Accelerate in-memory queries with SAP BusinessObjects Explorer, accelerated version
Dr. Berg Comerit Inc.
© 2011 Wellesley Information Services. All rights reserved.

In This Session «

In this session you will learn how BO Explorer adds very fast ad-hoc search capabilities to your warehouse and the infrastructure needed to deploy it. You will also learn how to format the output, see a step-bystep demo on how the tool works and explore how to plan for BW-Explorer in your organization. You will also see the milestone plan for installing BW-Explorer and technical considerations for an successful implementation


What We¶ll Cover «
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BO Explorer Overview Ad-Hoc search A step-by-step Demo of analysis and formatting Installing and managing BO Explorer Planning and Budgeting for BO Explorer Wrap-up


Unlike querying. InformationWeek. A survey of 534 top BI professionals. BO Explorer is a search and exploration tool for unstructured and semistructured data... BO Explorer addresses this need Source: Business Intelligence Survey. reported that the top concern was the ability to deliver faster query and data exploration capabilities.Why BO Explorer. 2009 4 . 'exploration' is unstructured analysis.

EDI) Generalpurpose.02 MB/$ 50. Berg 120x Physical hard drive speeds only grew by 120 times 5 since 1990.15 MB/$ Addressable Memory Network Speed 216 100 Mbps 264 100 Gbps 248x 1000 x Disk Data Transfer 5 MBPS 600 MBPS Source: 1990 numbers SAP AG 2010 numbers. high event volume. All other hardware components grew faster.31 MIPS/$ 5066x 2502x Memory 0. . cross industry value chains Applicationaware and intelligent data management 0.Why In-memory processing for BO Explorer? ‡ Disk speed is growing slower than all other hardware components Technology Drivers 1990 CPU 2010 Improvement Architectural Drivers 1990 Disk-based data storage Simple consumption of apps (fat client UI. applicationagnostic database 2010 In-memory data stores Multi-channel UI.05 MIPS/$ 253. Dr.

You can accelerate all data sources 6 . BW data may be indexed on BWA blades for fast in-memory processing 3. 2. .BO Explorer Overview BO Explorer (BOEx) has several ways in can connect to data sets: 1. External data may also be accessed as 'nonaccelerated' via SQL universes and BOBJ XI 4. Excel spreadsheets may also be accessed Source: SAP Ag. External data may be indexed by the BO Data Services and stored on dedicated BW Accelerator (BWA) blades. 2010 Accelerated BOEx does not require BW.

Indexing and compression stored on a file system DSOs 7 . Queries are routed to BWA by the Analytical engine SAP BW BI Analytical Engine 2.BWA 3.General Highlights . Indexes copied in to RAM on blades InfoCubes 1.In Memory Processing .

e. oR o     $  $  F E     "%  D  " % B A  A   !  " " DC @ . If a blade fails. For BOEx blade. the system can reload the indexes from the BWA file system (i.Creating Indexes from external data Using the Index Designer in Data Services.In Memory Processing .Q o o ¦¥ ¡ ¤£ ¢   ¨ 8 . you can use only one blade. SAP BI Analyt al ng ne 654321 0 ) ' ( © &  ! 7 9 7 8 o SOs E Index esigner Data Integrator G  "!%! $   #  "!    !!    ©     § e 1. o o o o Business Obje t ata Services Files atabases  . For BWA you should always have one 'spare' blade for failover. you can also index data from external data files and data bases. IBM's GPFS). It is important to note that the BO indexes are on dedicated blades.

However. or sent as an email. SAP AG (2010) 9 . In addition you can save the result set as an image and load it on portal sites. you can access the BOEx directly from a handheld device that support basic web browser functions. hand helds.The many BOEx Access Methods BOEx is normally accessed through a web browser. Finally. Source: Dan Kearnan. you can always download the results from a search into Excel and perform analysis from there.

