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Business Objects Tutorial PDF: A Complete Guide for Beginners and Experts



Business Objects Tutorial PDF




If you are looking for a comprehensive and easy-to-follow guide on how to use Business Objects for business intelligence, then you have come to the right place. In this article, you will learn what Business Objects is, what are its main components, how to access it, how to create queries and reports, how to analyze data, how to share and export documents, how to use Web Intelligence Rich Client, and some tips and tricks for using Web Intelligence more effectively.




business objects tutorial pdf


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What are the components of Business Objects?




Business Objects is a suite of tools that allows you to access, analyze, and present data from various sources in an intuitive and interactive way. It consists of several components that serve different purposes:



  • Web Intelligence: This is the main tool that you will use to create queries and reports based on your business questions. You can use familiar business terms and drag-and-drop interface to build queries and customize reports using tables, charts, sections, breaks, formulas, etc. You can also use Web Intelligence to analyze data using drill-down, drill-through, input controls, alerts, etc.



  • Crystal Reports: This is another tool that you can use to create pixel-perfect reports based on your data sources. You can use Crystal Reports to design complex layouts with headers, footers, groups, subreports, etc. You can also use Crystal Reports to add dynamic elements such as parameters, formulas, charts, etc.



  • Dashboards: This is a tool that you can use to create interactive dashboards that display key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics in a graphical way. You can use Dashboards to combine data from different sources and present it in various components such as charts, gauges, maps, sliders, etc.



  • Lumira: This is a tool that you can use to create data visualizations and stories based on your data sources. You can use Lumira to explore and discover insights from your data using various charts and filters. You can also use Lumira to create stories that combine data, text, and images to tell a compelling story.



  • Analysis for Office: This is a tool that you can use to access and analyze data from SAP Business Warehouse (BW) and SAP HANA using Microsoft Excel. You can use Analysis for Office to create workbooks that contain data, formulas, charts, etc. You can also use Analysis for Office to refresh and update data, drill-down and drill-through data, and apply filters and calculations.



In this article, we will focus on Web Intelligence, which is the most widely used and versatile tool in Business Objects.


How to access Business Objects?




To access Business Objects, you need to log in to the BI Launch Pad, which is the web portal that allows you to access all the Business Objects tools and documents. To log in to the BI Launch Pad, you need to follow these steps:



  • Open your web browser and enter the URL of the BI Launch Pad. The URL may vary depending on your organization, but it usually looks something like this: http://servername:port/BOE/BI.



  • Enter your user name and password and click Log On. You may also need to select a system or an authentication method depending on your configuration.



  • Once you are logged in, you will see the BI Launch Pad home page, which contains various tabs and options. You can use the Home tab to access your recently viewed or edited documents, the Documents tab to browse or search for documents in the repository, the Applications tab to launch different Business Objects tools, and the Preferences tab to set up your preferences for language, format, etc.



To launch Web Intelligence, you can either click on the Web Intelligence icon in the Applications tab, or right-click on any Web Intelligence document in the Documents tab and select Edit. This will open Web Intelligence in a new browser tab or window.


How to create a query in Web Intelligence?




A query is a set of instructions that tells Web Intelligence what data you want to retrieve from your data source. A data source can be a universe, which is a semantic layer that maps the underlying database tables and columns into business terms and objects, or a direct connection to a relational or OLAP database, an Excel spreadsheet, or a text file.


To create a query in Web Intelligence, you need to follow these steps:



  • In Web Intelligence, click on the New button in the toolbar and select New Document. This will open the Create a new document dialog box.



  • Select the data source type that you want to use for your query. For example, if you want to use a universe as your data source, select SAP BusinessObjects Universe. Then click Select Source.



  • Select the universe that you want to use for your query from the list of available universes. You can use the search box or the folder structure to find the universe that you need. Then click Select.



  • This will open the Edit Query panel, where you can build your query using the universe objects. The panel consists of three main areas: the Data Preview, which shows a sample of the data that will be returned by your query; the Query Filters, which allows you to apply filters or conditions to limit or refine your data; and the Data Objects, which contains two sub-areas: the Result Objects, which shows the objects that you want to include in your query result; and the Available Objects, which shows all the objects that are available in the universe.



  • To add an object to your query result, drag it from the Available Objects area and drop it into the Result Objects area. You can also double-click on an object or use the arrow buttons to add it. You can add as many objects as you need for your query. The order of the objects in the Result Objects area determines the order of the columns in your query result.



  • To apply a filter to your query, drag an object from the Available Objects area and drop it into the Query Filters area. You can also double-click on an object or use many filters as you need for your query. The order of the filters in the Query Filters area determines the order of the conditions in your query.



