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SAP Analytics Cloud for BW Customers #ASUG Webcast Recap

This was a webcast from yesterday

Don’t forget to join these upcoming webcasts:

February 21 BI: What’s new in SAP BI4.2 SP7

February 26 BI: Enabling SAP Analytics Cloud for SAP BusinessObjects BI customers

February 28: #askSAP Call: SAP Analytics 2019 Strategy and Roadmap

March 7 BI: What’s New in SAP BOBJ Web Intelligence 4.2 SP07

March 26 BI: Hybrid Analytics and Analytics Hub – Latest Developments

March 27 BI: Influence of Agility and Big Data Principles to BW/4HANA Architecture

March 28 BI: Overview of Latest BI Features in SAP Cloud Analytics

You can watch the replay of the webcast here

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From SAP:

Many SAP customers have been consolidating and transforming their data for years using SAP Business Warehouse (BW). SAP Product Manager Eric Yew walks you through end-to-end best practices with SAP Analytics Cloud integrating with SAP BW. This webinar will walk you through technical requirements and pre-requisites for data connections, technical overview on support of BW query features, best practices and tips on Story performance, BW query design, and more! A quick update on roadmap will also be provided.

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Source: SAP

Anything in the future is subject to change

Technical overview: Backend version pre-requisites

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Source: SAP

Supported versions are shown above

Key points – for listed versions in the slide, and blue font, encourage update to latest SP

There may be additional SAP notes you may be required to implement, specific to SAC

Encourage everyone to look at SAP Note 2541557 and run BW note analyzer to run and analyze SAP BW sytems

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Source: SAP

Questions from customers – what is the best way to plan ahead, SP, based on upcoming roadmap features

Should start planning version upgrade as soon as possible

There are upcoming features relating to SAC with BW integration that require a baseline

If you are on BW7.5 minimum baseline will start with SP16, GA in September this year

BW/4HANA 2.0 is planned for GA end of February

See SAP Note 2715030 – outlines dependencies 6 months in advance

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Source: SAP

SAC is more flexible with BW support with Data Import

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Source: SAP

SAP recommends HANA 2.0 – ensure compatibility

Technical overview: Data connectivity options

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Source: SAP

Two different options to connect to BW

Left – live connectivity – talks to BW in best manner when understanding metadata concepts; no data replication

Data is kept safe behind firewall; data security is seamless

On right – data import – data is being replicated and stored securely in SAC – can establish a scheduling job

Use for when live connect cannot achieve such as planning or predictive use cases

Need to model in SAC and think about authorizations as the BW authorizations do not transfer

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Source: SAP

Live connectivity – talks to SAP directly

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Source: SAP

CORS- above shows the different interaction points

Web browser handles the work in terms of sending the requests from BW system

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Source: SAP

Accessing data beyond the firewall, in case VPN is not available.

“Starbucks” scenario

Live connectivity to BW is possible via reverse proxy in DMZ

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Source: SAP

Need to be on a specific version of SAP Netweaver

Check out the guided playlist links:

https://www.sapanalytics.cloud/guided_playlists/live-data-connection-sap-bw-live-cors-icm-script/

https://www.sapanalytics.cloud/guided_playlists/live-data-connection-sap-bw-native-cors-unified-connectivity/

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Source: SAP

Import from BW queries and InfoProviders

Relies on on-premise components – HANA cloud connector (acts as a secure VPN tunnel) and cloud agent (establishes data connections to BW system and manage query executions)

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Source: SAP

It is recommended that the SAPCP cloud connector, SAP Analytics Cloud agent, and the SAP JCO are installed together on a dedicated server, and not a personal computer. This helps to ensure that multiple users can use an import data connection without experiencing slowness or downtime. (source: SAP)

Links:

SAP Analytics Cloud Agent Simple Deployment Kit

Enable SAP Analytics Cloud for data acquisition from on-premise systems | SAP Blogs

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Source: SAP

HANA calc view generated from a BW query; make sure you do a validation check on calculation view

From SAP:

There are two ways of creating SAP HANA views for BW objects: From the BW system or from SAP HANA Modeler. Although they present a number of differences, both approaches can be recommended in equal measure.

