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BusinessObjects Instance Management

Hello Folks,

Instance Management in BusinessObjects is the topic of discussion for this blog. Let us see more in detail about reports and program objects Instance management further.

Instance is an entity which is created whenever a report or a program objects is scheduled to run. Up on creation these instances are stored in Output File Repository. To get the right information as on when required, it is always important managing and backup those reports and instances as they contain organizational data.

Instance management plan enables us to

     –  Identify scheduled reports and their frequency of schedule
     –  Retention period till which instances need to be maintained
     –  Size of each report instance and the amount of disk space required
     –  Necessity to keep organizational sensitive data (Instance cleanup)
     –  Schedule destinations

We can manage instances by setting instance limits at below levels

  • Global limits (If it is required to set the limit throughout all the public folders and sub folders, we need set it at global level. We need to turn on inheritance to cascade the settings to sub folders and the objects.
  • Folder limits (This will help us to set the limits for all the objects contained within the folder)
  • Object limits (Applying limits to specific object then we need to set it at object level. This will override the limit set at folder level.



And based on below criteria’s

  • Number of Instances

                    This will enable us delete excess instances when there are more than N instances of the object.

  • User/User group

                    This will help us to set the limits per user/user group on a particular object.

  • Number of Days

                    This will enable us delete excess instances when the age of the instance exceeds N days.


Key benefits

     – Reduced File Repository Store backup size. This is a huge benefit as this backup is taken on daily basis.
     – User need not search for a huge list of instances.
     – By controlling the number of instances we can minimize the amount of space required in Output File Store

Hope this blog is informative. Thanks for reading!

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  • Hi Mani,

    Thanks for the information. Can you please let us know if we need to restart any service after setting the limit. I have set the limit on global level but its not working.



    • Hi Masood,

      There is no need to restart any services. It should start working 4am everyday (default time).  Are you still facing any issues?

    • Hi Patrick,

      It will count both failed and successful instances.  The limit being applied is on the instances, regardless of failed or successful.

      It simply wipes out the excess history until it reaches the limit set.  By 4am, which is the default time, the instance clean-up will initiate.

    • Hi Teresa,

      By making sure you have the first option ticked i.e. "Inherit From Parent Folder" will answer your query.

      To get to Assign Security, In CMC, you right click the sub folder and it will list all available options- you select User Security, then select Principal (the user or user group) and select Assign Security- then you reach the option whether to or not inherit from the parent folder.


      So now lets say if you set Instance limits on All folders (the parent- top folder), and there are sub folders within it, say there is a sub folder called Test_Folder (child) under All folders, then on Test_Folder, you can simply follow the steps and the screenshot as I have mentioned, whether to or not enable the folder inheritance.

      • Thanks Rahul for your answer.

        The problem we have is that subfolders have different security access than the parent, so for example the top folder is accessible by everyone, but some subfolders have some restrictions because they information they have. In order to create different access level we unselect the flags you mentioned. Does this mean that you can not use cascade limit if your children have different security requirements? as far as I can see the flag is used in both cases: security and limit.

        If that is the case and we have some subfolder with not inheritance, will the cascade limit still work for the rest of subfolders or will it be broken globally. 

        Thanks in advance,


        • You are right Teresa.

          As Inherit from parent folder is the only option to flow down the settings to the child folder from parent; so in your case - you'll have to explicitly right click the folder concerned, click Limits, and set the desired instance rule on those select folders.  This will be a tailor-made solution in your case.

    • Hi Shalini,

      Could you please give some more clarity on how are you setting the limit on number of reports per user using Instance Manager?

      Did you mean manually deleting instances from Instance Manager?

      • Hi Rahul, Sorry for the delay in reply. We have a non-functional requirement from the customer that user should not create more than 100 reports. I'm not sure if it is possible through instance manager.

        • Restricting user by having him/her to NOT create N number of reports is not possible anywhere in BO.  If you meant, that the user should not create more than N instances of a report then this is possible only through limits (if you want it automatically) and not through instance manager - unless you want to manually do it in Instance Manager by deleting selectively.

