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Starting in BI4 Feature Pack 3, you can create a universe against the SAP ERP/ECC back end.  Follow the steps below.

For more detailed information and background I recommend Ingo Hilgefort’s Integrating SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform 4.x with SAP NetWeaver

Start > Programs > BusinessObjects > SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform 4.0 > SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform Client Tools > Information Design Tool

Create a new project for ERP Universes

Create a new project



Click Finish

Right click on project and select New > Relational Connection


Give the connection a name


Select SAP > SAP ERP 6 > SAP Java Connector (SAP JCo)



You will want to test the connection to make sure it is successful.

Click Next


In the function name wildcard field, enter BAPI_SFLIGHT* and click finish (this example will use the SFLIGHT ABAP examples)

Right click on new connection and click publish to repository


Create a new Data Foundation


Add the tables




You may be prompted to log on to your connection


Insert your table


Create a new Business Layer – see part 2

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  1. Ricky Li

    Hi Tammy,

    Today I tried this connection in IDT with BO version 4.0 SP5.

    1. First I can get the Infoset and SAP Query in IDT connection and Data Foundation.

    2. Then I created some new Infoset and SAP queries in ECC side

    3. and I refresh the connection in IDT, but I can’t read those new created InfoSet or SAP queries,

    I don’t know why or missing anything.

    Could you help me on this or could you give me some tips that why I cant read the updated infoset in IDT?



    1. Tammy Powlas Post author

      Ricky – the biggest mistake I’ve seen is not assigning the user groups back in ECC

      Perhaps you can post screen shots with your issue in the discussion forum?

      1. Adir Oren

        Hi Tammy,

        we have followed your steps

        after part 2, we want to see the universe with in the webi

        we we enter to the webi , we don’t see the universe

        any ideas what we need to do in order to view in in webi?


        1. Henry Banks

          Have you published the businesslayer from idt into the repository folders? 

          can you see the universe from the cmc > universes lookup?

          If it’s there, and you are connecting your webi client to the right system,  then the only way this content will be hidden from you is due to object or folder restrictions on your user or group.



        1. Tammy Powlas Post author

          Hi Murali – I think this is possible but I am not using ECC with SQL Server (we use Oracle)

          To be sure, I encourage you to post this question as a separate discussion thread in the Semantic Layer space.

          Thank you,


  2. Christopher Walstra

    Hi Tammy,

    Are there any performance concerns when connecting directly to SAP?  I have experienced some serious performance issues during data extractions from SAP into a BOBJ DW and am considering the above approach as an alternative.  Specifically, is there any concern with connecting to a transactional database, or is that risk mitigated by accessing an InfoSet instead of the transactional tables (e.g. VBAP) directly?  I am worried about the hit to the SAP system through this type of connection.



    1. Tammy Powlas Post author

      You should always consider performance – and if you are using an ECC InfoSet as your source then I recommend always running the InfoSet natively in ECC before running it through the universe.

      On the whole I recommend using small amounts of data.

      1. Christopher Walstra

        Thanks for your reply Tammy.  I agree that using small(er) amounts of data is preferred but there are some instances where it cannot be helped.  I suppose I was wondering if you could speak from experience whether or not there are performance issues that arise from connecting to a larger ECC InfoSet.  Are there any special considerations that need to be made when taking this route?  I suppose I am trying to better understand what scenario would necessitate this method of connectivity to your SAP data.


        1. Tammy Powlas Post author

          To be honest we do not allow any performance issues to make it to production.  If the InfoSet cannot be run in dialog mode in ECC in a test environment, it is not sent to production (therefore no universe)

          You can use this scenario for real-time operational reporting and it is convenient to see the “business layer” of the universe which makes it easier for users to report on rather than native SAP ERP tables.

          1. Henry Banks

            I love this statement  “we don’t allow performance issues to make it to production” ūüôā

            this truth just makes so much sense, but to operate like this is seemingly to breathe a rare & elusive oxygen!

  3. LLuis Rull

    Hello everyone and happy new year,

    Please, when connecting to an abap infoview, select-options are supposed to by inherited as parameters to filter the data shown in report, aren’t they?

    This is my case, I need to filter records according to values entered in select options (as I do when executing the query built from the infoset) but I can’t find this parameters in my Data Foundation.  What am I doing wrong?  Or what have I to do to send values from the IDT to the infoset or the query to filter records?

    I succesfully created a corresponding data foundation for each source but no luck with parameters.

    Thanks in advance


      1. LLuis Rull

        Hi friend,

        Check out the discussion ‘IDT with an SAP ERP Infoset source.  Select-options inherited as parameters?’ in SCN.

        Do you think question is clear?

        Many thanks.

        — LLuis Rull

  4. Asha Philip

    I Followed the steps for creating the universe.  It was going fine till I create the Business Layer.  For me the Business Layer is empty.  It is not displaying any Table fields.  Does this means that I am missing any authorizations.. Please let me know..

    Many thanks,


    1. Tammy Powlas Post author

      Yes, you will need access to ERP tables to do this. You can also do an SU53 on the ERP backend to check the missing authorizations.

      1. Asha Philip

        Thank you Tammy for the Response.. Yes I have authorizations for the SAP tables..I am able to see the data for these tables in SE11 and BAPI function modules in SE37.  I tried, many times.. The Business Layer is not having any contents.

    1. Surbhi Chugh

      Hi Asha and Philip

      I am facing the same problem where business layer is coming blank. I have executed the codes SU53, SE37, SE11 and all are giving accurate results in in function module. The Business layer is not displaying any table though I can see the data in data foundation layer.

      Please suggest.

  5. Mike Garrett

    From what I can see it is currently not possible to create a Universe directly against base (transparent) ECC tables. Is that correct? Are the only options Infosets, Queries, and functions?

  6. Saleem Shaik

    Currently we have few universe created with ECc system and we are planning to migrate ECC to on HANA do we need to worry anything here ?

    do we need to redesign universe with ECC on HANA ?

    1. Tammy Powlas Post author

      Saleem – I am not an expert in these areas, so I recommend creating a new question at

      On the surface, if you have HANA, why not report against the HANA views?  Is the universe still needed?  Performance may be faster without it.

  7. Saleem Shaik

    Tammy Powals РThat is our road map. But we have some BO reports runs through universe from CRM and we planning migrate CRM on HANA. So we planning to move universe connection so that these report will not break on go-live.


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