Why I created a blog

Its been four years since I first created this blog. It has remained true to Essbase and related information over those years. Hopefully it has answered questions and given you insight over those years. I will continue to provide my observations and comments on the ever changing world of EPM. Don't be surprised if the scope of the blog changes and brings in other Hyperion topics.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

FCCS- What you see is not always what you get

I was contacted by another consultant who is working on an FCCS implementation and he was having issues with not getting data for certain accounts. He looked at his mappings and they should have been loaded. From an Essbase perspective, I know that the typical reason data won't load is because it is trying to load to a dynamic calc member.
I mentioned this to him and he showed me the properties of one account:

So much for that, I thought. I then asked him to use the dimension editor in Smart View for FCCS and Long story short, Although the Data storage showed never share, the Data Storage for the cube (and the rates cube showed dynamic calc.

(Note, I hid the extra columns that are not applicable to this issue.)

It turns out h had created this and other members by copying a parent member and just changing the one data storage property. Why there are multiple that don't show up in the editor, I don't know.

As a side note, this consultant did later in the day meet with the Oracle "Seal" team that helps with issues. They have the ability to look at the created cube with EAS and lo and behold, the members were tagged as dynamic calc. He is fixing the entries using the dimension editor now and that should solve his problem.  

Monday, December 12, 2016

An undocumented Update in the FCCS Dec-16 release

The other day, I blogged about the changes in the Dec-16 release for FCCS.  As it turns out there is a bug that was fixed (well partially fixed) that people might want to know about. It relates to reporting currencies. First a little history. Back in August, I submitted an SR which turned into a bug.  The issue was for the currency dimension, specifically when you create a reporting currency.

To do that, I went into the currency dimension and simply checked the reporting currency box for the currency I wanted.

The next time the Essbase database was refreshed, I had a new reporting currency. Nifty. The member name for the new reporting currency is CAD_Reporting, no problem, The Alias for the member is "CAD"  Hmmm the alias is the same as the member name of the input currency. If you tried to retrieve data in Smart View with Aliases turned on, an error popped up about an ambiguous member name can't be resolved.  
I know what you are saying (I can read your mind). Just remove the alias from Cad_Reporting and all will be good.  Nice idea, but unfortunately, we can't edit the aliases for reporting currencies.
In the Dec-16 release although it is not documented, the issue is partially resolved. Now when you retrieve from Smart View you will not get an error about the name. if I retrieve the following sheet (Of course my POV is set to retrieve data properly) I get:

Looks good. If I switch to aliases (or just type in Cad_Reporting while Aliases are turned on) I get:
No error, but now which is which? Both say CAD, but the one on the right is really the alias for CAD_Reporting and the one on the left is the member name for the CAD input currency.   So at least now we don't get the error retrieving the data, but it will be a bit confusing for the users. They really have to put in "CAD_Reporting" and not the Alias CAD even when they have aliases turned on.  It should not be too bad until they completely fix it as the input currencies are not really used much, but expect to get questions about why what appears to be the same intersection provides different results.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

FCCS Update - Dec 16

In my blog post A Glimpse into FCCS I talked about haw alternate rollups are not allowed in the Entity dimension because of how Oracle is doing the elimination logic. Well, one of the big improvements with the latest patch is the ability to have alternate rollups.
From the read me
"One entity can have multiple parents, and contribute differently to each parent. These members are called “Partial Shared” entities, where only a part of input data is shared across all instances of the entities".
This patch/upgrade release also includes  a number of other enhancements including:
Currency translation for supplemental data. This data can now be entered in local currency and be translated
Move of rate override members from the Data source dimension to the Consolidation dimension. Although not spelled out, this was a bug we encountered where historical rates were not being applied properly. This change allows different override rates to be applied to different source members. Three new members have been added to the consolidation dimension FCCS_Overrides, FCCS_Rate Override, and FCCS_Amount Override.

In Data Management, FCCS is now a source system- With this change FCCS can be used as a source for other cloud systems like PBCS( Planning Cloud Service,) EPBCS(Enterprise Planning Cloud), ARCS(Account Reconciliation Cloud Service)  and PCMCS (Profitability and Cost Management Cloud Service). In addition, you can push data to a flat file for use in other systems.

Data Management now also supports multi-period loads. This allows you to have periods on the columns in your data file.

There were a couple of bug fixes as well. dealing with member tagged as saved assumptions and Flow not accumulating over time and Data entry intersections not always clearing for parent members.

As you can see the FCCS team has been very busy adding needed enhancements.  It just gets better and better.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Essbase patch is here

Since the great pumpkin has gone to bed and we are ready for Thanksgiving gluttony in the US, I thought I would give you a little treat.
Oracle released the latest patch for Essbase and Essbase Studio These patches have no real new features but a number of important bug fixes. In Essbase, the two that caught my eye were:
"24675006 - In some cases, a Dynamic Calc member can return different values on subsequent refreshes"
"24439234 - In some cases, incorrect results will be returned when retrieving results from SmartView Client on an Aggregate Storage database."

Based on that alone, I would patch my system.

