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Simple Steps with SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP

In this post how to use the basic features of SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP and how to establish a data connection to our SAP NetWeaver BW system.

SAP NetWeaver Demo Model

Before we are going to look into more details of SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP, you should take a look at the information available on SCN for the SAP NetWeaver Demo Model:

  • SAP NetWeaver Demo Model
  • SAP NetWeaver Demo Model: BI Content

During the excercises in this book we will use the SAP NetWeaver Demo Model in SAP NetWeaver BW as the basis for the BEx queries and as the basis for our excercises.

BEx Queries for Activities

For the next set of activities we will use a BEx Query based on the Multiprovider oD_NW_M01 of the SAP NetWeaver Demo Model.

Screenshot_42

Fig: BEx Query Designer

The BEx Query (see Figure 4.1) contains the following characteristics in the Rows:

  • Calendar Year
  • Region

The BEx Query contains the following characteristics in the Free Characteristics:

  • Country
  • Sales Organization
  • Sold to Party
  • Product Category
  • Product Group
  • Product
  • Calendar Year / Month
  • Distribution Channel
  • Division
  • Sales Group.

In addition the BEx query is using the following Key Figures:

  • Net Value
  • Open Order Quantity
  • Product Costs
  • Transport Costs
  • Rebates

For the first set of excercises we will use this BEx query.

Now that we have clarified, which InfoProviders and BEx queries we will use, we can start now in the next section with our first steps with SAP Businessobjects Analysis, edition for OLAP by establishing an OLAP connection to SAP NetWeaver BW.

Establishing an OLAP Connection

SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP relies on the OLAP connections defined in your SAP BusinessObjects BI platform for the connection to SAP NetWeaver BW. So before we are going to learn more about SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP and the product capabilities, we will have to configure a new OLAP connection towards our SAP NetWeaver BW system.

  1. Open the Central Management Console via Start > All Programs > SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise XI 4.0 > SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise  > SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise Central Management Console (see Figure 4.2)
  2. Set the authentication method to SAP.

Screenshot_43

Fig: Central Management console Log on

3. Logon with your SAP credentials towards you SAP NetWeaver BW System.

SAP Authentication

The usage of Single Sign On for your OLAP Connection does require that your SAP BusinessObjects BI environment is configured with the SAP authentication. The setup and installation of SAP BusinessObjects BI 4 is not part of this book, as this is already covered in my book Integrating SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform 4.x with SAP NetWeaver available with SAP Press.

Screenshot_44

Fig: Central Management Console Home

4. Select the entry OLAP connections in the category Organize.

5. Select the button in the toolbar to create a new connection

Screenshot_45

Fig: OLAP Connection

6. Enter your system details according to  below Table

Element Name Description
Name Here you can enter a name for the OLAP connection. The name will then be shown to the user when creating a new workspace. Example: SAP BW
Description Here you can enter a description for the OLAP Connection, which will be shown to the user when creating a new workspace.           Example : SAP NetWeaver Demo InfoProvider
Provider Here you need to select the type of data source that you will be using. In our example: SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse.
Server Type Here you can choose between an Application Server (Server) or a Message Server (Group) based connection, depending on your SAP landscape
System Here you need to enter the three digits System ID of the SAP server. Example: IH1
Server Here you need to enter the full qualified server name of the application server. The entry Server is only shown, when you select the Server Type Server.Example: ihilgefort.dyndns.org
System Number Here you need to enter the two digit system number of your SAP server. The entry System Number is only shown, when you select the Server Type Server. Example: 01
Group Name Here you need to enter the name of the Logon Group configured for your SAP system. The entry Group Name is only shown, when you select the Server Type Group. Example: PUBLIC
Message Server Here you need to enter the full qualified server name of the Message Server. The entry Message Server is only shown, when you select the Server Type Group.Example: ihilgefort.dyndns.org
Client Here you enter the three digit client number of your SAP system. Example: 100
Language Here you need to enter the language code that you would like to use to establish the connection to the SAP system. Example: EN
Save Language The checkbox Save Language allows you to specify if the entered Language Code is being used always, or if the Preferred Viewing Local (configured in the user profile) is being used. When the option Save Language is activated, the entered Language Code is always used.
Authentication Here you can configure which type of Authentication is used. You can choose between Pre-defined, Prompt, and SSO. Pre-defined will require you to enter a user and password, which then will always be used. Prompt will result in a logon dialog for all users when using this OLAP connection and the users will have to enter the credentials manually. SSO will leverage the entered SAP credentials and requires the users to be logged on with their SAP credentials.

