SAP BI Platform – Geek Tweaks
Hi Folks! Following my initial series of Geek Tweaks on SAP BusinessObjects Lumira today we will be seeing some Geek tweaks on our famous BI Platform. BI Platform at this form of writing is in version 4.2 currently on GA which promises lot of enhancements, improvements and new features which we have been waiting. You can read more about the new features http://scn.sap.com/community/bi-platform/blog/2016/01/11/sap-bi-42–bi-platform-new-features
Some of the tweaks explain the internals of the Platform and are for information purposes and some of them might be dangerous to try in your environment. You are responsible for performing any tweaks related to this.
“God does not make mistakes, the rest of us better take backup”
List all Internal BI Service
SAP BI Platform is built on principle of modular design and exposes its end points as Services so that other applications, clients can consume and communicate with them. Some of the internal SDK operations are also relay on web service to get their job done.
BI Platform uses the famous Apache Axis2 as its engine to process and expose the service. You can find the list of internal services used by the dswsbobje by using the following URL.
This can be also used to check if the service is running or not. If this particular service has issues, SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio may not be able to communicate with BI Platform.
There are some more other services to explore from your webapps folder which is found under <BOBJ Install>\SAP BusinessObjects\tomcat\webapps
Changing the location of Data folder
The Data folder that is present in SAP BI platform acts as a cache and is also responsible for storing the session. Each node in the cluster will have separate folder in the format of hostname_SIAport. In addition to it, some of the services will also have its own folder to store their content.
The data folder should be in a High speed IO disk with less latency for high performance of the BI system. By default, it is located at the following location <BOBJ Install>\ SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0\Data
You can mount a high speed storage on this location so that BOBJ can then take advantage of it. On Linux based deployment it can be done by using the mount command while in Windows it can be done with the power of mklink
mklink /J “<BOBJ Install>\ SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0\Data” “<Destination>”
Finding and changing PID of BOBJ Process
BOBJ platform consists of lot of processing servers which internally spins up numerous process each having unique PID (Process Identifiers). These PID are used to identify the process and start them. You can find the same of each process in your task manager running under the service account which is used to start SIA.
All of the process always run in the same PID. That is because it is easy to operate a process when its PID is known. BOBJ stores all of the PID files in the following location
<BOBJ Install>\SAP BusinessObjects\SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0\serverpids
Although changing them is not recommended, changing the PID on the process file and restarting SIA would result in the process running with the new PID.
Default Bootstrap BI Platform files
SAP BI platform has a set of default bootstrap files that are created during the install time. Those files hold configuration information and details about the deployment and the instance. The location of these configuration files is
<BOBJ Install>\SAP BusinessObjects\SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0\win64_x64
_boe_<nodename>.bootstrap contains the default deployment information in XML, internal Java process configuration and values for various key that the BI Platform uses.
_boe_<nodename>.dbinfo contains the encrypted database information that is used by BOBJ to access the DB
_boe_<nodename>.keyfile contains the encrypted key that is used by BOBJ to encrypt the artefacts in DB
Tweak Advance Configuration
BOBJ is a versatile platform with ever growing features, one of the important aspects of it is the fact that it’s modular and configurable. Hidden amidst of BOBJ files are some advance configurations which can be found at
<BOBJ Install>\SAP BusinessObjects\SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0\win64_x64\config
C:\Program Files (x86)\SAP BusinessObjects\SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0\win32_x86\config
The configuration folder contains a lot of configuration information including the version of BI Platform and other XML based configuration used by each process in BI Platform.
Locate and open the file webiProperties.txt document to find some rendering options that are set for WebI
Apart from this, there are quite a bit of configurations that cannot be covered in this post. Lookout for future posts on those advance configurations.
Starting the CMS in console mode
Console mode is used when the CMS is refused to start or when there are some issues with it which needs some advanced debugging. Often console is used by SAP to debug the CMS when an issue is raised to them. Using the console mode can cause irreparable data corruption or data loss.
More details on the console mode is given on SAP Note 1828536
Securing your BOBJ with FIPS 140-2
BOBJ has support for FIPS based encryption. FIPS stands for Federal Information Processing Standard which is standards that specify requirements for cryptography modules. If your company compiles with this standard, you can enable FIPS to leverage the option in BI Platform.
Simply add the switch –fips to the SIA command in SIA properties to enable fips.
FIPS mode is stricter and prevents old clients that does not follow this to connect to BI Platform. If you are using old clients this may not be an option for you.
That’s all folks in this posts, Keep lookout for more Geek tweaks and if you have any, feel free to post below in comments.
Thank you for the detailed information...
Thanks likar. Hope you liked it.
Good insight Shankar!
Thanks Shankar. Very nice information. Not aware of few things explained here.
I read your Lumira Geek tweaks earlier and got to know many new things there.
Happy to hear that Aravind. Do spread the word around and comment on what should be covered on future Geek Tweaks.
Shankar, in reference to your entry about listing the Internal BI Services:
We have SSL configured in our environments. I have found the configuration change needed to be able to get to the following link:
When I click on the link for one of the services, I get "Internal server error".
Would this be a normal response or is there something additional that needs to be configured for SSL access to the services?
Some of the services might not run by default and its normal. Check the port configuration for the dswsbobje to see if its running on correct port.
It should be. We have port 8080 disabled in the server.xml file for Tomcat and port 443 enabled. We don't have to specify the port in the url for the Web Service, CMC, or BI Launch Pad with this configuration.
Port 443 is enabled in the axis2.xml file for dswsbobje under webapps also. I had to do this in order to see the list of services when going to the url for the Web Service. I'm wondering if there is somewhere else that there needs to be a port change. Do you know of any?
FYI - FIPS is now the default setting in a new installation of BI platform 4.2 SP3 (due very soon)
That is indeed a new news Hendry. Thanks for it 🙂