Thursday, February 20, 2014

BW Modeling Tools (for SAP HANA BW)

Whole SAP development world is moving away of SAP GUI. This trend is obvious. ABAP developers can develop their programs in Eclipse for quite some time already. See details e.g. FAQs - ABAP Development Tools for Eclipse. SAP HANA Studio which supports developing of HANA’s artefacts like Attribute/Analytic/Calculation Views, DB schemas, tables, sequences, procedures, table types etc. is also based in Eclipse. It was obvious that soon or later BW will get also possibility of developing its objects outside native SAP GUI’s RSA1 transaction and/or outside BEx Query Designer tool.

I remember back in 2009 there were rumors that next “big tool of BW” will be based in Eclipse. Logically it should be successor of Visual Composer (VC) which was/is based in Eclipse also. After VC there is another tool SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio also based in Eclipse. Design Studio is tool for creation of analysis applications and dashboards based on BW/HANA/Universe based data sources for browsers and mobile devices.

On other hand purpose of BW Modeling Tools is to support modeling of BW’s InfoProviders such as "CompositeProvider" and "Open ODS View". CompProv and Open ODS Views are newly introduced objects which came with SAP NetWeaver 7.40 SP5. The tool further supports consumption of SAP HANA Views in BW Models.

In order to use the tool you need few plugins to be installed into the SAP HANA Studio:
  • ABAP Development Tools – current version 2.19
  • BW Modeling Tools –
Both can be downloaded from service.sap.com/swdc -> search for SAP HANA Studio
Installation guide for Modelling Tools is available on SMP here (S* ID required).
Personally I’m very looking forward to “united” developer IDE where all kin dof SAP objects can be developed. On other hand I think I’ll be nostalgic for all the transaction in SAP GUI like SE80, SE38/37 and so on.

PS: explanation of new terms:

CompProv – in this new type of object it is possible to merge data from classic BW InfoProviders with data from SAP HANA models using Union and Join or just merge BW data. See the details here.

You can only use this new CompositeProvider if you are using a SAP HANA database.
Open ODS Views – You can define BW data models using it for integration of existing BW objects (DataSources) without the need to create InfoObjects. Open ODS View represents BW metadata of BW structures. While not having InfoObjects high level of consistency of the data model is not guaranteed. On other hand you can change the model much more quickly comparing to the model with InfoObjects. Also it has no separate storage of master and transaction data. See the details here.

- Update 02/05/2016 –
BW Modeling Tools are usually referred by abbreviation BWMT

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