Table: OLAP Connection Details

7. Click Connect.

8.You will then be asked to enter your SAP credentials to logon towards the SAP NetWeaver BW system.

9. Click OK.

10. You are presented with the cube browser  showing all InfoArea from the SAP NetWeaver BW system. As we are going to use BEx queries based on the SAP NetWeaver Demo model, we are selecting the SAP NetWeaver Demo model.

Screenshot_46

Fig: Cube Browser

OLAP Connections

You can configure OLAP Connections to be based on the SAP NetWeaver BW system, on an InfoArea, on an InfoProvider, or on a single BEx query. When creating a workspace the user will always use a BEx query and depending on which level the OLAP Connection has been defined, will see a list of queries, or InfoProvider and queries, or even InfoArea.

For example if the OLAP Connection has been defined on the InfoProvider level, like in our previous steps, the user will see all BEx queries available for this InfoProvider.

OLAP Connections & Authorizations

Often people ask on which level they should define the OLAP Connections, and the answer depends to some degree also what has been defined in SAP NetWeaver BW already.

In case you are using naming conventions to limit access to InfoProvider and BEx queries already in SAP NetWeaver BW, a single OLAP Connection configured with Single Sign On (SSO) might be all that is needed. In case you are not using such naming conventions in SAP NetWeaver BW, you might have to create multiple OLAP Connections and use security settings in your SAP BusinessObjects BI platform to grant or deny access to certain OLAP Connections to your users.

  1. Set the Authentication to the option SSO.
  2. Click Save.
  3. Close the Central Management Console.

We know created an OLAP Connection in the Central Management Console (CMC) and can use this connection in combination with SAP Business Objects Analysis, edition for OLAP. In the next section we will use this newely created OLAP connection and create our very first workspace.

Creating your very first workspace

In this section we will now explore SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP and create our very first workspace. After we learned about the different areas of SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP, we will also review how the different elements from a BEx query are being mapped to SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP.

  1. Open the BI Launchpad via Start > All Programs > SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform 4.0 > SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform > SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform Java BI Launchpad.
  2. Logon with your SAP credentials and the SAP authentication for your SAP NetWeaver BW system.
  3. Select the menu Applications.
  4. Select Analysis, Edition for OLAP. In the next step you are presented with the list of available OLAP Connections.

Screenshot_47

Fig: OLAP Connections

5. select the connection we created previously pointing to your SAP NetWeaver BW system.

6. Click Next. You are now receiving the list of available BEx queries. You can also use tab Find to search for specific queries

Screenshot_48

Fig: List of BEx Queries

7. Select the BEx Query you created and click OK

  • The DATA panel provides you with the access to the connections and the available elements of your underlying data source as well as the properties for the used elements.
  • The LAYOUT panel allows you to define the layout of your cross tab by using simple drag and drop navigations and defining the elements in the Rows, Columns, and Background area.
  • The Cross tab area in your worksheet presents the actual data in form of a cross tab or a chart to the end-user.
  • You can have multiple sheets in a single workspace and you can navigate between the sheets by using the navigation below the cross tab.
  • The menu tabs Analyze, Insert, and Display give you access to all the features and functions of SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP.
  • The menus on the far left give you access to the save and export capabilities.

Sheets and Components

SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP allows you to have multiple sheets in a single workspace, but you can only have four components (charts, cross tabs) on a single sheet.

