All of the topics discussed here in this blog comes from my real life encounters. They serve as references for future research. All of the data, contents and information presented in my entries have been altered and edited to protect the confidentiality and privacy of the clients.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

OBIEE 11G: Easy way to understand the High-Level Architecture and Sub-components

Hello here again.

Today I want to talk about the OBIEE 11g's architecture and how to navigate through some of the important components. 11g utilizes the concept of web logic, which makes its architecture very different from 10g. There are a lot of documents and articles that gives excellent introductions on how it works. However, nothing really clicks unless you actually work on it.

Therefore, I am going to lay out the basic ways to look at 11g's architecture from a 10g user's perspective. Why is this helpful? Because for those who are familiar with 10g already, they will be looking for the same thing in 11g. Only if you can establish this connection between how it works in 10g and how it works in 11g, you can then truly understand 11g's architecture. Learning from scratch will be simply too much work.

So let's start with this popular diagram of 11g architecture and see if we can make some kind of association with how it used to work in 10g:

So now how do I know what is what if I haven't used 11g yet, right?

A person who have used 10g before would want to know where is my BI server, where is my presentation server, OC4J, scheduler server and so on... We will get to all these places shortly.

Let's first talk about the components in the 'Weblogic Domain', namely the Admin Console and Enterprise Manager. I won't go into details about what they are and how they work in 11g architecture. Let's make it simple by assuming the Admin Console is available after installation.

First start WebLogic Server admin server, which enables to log in to the weblogic Admin Console: http://localhost:7001/console

Upon login, the interface will look at the following:

In the domain structure pane on the left hand side, we have 1 domain, which is BIFoundation_Domain. Domain can be created using weblogic tool’s Configuration wizard.

Under this domain, we have a list of nodes. The first one is ‘environment’. Underneath this node, we have a list of subjects, one is ‘server’, which is typically referred to as ‘managed servers’ in the 11G Architectural diagram:

Just to mention, in case you want to know where and how to set up the security authentication in 11g, it is also done here in Admin console. Under 'security realm'. There you can go further by setting up the LDAP server embedded in weblogic server, which allows you to create and manage users and groups:

However, that will be for another time. For the time being, let's move on with the overall architecture by clicking on ‘servers’ and we will see a list of managed servers under this domain. In my case, I have two servers.

The highlighted server is the managed server that once started, will automatically start the Java component and OPMN (referred to as the right side of the OBIEE 11G Architecture Diagram)

This should allow us to log in to the Oracle Enterprise Manager as referred to as ‘Enterprise Mgr’ on the left side of the architecture diagram under ‘Admin Console’. Typically, we can access to the enterprise manager via the url: http://localhost:7001/em

Here on the left pane, we can see the Weblogic Domain is what is in Admin console being BIFoundation_Doman.

The OBIEE components are under ‘Business Intelligence’ Node. In our case it is called ‘CoreApplication’. Click on it, and go to capacity management, we will see a list of OBIEE related services:

This is where we can manage to start/stop any of the OBIEE services, such as Presenation Service, BI Server, Scheduler Server that we are familiar in 10G.

This place is also used when we want to publish a new RPD. Simply go to ‘Deploy’ tab, which is the rightmost tab:

This is where we can upload a new RPD and webcat to publish. Simply click ‘Lock And Edit Configuration’ next to the ‘change center’ slightly above ‘Overview’ tab and start the process. I won’t go into it now.

That is pretty much it for an overview. It will take some time to get used to, but overall it is a pretty simple process.

Until next time.

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