Week 4 OpenSAP BI Clients – IDT, Crystal, Web Intelligence – Like TechEd at Your Desk
Week 4 of BI Clients and Applications on SAP HANA – James Rapp, Foroohar Rafiei and Harjeet Judge covers the Information Design Tool, SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence and SAP Crystal Reports for Enterprise. Quite honestly I am not using these tools so it was somewhat of a new experience for me. I do use Crystal Reports 2013 but as you learn in the course Crystal Reports for Enterprise is recommended against HANA.
Something I have been struggling with – should I do the homework before I do the weekly assignment test? I confess, right after the last lecture and quiz, I immediately take the assignment/weekly test. I guess my concern is I’ll spend too much time on the homework and not the assignments. However, I do feel the homework would make me better prepared for the weekly test.
How long did the homework take? It took me about 4 hours to complete the three exercises. The first exercise is long on the Information Design Tool. The second exercise is on Web Intelligence and doesn’t take too long. The final exercise is Crystal, but I struggled getting things to work there – more on that later.
If you are new to these tools, my take is this the materials for this week and the homework may not be enough for you, depending on your background- my take only. To further your learning, I recommend taking courses in the Learning Hub at training.sap.com. That said I must thank the SAP team who prepared this course and the homework materials – they are very detailed and you can follow along, even if you are not that experienced. That part is really amazing. Which is why I think of this as a TechEd hands-on session at your desk.
The best part about this course is that it is free, and you can take it at any time. It does expose you to the features of the tools and the current capabilities.
Information Design Tool Exercise
I found the Information Design Tools easy to follow and had no issues. But it reminded me how much SQL I have forgotten:
As you go along and view the SQL later in the exercise it gets more involved:
COALESCE( F__1.Axis__1,F__2.Axis__1 ),
Table__2.”SUPPLIER_COUNTRY” AS Axis__1,
SUM(Table__2.”NETAMOUNT”) AS M__2
( Table__2.”AT_BUYER_POSTALCODE”=Table__2.”AT_BUYER_POSTALCODE” )
FULL OUTER JOIN
Table__1.”SUPPLIER_COUNTRY” AS Axis__1,
SUM(Table__1.”QUANTITY”) AS M__2,
SUM(Table__1.”TAXAMOUNT”) AS M__3,
SUM(Table__1.”NETAMOUNT”) AS M__4
( Table__1.”PRODUCTID”=Table__1.”PRODUCTID” )
ON ( F__1.Axis__1=F__2.Axis__1 )
Web Intelligence Exercise
We did a data tracking exercise, query drill, navigation paths, input controls and more.
I thought I had a made a mistake on the drill path exercise, but then for fun I used Mobile BI against and then I could see I succeeded:
I also tend to forget how well Web Intelligence works with SAP Mobile BI. Note that Mobile BI is not part of the exercises but you can simply save your Web Intelligence document to a Mobile category in the BI Launchpad.
Crystal Reports for Enterprise on HANA
I was looking forward to getting this to work on HANA, but I kept getting JDBC errors. Fortunately you can connect using the OLAP connection but even there I had to change the password in the CMC to get this working.
The other part of the exercise I couldn’t get to work was promoting the Crystal Report to Lumira Server by logging on to the HANA XS engine. I kept getting this:
Since I wasn’t too concerned about that use case and the exercise said this will be changed in the future, I decided to leave it. For sure I could have made a mistake.
I encourage you to do the exercises and if you need to take a break, be sure to “suspend” your CAL instance.