Thursday, July 26, 2018

Why to open ports when you can stream the data to Essbase (OAC) over HTTPS?

Migrating to cloud is sometimes hard when few things are on premise and few are moved to cloud. It becomes harder when cloud is connecting back to on premise systems. Say we have a large warehouse on premise and some application is on cloud and now cloud application wants to connect to this warehouse.
Some cloud providers came with *** Direct Connect, few came with **** Connect.
We may have to open the system and ports to public network and maintain those ports backed by strong IT team. Well, good luck with that!

One other approach could be to upload the huge files and process those files on cloud. Not a bad approach security wise but time consuming.

What could be really cool is someone comes up with a solution where we do not have to open the ports but we can stream on premise data to the cloud using industry standard HTTPS.
Wish listened! OAC- Essbase  streaming command line will allow us to do that as it comes with a tiny stream loader for a giant problem.
Let's try it out...

In this example, we will try to load the data from MySQL database which is on premise and we will load the data to famous Sample/Basic cube.
Your database can be any database which supports JDBC. e.g. Redshift, SQL Server, Teradata, DB2, SalesForce, ...

I created a sample data table in MySQL like below:

Now created a rule file like below with SQL query inside it. We can keep the query empty in rules and dynamically provide as well. Query should be JDBC compliant and should not contain any Essbase substitution variables.

Download Essbase CLI and install it at your favorite location.

login to CLI.
>esscs.bat login -url https://host/essbase -u

Create a local connection so that it can be used multiple times or in scripting.

>esscs.bat createlocalconnection -cs "jdbc:mysql://localhost:3306/world" -D "com.mysql.cj.jdbc.Driver" -u <user> -p <password> -N mysql1

Before trying out actual data load or dim build , make sure that you add an EXTERNAL_CLASSPATH with JDBC jars of your database.
Only Oracle DB jdbc jars are provided with CLI.

e.g. echo command on windows box should print your jar like below.

Now, load the data to database using below command:

>esscs.bat dataload -application Sample -db Basic -rule data1.rul -user root -stream -connection mysql1
Streaming to Essbase...
Streamed 4224 rows to cube

In the CLI/log directory, a log file will have an entry with time taken to load these many records.
Total time taken for streaming 0 secs 270 millis

Note: Rule file should exist in the DB directory.

You can use this for building a dimension as well. See the details here:

Try it out with your favorite database and let us know if you like it.

This command only supports loading the data from JDBC sources; what if we have a legacy system which cannot expose JDBC but we want to load data from that...

Can OAC expose a REST api to achieve this??

Stay tuned!

Friday, July 13, 2018

Playing with essbase ad hoc analysis using command line

If you are not familiar with cURL, JSON and REST, please read my earlier blog. Initial section of it has few links to quick start.

In this blog, we are going to play with a grid using command line. Wait! Is this even possible?
Let's try...

Create a Sample/Basic cube from Gallery.
Let's get a default grid first.
curl -X GET -u <user>:<password> "https://host/essbase/rest/v1/appliations/Sample/databases/Basic/grid"

It returned the default grid, it is based on the Smart View protocol.
  "slice" : {
    "columns" : 4,
    "rows" : 3,
    "data" : {
      "ranges" : [ {
        "end" : 11,
        "values" : [ "", "Product", "Market", "Scenario", "", "Measures", "", "", "Year", "105522.0", "", "" ],

The json above explains that it's a 3x4 grid and values contains all the values in a flat array.

Now let's Zoom In Year. Really??

Save above grid as "grid.json" by adding an initial 'zoomin' action node.

curl -X POST -u <user>:<password> "https://<host>/essbase/rest/v1/applications/Sample/databases/Basic/grid" -H Content-Type:application/json  --data "@/mnt/d/grid.json"

"action" : "zoomin",
"ranges": [[2,0,1,1]],
"grid": { <above grid goes here> }

"slice" : {
    "columns" : 4,
    "rows" : 7,
    "data" : {
      "ranges" : [ {
        "end" : 27,
        "values" : [ "", "Product", "Market", "Scenario", "", "Measures", "", "", "     Qtr1", "24703.0", "", "", "     Qtr2", "27107.0", "", "", "     Qtr3", "27912.0", "", "", "     Qtr4", "25800.0", "", "", "Year", "105522.0", "", "" ],

ranges in the above json has four values: row#, column#, number of rows, number of columns.  This means we can add multiple symmetric ranges in a single operation.