What We¶ll Cover « ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ BO Explorer Overview Ad-Hoc search A step-by-step Demo of analysis and formatting Installing and managing BO Explorer Planning and Budgeting for BO Explorer Wrap-up 10 .

The users may save their settings and the display at any time. BOEx takes a 'first stab' at presenting the data in a usable format. users may navigate and change the display. From there. what query to execute. Bing or other search engines. or how to display the data. 11 .Ad-hoc Search The core idea of BOEx is that users can search the BI data like they would using Google. Users should not have to know how the data is structured. Yahoo.

Ad-hoc Search Example 1. We select 'sales Information' and searched after the term "Texas". emailed or bookmarked 12 . Any display can be exported to Excel. saved as an image. First we searched after 'sales' and found 3 possible choices 2. This shows the sales amount by state as a table. the gross margin as a graph and as a table.

What We¶ll Cover « ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ BO Explorer Overview Ad-Hoc search A step-by-step Demo of analysis and formatting Installing and managing BO Explorer Planning and Budgeting for BO Explorer Wrap-up 13 .

The search result list is sorted based on an internal 'relevancy' score .A Step-by-Step Demo: Searching Step 1. We load the BOEx web interface into a browser Step 2. We get the search results and a list of "information spaces". We Search for "sales" Step 3.

customer) as well as measures. . geography. The system looks at the data and formats it based on implied hierarchies (i..A Step-by-Step Demo: The Initial View Step 4.e. Users may navigate and change measures. graphs and tables. time.

and can search the initial result set: Step 6. we are interested in sales around Texas. Again.A Step-by-Step Demo: Searching in a result set & measures Step 5. By changing the measure from 'margin' to 'sales revenue' all graphs and tables change .

We can change the chart by selecting from the left menu options. is highlighted by a star: . Step 8. While the first display was based on the 'best guess'.A Step-by-Step Demo: Changing Charts and Drill down Step 7. we can now drill-down to the different product lines The best graphing options. based on our data.

e. "Proportional' view is best when you are looking for size relations I. There are many graphing options and some are more usefule than others.A Step-by-Step Demo: More Graphing Options Step 9.. the reccomended graphs works best for the data set. but not always Try several graphing options before deciding on 'your' view. . what are the larges contributors to sales"? Most of the time.

It is harder to analyze 50 states and scroll through the data. we can now select only the states we are interested in. . Since we clicked "explore more" in the state box. By clicking on "explore more..A Step-by-Step Demo: Explore More ." you are promted to filter on the characteristic you selected. Filtering data makes the Images more meaningful.Filtering Step 10..

before you look at the data.789 is not the sales revenue for the firm.e.A Step-by-Step Demo: Filter Results We now see only the (product) lines sold 3 states Filter values are displayed here: Always see if any items have been removed in a filter. 15. only the revenue for 3 states . I.061.

A Step-by-Step Demo: The Visualization Panel Step 11. In the Visualization Panel. You can also zoom in on the data by only showing the visualization panel. . Notice: The table only contains data from the 3 states we filtered on. you can view all the fields and measures as a complete table.

A Step-by-Step Demo: Top-10 Analysis Step 12. . and can be very slow. In the visualization panel. we can perform top-10 analysis by a single click. This is normally done in the BI analytical engine of SAP NetWeaver BW. The ability to quickly group and summarize data is a great feature. All other values are summarized in an "other" category and graphed.

A Step-by-Step Demo: Other Display Options Step 13. You can view the data in relative size by using a comparison graph Line graphs are usually preferred if you have 3-20 data points Areas on the graphs can be highlighted by clicking on one or more data points .

Any data panel can be sorted in many ways Step 14. can be calculated 'on-the-fly' .A Step-by-Step Demo: Sorting and New Calculations Step 13. We can also add our own measures. In our example we are adding the measure 'margin per unit' as total margin divided by 'quantity sold' Measures used on any graph.

but can support basic drill-down features.A Step-by-Step Demo: Mini-OLAP example Step 16. In this mini-OLAP example we are: Looking at some key cities in a few states (filter)  Only looking at data for 2003 and only for "Sweats and T-Shirts" (filters)  Examining the profit margin per unit sold (customized calculation)  BOEx is not an OLAP tool. and thereby complex unstructured analysis. .

