Today's post comes to you from Brent at STR Software. If you could help out, it would be greatly appreciated, read on ...
First off, if you are not familiar with the term SIG, it stands for Special Interest Group.
OAUG facilitates a number of
SIGs to bring users together that share common or industries concerning certain Oracle products.
the BI Publisher SIG has been offline for a number of years and has not
been given the attention it needs to be a useful resource for members
of OAUG. Well...
I'm getting the band back together and I need your help!
SIG itself was formed to specifically focus on BI Publisher embedded in
Oracle EBS, Peoplesoft and JD Edwards. I have put together a survey
that is being emailed out
to previous members of the SIG to get thoughts on how the SIG can be of
service. That list is pretty old and YOU may not be on it, so if you
are interested in participating in the SIG (or even if you are not),
have a look at the link below and let me know
your thoughts. Our first official meeting will be at
Collaborate 15 in Las Vegas, hope to see you there!
With some help from the EBS folks, I recently re-ran a report on the latest EBS environment that stores the seeded content that we ship to customers. The document here (sorry,I had to zip it), lists the reports and their publisher templates. The vast majority are still based on an Oracle Reports extract rather than a publisher extract. I can not say that 100% of the reports have a Publisher template but its close. Hopefully it'll be a useful reference.
For more information on the reports check the specific products' documentation.
Gareth Roberts, founder of Virtuate, a consulting outfit based in New Zealand, came up with a doh! moment for me this week. He has been working with Publisher and trying to get images into his reports that are sitting behind a proxy server. This is all inside E Business Suite so no means to use the JVM proxy settings when the concurrent manager starts up. The support folks found the solution that I had completely forgotten about ... I have been away from EBS too long :(
When the concurrent manager (CM) starts a java based job (concurrent program) such as a Publisher one. It fires up a new JVM instance for it. In their wisdom the CM development folks left an 'options' field on the concurrent program definition where you can add JVM start up parameters.
So to allow Publisher to reach the proxied images adding the following to the options field:
did the trick. Why a Doh! moment? Because we also used the same field when we knew a report was going to be BIG and wanted to increase the memory heap available to that particular report at runtime i.e. -Xmx, -Xmn, etc. You can catch Gareth over on his blog waxing lyrical about all things EBS.
Pieter from support pointed out that if the application requires a proxy server then it can be done at
a more global level, that is via the context file using these CP
It's here, its been here for a while and I have only just found out! You can delivery your concurrent request outputs using BIP in EBS! You can print, email, fax, ftp! There is a caveat, you need to be on 12.1.3.
Being the lazy or perhaps smart cookie that I am, I'm not going to re-invent the blog post. Im going to blatantly link to friend of BIP, Brent Lowe's series of posts on the integration:
BI Publisher has always supported the EBS (Oracle E-Business Suite) security as one of the security model options. However, when it comes to the EBS data level security there was no straight forward way to support it before. And this has prevented many folks from moving to BI Publisher Enterprise Server for the EBS reporting even when we know that BI Publisher Enterprise Server would provide a great deal of benefits that come with it such as Data Model Editor, Layout Editor, Interactive View, just to name a few.
So, we added the EBS data level security support with the latest release of 18.104.22.168 to help our EBS customers to move to BI Publisher Enterprise Server and take advantage of such benefits.
I created a quick video demo for this new feature, if you are interested check the following video.
If you prefer reading or like to know more detail please continue.
What is the EBS Role Based Data Security?
If you are familiar with EBS you probably know the data level security comes with the responsibility and org_id combination. Each responsibility is associated with an org_id and the user selects a responsibility before running a report. And many of the EBS database views, which typically many of the EBS reports query against, use the org_id to filter the data. Therefore, based on your selection of the responsibility you will get a different set of the data for a single report. And of course this means that another user with a different responsibility would see a different set of the data from the one you would see.
