The latest release of BusinessObjects, BI 4.0, is a major update in terms of new and enhanced functionality to the most popular business intelligence product suite on the planet. It includes a new semantic layer that now fully supports OLAP data sources natively and brings with it a feature-rich new universe designer known as the Information Design Tool (IDT).
Web Intelligence 4.0 has some powerful new hierarchy functionality in addition to a new graphics library that includes heat maps and many cool new charts. There is a new version of Crystal Reports Enterprise that integrates with BI 4 and the new IDT.
A subsequent update to BI 4 known as Feature Pack 3 (FP3) brings a new version of Xcelsius dashboards rewritten in Flex 4 and a new version of Explorer know as Exploration Views.
Improved integration with SAP also makes BI 4 a “must go to” release for any existing SAP ERP customer.
The new 64-bit architecture BI 4 also includes lots of new and improved enhancements with the core infrastructure providing better performance, monitoring and more seamless integration between all the various content providers (Webi, Crystal, Xcelsius, Explorer).
For an existing BusinessObjects user, some planning and preparation will be required. There is a new Migration Tool to move the contents from your old XI R2 or XI 3.1 repository to the new one. Desktop Intelligence (Deski) is no longer supported at BI 4 so if you have any Deski reports these will either need to be converted to Webi or rewritten. Existing universes can be brought across without changes and will run under BI 4 but if you want to make use of the new functionality of the IDT these universes will need to be converted or recreated.
InfoSol offers both services and education to help customers make a smooth and successful transition to BI 4. We recommend a three phased approach :
- Download BI 4 on to a test or sandbox environment and play with it to try out some of the new features and functions to help you with deciding which you want to include as part of your migration.
- Engage an experienced BusinessObjects consulting partner, like InfoSol, to perform a migration assessment and to help plan and deliver the migration services required.
- Attend BI 4 training and learn the new tools and features thoroughly
At IBIS 2012, InfoSol is offering several hands-on 3-day immersion boot camps to help you learn BI 4. The BI 4 Developer Boot Camp covers IDT, Webi 4, Crystal 4, Xcelsius Dashboards 4 and Exploration Views while BusinessObjects Administration Boot Camp covers all the system management and administration topics. There are also dedicated boot camps on Xcelsius (beginner and master) and Web Intelligence.
InfoSol also offers many of the new BI 4.0 SAP BusinessObjects Certified Training courses both on-site and at our public training center. Visit our Education Page for more.
2013-01-14 Update: New BI 4 Delta Training Available