  • For each filter that you add, you need to specify a value or an operator for the object. You can use the drop-down list or the ellipsis button to select a value or an operator from a list, or you can type a value or an operator manually. You can use operators such as equal to, greater than, less than, between, in list, etc. to define your filter condition. You can also use prompts or variables to make your filter dynamic or flexible.



  • Once you have added all the objects and filters that you need for your query, you can click on the Run Query button in the toolbar to execute your query and retrieve the data from your data source. You can also click on the Refresh Data button to update your data if it has changed in the data source.



  • This will open the Edit Report panel, where you can see your query result in a default table format. You can also switch to the Data View tab to see your query result in a grid format. You can use the Edit Query button to go back to the Edit Query panel and modify your query if needed.



How to design a report in Web Intelligence?




A report is a presentation of your query result in a format that is easy to read and understand. You can use Web Intelligence to design your report using various elements such as tables, charts, sections, breaks, formulas, etc. You can also use Web Intelligence to format your report using various options such as fonts, colors, borders, alignment, etc.


To design a report in Web Intelligence, you need to follow these steps:



  • In Web Intelligence, go to the Edit Report panel and select the Design View tab. This will show your query result in a default table format.



  • To customize your table, you can use the options in the toolbar or the right-click menu. For example, you can use the Insert menu to insert rows, columns, cells, etc.; you can use the Delete menu to delete rows, columns, cells, etc.; you can use the Merge and Split options to merge or split cells; you can use the Format Table, Format Cell, and Format Number options to format your table, cell, and number respectively; etc.



  • To change the report title and name, double-click on the default title or name and type a new one. You can also use the Title, Name, and Description options in the right-click menu or the Document Summary dialog box to change them.



  • To change the page layout, click on the Page Setup button in the toolbar and select a page size and orientation from the drop-down list. You can also use the Margins, Paper Source, and Paper Options tabs to adjust other page settings.



  • To create a chart in your report, click on the New Chart button in the toolbar and select a chart type from the drop-down list. This will insert a default chart in your report based on your query result. You can also drag an object from the Data Objects area and drop it into an empty area of your report to create a chart based on that object.



the options in the toolbar or the right-click menu. For example, you can use the Assign Data option to assign different objects to different chart components, such as axes, legend, etc.; you can use the Chart Properties option to change various chart settings, such as title, subtitle, labels, colors, etc.; you can use the Format Chart option to format your chart using various options, such as fonts, borders, alignment, etc.


  • To create a section in your report, drag an object from the Data Objects area and drop it into the Sections area. This will create a section based on that object and group your data accordingly. You can also use the Create Section option in the right-click menu to create a section based on an object in your table or chart.



  • To customize your section, you can use the options in the toolbar or the right-click menu. For example, you can use the Delete Section option to delete a section; you can use the Section Properties option to change various section settings, such as title, layout, sorting, etc.; you can use the Format Section option to format your section using various options, such as fonts, colors, borders, etc.



  • To create a break in your report, select a column in your table and click on the Create Break button in the toolbar. This will create a break based on that column and group your data accordingly. You can also use the Create Break option in the right-click menu to create a break based on a column in your table.



  • To customize your break, you can use the options in the toolbar or the right-click menu. For example, you can use the Delete Break option to delete a break; you can use the Break Properties option to change various break settings, such as sorting, aggregation, subtotals, etc.; you can use the Format Break option to format your break using various options, such as fonts, colors, borders, etc.



To create a formula in your report, click on the New Formula button in the toolbar and select a formula type from the drop-down list. This will open the Edit Formula dialog box, where you can type or select a formula expression using various functions, operators, and objects. You can also use the New Formula, Edit Formula, and Delete Formula


  • options in the right-click menu to create, edit, or delete a formula.



To customize your formula, you can use the options in the toolbar or the right-click menu. For example, you can use the Rename Formula


option to rename a formula; you can use the Cut, Copy, and Paste


options to move or copy a formula; you can use the Format Cell


and Format Number


  • options to format a formula cell and number respectively; etc.



To add more elements to your report, you can use the options in the toolbar or the right-click menu. For example, you can use the New Cell, New Image, and New Text


  • options to insert cells, images, and text respectively; you can use b>New Alert options to create variables, input controls, and alerts respectively; etc.



How to analyze data in Web Intelligence?




Once you have designed your report, you can use Web Intelligence to analyze your data and discover insights and trends. You can use various features and options to explore and understand your data in different ways:



  • Drill-down and drill-through: You can use these features to navigate through different levels of detail in your data. You can drill down to see more detailed data within a section or a break, or drill up to see less detailed data. You can also drill through to see related data from another document or data source.