          Thank you, Rahul

  • Hi Rahul,

    Do you know where you can set the time when server cleans the excess of instances ?

    You mentioned 4 am as a default time, i would like to modify it.


    • Hi Zakaria,

      At the moment, I am several days away from server but its in the registry,and from what I remember

      HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\SAP BusinessObjects\ Suite XI 4.0

      but if you search near this, you will get the paramter.

      You will also find the batch size and other settings.

      Let me know if it helps.

  • Hi Mani, Everyone,

    Thanks for the wonderful blog.

    1) Does this limit apply to the "Recurring" Instances as well ?

    2) What type of instances are applicable while applying the limits (Success, Failed, Pending, Paused, Recurring) ?

    3) When we keep the limit to N, it means the LATEST N will be retained, isnt it ? the OLDER instances will be deleted, isnt it ?



  • Hi Mani,

    I have a requirement, In Public folder, every user should only see instances of reports scheduled by themselves but not by others.

    Is this type of access is possible in public folders.?

    Please help.


  • Hi Mani,
    hi all others,

    I'm struggeling with the folder limits and access right to amend them.
    Is it possible to deny the amendment of limits which are set by Administrator ?
    The goal is to set a "master" limit which can't be changed by others.


  • Hi

    We use BO 4.1 at my work.

    We have around 600 instances of reports running in BO production server.
    All of these reports have one username/password combination.

    Now, we have a need to change the database connection/password to something other than the existing one.

    Is there a global place where i can change the password and that will get updated in all the scheduled runs or do i need to go to each and every instance and manually change the password?



  • Hi

    I'm back again with one more question 🙂

    Is there any way to export "details of BO instances" (paused, recurring, success, failed, pending, running) in to Excel or csv file using BO CMC?





  • Hi Mani,

    Thanks for providing the solution for changing db connection/username/pwd for BO recurring runs.

    My bad, we use same username/pwd to schedule all recurring runs.

    It is the Database Server which we change during each upgrade of our Application. (e.g ARG7P2 to ARG8P2).

    During our last upgrade we ended up changing this server name for every single scheduled recurring.


  • Hi Mani

    Some of the reports have instances (see the below pic) for years and now the Business users wants to archive/save these instances to a shared drive. Is there any option in CMC to save these instance files to a shared drive or do we need to write a custom program, please let me know.



  • Hi there

    I have deleted old instances of reports but the physical files are not removed from the filestore server. I deletd them by changing the limits on the folders. Is there another cleanup process required?
    Do I need to restart the server??

    If I delete the report, it and its instances disappear from the BO Server and the filestore, however if I set the instance limits the instances disappear from the BO system but not from the filestore? The reason for setting the limits is to make space on the server but it’s not helping.

    We are using BO 4.1 SP5.



  • Hi Mani,

    I understand this is an old post, but have noted that you have also responded very well to the queries others have asked. I have a couple...

    Bit of a silly question this one, but just to make sure, when i set limits at folder level, this only applies to the instances generated by recurring reports not the report itself?

    Will limits also apply to recurring jobs?

  • We have identified around 8.5 Million Failed instances on our platform and also found that these instances belong to a small set of reports, SAP engineer asked us to delete the reports which will automatically clean up the instances from FRS and also will correct the metadata on CMS DB but we would like to know if this creates any performance impact on the Platform. We are interested to know how different is this process from running the Instance deletion script. We can estimate the performance impact if we know the backend process which runs to clean up these instances when we delete the respective reports


  • Hi Mani,

    I have a question, if I set the limit for instances by object let's say no more than 300 this automatically will delete the excess, but what is the criteria of the process to delete these instances? I mean, does it take the ones under failed/completed/pending status off or it takes the old ones no matter what the status is? Since I have users with many recurrent instances and most of them are old ones I don't want these to be deleted because they are critical for the business.


    Thanks in advance.