This problem has been overcome in BI 2004s version, where the concept of ‘Remodeling’ can be used to change the structure of an infoprovider even while it holds data.
REMODELLING: Remodeling is a new concept in BI 2004s where we have different options like Add characteristic, Delete characteristic, Replace characteristic, Add key figure, Delete key figure and Replace key figure.
Eg: Below is an Info cube with 2 characteristics and 2 key figures. Now we will delete one characteristic ZREG and add a new characteristic ZCOUNTRY.
Once you have created infoprovider and want to change it with addition or deletion or replace with any other new infoobject, go to ADMINISTRATION tab and click on “Remodeling”.
Enter Remodeling Rule name and Infoprovider on which you want to do Remodeling and click on create.
Click on ‘Add’ icon in the next screen.
Choose radio button for the operation ‘Delete Characteristic’.
Fill the characteristic name and click on ‘Transfer’ button.
Now save the changes and click on ‘Schedule’.
If you want to execute it immediately click on “start immediately”, else “start Later”.
Now go to cube and check the changes, you can find ZREG has been deleted.
In the same way you can add characteristic ZCOUNTRY.
After adding or replacing the characteristic, use one of the following options to populate data.
1. Constant: To populate constant data for the new characteristic.
2. Attribute of characteristic: To populate data from an attribute of some other characteristic.
3. 1:1 Mapping with characteristic: To populate data from other characteristic use.
4. Customer Exit: To populate data from some other source.
After saving the changes and Schedule check the changes in the info cube, you will find ZCOUNTRY.
In the same way, to add a key figure you can select ‘Add key figure’ and fill the details.
After adding the key figure, use one of the following options to populate data.
1. Constant: To populate constant data for new key figure.
2. User Exit: To populate data from different source.
For replacing the key figure, use the following option to populate data.
Customer Exit: To populate data for the replaced key figure.
Before saving and scheduling, if you want to undo the changes, then select the change(shown in circle in below screenshot) and then click on ‘Delete’ icon.
For further details please see this link from help.sap.