Generating SAP HANA views from the BW system is recommended if:

you mainly use the BW Enterprise Data Warehouse layer and plan to execute queries directly on the data models, without OLAP functions.

you want the SAP HANA view to be automatically adjusted when changes are made in BW

you want the SAP HANA view to be part of the BW transport system

you want SAP HANA users to be automatically assigned SAP HANA privileges

you want CompositeProviders or queries to be used for SAP HANA views

you want to access the near-line storage or use non-cumulative key figures

However, importing BW objects from the SAP HANA Modeler is recommended if:you mainly use SAP HANA Modeler and your own ETL tools

the content package can be individually configured for each object

you want to keep changes made to the generated SAP HANA view after a re-import

Technical overview: Supported BW query concepts

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Live connections offers the strong integration with BW query features and authorizations

Data import – BW OLAP engine is not tied to the data

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Source: SAP

Metadata support for BW query concepts

Live connections understands dimensions, string, date, measures

Data import – can import into a model, but may need to do extra work in data prep so right data item is mapped

SAC does not support TIMS time concept – live connection cannot leverage it for a time series chart; data import – cannot be acquired as time concept

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Source: SAP

As you can see, display and navigation attributes are supported

Live connections supports more “exotic” features, including cell editor calcuations

You cannot import a query with 2 structures; data import UI will block you from opening

Dynamic filters are supported in Live (default values in BEx Query)

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Variable support; pay attention to hierarchy version variables as part of prompting; SAC does not have ability to show version information in chart builder

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Selection option for complex filtering

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Variants are supported for live connections; consumptive workflow only

If need to edit, go back to on-premise tool

Merge/unmerge for technical ID for prompt (live connection)

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Live connections supports BEx conditions

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Display of how KPI’s are shown – supported for live connection

Best practices consideration: Tips and tricks

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Query read – determine how often the OLAP processor reads during an SAP end user navigation

– hierarchy in table visualization, user clicks on parent node to click out – BW reads from database – fetch on demand based on user navigation

SAC – recommends – query to read when navigate

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Source: SAP

Leverage existing queries, follow existing best practices on query design

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Source: SAP

Use can configure scaling options as shown above

Configured scaling factors in query are transferred to SAC – only happens for supported scaling options shown above

If scaling factor is unsupported, SAC will display raw number; may lead to confusion

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Source: SAP

If internet connection is slow, or BW server is on peak load, these are factors impacting story design experience

Enhanced story building performance option – feature in live model; like pause-refresh capability (Analysis Office) – can suspend query interactions while making modifications to chart and visualizations

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Source: SAP

Take in consideration to hide unnecessary metadata

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Organize and group common dimensions together to help content creators

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Navigate to Sys Admin of SAC to configure number of parallel sessions you would like to allow

Could see gains in performance improvement

Does introduce additional overhead on BW resources

Works on a per user basis; discuss this with your BW admin team

Integration road map with SAP BW

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Data blending – – support 2 forms – allow business users to create blended visualizations based on post-aggregated data

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Browser based blending based on live/imported data – do limit the data volumes – 6MB of uncompressed data

If larger volumes, look at SDI based blending

Check the latest SAP Notes

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Planned for Q1/2019

Support native data type date

Allows for filtering on data – slider approach, fixed range

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Planned for Q2/2019; planned for BW 7.5/BW4HANA

Analyze how an initial value is effected over increase/decrease

Links: What’s New in SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom Release 2017.19 | SAP Blogs

What’s New in SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom Release 2018.20 | SAP Blogs

What’s New in SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom Release 2018.20 | SAP Blogs

What’s New in SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom Release 2018.20 | SAP Blogs

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Source: SAP

Planned for BW 7.5/BW4HANA

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Planned for Q2 support

Can leverage BW lat/long features

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Supports BW/4HANA 2.0 BW75 SP6

Linked analysis filtering based on multiple dimensions

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Supported today for table display and visualizations

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Focused on improving data import connectors