A Step-by-Step Demo: Downloading a Data Set Step 17. . Data saved this way can be opened in Excel or imported directly into Access and other data bases. Any result set displayed in BOEx may be saved to a PC as a comma-delimited file. You can select to save the data set filtered by the navigations or only the data from the visualization panel.

A Step-by-Step Demo: Configuring Measures Step 18. Measures in the data set can also be configured to be "filter columns" for user navigation Other options include  Max  Min  Sum  Average This is how you determine how data will be accessed and how measures will be displayed .

network and non-logical calculations You sometimes can get the following message from the system: This normally means that the connectively to the system is either too slow. non logical calculations). .HINT : Connectivity.e. or broken. You can also get this error message if the result set you requested are not available (i. This is an issue that is more common for very slow connections such as older Wi-Fi networks.

What We¶ll Cover « ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ BO Explorer Overview Ad-Hoc search A step-by-step Demo of analysis and formatting Installing and managing BO Explorer Planning and Budgeting for BO Explorer Wrap-up 29 .

2 Explorer (blade) 2. HP BWA. Cisco. can run only on SUSE Linux 64-bit OS for blade servers. Dell. Optional Components: Services XI 3. Sept.0 Client Tools XI 3. Some components are required.20 if you use Accelerated data Data Required Components: NW 7.01 SP05 EhP1 (minimum) Explorer XI 3.1 SP2 Enterprise XI 3. Fujitsu. SUN.1 SP2 for SAP SAP Certified blade vendors: IBM. 2010 30 .BOEx Required & Optional Components Installing BOEx can be confusing.2 SP1 if you use external data Index designer plug-in if you use external Accelerated data BW Accelerator 7. XI and Integration can be on all SAP supported HW & OS Source: SAP AG .2.1 SP2 (consider SP3) Integration XI 3. Teradata. while other are optional. Data Services and BO Explorer 3.

31 . You can also upload your own data and try BOEx to see if it is something for your organization.ondemand.Registrar and Take a free test drive You can registrar for a free 21 days test drive at: http://goexplore.com .

32 . Many of these limitations are now remedied.BO Explorer XI 3.0 New Features Many customers looked at earlier releases of BO Explorer and the previous release called "Polestar" and noted several limitations.2 and Explorer Blade 2. This include:       The possibility to import your own Excel files Create your own calculations at the user level You can group related dimensions for simplicity of analysis Security in improved and row-level data security can be implemented You can personalize the view by filtering information Users may navigate hierarchies instead of 'flat' data PS! BOEx solution is licensed based on number of blades and the number of named users.

33 .2 We now have a new "calculation engine" and a new "aggregation engine" inside . BI analytical engine processes such as data sorts. Calculation Engine Aggregation Engine Index SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator 7. was still costly overheads to the query execution. with version 7. You can now performance tune most BI Analytical Engine functions with BWA.BWA 7. top-5 conditioning etc. not only data reads. prior to BWA 7.. calculated key figures (CKF).2 this is now available. the solution was only used for rapid in-memory data fetches.2.2 New Features In earlier released of BWA you could not index DSOs. This means that the benefits of in-memory processing is no longer confined to data fetches and queries can be made to run even faster. restrictive key figures (RKF). Also.

Today we can index MultiProviders 'nativly'. and have automatic delta-loading capabilities (only changed records gets updated in the index). This means that we can create an Index of MPs that have multiple InfoCubes once. For Multiproviders that also have DSOs and InfoObjects we can create periodic 'snapshots'.MultiProviders and Queries MultiProviders (MP) are 'views' that links data stores. indexing these was a challenge. This allows you to take advantage of query calculations as part of the index creation. U IIH TI IH S II H RI IH Q II H PI IH HIIH 34 .2 New Features . InfoCubes and/or InfoSets together for simplifies user access and querying. Indexes can also be built based on queries. In the past.BWA 7.