And that’s exactly what we did with BI Publisher Enterprise Server with the release of 22.214.171.124. Now the user can select one of the responsibilities that are assigned to the user at the login time or from the My Account profile setting. Once the user select it BI Publisher automatically takes care of that by setting an application context passing the org_id when it opens a EBS database connection for the user.
How to Configure?
There is no extra configuration to enable the Role Based Data Security at all. Once you have integrated your BI Publisher Enterprise Server with your EBS by selecting ‘Oracle E-Business Suite’ as the security model and upload the EBS application dbc file, then BI Publisher will take care of all the security related stuff from there based on the user’s selection of the responsibility!
How It Works?
Right after you login to BI Publisher Enterprise Server with your EBS user id and password, you will be asked to select one of the responsibilities assigned to you. Once you select one then it’s all set. Any following database query will have the application context with the org_id that is associated with your responsibility.
1. Login to BI Publisher Enterprise Server with EBS user id and password.
2. When you login you’ll be asked to select one of the responsibilities you have. And BI Publisher will use this information to support the EBS role based security.
If you want to change the responsibility after you have logged in then you can go to ‘My Account’ dialog by clicking your username at the right hand side top and select one of the responsibilities listed under ‘Group’ tab.
Here is a sample report ‘Customer Open Balance Report’, which I have migrated from the EBS instance by using the BI Upgrade Assistant Utility and added some report layouts. The following screenshot shows when I select a responsibility ‘Receivables Vision Germany’.
When I change the responsibility to ‘Receivables Vision France’ in the My Account dialog box, now I get a different set of the data.
The above example is based on the RTF template that I have downloaded from the EBS instance, which is one of the out-of-box report layout templates that come with EBS R12, and uploaded to this report. Now, because I’m in BI Publisher Enterprise Server I can use the Layout Editor, which is the pure web browser based report design tool, so I created a similar layout with the Layout Editor. Here is the one.
And, one step further, since I can now use the Interactive capability of BI Publisher Enterprise Server why not create another layout that takes full advantage of that ! And here is the one.
This sample layout actually shows the Role Based Data Security much more obvious. The above example is when I select ‘Receivables Vision Germany’ where you can see the Country list shows ‘DE’ and ‘US’. The below example is when I select ‘Receivables Vision France where you can see the Country list is showing ‘FR’ and other components in the report showing a different set of data compares to the above.
Start BI Publisher Enterprise Server for your EBS data!
With the new EBS Role Based Data Security support this is the best time to start moving your Oracle E-Business Suite reporting to BI Publisher Enterprise Server to take advantage of all the great features that come with the Bi Publisher Enterprise Server. It’s not just that it offers better usability and rich functionality over the embedded version inside the EBS and it allows you to extract data from many other different data sources and combine and aggregate, but also it enables you to deliver the next generation operational reporting that satisfies both pixel perfect customer facing requirements and interactive analytical reporting requirements to gain much greater insights from your operational/transactional data.
Happy Operational Reporting 2.0!
If you have any feedback to share please contact me directly at ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’.
OTN has a great newish sample code site where you can create code samples to share with the community. In their own words: Welcome to the Oracle Sample Code public repository, where Oracle Technology Network members collaboratively build and share sample applications, code snippets, skins and templates, and more.
Note the word 'templates' I read that as an open invitation to share your latest and greatest!
If you have template samples or code snippets that you think would benefit the wider BIP community please create new code samples and let me know the link and I'll ensure they get promotion through the blog.
You just need an OTN account to get started. Scroll down for the BI Publisher entry.
I'll be pushing some more samples and snippets in the near future, its a great centrally managed repository. Finally, Oracle has somewhere to get code and files hosted.
The two samples I have created cover the book binding function from a couple of angles:
Oracle BI Publisher Bookbinding Demonstration - this is a sample J2EE application that demonstrates how to create an HTML/servlet combination to allow users to make sub document selections and then the document features e.g. TOC, page numbering, cross links, etc you would like added to the final document
I'd be very interested in any feedback. Happy Binding!
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