Question & Answer

Question Response
what type of queries are a source for live connection? default infoprovider query ? transient query? e.g. do I need to create a query on an infoprovider or is there a default query I can leverage? The drop down list of queries appears to include transient queries but not default queries Live connectivity connects to the BW Queries. the Default Query on the InfoProvider is not supported.
lot of existing customer use SAP BusinessObjects BI, What is the positioning of SAC vis a vis BO BI? and also is there a migration path available / planned? SAP Analytics Cloud is a pure cloud offering combining BI, Predictive, and Planning – so there is no 1-1 comparison because as part of the on-premise BI offering you don’t have such offering.
Currently there is content migration planned.
Which datasources are available in SAC from a BW connection? for example: Infoproviders, BW queries, etc….. SAC support BW Queries for the Live Connection.
For Import BW Queries and InfoProvider are available.
In the case of having a calculation view created from a BW object, a connection between HANA and SAC would have to be created? Instead of using the connection between BW and SAC Thats correct. You would then point to the SAP HANA system.
Is it recommended to have a Live connection and an Import connection created to the same BW system in order to support different scenarios? It really depends on your overall requirements. For sure it is a scenario that is possible
1.How much data can we import to SAC with import connection. in a single step currently you can upload around 80.000 rows but it also depends on your backend configuration as 80.000 rows could be a large number of cells and you might have a lower number of cells configured using the safety belt in BW
Is there any way we can transform the dimension types when building the model in live connection? SAC is not recognising time dimension from a BW query, thus we are unable to create a time series chart. Is there any other way? Full date dimension support is planned as part of Q1
Can you do HANA modeling and create Calc views on top of SAC tables? Are you referring to “SAC Tables” meaning the model that you created in SAC ? If so – the answer is No.
Will changing of measures also apply to calculations made in SAC. So, you could combine BW measures and calculations and change the order of measures? its about changing the order or displaying measures in a table for example. its not changing the actual measure.
so a calculation you created in SAC should not be impacted
When will the smart predict feature supported? only working on concept for HANA Live connection; today available for import connections
We are working with an Analysis for Office workbook, adding data models from SAC, we are not able to consume BW and HANA models, only native models, this is going to change in the future? that is planned for a future release

More subsequent Q&A from another related webcast:

Q: Which BW 7.5 SP is working with SEM BCS

A: SAP BW 7.5 SP8 and SAP Note 2541557

Q: if a user manually imports data from an excel file on his desktop into SAC, is the data transfer to the SAC then safe?

Q: Hi there. For the live connection. BW is currently using a certificate that is self-certified. When connecting from BW to SAC this comes up and does not play well with our network security. If possible we would want to change this to. Do you know how we go about changing this and the best practice around it? As a workaround for now we are using Firefox to connect to SAC which is working in this manner.

Q: If we upload data from a BW infoprovider, can we import data with a delta mechanism into SAC instead of each time uploading the full cube content?

Q: Can I combine/blend a live model on a BW query with an import data model in one story?

Q: Is it possible to expose BW WAD into SAP Analytics Cloud..?

A: Application design is being built into SAP Analytics Cloud per https://help.sap.com/doc/00f68c2e08b941f081002fd3691d86a7/2019.1/en-US/25a3b8d145864d7faf7447b916e492e7.html so WAD is not consumed.

Q: Is it possible to expose BW WAD into SAC..?

A: Application design is being built into SAP Analytics Cloud per https://help.sap.com/doc/00f68c2e08b941f081002fd3691d86a7/2019.1/en-US/25a3b8d145864d7faf7447b916e492e7.html so WAD is not consumed.

Q: you mentioned smart discovery and smart insights features are not possible with live data connection. Is this correct? is it in the roadmap?

Different smart capabilities  first is planned for Q3/2019
Others later
Will work on HANA Live Connections first then BW

Q: My live connection to BW works well in Web, but the application IOS fail whit the connection, how can help me?

Q: How to schedule a stories in SAC(Not models)

A: Currently no way to generate an Instance of a Story which contains Saved Data as of a certain date. SAP Analytics Cloud stores data in the Model. APOS has an add on which might be interesting to you https://www.sapappcenter.com/apps/27794/apos-publisher-for-cloud#!overview

Q: are there any tools which allow you to trace the INA interface and extract the statement which is passed on to BW (or HANA)

A: For BW there is RSBITT per https://wiki.scn.sap.com/wiki/display/BI/Transaction RSBITT – InA Test Monitor
Q: Is there a plan to have on premise version of SAC?

A: No, SAP Analytics Cloud is a native cloud application. It does connect to SAP BusinessObject Business Intelligence Platform Universes.

What do you think?

 

Special thanks to Ingo Hilgefort for setting up the webcast and answering all the questions and Eric Yew for presenting

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