I've heard from a number of users of Essbase studio how Drill through reports that used to work, no longer do. They will be happy with this patch as the big bug fix is:
"24321974, 23222585 - Unable to run Drill Through reports when a member has more than 999 descendants"

If you want to see all of the fixes for Essbase, Studio, APS and the client then you can look at Oracle Blogs. Note to actually read the readme files you will need an Oracle ID.

Hopefully Oracle has a nice Christmas present for us with a new release that has additional features. The irony of a Jewish person wanting Christmas presents for Oracle. Right up there with believing in the Easter bunny.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Migrating from EIS to Essbase Studio

The week at Open World for me was sessions, lots of meetings with Oracle and meetups. At one I was talking with Aneel Shenker the product manager for Essbase Studio. We somehow got on the topic of migrating from EIS to Essbase  Studio. I told him that I typically rebuild the models because it is difficult to get the migration wizard to work.

He agreed that it was very under documented and that is why a little while back, he investigated the process to get it working (and he says it works pretty good).  He created two white papers on the migration
Oracle Support Document 2094412.1 (EIS - Essbase Integration Services to Essbase Studio migration) for the migration and
Oracle Support Document 2095995.1 (Troubleshooting the Essbase Integration Services (EIS) Migration Tool within Essbase Studio)
for trouble shooting migrations. To get to either of these documents you have to sign in to  Oracle support with your ID.
For the migration it seems pretty straight forward:

From the migration document (some of the formatting is mine)

1 Ensure that your EIS metaoutlines and models complies with the guidelines listed in the Essbase Studio user's Guide in the Chapter "Guidelines for Migrating Metaoutlines and Models" and "Properties Not Migrated".
2. Install Studio Console on a 32-bit machine. Note: If you are planning to install the EPM bundled ODBC drivers it should be a server operating system.
3. On the 32-bit machine where Studio console is installed, install ODBC drivers that works with the EIS catalog database.
Note: You can install the DataDirect ODBC drivers that are shipped with EPM by installing EPM Foundation Components. However, there is no need to run the EPM System configurator, installation is enough to install the drivers.
4. Create a User DSN that can connect to the EIS Catalog database. Note: It must be a User DSN, not a System DSN.
5. Ensure that you can connect to the EIS Catalog database through the ODBC User DSN on the 32-bit machine. Note: EIS Server does not need to be running
6. Ensure Studio Server is running. Note: Studio Server can be running on a separate 64-bit machine.
7. In Essbase Studio, create a data source that points to the same source database that was used for EIS.

EIS to Studio Migration Steps
1. Start Studio console on the 32-bit machine and connect to the Studio Server where the EIS catalog should be migrated to.
2. In Studio console, start the EIS migration tool. (Tools-> Essbase Integration Services Catalog migration)
3. Fill in the "EIS Catalog ODBC DSN field", the "User' and "Password" field.
4. Click the "Fetch models" button, and the EIS models should be listed.
5. You can now choose
- the matching Data source connection that was used for EIS. Note: Typically different from the EIS Catalog connection
- the EIS Catalog and Schema from the drop down. Note: If your relational database is Oracle, selecting a catalog is not required.
6. Select a folder where the migrated metaoutline and model  should be put
7. Click the Migrate button
8. If there are any errors, double-check check that all documented guidelines are followed.
Note: If the migration does not work, it is possible that it is needed to rebuild the models from scratch in Essbase Studio. There are cases that are too complex for the EIS Catalog migration to work.
You should largely still be able to use the source tables that you were using with EIS, although a few tweaks might be needed.

Thank you Aneel for providing the community with this much needed information

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Quick Smart view post

This will just be a short post that might help you out.
A number of Ace Director friends and I met with the Oracle Smart View Team at Oracle Open world this week and evangelized for you all on changes to the product. More posts will be coming out from all of us on some things we learned and if you follow us all there might be overlap. We just want to get the word out to as many as we know.

One thing that came out during the meeting is there are two Excel Add-ins that cause issues for Smart View and it is suggested you turn them off when using Smart View.
The first is the Webex add-in and the second is the Adobe PDF add-in. something in the way they take control of spreadsheets messes with smart view functionality and stability.

I'll be putting a slightly longer blog post together later on some Knowledge base articles that help with fixing some common problems.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

FCCS Dimension Security

Just a short post today. Everyone else in the world probably knows this, but I learned something new working with FCCS and dimension security. I was having an issue where I had not set up security on a number of dimensions, but when I used a non-admin user, and tried to retrieve data in Smart View I got nothing more than the dimension name and #No access

It took working with Development to figure out the issue. It turns out in FCCS you can “Unsecure” dimensions that were secured in FCCS (and probably PBCS and EPBCS). When I set up the application, it secured all of the dimensions, without me knowing it. In order to see the members, I had to actually add security rules to every dimension to get data.

That should not have been necessary.  What I discovered (with oracle Help) was that at the dimension level, you have to turn on or off security. There is a check box that sets it. Last I remember, on-prem, this was greyed out and could not be unset once set. In FCCS, you can turn it on or off.
Once I removed the security rules I added and unchecked it, everything worked hunky dory! I could see the hierarchies and my retrieval now retrieves data.