Then set level at which additional Logical Table Source is used ‣ Oracle BI Server will use original LTS before this level ‣ Oracle BI Server will use new LTS at this level and higher

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The Aggregate Persistence Wizard
• • • • • Automates the process of creating and mapping summary tables Pick one or more measures and dimension levels to aggegate on Generates internal scripting code, Execute script using nqCMD.exe Generates RDBMS tables, inserts summary data, maps to logical model Aggregates can be stored in different RDBMS than source data

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Using the Aggregate Persistence Wizard Step 1
• Select measures to aggregate • Can be from different physical databases • Must be from the same logical table

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Using the Aggregate Persistence Wizard Step 2
• Select the dimension levels to aggregate on • Must have been already defined as dimensions in the logical model

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Using the Aggregate Persistence Wizard Step 3
• Select RDBMS to store aggregates in • Must be one of ‣ Oracle RDBMS ‣ MS SQL Server ‣ IBM DB/2 ‣ Teradata • Can be a different database than the source physical database

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Using the Aggregate Persistence Wizard Step 4
• • • • • • Execute the script that the wizard generates Either through nqCmd.exe or through Scheduler Generates RBDMS tables Populates with summary data Maps new physical tables to logical model Sets aggregation levels
C:\%ORACLEBIHOME%\server\bin\nqCmd.exe –d AnalyticsWeb –u Administrator –p Administrator –s c:\agg_wiz_script.sql

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Demonstration
The Aggregate Persistence Wizard

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Oracle OLAP within Oracle BI EE
• Oracle OLAP 11g can be used along with Oracle BI EE • Either through Cube Organized Materialized View, or through SQL Views • Cube Organized MVs are simple to set up, but do not expose calculations ‣ No relational column to rewrite from • SQL Views provide full capabilities ‣ Tricky to manipulate though • At present, no metadata import ‣ Coming in OBIEE 11g+

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Oracle Essbase and Oracle BI EE
• Essbase is a native data source for Oracle BI Enterprise Edition • Uses XMLA compatibility feature of OBIEE • Requires OBIEE 10.1.3.3.2, or 10.1.3.3.1 with registry edit ‣ HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Oracle Corporation\Oracle BI\Oracle BI Administration Tool\Hidden Features ‣ Create new DWORD value called “Essbase”, set to “1” • Some restrictions in 10.1.3.3.1 release, treat as “for evaluation only”

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OBIEE 10.1.3.3.x Guidelines & Limitations
• Measure hierarchies not supported, all measures shown on same level • Import process does not know that dimension member names may be unique, you will need to inform OBIEE of this in the logical dimension member properties • EVALUATE function can now work against MDX data sources • EVALUATE_AGGREGATE function will need to be used for Essbase to natively handle time-series functions (not function shipped by default) • Essbase UDAs suppressed by default, can be enabled using EVALUATE • Requires Essbase 9.3.1 stack ‣ Essbase Server 9.3.1 ‣ Essbase Provider Services 9.3.1

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 1
• Use Oracle BI Administrator to Import from XMLA • Requires Essbase Provider Services to be installed and running

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 2
• • • • • Enter the connection details for the Essbase server URL = <server_name>:13080/aps/XMLA Press “Update” to pre-populate the Data Source field Username = Essbase login ID Password = Essbase password ‣ Not Shared Services login

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 3
• Select the cube that you want to import • Essbase cubes are hypercubes, contain measures of the same dimensionality • Cube brings across measures and dimensions

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 3
• Select the cube that you want to import • Essbase cubes are hypercubes, contain measures of the same dimensionality • Cube brings across measures and dimensions

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 4
• Cube appears as new database data source in OBIEE Physical layer • Note different icons for dimensions and measures • All “joins” are created automatically

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 5
• Drag physical cube into logical layer • All dimensions, joins, “tables” are automatically created • Note that level names do not get imported

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 6
• Rename levels to correct names

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 7
• Drag logical model into Presentation Layer • Delete all the Level 0 levels ‣ Not required, if selected will cause request to error

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 8
• Presentation layer should now only contain the tidied-up column names, as if it was a relational schema • Now ready for reporting against

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Registering an Essbase Cube in OBIEE Step 9
• Create request as normal, results are returned super-fast

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Demonstration
Oracle OLAP and Oracle Essbase in OBIEE

T : +44 (0) 8446 697 995 E : enquiries@rittmanmead.com W: www.rittmanmead.com

Advanced Development Using OBIEE Plus
Mark Rittman, Director, Rittman Mead Consulting ODTUG Kaleidoscope 2008, New Orleans
T : +44 (0) 8446 697 995 E : enquiries@rittmanmead.com W: www.rittmanmead.com

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