New ways for backup, recovery and restore of Essbase Block Storage databases – part 2 by Bernhard Kinkel

After discussing in the first part of this article new options in Essbase for the general backup and restore, this second part will deal with the also rather new feature of Transaction Logging and Replay, which was released in version 11.1, enhancing existing restore options.

Tip: Transaction logging and replay cannot be used for aggregate storage databases. Please refer to the Oracle Hyperion Enterprise Performance Management System Backup and Recovery Guide (rel. 11.1.2.1).

Even if backups are done on a regular, frequent base, subsequent data entries, loads or calculations would not be reflected in a restored database. Activating Transaction Logging could fill that gap and provides you with an option to capture these post-backup transactions for later replay. The following table shows, which are the transactions that could be logged when Transaction Logging is enabled:



In order to activate its usage, corresponding statements can be added to the Essbase.cfg file, using the TRANSACTIONLOGLOCATION command. The complete syntax reads:

TRANSACTIONLOGLOCATION [ appname [ dbname]] LOGLOCATION NATIVE ENABLE | DISABLE

Where appname and dbname are optional parameters giving you the chance in combination with the ENABLE or DISABLE command to set Transaction Logging for certain applications or databases or to exclude them from being logged. If only an appname is specified, the setting applies to all databases in that particular application. If appname and dbname are not defined, all applications and databases would be covered. LOGLOCATION specifies the directory to which the log is written, e.g. D:\temp\trlogs. This directory must already exist or needs to be created before using it for log information being written to it. NATIVE is a reserved keyword that shouldn’t be changed.

The following example shows how to first enable logging on a more general level for all databases in the application Sample, followed by a disabling statement on a more granular level for only the Basic database in application Sample, hence excluding it from being logged.

TRANSACTIONLOGLOCATION Sample Hyperion/trlog/Sample NATIVE ENABLE
TRANSACTIONLOGLOCATION Sample Basic Hyperion/trlog/Sample NATIVE DISABLE

Tip: After applying changes to the configuration file you must restart the Essbase server in order to initialize the settings.

A maybe required replay of logged transactions after restoring a database can be done only by administrators. The following options are available:

In Administration Services selecting Replay Transactions on the right-click menu on the database:

Here you can select to replay transactions logged after the last replay request was originally executed or after the time of the last restored backup (whichever occurred later) or transactions logged after a specified time.
Or you can replay transactions selectively based on a range of sequence IDs, which can be accessed using Display Transactions on the right-click menu on the database:

These sequence ID s (0, 1, 2 … 7 in the screenshot below) are assigned to each logged transaction, indicating the order in which the transaction was performed.

This helps to ensure the integrity of the restored data after a replay, as the replay of transactions is enforced in the same order in which they were originally performed. So for example a calculation originally run after a data load cannot be replayed before having replayed the data load first. After a transaction is replayed, you can replay only transactions with a greater sequence ID. For example, replaying the transaction with sequence ID of 4 includes all preceding transactions, while afterwards you can only replay transactions with a sequence ID of 5 or greater.

Tip: After restoring a database from a backup you should always completely replay all logged transactions, which were executed after the backup, before executing new transactions.

But not only the transaction information itself needs to be logged and stored in a specified directory as described above. During transaction logging, Essbase also creates archive copies of data load and rules files in the following default directory:

ARBORPATH/app/appname/dbname/Replay

These files are then used during the replay of a logged transaction. By default Essbase archives only data load and rules files for client data loads, but in order to specify the type of data to archive when logging transactions you can use the command TRANSACTIONLOGDATALOADARCHIVE as an additional entry in the Essbase.cfg file. The syntax for the statement is:

TRANSACTIONLOGDATALOADARCHIVE [appname [dbname]] [OPTION]

While to the [appname [dbname]] argument the same applies like before for TRANSACTIONLOGLOCATION, the valid values for the OPTION argument are the following:

Make the respective setting for which files copies should be logged, considering from which location transactions are usually taking place. Selecting the NONE option prevents Essbase from saving the respective files and the data load cannot be replayed. In this case you must first manually load the data before you can replay the transactions.

Tip: If you use server or SQL data and the data and rules files are not archived in the Replay directory (for example, you did not use the SERVER or SERVER_CLIENT option), Essbase replays the data that is actually in the data source at the moment of the replay, which may or may not be the data that was originally loaded.

You can find more detailed information in the following documents:

Or on the Oracle Technology Network.

If you are also interested in other new features and smart enhancements in Essbase or Hyperion Planning stay tuned for coming articles or check our training courses and web presentations.

You can find general information about offerings for the Essbase and Planning curriculum or other Oracle-Hyperion products here; (please make sure to select your country/region at the top of this page) or in the OU Learning paths section, where Planning, Essbase and other Hyperion products can be found under the Fusion Middleware heading (again, please select the right country/region). Or drop me a note directly: bernhard.kinkel@oracle.com.

About the Author:

Bernhard Kinkel

Bernhard Kinkel started working for Hyperion Solutions as a Presales Consultant and Consultant in 1998 and moved to Hyperion Education Services in 1999. He joined Oracle University in 2007 where he is a Principal Education Consultant. Based on these many years of working with Hyperion products he has detailed product knowledge across several versions. He delivers both classroom and live virtual courses. His areas of expertise are Oracle/Hyperion Essbase, Oracle Hyperion Planning and Hyperion Web Analysis.

Disclaimer:

All methods and features mentioned in this article must be considered and tested carefully related to your environment, processes and requirements. As guidance please always refer to the available software documentation. This article does not recommend or advise any explicit action or change, hence the author cannot be held responsible for any consequences due to the use or implementation of these features.

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