Over the last few years we have been involved in a number of successful projects upgrading Business Objects. The majority of our customers are now looking at moving from XI 3.1 to the current version (BI 4.1). There are many reasons for upgrading your version of Business Objects such as improved data access, usability and integration, but also to further embrace the future of business intelligence within your organisation and maximise return on investment.
It is also important to note that support for Business objects XI 3.1 will be facing its End of Life at the end of 2015. Furthermore, many instances of Business Objects that are using a Windows server, are using a version of Windows Server 2003 which is also facing it’s support End of Life (July 2015). Given these key milestones are not that far away, should your organisation be planning an upgrade now?
In some scenarios, the upgrade process may require additional hardware. This in turn requires that the existing environment be migrated from the “old” server to the “new” server. The specific items to migrate will be dictated by a number of factors including your choice of security model within the new environment, any universe changes and any report changes.
Generally, organisations opt to retain their existing security model and wish to have everything from user accounts to reports and database connections migrated across. This tends to be the simplest solution (assuming that everything was working before the move).
However, in terms of migrating reports it is important to note that depending on the age and content of the reports, some may not be suitable for migration to the new server either in part or at all. It is common to see issues arise when migrating Desktop Intelligence (Deski) reports over to Web Intelligence (Webi). Many features supported by Deski are not supported by Webi. However, on the plus side, there are many new features within Webi to make the exercise worthwhile.
One important task to undertake prior to any upgrade project is to discuss your licence entitlements with SAP. With a strong relationship built up with SAP Business Objects Ireland (and as the sole SAP Education Partner in Ireland), Olas are in an ideal position to discuss this on your behalf. Some of our customers that have retained their SAP Business Objects support have found that they are entitled to upgrade their version without incurring additional costs.
Generally Business Objects upgrade and migration projects can be straight forward migration projects without major issues, if proper research and planning is completed beforehand. This would include the following:
- Assessment of Existing Inventory
- Assessment of Licence Entitlements
- Assessment of Required Inventory
- Clarification on upgrade team, responsibilities, deliverables and timelines
- Confirmation of training requirements
- Training for Business Objects Report Designers (BOW310: Web Intelligence: Report Design and BOW320: Web Intelligence: Advanced Report Design and BOX310 – Dashboards 4.0: Core)
- Training for Business Objects End Users through a bespoke demonstration workshop
- Training for Business Objects System Administrators (BOE310: SAP Business Objects Intelligence Platform – Administration and Security and BOE320: SAP Business Objects Business Intelligence Platform – Administering Servers (Windows))
An upgrade to your Business Objects installation can be a daunting task. However, with the right partner, the process can be undertaken with confidence. If you are considering upgrading your instance of Business Objects, please call us on 01-2790020 today for a no charge chat on your best options.