  • Input controls: You can use these features to filter your data interactively using various components such as list boxes, radio buttons, check boxes, sliders, etc. You can create input controls based on different objects or variables in your report, and apply them to one or more report elements.



  • Alerts: You can use these features to highlight your data based on certain conditions or thresholds. You can create alerts based on different objects or formulas in your report, and apply them to one or more report elements. You can also use different colors or icons to indicate the alert status.



  • Ranking: You can use this feature to rank your data based on a measure or a formula. You can create rankings based on different criteria such as top, bottom, above average, below average, etc. You can also specify the number or percentage of values that you want to rank.



  • Sorting: You can use this feature to sort your data in ascending or descending order based on one or more objects or formulas. You can also use custom sorting to define your own order for your data.



  • Filtering: You can use this feature to filter your data based on one or more conditions or values. You can also use quick filters to filter your data using predefined values such as all values, non-empty values, empty values, etc.



  • Calculations: You can use this feature to perform calculations on your data using various functions and operators. You can also use predefined calculations such as sum, count, average, minimum, maximum, etc.



How to share and export a document in Web Intelligence?




After you have created and analyzed your document in Web Intelligence, you may want to share it with others or export it in a different format. You can use various features and options to do so:



  • Save: You can use this feature to save your document in the BI Platform repository or in your local computer. You can also save your document as a personal document that only you can access, or as a public document that others can access.



  • Publish: You can use this feature to publish your document in the BI Platform repository so that others can view it or edit it. You can also publish your document with or without its associated data source.



  • Schedule: You can use this feature to schedule your document to run at a specific time or frequency. You can also specify the output format and destination of your scheduled document.



to export your document in a different format such as PDF, Excel, CSV, etc. You can also specify the export options such as page range, layout, password, etc.


  • Send: You can use this feature to send your document to one or more recipients via email. You can also specify the email options such as subject, message, attachment format, etc.



  • Print: You can use this feature to print your document using your default printer. You can also specify the print options such as page range, layout, orientation, etc.



How to use Web Intelligence Rich Client?




Web Intelligence Rich Client is a desktop application that allows you to create and edit Web Intelligence documents offline or online. You can use Web Intelligence Rich Client to access and analyze data from various sources without connecting to the BI Platform. You can also use Web Intelligence Rich Client to import and export documents from and to the BI Platform repository.


To use Web Intelligence Rich Client, you need to follow these steps:



  • Install Web Intelligence Rich Client on your computer through the BI Launch Pad or as a part of a BI Platform installation.



  • Launch Web Intelligence Rich Client from your Start menu or desktop shortcut.



  • Log in to Web Intelligence Rich Client using your user name and password. You can also select a system or an authentication method depending on your configuration.



  • Select a connection mode: online or offline. Online mode allows you to access and edit documents from the BI Platform repository. Offline mode allows you to access and edit documents from your local computer.



  • Create or open a document using the same steps as in Web Intelligence web client.



  • Edit or analyze your document using the same features and options as in Web Intelligence web client.



  • Save or publish your document to the BI Platform repository or to your local computer.



What are some tips and tricks for using Web Intelligence?




Here are some useful tips and tricks for using Web Intelligence more efficiently and effectively:



  • Use keyboard shortcuts to perform common tasks faster. For example, you can use Ctrl+C to copy, Ctrl+V to paste, Ctrl+Z to undo, Ctrl+Y to redo, etc.



  • Use templates to apply a consistent look and feel to your documents. You can use predefined templates or create your own templates using the Template Design tool.



  • Use conditional formatting to apply different formats to your data based on certain conditions or rules. You can use predefined rules or create your own rules using formulas or variables.



  • Use comments to add notes or feedback to your document or report elements. You can also use comments to track changes or revisions made by different users.



  • Use formulas and variables to create custom calculations or expressions based on your data. You can use predefined functions and operators or create your own functions and operators using the User Defined Function tool.



  • Use input controls and alerts to make your document more interactive and dynamic. You can use input controls to filter your data using various components such as list boxes, radio buttons, check boxes, sliders, to highlight your data based on certain conditions or thresholds. You can use different colors or icons to indicate the alert status.



  • Use ranking and sorting to rank or sort your data based on a measure or a formula. You can use different criteria such as top, bottom, above average, below average, etc. You can also use custom sorting to define your own order for your data.



Use drill-down and drill-through to navigate through different levels of detail in your data. You can drill down to see more detailed data within a section or a break, or drill up to


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