SAP BW: A Step-by-Step Guide

Overview

SAP BW has recently come to the fore as a valuable tool for developing data warehouses that accurately and effectively support critical business decision making. It facilitates easy-to-use and high-performance extraction, transfer, transformation, and loading of data from a variety of data sources, including such comprehensive business management systems as SAP R/3.

This practitioner's guide uses step-by-step instructions complete with a plethora of screen captures to illustrate...

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Overview

SAP BW has recently come to the fore as a valuable tool for developing data warehouses that accurately and effectively support critical business decision making. It facilitates easy-to-use and high-performance extraction, transfer, transformation, and loading of data from a variety of data sources, including such comprehensive business management systems as SAP R/3.

This practitioner's guide uses step-by-step instructions complete with a plethora of screen captures to illustrate key SAP BW functionalities. It demonstrates how SAP BW implements the fundamental star schema and solves the major challenges inherent in the creation of data warehouses: performance, reliability, and error-handling. Using a real-world business scenario as a running example, SAP® BW presents a comprehensive view of the technology, from underlying concepts and basic techniques through its most sophisticated capabilities.

Specific topics covered include:

  • Creating an InfoCube and loading the data
  • Checking the accuracy of data with BW Monitor and the Persistent Staging Area (PSA)
  • Creating queries to generate reports using Business Explorer (BEx)
  • Managing user authorization with the Profile Generator
  • Advanced InfoCube design techniques
  • Aggregates and multicubes
  • Working with the Operational Data Store (ODS)
  • Installing business content and creating an R/3 source system in BW
  • Loading data from SAP R/3 into SAP BW
  • Data maintenance
  • Performance tuning, including parallel query option and data packet sizing
  • Object transport

Although the focus is on the core SAP BW technology, this book also discusses other relevant technologies, including Basis, ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming), ALE (Application Link Enabling), and ASAP (Accelerated SAP) for BW.

With the clear explanations and practical techniques presented in SAP® BW information systems professionals will gain both the general understanding and specific skills necessary to create high quality data warehouses that support effective decision making.

0201703661B07092002

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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Walks through the core features of an SAP business information warehouse, using a sales analysis scenario. Written for computer professionals new to SAP or data warehousing, the guide focuses on the Administrator Workbench side of the program, illustrating how to create an InfoCube, load data, and create queries to generate reports. The more advanced topics include aggregates, operational data store objects, business content objects, and the R/3 source system. The CD- ROM contains example files from the book. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780201703665
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley
  • Publication date: 7/28/2002
  • Edition description: BK&CD-ROM
  • Pages: 460
  • Sales rank: 1,006,296
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Biao Fu is a partner with Fuguji LLC, an IT consulting firm specialized in ERP, data warehousing, business intelligence, and supply chain management. Prior to Fuguji LLC, he was a principal consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). At PwC Global Training Center, he was a solutions architect, as well as the lead instructor of SAP BW Technical Infrastructure (BWTI) class, where he was granted the Award of Excellence for his contributions to BWTI and other BW classes. He is an SAP Certified Technical Consultant and SAP Certified BW Consultant.

Henry Fu is a partner with Fuguji LLC, an IT consulting firm specialized in ERP, data warehousing, business intelligence, and supply chain management. He is an Oracle Certified Database Administrator and Oracle Certified Application Developer. He has been involved in the development and implementation of several large-scale data warehousing projects. He is a licensed professional engineer (Ontario, Canada), and has two M.S. degrees majoring in management science and engineering.

0201703661AB01142003

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Read an Excerpt

Book Objective

This book is a how-to guide. It uses step-by-step procedures with captured screen shots to illustrate SAP BW's functionalities. Although the book focuses on the core SAP BW technology, it also discusses other SAP technologies, such as Basis, ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming), and ALE (Application Link Enabling) when necessary. It does not, however, discuss third-party reporting tools and BAPI (Business Application Programming Interface).

Intended Audience

This book is written for BW implementation teams and other individuals who need a product to understand the data warehousing concept.

Prerequisites

BW is built on the Basis 3-tier architecture and coded in the ABAP language. ALE and BAPI are used to link BW with SAP systems (R/3 or BW) and non-SAP systems.

This book, however, does not require readers have knowledge in these areas. Instead, BW has made the development of a data warehouse so easy that people with minimal experience in database design and computer programming can use it.

Book Structure

This book is organized into two parts:

  • Part I contains guided tours. We start from a simplified business scenario, then illustrate how to create an InfoCube, load data into the InfoCube, check the accuracy of the loaded data, create queries to generate reports, and manage user authorization.
  • Part II focuses on advanced topics, such as InfoCube design techniques, aggregates, multi-cubes, operational data store (ODS), Business Content, generic R/3 data extraction, data maintenance, performance tuning, and object transport.

