BI Publisher 11g

What's involved in upgrading
BI Publisher to 11g for
Siebel Customers?

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Let's Upgrade BI Publisher to 11g!

Upgrade BI Publisher from 10g to 11g to stay fully supported by Oracle, and to integrate with Siebel Innovation Packs 2014 and 2015!

When the reporting integration between Siebel and Oracle BI Publisher (aka BIP) was first introduced in 2008, it was built around BI Publisher version 10g. However, extended support for BI Publisher 10g expired in July 2015, and Oracle will not release any new security updates or other patches.

The new standard for real time reporting in Siebel is BI Publisher 11g: if you are upgrading to Siebel 15 or 16 to deploy Open UI, you must also upgrade to BI Publisher 11g to remain on a supported platform. Integration between Siebel 15/16 and BI Publisher 10g is not supported by Oracle.

What’s new and different in BI Publisher 11g?

From a Siebel perspective, the processes for creating, managing and executing Siebel Reports in BI Publisher 11g are identical to those in 10g so there is no need for any new end-user training as part of the upgrade. However, behind the scenes there are some important changes and benefits.

BI Publisher 11g:

  • Runs on a WebLogic Server, and provides an improved architecture over the OC4J Server which hosts BI Publisher 10g. The WebLogic server includes a superior user interface and server management features;
  • Includes support for XSLT 2.0. XSLT 2.0 contains a much larger number of functions than XSLT 1.0, and considerably broadens the scope for the creation of more complex BI Publisher reports;
  • Has improved OOTB support to run as a operating system service and auto-start when server reboots, without the need for custom development or having to leave a remote desktop session open to the BI Publisher server;
  • Requires a repository database. In 10g a separate database was only required for report scheduling, however in 11g a database is required whether this functionality is used or not.

BI Publisher 10g to 11g upgrade process – What’s involved?

The process to upgrade from BI Publisher 10g to 11g essentially requires a fresh installation of 11g, followed by a migration of existing 10g reports using a migration tool from Oracle.

More specifically it involves the following steps:

1. Install BI Publisher 11g

  • Install Web Logic Server
  • Install BI Publisher 11g Server
  • Install Oracle BI Repository

2. Migrate BI Publisher
from 10g to 11g

  • Use Upgrade Agent to migrate Repository (including Reports)
  • Use Upgrade Agent to migrate Schedule (if used in 10g)

3. Update Siebel Integration

  • Extract and manually edit Java (JAR) files that are used by BI Publisher server
  • Register and deploy Siebel Java classes on Web Logic Server
  • Update the Web Services integration in the Siebel UI and within BI Publisher administration

Why is BI Publisher 11g upgrade assistance useful and essential?

There are a number of reasons why most companies require assistance when upgrading BI Publisher from 10g to 11g:

  • The new architectural components used in BI Publisher 11g (e.g. WebLogic Server, BI Repository DB) means that the installation process is completely different to that for 10g. Experience gained from the initial 10g installation is not applicable when installing 11g.
  • The installation and integration process requires manual updates to environment variables, cmd files, xml files and Java archive files among others. At best these updates could be described as ‘fiddly’, and it’s easy to make a mistake that can be difficult to resolve. There are also a few known issues that must be resolved for installation and integration to work.
  • BI Publisher 11g Server is administered with Oracle’s WebLogic Server, and while WebLogic is a powerful tool, without prior exposure it can be a daunting application to work with. For example, the initial configuration and setup for the BI Publisher 11g Server to automatically restart at server reboot demands that an administrator
    • follows a complex, multistep process;
    • manually edits a number of dos cmd files;
    • has the background knowledge of the detailed steps necessary to overcome known issues.
  • BI Publisher 11g in Siebel: Executing Reports
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BI Publisher 11g installation and upgrade – What does it take?

The step-by-step installation and upgrade guides which we build for our clients regularly surpass 200 pages in length. A significant portion of the required detail is screen shots to make the instructions easy to follow. However, the length of the document hints at the complexity and number of steps involved.

However, despite the number of steps involved, on past projects it has typically only taken Accelsior's consultants 3-5 days to install 11g in a development environment, integrate it with Siebel and upgrade the BI Publisher reports repository to 11g. In addition to the install of the development environment, project time is typically required to support report testing and any Test and Production environment migration activities and documentation.

Next steps

Whether you are looking to upgrade BI Publisher to stay fully supported now that BI Publisher 10g extended support has ended, or are planning to deploy Siebel Innovation Pack 2015/2016, make sure to work with Accelsior’s experts to ensure the project completes without delays, on time and within budget. Contact us today and talk with one of our expert consultants!