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Data Federator is a powerful multi-source SQL engine which help you to query your information systems uniformly.
In our last version, Data Federator XI 3.0 SP1 (aka 3.1), we developed a new connector to connect and query SAP BW using SQL.

This connector connects to BW at the aggregation engine layer bypassing the BW OLAP engine.
For instance, the table below summarizes the differences between OLAP universes and Data Federator relational Universes.

This means that OLAP features are not be supported but you will get other features like federation (be able to combine BW with other sources) and ad-hoc reporting scalability extremely well aligned with Web Intelligence and Universes.

The diagram below describes our connector architecture.

BW integration

Today, the connector supports the InfoCube, Multiprovider and DSO Infoproviders and is fully compatible with BW Accelerator accelerations.
Data Federator exposes these info providers as star schema fully compatible with SQL 92.

This new connector complements the current BW access offering from the most advanced OLAP front end to the easy to use, scalable SQL connector.

OLAP SQL

This connector is a great opportunity to deploy WebI on top of SAP BW and deploy ad-hoc reporting for your end users.

End to end architecture

For people who want to leverage this new opportunity, they have to upgrade their system to:
– SAP NetWeaver 7.01 (Enhancement Package 01) Support Package Stack 03 and install the collective note
– BOE XI 3.1 Fix Pack 1 or higher
– Data Federator XI 3.0 SP1 or higher

This connector is extremely easy to deploy and use as relational universes are automatically generated.
Stay tuned, I will explain the complete workflow in my How to configure the SQL BW connector.

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13 Comments

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    1. T Bala
      One small suggestion. Please change the background from blue to another color on the first diagram or change font color to white .. blue on blue is not readable when printed.

      Thanks!
      bala

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    2. T Bala
      Frederic,

      I posted a suggestion in Thomas Zurek’s blog… when we use DF to access BW infocubes.. it may bring a lot of table and adding relationship for takes a lot of time. Is there a way to cut down manual steps? DF already knows the table linkages when it brings meta data.. can df default the relationships between BW tables.. (just like universe does by some matching strategy)… If we want to federate BW to another source, then, probably we can do manual work in adding relationships and mapping. This is a great product to provide SQL access to BW without having to do data transfer. As much as you can automate design steps, it will help boost productivity and also be unique in EII market since no other product has as much connectivity solutions as Bobj DF does at this time.

      Thanks
      Bala

      (0) 
      1. Frederic VANBORRE Post author
        Bala

        You anticipate my next post.
        In fact, the Data Federator SAP BW SQL connector is shipped with a Universe strategy which creates the joins between the tables (as well as the aliases to avoid the join loops) and the associated business layer (the business objects – dimension, details and measures).

        Of course, this strategy leverages all the metadata available in BW.

        I will describe these elements in my next post.

        Hope this helps,

        Fred

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    1. Frederic VANBORRE Post author
      Hi

      Relational Universes can connect to SAP BW Infocubes thanks to this connector.

      However if you want to connect to OLAP cubes you have to use the OLAP Universes which generate MDX statements instead of SQL.

      Hope this helps,

      Fred

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      1. Saravana Natarajan
        Nice article Fred. I question. Does this allow users to join the BW data providers and report on the result set etc..like how we do in MS access? Is it user friendly like MS access for the business users?
        (0) 
        1. Frederic VANBORRE Post author
          Thanks.

          You can do that in the Universes and it is just a matter of joining tables together using drag & drop (like in Access 😉 )

          However, SAP recommends to use MultiProvider when you want to combine multiple data providers.

          Hope this helps,

          Fred

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      2. fanchao meng
        Hi fred,
        what do you mean by OLAP CUBES and BW infocubes?
        I also wonder if we use this connector for a bw infocube which contains aggregates,do these aggregates still work and give benefits?
        Thanks
        (0) 
        1. Frederic VANBORRE Post author
          Hi

          I am making a distinction between the InfoProvider (InfoCube) and its OLAP capabilities provided by the BW analytical engine.

          Data Federator connects to the InfoCube via the aggregation engine and exposes it as a star schema (without the OLAP capabilities).

          Yes, if you define some aggregates in the InfoCubes they will continue to work with the DF connector.

          Hope this helps,

          Fred

          (0) 
    2. Frederic VANBORRE Post author
      Yes, thanks to this new connector, you can connect relational Universes to InfoCubes (but without the OLAP features).

      InfoCubes are exposed as relational star schemas and can be queried using SQL.

      Hope this helps,

      Fred

      (0) 
    1. Frederic VANBORRE Post author
      SAP BW authorisations at the Infoprovider level are fully supported however all the authorization defined at the OLAP engine level are not supported.

      Hope this helps,

      Fred

      (0) 

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