SAP BusinessObjects Data Services XI 4.0 Overview

Introduction

SAP BusinessObjects Data Services combines industry-leading data quality and integration into one
platform. With Data Services, your organization can transform and improve data anywhere. You can
have a single environment for development, runtime, management, security and data connectivity.
One of the fundamental capabilities of Data Services is extracting, transforming, and loading (ETL) data
from heterogeneous sources into a target database or data warehouse. You create applications (jobs)
that specify data mappings and transformations by using the Designer.
Use any type of data, including structured or unstructured data from databases or flat files to process
and cleanse and remove duplicate entries. You can create and deliver projects more quickly with a
single user interface and performance improvement with parallelization and grid computing.
Data Services RealTime interfaces provide additional support for real-time data movement and access.
Data Services RealTime reacts immediately to messages as they are sent, performing predefined
operations with message content. Data Services RealTime components provide services to web
applications and other client applications.
Data Services features
• Instant traceability with impact analysis and data lineage capabilities that include the data quality
process
• Data validation with dashboards and process auditing
• Work flow design with exception handling (Try/Catch) and Recovery features
• Multi-user support (check-in/check-out) and versioning via a central repository
• Administration tool with scheduling capabilities and monitoring/dashboards
• Transform management for defining best practices
• Comprehensive administration and reporting tools
• Scalable scripting language with a rich set of built-in functions
• Interoperability and flexibility with Web services-based applications
• High performance parallel transformations and grid computing
• Debugging and built-in profiling and viewing data
• Broad source and target support
• applications (for example, SAP)
• databases with bulk loading and CDC changes data capture
• files: comma delimited, fixed width, COBOL, XML, Excel

Product components

The Data Services product consists of several components including:
• Designer
The Designer allows you to create, test, and execute jobs that populate a data warehouse. It is a
development tool with a unique graphical user interface. It enables developers to create objects,
then drag, drop, and configure them by selecting icons in a source-to-target flow diagram. It allows
you to define data mappings, transformations, and control logic. Use the Designer to create
applications specifying work flows (job execution definitions) and data flows (data transformation
definitions).
• Job Server
The Job Server is an application that launches the Data Services processing engine and serves as
an interface to the engine and other components in the Data Services suite.
• Engine
The Data Services engine executes individual jobs defined in the application you create using the
Designer. When you start your application, the Data Services Job Server launches enough engines
to effectively accomplish the defined tasks.
• Repository
The repository is a database that stores Designer predefined system objects and user-defined
objects including source and target metadata and transformation rules. In addition to the local
repository used by the Designer and Job Server, you can optionally establish a central repository
for object sharing and version control.
The Designer handles all repository transactions. Direct manipulation of the repository is unnecessary
except for:
• Setup before installing Data Services
You must create space for a repository within your RDBMS before installing Data Services.
• Security administration
Data Services uses your security at the network and RDBMS levels.
• Backup and recovery 
You can export your repository to a file. Additionally, you should regularly back up the database
where the repository is stored.
• Access Server
The Access Server passes messages between web applications and the Data Services Job Server
and engines. It provides a reliable and scalable interface for request-response processing.
• Administrator
The Web Administrator provides browser-based administration of Data Services resources, including:
• Scheduling, monitoring, and executing batch jobs
• Configuring, starting, and stopping real-time services
• Configuring Job Server, Access Server, and repository usage
• Configuring and managing adapters
• Managing users
• Publishing batch jobs and real-time services via Web services
The following diagram illustrates Data Services product components and relationships.

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Using the product

You use Data Services to design, produce, and run data movement applications.
Using the Designer, you can build work flows and data flows that cleanse your data and specify data
extraction, transformation, and loading processes. In Data Services RealTime, you have the added
capability to build real-time data flows that support e-business transactions.
You create jobs to contain, organize, and run your flows. You create projects to organize the jobs.
Refine and build on your design until you have created a well-tested, production-quality application. In
Data Services, you can set applications to run in test mode or on a specific schedule. Using Data
Services RealTime, you can run applications in real time so they immediately respond to web-based
client requests.

image

When integrating Data Services into your existing environment, consider:
• The servers shown in the diagram can be separate physical computers, or they can be installed on
a single computer.
• For peak performance, install and create the Data Services local repository on either the same
computer as the Data Services Job Server or on the same computer as the target data warehouse.
In either of the previous configurations, the computer should be on the same LAN segment as the
rest of the Data Services components.