The appendices introduce ASAP (Accelerated SAP) for BW, one of the derivatives of the ASAP implementation methodology developed by SAP, and give an overview of the Basis 3-tier architecture.

Conventions Used in This BookHigh-Level Procedures

Most chapters are organized so that they present a high-level procedure for completing a particular task. For example, the contents of Chapter 2, Creating an InfoCube, are as follows:

  • 2.1 Creating an InfoArea
  • 2.2 Creating InfoObject Catalogs
  • 2.3 Creating InfoObjects—Characteristics
  • 2.4 Creating InfoObjects—Key Figures
  • 2.5 Creating an InfoCube
  • 2.6 Summary

Almost always, you can complete a task in many ways. In such cases, we will select a strategy that shows better logical dependency.

Work Instructions and Screen Captures

Each step in the high-level procedure involves many substeps. Whenever possible, we will use captured screen shots to illustrate these substeps.

Each screen is assigned a unique number, which is then used to reference the screen from other locations in the book. In this example, the screen number is 2.1, where "2" is the chapter number and "1" indicates that it is the first screen in that chapter.

Key words, such as RSA1 and Administrator Workbench, are shown in italic for easy distinction.

Caution: Due to the differences among BW releases and patches, the screens in your system may appear somewhat different from the screens illustrated in this book. BW is becoming more stable, so these differences should be small.

Transaction Codes

In SAP, transaction codes are the technical names of menu items or ABAP programs. Transactions can be used as shortcuts to screens we want to open. For example, to start Administrator Workbench, we can either (1) double-click the menu item Administrator Workbench or (2) type RSA1 in the transaction field and then click on the icon. The transaction field appears in the upper-left corner of a SAPGUI window.

To display transaction codes for all menu items, in Screen 2.1 select the menu item Extras/Setting, check the option Display technical names in the pop-up window as shown in Screen 0.1, and then click the check-box icon to continue.

To find the transaction code for a particular screen, select the menu item System/Status of the screen. The transaction code will be displayed in a field called Transaction.

Legends

BW implements good visual aesthetics. That is, different icons and their colors represent different objects and their status. If the legend icon is visible in a screen, clicking it enables us to see the meaning of each icon in that screen. Icons are also used to represent command buttons in BW.

Object Names and Descriptions

We can give any name to an object as long as the name does not exceed the length limit set by BW. This name, which is often referred to as the technical name, uniquely identifies an object.

BW prefixes the number 0 to the names of the objects delivered with Business Content. For this reason, we will begin our object names with an alphabetical letter.

The object description can be a free sentence.

Field Descriptions and F1 Help

To keep the description of each step in a procedure short and clear, we do not describe all fields or options in a screen. If needed, you can check the BW online documentation for more information. Perhaps even more convenient, you can select the field and then press the F1 function key to display an online help file.

Terminology

BW objects and terms encountered in each chapter are summarized in the last section of each chapter, not necessarily the first place we use these objects and terms.

For Further Information

A list of materials for further reading appears at the end of each chapter. To avoid duplication among chapters, here we give two very important resources that apply to SAP BW in general:

  • SAP Library: Business Information Warehouse: The online documentation is delivered with the BW installation CDs.
  • ASAP for BW Accelerators: Accelerators are documents, templates, tips, and tricks on specific topics. Their titles are listed in Appendix A, and the files can be downloaded from http://service.sap.com/bw/. An OSS (Online Service System) ID from SAP is required to access this Web site.
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Table of Contents

(NOTE: Each chapter concludes with a Summary.)

Preface.

Acknowledgments.

I. GUIDED TOURS.

1. Business Scenario and SAP BW.

Sales Analysis—A Business Scenario.

Basic Concept of Data Warehousing.

Star Schema.

ETTL—Extracting, Transferring, Transforming, and Loading Data.

BW—An SAP Data Warehousing Solution.

BW Architecture.

BW Business Content.

BW in mySAP.com.

2. Creating an InfoCube.

Creating an InfoArea.

Creating InfoObject Catalogs.

Creating InfoObjects—Characteristics.

Creating InfoObjects—Key Figures.

Creating an InfoCube.

3. Loading Data into the InfoCube.

Creating a Source System.

Creating an Application Component.

Creating an InfoSource for Characteristic Data.

Creating InfoPackages to Load Characteristic Data.

Checking Loaded Characteristic Data.

Entering the Master Data, Text, and Hierarchy Manually.

Master Data and Text.

Hierarchy.

Creating an InfoSource for Transaction Data.

Creating Update Rules for the InfoCube.

Creating an InfoPackage to Load Transaction Data.

4. Checking Data Quality.

Checking InfoCube Contents.

