Since 2001, my husband and I have moved 5 times. Every time we moved, we also moved a large crate that was about 4 feet long and 2 feet tall. It was really heavy and had a lock on it. I had no idea what was in the crate, my husband said it contained “important things” he wanted to save.
So we paid to move this large crate 5 times, and stored it at each house. It was kept in the basement or garage in each house and was never opened. I never asked any other questions about it until the last move when it ended up on the floor of the office. It was in the way and I wanted it gone! My husband admitted he had lost the key to the lock, I think he had also forgotten what was inside the crate. After a week of me complaining about it, he cut the lock and opened the crate. It was full of his college text books…over 20 years old…they were obsolete!
You may be wondering why I am sharing this story and what this has to do with a BO migration. Moving this crate reminds me of the Business Objects upgrades I have done over the years. We migrated content from one version of Business Objects to another and had no idea whether we were moving unused, obsolete content. We didn’t have any insight into what was used and couldn’t risk removing reports or objects that were needed by the end users, so we moved everything. This is exactly what we were doing moving a locked crate full of old college text books from house to house. If I had known what was inside I would have recycled or donated them before the first move!
I was a Business Objects Administrator for 10 years for one client. During that time, I upgraded from every version of Business Objects starting with version 5. We migrated from v5 to 6.5, 6.5 to XI, XI to XI R2, XI R2 to XI 3.1 and finally XI 3.1 to BI 4.1. The environment was heavy on ad hoc usage, so the number of reports in the users’ personal folders grew over time. This of course increased the size of the repository and increased the migration time. Each time we upgraded to a new version of Business Objects, we tried to come up with different strategies to get the users to clean up their personal folders. This topic was discussed in another post regarding Business Objects disaster recovery (case 5).
With one upgrade (I believe it was 6.5 to XI) we decided not to migrate any of the users’ personal folders. Instead, we asked the users to send any reports they wanted to keep to the Administrator’s inbox. We watched daily as the number of documents in the inbox grew. Then one day we could no longer see any reports in the Administrator’s inbox, it appeared to be empty. After frantic searching and creating a ticket with Business Objects we discovered we had exceeded an internal Business Objects setting, once documents in the inbox exceeded 1000 they were no longer displayed. It turned out they were actually there; we just couldn’t see them on the screen. We were able to successfully migrate those inbox documents but we never tried that again! For future upgrades, we pleaded with users to delete their unused documents, we had no idea whether they did or not, we just moved everything.
During a move, while packing, you often separate items you no longer want. I would often make a pile of items to donate and another pile of things to throw away. You never want to pack everything, moving is the perfect time to purge! You should do the same when you migrate from one version of Business Objects to another, migrations are also the perfect time to purge!
Our recommended 10 step path to fast track your BI4.2 migration is explained in detail here:
This post is focused on the steps involving clean up.
Do you keep migrating all of your content from one version of Business Objects to another? Are you spending time and resources on migrating content that isn’t used, obsolete or redundant? Are you constantly adding space to your servers as your environments grow? Do you have any insight into your content?
Do you know the answers to any of these questions?
- Which reports haven’t been run in the past year, or the past 2 years?
- Which objects in your universes aren’t used in any reports in your environment?
- What is taking up the majority of the space in the CMS? Is it inbox documents? Instances? Public folders? or personal folders?
Wouldn’t it be great to know what is in your environment and to have definitive information about what should be retained? Being able to eliminate unused and obsolete content prior to a migration would result in faster migration times and a reduction in the storage needed on the BOE server. Business Objects auditor can provide some useful information, however, auditing will only provide data on content that has been accessed. If a report has never been run, or an object has never been used, it will not appear on any auditing report.
With the 360Suite you can gain insight into your SAP Business Objects environments. 360Eyes is one of the solutions in the 360Suite, it provides you with a wealth of information that will assist you with answering questions you have about your environments. Regarding the auditing limit above, 360Eyes extracts data from the CMS and Auditor, providing the missing link by combining that data into one easy to report on database schema. 360Eyes for Business Objects metadata includes 4 universes and over 40 canned Webi reports to get you started with your analysis. You have the ability to create your own custom reports as well. You will wonder how you ever did a migration without this information!
Benefits of 360Eyes:
- Gain insight into what content is unused (universe objects, reports, users, etc.).
- Compare several environments and versions throughout the migration.
- Analyze and clean UNV universes before converting them to UNX.
- Optimize report structures before converting them by determining which objects and variables aren’t used on the reports.
- Determine which documents contain certain objects, specific SQL or report variables.
- Track duplicate reports to pinpoint documents that have been copied to different folders across the environment.
- Compare security between versions to determine what changed during the migration.
- Document the content of your environment; documents, universes and security.
- And much more…
The unknown will prevent you from lowering the costs associated with storage, resources and migration time. You no longer have to go in blind when doing SAP BusinessObjects migrations, 360Eyes provides insight into your environment and allows you to optimize your migrations.
Find out more here: Audit And Analyze.