What is SAP BusinessObjects Explorer?
SAP BusinessObjects Explorer is a data discovery application that allows you to retrieve answers to
your business questions from corporate data quickly and directly. Through the means of search, you
can find relevant data that is held within consistent, meaningful datasets known as Information Spaces.
To find your answers, you can filter and drill through Information Spaces and view only the data you
are interested in via advanced visualizations or charts. You are then able to perform visual analysis to
attain the information you are looking for quickly in the most appropriate format.
Using SAP BusinessObjects Explorer in BI Launch pad, you can launch the Explorer as application or
you can open and explore an Information Space directly from the BI launch pad document list on the
If you launch Explorer as application, you can manage and explore Information Spaces. You can define
and create new Information Spaces and you can change existing Information Spaces. You can also
schedule the indexing for Information Spaces and open existing Information Spaces for exploration.
If you open an Information Space from the document list, you can explore the Information Space.
What is an Information Space?
An information space is a collection of objects that map to corporate data for a specific business operation
or activity, for example product sales, employee performance, product inventory, delivery tracking, or
player statistics for a sporting event.
SAP BusinessObjects Explorer users type in key words related to a business question to analyze, to
retrieve the information spaces that contain the relevant data.
The data in information spaces is organized in data sets called facets. A facet is a list of values available
for an object in the information space. For example, a facet called "Vehicle" could include values such
as "Car", "Bicycle", "Motorbike", "Truck", and other types of vehicles. Facets contain the data that you
are interested in exploring to find variance and trends.
Information spaces are created in the Managing Spaces part of Explorer by power users on top of
corporate data providers for example SAP Hana, universes, BWA, and Excel spreadsheets.
What is an Exploration view?
An exploration view is a saved exploration on an information space. Exploration views are organized
thematically within folders called exploration view sets. An exploration view can be used to show a
detailed analysis on a targeted area of the data, for example, an exploration view set called Rugby
World Cup 2011 could contain exploration views dealing with specific aspects of the tournement such
as offensive statistics, defensive statistics, or player rankings per game. You access an exploration
view from its exploration view set which is listed in the Explorer Home tab.
An exploration view set can include exploration views from different information spaces, so a user can
now have quick access to pre-filtered information for a common information theme over different data sources.
A saved exploration on an information space that can be used to expose and explore
a specific part of the data on the information space. An exploration view can only
have one information space as its data source. Within an exploration view you can
edit charts, tables, and filters exposed by the exploration view set. The exploration
view usually represents a very targeted part of the information space that is related
to a specific business question or information theme.
Exploration view set:
A container for one or more exploration views based on either the same, or different,
information spaces. It is the starting point to create or add more specific explorations
using exploration views. Before you create an exploration view, you must first create
an exploration view set as a view container. Exploration view sets are accessed from
the Explorer Home tab.
Any visual element that is used on the information view, for example, graphs, tables,
SAP BusinessObjects Explorer 4.0 is installed as an add-on to SAP BusinessObjects Business
Intelligence platform 4.0. The servers, information spaces, and users are managed by the Central
Management Server (CMS) and administered from the Central Management Console (CMC).
The architecture of SAP BusinessObjects Explorer is structured into three layers:
2 web tier/gateway - includes the web server(s) and Web Application Server(s)
3 backend - includes the SAP BusinessObjects Explorer servers and the SAP BusinessObjects
Business Intelligence platform servers.
The Explorer servers
When you install SAP BusinessObjects Explorer, the following servers are added to the SAP
BusinessObjects Business Intelligence platform Central Configuration Manager (CCM) and Central
Management Console (CMC):
1 Explorer Master Server
Manages all of the Explorer servers.
2 Explorer Indexing Server
Provides and manages the indexing of Information Space data and metadata.
3 Explorer Search Server
Processes search queries and returns search results.
4 Explorer Exploration Server
Provides and manages the Information Space exploration and analysis capabilities including search
on data, filtering and aggregation.
Each Explorer server manages its own index.
Supported data providers
SAP BusinessObjects Explorer 4.0 can consume data from the following data providers:
1 BusinessObjects universes (.UNX)
2 Excel spreadsheets
3 SAP Hana
4 SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator
In this release only universes in the new .UNX format are supported. The universes from previous
releases in the .UNV format, and OLAP universes are not supported.