Integration SAP BI and XI: a critical point of view.
There are some official documents from SAP about the technical descrition of this integration. NW2004s: http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/servlet/prt/portal/prtroot/docs/library/uuid/f36ce30f-0e01-0010-a89b-c158d07c44ffNW2004:http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/servlet/prt/portal/prtroot/docs/library/uuid/18dfe590-0201-0010-6b8b-d21dfa9929c9 I can’t define general roles to use or not XI with BW, I only would like to give some points of attention on this argument. When you have to load a data (docs or master data) to BW from an application, you need to consider some big issue before take a decision if use or not the integration supplied by XI. 1. Volume of data 2. Timing and scheduling of loading in BW 3. Product of source application (i.e. SAP or non SAP) 4. The data-flow or type messages is already manage in XI 1. If you have a large volume of data to load in BW daily, you have to add the time of elaboration of the data in XI to the process flow. Take in mind that XI elaborates every record (message) separatly and not in package like BW. 2. XI post data in BW when the single message has finished the elaboration in XI. The data will be avaiable in BW in a delta queue (NW2004) or in a PSA (NW2004s). To update the data in the data target of BW you wave two ways. First, push the data with a PushInfoPackage (NW2004s) or with a simple Infopackage scheduled frequently (NW2004). Second, schedule the load based on event or at precise moment of the day. The last case could be common like “start load of FI documents after the complete elaboration of the master data”. If the elaboration depends by BW it’s simple to manage with chains, if it depends by XI elaboration could be not simple (see the Monitoring a flow in XI) 3. For the SAP products, already exists integration with BW. If you want to integrate a particular flow by XI you need to replicate the objects involved in XI and pay a particular attention to the Initialization and delta mechanism. For the others products no unique way can be considered, you have to evaluate every single case. Take a look to the native instruments of BW like UD connection. 4. This is the best case for XI. You have already managed the message with their structure, transcoding and extraction from source system. 5. Push or pull data? With XI you can only push data in BW. BW system is not able to pull the data through XI. If a reconstruction is needed (changed business logic or other) PSA data will be foundamental or Source system with XI must be able redirect all the history data. But in case you want to push data in BW, XI is a good way to do that. Others points to consider are: – Monitor of the message and transfering data: you have to check XI (IE and adapters), in BW the related proxy and the infopackage for the rest of the flow. – Data from XI can be received only on Infosource and PSA (data store in BI 7.0) objects, if you have master data to update in Infoobject you have to pass before in a dedicated ODS and then update the Infoobject or make a direct update to the Infoobject. In conclusion, a good use of XI is when you need to take data from other system and you can reach it with the various XI adapters but not with the UD connector of BW. Another reason to introduce XI is the trasformation of the data (messages) before BW.