Archive for the ‘IDT’ Category

Creating Dynamic References in Universes

This is a guide to create easy dynamic references in a universe for easy dynamic date filtering in BusinessObjects. The following steps are for universes based off HANA Analytic and Calculation Views. 

A common ask from a client is automation, and we are definitely fans. It’s preferable to write a report once, then not have to touch it again, a la the old Ron Popeil adage: “Set it and forget it.” There are many Web Intelligence documents that are time-based analyses. Perhaps a year-to-date (YTD) report that compares the current year over the previous three years. Without some kind of dynamic data in there for filtering, we are stuck constantly updating the date. If this report is also on a scheduled burst to users, updating the date range becomes a monthly (even weekly) activity. Who wants to keep doing that?

We recently implemented a solution with one of our clients that offers a plethora of dynamic date options to use as filters in Web Intelligence. Given that we can filter a data dimension by another object in the query, we can use these dynamic dates to always return the appropriate dates regardless of when they are run/bursted. Let’s walk you through the steps to create them in a universe via the Information Design Tool (IDT).

    1. When is now? 
      The first step is to create the current date. Organizationally, we are going to create additional folders and sub-folders to make it easier for our users. Let’s create a few folder and sub-folders:


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About the Authors 

Jason Kehl

Jason is a Manager in Protiviti’s Data Management & Advanced Analytics practice. A multi-year veteran of SAP products, he has helped customers move from BEx Queries into HANA powered BusinessObjects, upgrade environments, security and administration, and build various reports and dashboards. Jason is proficient on SAP BW, Business Explorer queries, Web Intelligence, Information Design Tool, Universe Design Tool, Lumira, HANA modeling, BusinessObjects administration, security and upgrades. He has also spoke at numerous ASUG and SAPinsider events.


Russ Cohen

Russ is a senior consultant in Protiviti’s Data Management & Advanced Analytics practice with a strong business and technological background in SAP HANA modeling, Design Studio, Lumira, Web Intelligence, and Information Design Tool. Russ is familiar with and has worked on multiple databases including HANA, ECC, BW, as well as OLAP and relational databases. he is skilled in all stages of the development cycle: requirement analysis, design, development, testing, deployment and end-user training abilities.

Categories: HANA, IDT

Column-Level Security with Information Design Tool: Using Business Security Profiles to Secure Objects and Customize Reporting Experience

One of the new universe security features in Information Design Tool (IDT) is the Business Security Profile, which allows universe designers to assign column-level security on objects and apply profiles directly to users and groups. Business Security Profiles provide advanced and flexible object security, which is an overall improvement compared to the all-or-nothing approach with legacy Universe Design Tool.

Pros and Cons

The added flexibility means fewer universes to develop and maintain since you can achieve more with a single universe. I am particularly pleased that SAP included a distinction between “Create Query” and “Display Data” object security. This is a relatively simple security method with powerful possibilities.

There is no denying that all these new features (and the extra steps involved at every level) have greatly complicated the universe design process. The learning curve is steep, but I still find many of these features useful. Business Security Profiles are assigned directly to users and groups from the IDT Security Editor. I personally find this quick and easy, but it could pose a challenge to organizations with distinct admin and designer roles. While SAP still has some bugs to work out, the feature generally works as intended.

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Marshall Kelley About Marshall Kelley
Marshall Kelley is a business intelligence consultant specializing in SAP BusinessObjects tools and solutions. With Decision First, Marshall provides customized solutions for customers across all industries. He utilizes a wide-range of front-end BusinessObjects products and is experienced in BusinessObjects configuration, administration, and end-user training.

Categories: IDT