Before we are now starting to use SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP, let’s explore where the information defined in our BEx query, appears in our workspace.

Screenshot_49

Fig: Data Panel

The Data Panel provides you access to the underlying meta-data from the used BEx query. In the example shown above you can see that:

  • All Key Figures are listed together in a folder called Key Figures.
  • All characteristics are visible in the data panel and each characteristic has a set of elements. For example characteristic Country is shown here with the element Country for the characteristic itself but also the available hierarchies – here Country Hierarchy 1 – are available.
  • Display Attributes for the characteristics are shown below the characteristic itself – here shown for Sales Organization.

One of the not so obvious items is the different display options such as the key, short text, medium text, or long text. The option to switch between these display settings is part of the context menu (right mouse click) of the characteristic when displayed in the crosstab.

Screenshot_50

Fig: Menu – Display as

After we identified all the necessary meta-data from our BEx query, we are now ready for our first steps in SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP.

In the next couple of steps we use some of the basic functionality of SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for OLAP. We created a new workspace based on the BEx query we created previously, so our workbook shows:

  • Characteristic Calendar Year and Region in the Rows.
  • All Measures in the Columns.

Screenshot_51

Fig: Analysis Workspace

  1. Select characteristic Calendar Yearin the Rows.
  2. Drag and drop Calendar Year to an empty area to remove it from the Rows. You cal also use a right-click and select the menu Remove

Screenshot_52

Fig: Analysis Workspace Navigation

3. Now select Country in the Data Panel and open the list of available objects

Screenshot_53

Fig: Characteristic Country

4. Now drag Country on top of Region in the Rows so that it replaces Region

Screenshot_54

Fig: Exchanging characteristics

5. Select Country in the Rows and use a right-click.

6. Select the menu Display as to switch between the different options of showing the key or text for characteristic Country.

7. Select the option Text.

Screenshot_55

Fig: Analysis Workspace

8. Select the characteristic Region in the Data Panel.

9. Drag and drop Region to the Rows so that your cross tab displays first the Countries and then the Regions.

In addition to the simple drag and drop navigations you also have the menu options Move to, Move Before, Move After, and Swap with, which allow you to select a characteristic in the Layout Panel and move to the Rows, or Columns, or move before or after another characteristic, or swap it with another characteristic.

In this section we learned the basic navigation steps in SAP Business Objects Analysis, edition for OLAP and where the meta-data from our existing BEx  queries appears. In the next section we will learn the different options to filter the data.

Adding or removing characteristics and key figures

From the previous section our workspace now shows a cross tab with characteristic Country and characteristic Region in the Rows and all the available key figures in the Columns. In the next few steps we will learn about the different options of adding or removing characteristics and key figures to the cross tab.

Screenshot_56

Fig: Analysis Workspace

Adding Characteristics

Adding characteristics to the cross tab or to a chart is possible by using the menus and by a simple drag and drop navigation. We will start with the options in the menus first.

1. In Our existing workspace open the list of available items for characteristic Product.Screenshot_57

 

Fig: Characteristic Product

2. Select the entry Product.

3. On top of the list of available objects you also have a toolbar which allows you to add the selected characteristic to the Rows, Columns, or the Background area.

Screenshot_58

Fig: Toolbar

4. Click on the button to add characteristic Product to the Rows.

Screenshot_59

Fig: Analysis Workspace

Our cross tab shows now the key figures broken down by Country, Region, and Product.

5. Click on the  Undo button in the toolbar.

6. Now use the  button to add characteristic Product to the Columns.

The cross tab will show the key figures separated by each Product grouped by Country and Region.

Screenshot_60

Fig: Analysis Workspace

7. Click on the Undo button in the toolbar.

8. Now use the button to add characteristic Product to the Background Filter area.

Screenshot_61

Fig: Member Selector

The Member dialog will be shown on the left hand side and you can now define which members of characteristic Product are being used as filter values.

