Business Intelligence Monitoring

In todays BI scenarios it is critical to ensure that end users retrieve up-to-date information from the BI solution. This requires sufficient performance and availability of all involved components. BI monitoring has the capabilities to ensure that the involved technical systems and components are working as expected. The BI Monitoring application is part of the System and Application Monitoring group in the Launchpad of SAP Solution Manager 7.2.

In a typical customer scenario: Data from backend systems (SAP ERP) are extracted into data warehouse systems (SAP BW). In case of SAP BW this is done via process chains defined in the SAP BW systems. The resulting data is stored within info objects in the SAP BW systems. This data can be viewed by end users via so-called queries or templates which are also defined within the SAP BW systems. In addition, other systems (Business Objects Enterprise / BI Platform Enterprise) can access SAP BW data (directly from info objects or via queries) for producing high sophisticated reports. The definition and scheduling of the jobs, process chains, queries and templates is normally directly performed with the help of standard BO or BW tools like the BO Info View / BI launch pad tool or inside the BW transaction RSPC. The main challenge is --How to control and monitor BO jobs, BW process chains, queries and templates?

At the minimum, top business critical jobs, process chains, templates and queries should be monitored and an immediate resolution has to be found in case of a problem. Before BI Monitoring in the past, manual monitoring via system local tools had to be performed.

Following are the key questions that arise during monitoring of typical BO BW customer landscape: 

  • Do the most important BW Process Chains run with good performance and finish successfully?
  • Are my Business Objects jobs executed as planned and are they running with good performance?
  • Do I have somewhere a delay in my Business Warehouse Process Chains processing which hinders right in time delivery of business-critical data?
  • Do I have a resource bottleneck somewhere in my Business Intelligence solution? Am I automatically informed about it?
  • Did the process chain process too many/few records?
  • Were too many/few data packages processed in process chains?
  • Did the BO jobs start or finish on time (start delay and end delay)?
  • Are BO jobs running outside a definite time window?
  • Are BO jobs running into a status indicating an error or warning?

BI Monitoring Scope & Benefits

BI monitoring has the capabilities to address above questions that arise to perform end to end monitoring of the heterogeneous BI solution landscape.

Following are the highlights of capabilities offered by the BI monitoring:

  • Central system status overview for all technical components involved in SAP Business Intelligence Solution
  • Capability to monitor cross-system SAP BW process chains and single process chain steps
  • Central monitoring of SAP BW queries and templates
  • Central monitoring of Business Objects specific jobs and correlation to system specific metrics
  • Integration of Business Intelligence specific alerts in Alert Inbox including Notification Management, Incident Management, Task Assignment and forwarding to 3rd party

BI Monitoring is to centrally perform proactive monitoring of Business Intelligence solutions based on SAP BW and BOE XI including BW Process Chain and BOBJ Job Monitoring and Alerting. The BI Monitoring application is part of the Technical Monitoring Work Center within SAP Solution Manager.

Data Readiness Monitoring Scope & Benefits

To enhance the BI Monitoring functionality we offer now the Data Readiness Monitoring application inside BI Mon.

  • Data Readiness Monitoring – Goals
  • “Enable the user to determine whether the data behind his report / query / analysis (delivered by one or multiple BW process chains, BO jobs, BO Data Services jobs, ABAP Jobs, …) is up to date and reliable.”
  • For each Data Readiness scenario, the underlying processes (BW process chains, ABAP jobs, Data Services jobs, …) are defined. For each process an individual data actuality is configured (defining how recent / actual the last successful run of this process has to be).
  • There are 3 KPIs that are provided by DRM:
    • SLA: One point in time per day where the data should to be available. This is calculated by checking the last successful run in relation to a provided point in time that defines whether all data is considered as „ready“ or not.
    • Current Status: The availability of the data right now.
    • First Availability per Day: Shows the time stamp when the data was available the first time for a day.

Usage

We very often we have the case that end-users that come into the office early in the morning, need to know if the application data that was loaded during the night is already available for reporting.

To decide if the data can be used for reporting we can combine different jobs and process chains which are processed at different times into a scenario. For this scenario we analyze the result of each monitored object (that is setup already in BI Monitoring) and check if a successful run has happened in an acceptable time range. If this is true we say the data is ready for reporting. This is a pure technical decision which means we assume that if the job runs successfully then the content is also correct. Currently we have no option to check also the content (e.g.: data quality) of a job.

Example: Sales Data must be available punctually at 08:00 in the BW system for reporting. We can check the corresponding ABAP jobs in the source system and process chains in the BW system and if all of them run successfully until 8:00 we say the data is available for reporting.

This information can be shown in the DRM application of Sap Solution Manager 7.2 or send via E-Mail to the business end users.

BI Monitoring Setup

In SAP Solution Manager Configuration general setup steps for BI Monitoring Configuration can be performed as guided procedure.

Step 1: Overview

Gives you a short introduction which steps of the guided procedure have to be performed

Step 2: Configure infrastructure

This is a generic step that is available in different flavors for all MAI applications. It contains mainly the following areas:

  • Check infrastructure prerequisites
  • Advanced manual configuration of technical infrastructure
  • Settings for notification and incident creation
  • Schedule Consistency Checker
  • Update Content with the latest monitoring template definitions

Step 3: Standard Users

Step 3 Standard Users allows you to create standard Users in the SAP Solution Manager system.
If you use BI Reporting, you need additional standard template users in the BW system/client. If your BW system is in the same client as SAP Solution Manager, the relevant roles are assigned to the standard user in the SAP Solution Manager system.

Step 4: Define Scope

Define Scope allows you to define the scope (=“scenario”) to be covered by a HANA and BI monitoring scenario. You need to “Create” a new BI monitoring scenario and give it a unique name. Then you can add several technical systems that are known in LMDB to your scenario.

Step 5: Monitoring & Alerting

Monitoring & Alerting consists of the detailed sub-steps for the configuration of all BI specific objects to be monitored

  • ABAP jobs
  • BO jobs
  • BW process chains
  • Data Service jobs
  • BW queries, BW templates

Data Readiness Monitoring Setup

The DRM application is based on job and process chain data. These data is retrieved by SAP Solution Manager from the Managed Systems, therefore BI Monitoring must be configured first.

  • Configure BI Monitoring or Job Monitoring scenario
    • Create a BI Monitoring or Job Monitoring scenario and create the monitoring objects that are required for the DRM scenario (e.g. BW Process Chains, BO Jobs, ABAP jobs, …).
    • Activate and check the data collection in SAP Solution Manager.
  • Configure DRM scenario
    • Schedule the required DRM jobs in the ABAP stack of the SAP Solution Manager.
    • Define reports, groups, availability details and further relevant details and enter this in the DRM configuration UI.
    • The KPIs of scenario can be based on the following calculation models:
      • Current Status (CS) – result is calculated/updated every 5 min.
      • SLA – result is calculated only once per day at the expected time. Furthermore, you have to define the date, time step, time zone and optional recurrence pattern.
    • Use the Assign functionality to select the relevant Monitored Objects that should be used in your scenario

In SAP Solution Manager Configuration general setup steps for Data Readiness Monitoring Configuration can be performed as guided procedure.