Wednesday Jun 25, 2014

P6 Links appearing as text instead of HTML hyperlinks

With the latest version of the P6 Analytics catalog, the P6 Link fields (those fields that are used to launch P6 Action Links directly from Oracle Business Intelligence analysis) are appearing as text fields as opposed to a normalized hyperlinks. This is caused by the fact that the default data type for these fields are text instead of HTML. There are a few options that can be taken in order to correct this behavior and have the P6 Link fields appear as hyperlinks in analysis. The first option is to change the P6 Link field on an analysis by analysis basis. This is very time consuming and not very practical, especially if these fields are used in a lot of analysis. The Second option (Recommended) is to change the data type to HTML and save this as the system wide default for this field. This option is also a bit tedious because you have to do this for most of the subject areas, but once it's done, there is nothing else to do.

Follow these steps to change the data type for these fields:

1. Create a new analysis that contains ALL of the P6 Links for a specific Subject Area

2. For each link, choose Column Properties,

3. Select the Data Format tab, and check the "Override Default Data Format" option. Change the "Treat Text as" to HTML from the drop down box.

4. After Step 3 is complete, at the bottom right of the Properties window, there is a button to the left of the "Ok" button called "Save as Default". Click this button, and choose "Save as the system-wide default for <whichever Link you are changing the properties for>".

5. Click "Ok" on the Properties Window to save this setting as the default for this field system wide. Repeat steps 2-5 for the remaining fields in this Subject Area. Now anytime you add this field to an analysis, it should appear as a hyperlink.

6. Repeat Steps 1-5 for each subject area.

Friday Jun 20, 2014

Star Schema Table Descriptions

In the P6 Reporting Database STAR schema there are several acronyms on the tables. In this blog we will give a high level description of some of these tables and what the acronyms represents. In each description there will be key words you can use to search and find more information about the specific data warehousing terminology.


Staging Tables

_DS, STG, _%S 

These tables are used during the ETL process and is the first stop from some data being pulled from the P6 Extended schema.  These are overwritten during each ETL run.


Dimensions
_D

These are the foundation Dimensional tables that are used with P6 Analytics.  During the ETL process these are repopulated each time. For more information search on Dimensions and Facts, high level a dimension contains information about a specific object.  For example, Project (w_project_d), this table will contain information about Project - Project Name, Description, Dates, etc.


Facts

_F

These _F tables are the foundation Fact tables that are used with P6 Analytics.  These are also repopulated during each ETL run.  For information search on Data warehouse Facts. An example is (w_activity_spread_f), and this fact table with activity spread data contains fields like costs and units.  An exception are the Fact tables which contain History in the name.  These are NOT repopulated each ETL run.  These capture the historical records in the pre-defined intervals. History can be captured on the Project, WBS, or Activity level. 


Historical Dimensions

_HD

Historical dimensions represent our Slowly Changing Dimensions tables.  SCD's capture changes over time. These are NOT repopulated during each ETL run. The historical values are saved and stored to represent when this row was valid.  For example, w_project_hd, say you changed the project name.  There will be a row representing what the project name was originally, and the period start and finish range of when that was the project name.  On the next ETL run a new row will be inserted with the new project name and a period start date so you can determine as of which date this was the most recent record. 


Historical Facts

_HF

Historical fact tables were added as part of the Slowly Changing Dimension implementation and represent in a similar nature the storing of historical fact data. Similar to the _HD tables these rows are NOT repopulated during each ETL.  They do however act like the _HD tables in that a row will represent each change captured for this fact row. For example, changing of a cost on an activity. These differences can be captured during ETL runs and will have the similar period start and end dates so you can determine when this value was the current record. _HF and _HD will not be automatically populated for all project data. These need to be opted in, by setting the project to Activity level history.  Please plan accordingly before doing so, check the P6 Reporting Database Planning and Sizing guide as this will have a long term effect on the size of your Star Schema.  


Internal Usage 

ETL_

Tables with ETL_ are used for processing events such as expanding out and populating dynamic codes or capturing process related information. Generally these are not used for reporting  as most serve an internal purpose.  An example is the ETL_PROCESSMASTER table which captures a row and result for every ETL run, or ETL_PARAMETERS which captures the settings supplied from the configuration setup.  Other tables contain metadata and mappings.   
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