Using BW Monitor.

Using the Persistent Staging Area (PSA).

5. Creating Queries and Workbooks.

Creating a Query Using BEx Analyzer.

Organizing Workbooks Using BEx Browser.

Using a Variable to Access a Hierarchy Node Directly.

6. Managing User Authorization.

Creating an Authorization Profile Using Profile Generator.

Creating an Authorization Object to Control User Access to the InfoCube Data.

Integrating Profile Generator and BEx Browser.

II. ADVANCED TOPICS.

7. InfoCube Design.

BW Star Schema.

InfoCube Design Alternative I—Time-Dependent Navigational Attributes.

InfoCube Design Alternative II—Dimension Characteristics.

InfoCube Design Alternative III—Time-Dependent Entire Hierarchies.

Other InfoCube Design Techniques.

Compound Attributes.

Line Item Dimensions.

8. Aggregates and Multi-Cubes.

Aggregates.

Multi-Cubes.

9. Operational Data Store (ODS).

Creating an ODS Object.

Preparing to Load Data into the ODS Object, Then into an InfoCube.

Loading Data into the ODS Object.

Loading Data into the InfoCube.

Using 0RECORDMODE for Delta Load.

10. Business Content.

Creating an R/3 Source System.

Creating a Logical System for the R/3 Client.

Creating a Logical System for the BW Client.

Naming Background Users.

Creating an R/3 Source System in BW.

Transferring R/3 Global Settings.

Replicating R/3 DataSources.

Installing Business Content Objects and Loading R/3 Data.

11. Generic R/3 Data Extraction.

Creating Views in R/3.

Creating DataSources in R/3 and Replicating Them to BW.

Creating a Characteristic in BW.

Loading Data from R/3 into BW.

12. Data Maintenance.

Maintaining Characteristic Data.

Maintaining InfoCube Data.

InfoCube Contents.

Indices and Statistics.

Data Load Requests.

Aggregate Rollup.

InfoCube Compression.

InfoCube Reconstruction.

13. Performance Tuning.

BW Statistics.

System Administration Assistant.

Tuning Query Performance.

Query Read Mode.

Bitmap Index.

Statistics for the Cost-Based Optimizer.

Partition.

Parallel Query Option (PQO).

Tuning Load Performance.

Number Range Buffering.

Data Packet Sizing.

14. Object Transport.

System Landscape.

Development Class.

Object Transport.

Appendix A: BW Implementation Methodology.

ASAP for BW.

A Simplified BW Project Plan.

For Further Information.

Appendix B: SAP Basis Overview.

SAP Basis 3-Tier Architecture.

Presentation Interface.

Application Server.

Database Interface.

Open SQL.

Native SQL.

Dispatcher, Work Processes, and Services.

Dialog Work Process.

Update Work Process.

Enqueue Work Process.

Background Work Process.

Spool Work Process.

Message Service.

Gateway Service.

Memory Management.

SAP Buffer.

Appendix C: Glossary.

Appendix D: Bibliography.

Index 447 0201703661T07092002

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Preface

Book Objective

This book is a how-to guide. It uses step-by-step procedures with captured screen shots to illustrate SAP BW's functionalities. Although the book focuses on the core SAP BW technology, it also discusses other SAP technologies, such as Basis, ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming), and ALE (Application Link Enabling) when necessary. It does not, however, discuss third-party reporting tools and BAPI (Business Application Programming Interface).

Intended Audience

This book is written for BW implementation teams and other individuals who need a product to understand the data warehousing concept.

Prerequisites

BW is built on the Basis 3-tier architecture and coded in the ABAP language. ALE and BAPI are used to link BW with SAP systems (R/3 or BW) and non-SAP systems.

This book, however, does not require readers have knowledge in these areas. Instead, BW has made the development of a data warehouse so easy that people with minimal experience in database design and computer programming can use it.

Book Structure

This book is organized into two parts:

  • Part I contains guided tours. We start from a simplified business scenario, then illustrate how to create an InfoCube, load data into the InfoCube, check the accuracy of the loaded data, create queries to generate reports, and manage user authorization.
  • Part II focuses on advanced topics, such as InfoCube design techniques, aggregates, multi-cubes, operational data store (ODS), Business Content, generic R/3 data extraction, data maintenance, performance tuning, and object transport.

The appendices introduce ASAP (Accelerated SAP) for BW, one of the derivatives of the ASAP implementation methodology developed by SAP, and give an overview of the Basis 3-tier architecture.