As shown in the diagram, most Data Services components—the Designer, Job Server, and Access
Server—can run on the same Windows system, or you can install the Job Server on a UNIX system
running Hewlett Packard HP-UX, Sun Solaris, or IBM AIX.

The Designer window

image

The key areas of the Data Services application window are:
1. Project area — Contains the current project (and the job(s) and other objects within it) available to
you at a given time. In Data Services, all entities you create, modify, or work with are objects.
2. Workspace — The area of the application window in which you define, display, and modify objects.
3. Local object library — Provides access to local repository objects including built-in system objects,
such as transforms and transform configurations, and the objects you build and save, such as jobs
and data flows.
4. Tool palette — Buttons on the tool palette enable you to add new objects to the workspace.

SAP BusinessObjects Data Services objects

In SAP BusinessObjects Data Services, all entities you add, define, modify, or work with are objects.
Objects have:
• Options that control the object. For example, to set up a connection to a database, defining the
database name would be an option for the connection.
• Properties that describe the object. For example, the name and creation date. Attributes are properties
used to locate and organize objects.
• Classes that determine how you create and retrieve the object. You can copy reusable objects from
the object library. You cannot copy single-use objects.

Object hierarchy

The following illustration shows the hierarchical relationships for the key object types within Data
Services.

image

In the repository, the Designer groups objects hierarchically from a project, to jobs, to optional work
flows, to data flows. In jobs:
• Work flows define a sequence of processing steps. Work flows and conditionals are optional. A
conditional contains work flows, and you can embed a work flow within another work flow.
• Data flows transform data from source(s) to target(s). You can embed a data flow within a work flow
or within another data flow.

Projects and jobs

A project is the highest-level object in the Designer window. Projects provide you with a way to organize
the other objects you create in Data Services. Only one project is open at a time (where "open" means
"visible in the project area").
A “job” is the smallest unit of work that you can schedule independently for execution.

Work flows and data flows

Jobs are composed of work flows and/or data flows:
• A “work flow” is the incorporation of several data flows into a coherent flow of work for an entire job.
• A “data flow” is the process by which source data is transformed into target data.
A work flow orders data flows and operations that support them; a work flow also defines the
interdependencies between data flows. For example, if one target table depends on values from other
tables, use the work flow to specify the order in which you want Data Services to populate the tables.
Also use work flows to define strategies for handling errors that occur during project execution. You
can also use work flows to define conditions for running sections of a project.

The following diagram illustrates a typical work flow.

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A data flow defines the basic task that Data Services accomplishes, which involves moving data from
one or more sources to one or more target tables or files. You define data flows by identifying the
sources from which to extract data, the transformations that the data should undergo, and targets.

image

Blueprints
We have identified a number of common scenarios that you are likely to handle with Data Services.
Instead of creating your own job from scratch, look through the blueprints. If you find one that is closely
related to your particular business problem, you can simply use the blueprint and tweak the settings in
the transforms for your specific needs.
For each scenario, we have included a blueprint that is already set up to solve the business problem
in that scenario. Each blueprint contains the necessary Data Services project, jobs, data flows, file
formats, sample data, template tables, and custom functions to run the data flows in your environment
with only a few modifications.
You can download all of the blueprints or only the blueprints and other content that you find useful from
the SAP BusinessObjects Community Network. Here, we periodically post new and updated blueprints,
custom functions, best practices, white papers, and other Data Services content. You can refer to this
site frequently for updated content and use the forums to provide us with any questions or requests
you may have. We have also provided the ability for you to upload and share any content that you have
developed with the rest of the Data Services development community.
Instructions for downloading and installing the content objects are also located on the SAP
BusinessObjects Community Network at http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/boc/blueprints.

New terms

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Data Flow Screenshot:

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Multiuser Development (Central vs. Local) Difference Viewer.

ds

Useful websites:

http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/sdn/ds

http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/boc/blueprints

http://www.maxima.co.uk/solutions/business-solutions/business-intelligence/business-intelligence-blog/item/installing-sap-data-services-40-part-1-information-platform-services

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