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Browser Envy, Revisited

In March 2011, I wrote an SCN post entitled Browser Envy, reminding SAP BusinessObjects users to check the Supported Platforms/PAR documentation before upgrading their browser.  In October 2011, the browser issue is still a pressing concern for SAP BusinessObjects customers.  At an ASUG Influencer Summit that kicked off last week’s ASUG SAP BusinessObjects User Conference in Orlando, Florida, many influencers felt that browser support should be a top item on SAP’s agenda.

In particular, neither SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 3.1 SP4 or the recently GA’d SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence 4.0 SP2 (Patch 6) support Microsoft Internet Explorer 9.0 (IE9).  Customers who crossed their fingers and tried IE9 have reported compatibility issues.  Support for Mozilla Firefox 4.0-7.0 and Apple Safari 5.0 is less critical to most enterprises; however, I often use these browsers for an alternate perspective when isolating Web Intelligence or other browser-based issues.

In the past, organizations tended to stagnate on obsolete browsers like Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 (IE6), which is still supported by XI 3.1 SP4 but thankfully not BI4.  Much of the stagnation was due to Microsoft’s “Vista problem” and the fact that enterprises everywhere remained on 10-year-old Windows XP while waiting for Microsoft to redeem itself with Windows 7.

Today’s world is different.  Organizations are replacing their aging PCs with modern replacements that come preloaded with Windows 7 and Internet Explorer 9.0.  Depreciating the browser is difficult, if not impossible. XI 3.1 SP5 is in the pipeline and BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 (FP3) will go into ramp-up in January 2012.  So far, SAP has been silent on when IE9 support is coming to either platform, but perhaps we can hope for an early Christmas present.  Until Santa arrives, be sure to stick to the supported browsers.

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