What We¶ll Cover « ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ BO Explorer Overview Ad-Hoc search A step-by-step Demo of analysis and formatting Installing and managing BO Explorer Planning and Budgeting for BO Explorer Wrap-up 35 .

more infoproviders) Create all planned indexes and test process chains (time to build indexes) Execute system test with User Acceptance team (end users) Design and implement updated process chains Collect benchmarks for current performance and targets Document results and close project 1 2 3 4 Weeks 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Since most vendors build the HW as Made-to-Order. it is important to get the purchase order placed as soon as possible.BOEx Milestone Plan BO Explorer Milestone Plan Project start up BW implementation review and ranking of InfoCubes/DSOs for indexing Review physical hardware infrastructure and network access Size the BWA using program in note: 917803 Plan for fail-over. disaster recovery and backup HW vendor selection (& approvals if required) Contact vendor and place Purchase order Collect benchmarks for current performance and targets Execute performance tuning of queries.e. 36 . install SAP BO XI and BO-E Security design Examine process chains and create new if needed Install hardware BWA and connectivity Test connectivity and perform readiness assessment Training for 2 system admins Create first indexes and test functionality Make enhancements and change scope as needed (i.

$14K-$20K per chassis + $6-8K per blade and a rack.) f Good planning numbers for production environment (only):  Small HW costs ~ $40K to $60K  Medium HW costs ~ $60K to $250K  Large HW costs ~ $250K to $500K Add consulting fees for 2-3 people for 8-12 weeks. Add in 2 network cards and a file system.Budgeting for BOEx ‡ You have to plan for:  BOEx licenses (per blade as well as per number of users)  Hardware costs (approx. 37 . The actual time needed depends on how much of the infrastructure you already have in-place and how you plan on roll out the solution)  Remember to plan for 3-years vendor service costs. if you do not have spare place for the chassis.

What We¶ll Cover « ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ BO Explorer Overview Ad-Hoc search A step-by-step Demo of analysis and formatting Installing and managing BO Explorer Planning and Budgeting for BO Explorer Wrap-up 38 .

sap.Resources ‡ BO Explorer Implementation Checklist by SAP  http://tinyurl. Ingo Hilgefort.com/32v5ycw SAP BOEx Product Website  http://www. 315 pages 39 .com/solutions/sapbusinessobjects/large/busine ss-intelligence/search-navigation/explorer/index. Hardcover.sap.com/cw/community/sap/sapbusinessobjects explorer ‡ ‡ ‡ Inside SAP BusinessObjects Explorer . ISBN:978-1-59229-340-7.epx SAP BOEx Collaboration Workspace  https://cw.book  SAP PRESS.sdn.

it does not replace the other BOBJ tools.. The accelerated version adds real value via in-memory speed You need to have a formal training for end users (consider on-line training) Lead times for hardware orders can be long.. ad-hoc and formatted reports... purchase early. Make sure that the BOEx project also addresses process chains. There is a place for OLAP. plan to 'get-with-theprogram" in 2011. In-Memory processing of queries are the future. performance tuning and connectivity to other components also. The days of the hard drives for end users in BI is numbered.7 Key Points to Take Home ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ BOEx is a great tool for unstructured ad-hoc analysis BOEx is a specialized tool. 40 .

Berg Bberg@ComeritInc.com 41 .Your Turn! How to contact me: Dr.

SAP NetWeaver®. R/3.com.Disclaimer SAP. PartnerEdge. Wellesley Information Services is neither owned nor controlled by SAP. and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP AG in Germany and in several other countries all over the world. mySAP. 42 . All other product and service names mentioned are the trademarks of their respective companies. DuetŒ®. mySAP.

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