Working with BW Queries

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Explain the new features of the BW Query

Working with BW Queries

SAP BW Modeling Tools: New Query Designer

SAP BW/4HANA does not support the SAP Business Explorer suite. This means the BEx Query Designer can no longer be used. The new Eclipse-based Query Designer in the BW Modeling Tools takes over its role.

Queries that were created using the BEx Query Designer are compatible with SAP BW/4HANA and need no adjustment.

The BW Query Designer includes the same features as the BEx Query Designer, but also provides additional features including:

  • An IF operator for conditional calculations.

  • Option to generate an external SAP HANA calculation view based on a BW Query.

  • Variable processing type SAP HANA Exit allows you to use an ABAP-managed database procedure (AMDP) class implementation to determine default values for variables. SAP recommends using the SAP HANA Exit in queries that you want to generate an external SAP HANA view for, and for which special requirements apply in terms of determining the variable values and processing performance.

  • Filter options based on a new variable of type predefined value set.
  • New concept of linked components. A linked component can be automatically synchronized whenever changes are made to the corresponding source component. Example scenario for linked components: You have two highly similar InfoProviders: IP_A and IP_B. You have created query Q_A for IP_A. You now want to create query Q_B for IP_B. You want this query to be very similar to query Q_A and to be automatically adjusted whenever changes are made to query Q_A. To do this, you use the link component concept: You create the linked target query Q_B for source query Q_A. This is more than just a copy, as the system also retains the mapping information. This mapping information makes it possible to synchronize the queries.

New queries are created using the context menu of the corresponding InfoProvider. In SAP BW/4HANA, those are CompositeProviders, Open ODS Views, DataStore Objects (advanced), and InfoObject characteristics.

The global objects of a query, such as variables and calculated key figures are also maintained in the BW Modeling Tools. So now, the same tools used to develop modeling objects are also used to create queries.

Be aware that we refer to BEx queries as those that were created and maintained in SAP BW Explorer (BEx). BW Queries are those created and managed in BW Modeling Tools.

Hint

Keeping your system up to date is crucial regarding queries. Please refer to SAP note 2133546 (BWMT Query Designer Composite SAP note) to install helpful corrections.

Maintenance Plans for SAP Business Explorer (BEx) (source: SAP note 2609031)

Since 1998, BW BEx was the traditional front-end for SAP BW. It consists of an Excel-based add-on (BEx Analyzer) and a Web-based analytics front end, including design time. As mentioned in SAP note 2095909, SAP is addressing the strategic and technologically appropriate development of analysis tools and interfaces via the product SAP Analytics. For Business Explorer, whose last version (BI 7.0 ADDON) has been offered since 2005 (for the current SAP GUI versions, so "BI 7.0 ADDON FOR SAP GUI 6.40" or now "BI 7.0 ADDON FOR SAP GUI 7.50"), SAP limited adjustments for some years already.

Hint

For more details please refer to SAP note 2609031: Sunset of BW Business Explorer (BEx)

BEx Analyzer, as an Excel-based add-on, is greatly dependent on changes in Microsoft Office. These adjustments have proven to be difficult and time-consuming. More extensive adjustments were required to be able to support BEx Analyzer with Microsoft Office 2016. Due to the technology and components used in the BEx toolset, inter-dependencies exist between the BEx tools (so Query Designer, Report Designer, Web Application Designer, and BEx Analyzer). For this reason, the maintenance of Business Explorer is restricted to Microsoft Office 2016.

Additional incompatibility and interoperability problems can also not be excluded in conjunction with future operating systems and browsers, possibly also in combination with Microsoft Office 2016. For this reason, SAP recommends an early migration to the new strategic offerings of SAP Analytics in particular if you need to carry out an upgrade to Microsoft Office above version 2016:

  • BEx Query Designer –> BW Query Designer in BW Modeling Tools

  • BEx Analyzer –> SAP Analytics Cloud or SAP Analysis for Microsoft Office

  • BEx Web Application Designer –> SAP Analytics Cloud

SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC) is a central cloud solution for the areas of business intelligence, planning, and predictive analytics. An integral part of this is a native connection to SAP BW/4HANA and the heavy integration of query concepts, which enables the replication of data as well as replication-free live access. As a result, SAP Analytics Cloud also enables the use of sensitive data, since this is not replicated or transferred to the cloud and additional authorization concepts of SAP BW/4HANA can be used.

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