Conventions Used in This Book

High-Level Procedures

Most chapters are organized so that they present a high-level procedure for completing a particular task. For example, the contents of Chapter 2, Creating an InfoCube, are as follows:

  • 2.1 Creating an InfoArea
  • 2.2 Creating InfoObject Catalogs
  • 2.3 Creating InfoObjects--Characteristics
  • 2.4 Creating InfoObjects--Key Figures
  • 2.5 Creating an InfoCube
  • 2.6 Summary

Almost always, you can complete a task in many ways. In such cases, we will select a strategy that shows better logical dependency.

Work Instructions and Screen Captures

Each step in the high-level procedure involves many substeps. Whenever possible, we will use captured screen shots to illustrate these substeps.

Each screen is assigned a unique number, which is then used to reference the screen from other locations in the book. In this example, the screen number is 2.1, where "2" is the chapter number and "1" indicates that it is the first screen in that chapter.

Key words, such as RSA1 and Administrator Workbench, are shown in italic for easy distinction.

Caution: Due to the differences among BW releases and patches, the screens in your system may appear somewhat different from the screens illustrated in this book. BW is becoming more stable, so these differences should be small.

Transaction Codes

In SAP, transaction codes are the technical names of menu items or ABAP programs. Transactions can be used as shortcuts to screens we want to open. For example, to start Administrator Workbench, we can either (1) double-click the menu item Administrator Workbench or (2) type RSA1 in the transaction field and then click on the icon. The transaction field appears in the upper-left corner of a SAPGUI window.

To display transaction codes for all menu items, in Screen 2.1 select the menu item Extras/Setting, check the option Display technical names in the pop-up window as shown in Screen 0.1, and then click the check-box icon to continue.

To find the transaction code for a particular screen, select the menu item System/Status of the screen. The transaction code will be displayed in a field called Transaction.

Legends

BW implements good visual aesthetics. That is, different icons and their colors represent different objects and their status. If the legend icon is visible in a screen, clicking it enables us to see the meaning of each icon in that screen. Icons are also used to represent command buttons in BW.

Object Names and Descriptions

We can give any name to an object as long as the name does not exceed the length limit set by BW. This name, which is often referred to as the technical name, uniquely identifies an object.

BW prefixes the number 0 to the names of the objects delivered with Business Content. For this reason, we will begin our object names with an alphabetical letter.

The object description can be a free sentence.

Field Descriptions and F1 Help

To keep the description of each step in a procedure short and clear, we do not describe all fields or options in a screen. If needed, you can check the BW online documentation for more information. Perhaps even more convenient, you can select the field and then press the F1 function key to display an online help file.

Terminology

BW objects and terms encountered in each chapter are summarized in the last section of each chapter, not necessarily the first place we use these objects and terms.

For Further Information

A list of materials for further reading appears at the end of each chapter. To avoid duplication among chapters, here we give two very important resources that apply to SAP BW in general:

  • SAP Library: Business Information Warehouse: The online documentation is delivered with the BW installation CDs.
  • ASAP for BW Accelerators: Accelerators are documents, templates, tips, and tricks on specific topics. Their titles are listed in Appendix A, and the files can be downloaded from http://service.sap.com/bw/. An OSS (Online Service System) ID from SAP is required to access this Web site.

0201703661P07092002

Read More Show Less

Introduction

Book Objective

This book is a how-to guide. It uses step-by-step procedures with screen captures to illustrate SAP BW functionalities. This book focuses on the core SAP BW technology. It discusses other SAP technologies, such as Basis, ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming), and ALE (Application Link Enabling) when necessary. It will not discuss 3rd-party reporting tools and BAPI (Business Application Programming Interface).

Intended Readers

This book is written for BW implementation teams and those who need a product to understand data warehousing concept.

Prerequisites

BW is built on Basis 3-tier architecture and coded in ABAP language. ALE and BAPI are used to link BW with SAP systems (R/3 or BW) and non-SAP systems.

This book, however, does not require readers have knowledge in these areas. BW has made the development of a data warehouse so easy that people with experience in database design and computer programming can use it.

Book Structure

As shown in the table of contents, this book is organized into two parts:

Part I contains guided tours. We start from a simplified business scenario, then go on to illustrates how to create an InfoCube, load data into the InfoCube, check accuracy of the loaded data, create queries to generate reports, and finally how to manage user authorization.

Part II contains advanced topics. There we discuss InfoCube design techniques, aggregates, multi-cubes, operational data store (ODS), Business Content, generic R/3 data extraction, data maintenance, performance tuning, and object transport.

In the appendices, we introduce ASAP(AcceleratedSAP) for BW, one of the derivatives of the ASAP implementation methodology developed by SAP, and give an overview of Basis 3-tier architecture.



Read More Show Less

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2003

    Excellent content!

    Just picked this up. While not the most technically accurate book, it's a good read, useful in bw engagements, and looks great in my library until I need it. Nice job.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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