9. Select all members.

10. Click OK.

11. Click on the   Undo button in the toolbar.

So far we have used the buttons in the toolbar to add characteristic Product to the Rows, Columns, or Background area, but you can also use a simple drag and drop navigation.

1. In our existing workspace open the list of available items for characteristic Product.

Screenshot_62

Fig: Data and Layout Panel

2. Select the entry Product and drag characteristic Product into the Rows area.

You can – while keeping the mouse button pressed – move characteristic Product into the Rows and place it either on top of Country, or between Country and Region, or below Region, or you can replace Country or Region. You will be able to see the differences also in the video at the end of these steps.

3. Place characteristic Product into the Rows so that it replaces characteristic Region.

4. Select characteristic Region in the Data Panel.

5. Drag characteristic Region on top of the members of characteristic Product in the cross tab.

Screenshot_63

Fig: Analysis Workspace

Now characteristic Region will replace characteristic Product.

6. Select characteristic Product in the Data Panel.

7. Drag characteristic Product into the cross tab so that is being placed as the most inner characteristic, which means your cross tab will display the key figures by Country, Region, and then Product.

Screenshot_64

Fig: Analysis Workspace

So far we have seen that we can use the buttons in the toolbar of the Data Panel to add characteristics to the cross tab and that we can use a drag and drop navigation to the Layout panel or directly to the cross tab as well. Now let’s take a look how we can remove characteristics.

Removing Characteristics

In this section we will focus on the workflows that allow us to remove characteristics or key figures from the workspace. From our previous section we have a workspace that shows the characteristics Country, Region, and Product in the Rows and all the key figures in the columns.

Screenshot_65

Fig: Analysis Workspace

Removing characteristics is possible by using a simple drag and drop navigation, and by using the contextmenu in the Layout panel.

1. In our existing workspace select characteristic Product in the Rows of the Layout panel.

2. Use a right-click on characteristic Product to open the context menu.

Screenshot_66

Fig: Context Menu

3. Use the menu Remove to remove characteristic Product from the cross tab.

4. Now use the  Undo button in the toolbar.

5. Select characteristic Product in the Rows of the Layout panel.

6. Keep the left mouse button pressed and drag characteristic Product to an empty area.

Screenshot_67

Fig: Data Panel

With a simple drag and drop navigation you removed the characteristic from the cross tab.

7. Now select the first entry for characteristic Country in the cross tab.

Screenshot_68

Fig: Removing Characteristics

8. Use a right-click and select the menu Remove.

Screenshot_69

Fig: Filtered Characteristic

You will notice that the characteristic Country is still shown in the cross tab, but that the selected country has been removed. It is important to recognize that the menu Remove in the cross tab itself is acting like a filter. You can also notice that in the Rows, because characteristic Country is shown with a Filter symbol, indicating that there is a filter defined for the characteristic.

9. Now use the  Undo button in the toolbar.

Removing key figures from the cross tab is possible by using the Remove menu and by using the Filter option as part of the context menu.

1. In our existing workspace select the column for key figure Net Value.

2. Use a right-click to open the context menu.

3. Select the menu option Remove.

Screenshot_70

Fig: Context Menu

Screenshot_71

Fig: Analysis Workspace

Key figure Net Value is being removed from the cross tab and the filter symbol in the Layout Panel  also indicates that the list of available key figures has been filtered.

4. Select the entry Key Figures in the Columns.

5. Use a right-click to open the context menu.

6. Use the menu Filter by member.

Screenshot_72

Fig: Filter by Member

7. The Filter by Member dialog is being shown and you can now decide which of the available key figures should be included into the cross tab.

Screenshot_73

Fig: Filter by Member

8. Select the key figures Net Value, Transport Costs, and Product Costs.

9. Click OK.

Screenshot_74

Fig: Analysis Workspace

In this section we reviewed the different options to remove characteristics and key figures by using menus and simple navigations. In the next section we will take a look at the options to format the data.

 

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