Great, what next? Can we keep only, remove only, zoom out, pivot?
Yes. See the details here:
(Download and view it in MS Word or Libre Office as Google docs cannot render it properly)

Let's zoom in, keep only to get the editable grid like below. ( Hack Hint: You can manually build a grid and call refresh to avoid too many zoom-ins...)
"slice" : {
    "columns" : 5,
    "rows" : 3,
    "data" : {
      "ranges" : [ {
        "end" : 14,
        "values" : [ "", "", "", "Actual", "Actual", "", "", "", "Sales", "COGS", "New York", "Cola", "Jan", "678.0", "271.0" ],

Let's change the COGS to 300 from 271. Save this grid like earlier in grid.json with initial "submit" action node.

"action" : "submit",
"grid": { <above grid goes here along with the dirtycells array inside slice tag> }

Here is how to add dirtycells. Dirty cells are the indexes of changed cells.

"slice" : {
    "columns" : 5,
    "rows" : 3,
    "data" : { ....}

Here 14 is the index of an array which starts from 0.

Grid comes back with changed values. We can zoom out on Profit to see the impact.

By the way, you can execute MDX queries as well. See the link above.

Cool, isn't it? Let me know if have any questions.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Introduction to Cube Designer - Files

OAC-Essbase has introduced a new platform concept called a catalog. The catalog is an area of storage within the cloud for both Essbase artifacts and end user artifacts. The catalog uses the OAC-Essbase security to restrict access.

Can Python digest a cube?

Then, I drew the inside of the boa constrictor, so that the grown-ups could see it clearly. They always need to have things explained.
But let's put elephants and boa constrictors aside. The more important question would be -- Can Python digest a cube? Nowadays even kids in elementary schools do python, so I thought it would be useful to show how Python code can call OAC Essbase REST APIs. Let's try to list files under /gallery/Cubes directory in the Essbase catalog.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Introduction to outline editing using JSON and REST apis

In this blog, we will cover how we can automate the outline editing using simple JSON file and REST apis.

Read more about JSON here:
and REST apis here:

We will use cURL for executing the outline REST. cURL is a command line library to execute HTTP requests.

cURL is installed by default on the Linux systems but on windows, you have to download and install it before trying the examples.

If you want to try any REST clients like POSTMAN etc., you can skip the cURL installation.

 Create a simple JSON file on your system with below code snippet.
  "editActions" : [
        "mbrAdd" : {
                            "mbrName" : "Test", "parent" : "Product"
        "mbrRename" : {
                           "thisMbr": "Test", "mbrName":"Test1"}

In this JSON, we are trying to add a member called "Test" in Product dimension and renaming it to "Test1".  This example will work on any outline with Product dimension in it.

Now, let's run this.
Save the above JSON into a file called myBOE.json. We can name it anything though.

Open command prompt and run it like below:

suresh@mylaptop:/mnt/d/study/Essbase/boe$ curl -X POST -u <username>:<password> "https://<host>/essba
se/rest/v1/applications/<application>/databases/<database>/boe" -HAccept:application/json -H Content-Type:application/json --data "@
  "messages" : "Info [1370001]: at line 2 char 111 element[otlEditMain], outline version reset to [0].
   Total member added: 1
   Total member updated: 1
   Total member deleted: 0
   Total XML edit time:[0.010000]"

Replace <username> with your username, <password> with password <host> with your OAC host, <application> with your Essbase application and <database> with database/cube name.

Yay! we got the output saying a member is added and updated. I don't believe, it's that simple. Let's confirm if it's real in the outline user interface :-)

Nice! It added and renamed a member.

To see what one can do and what are all the elements we can put in the JSON, click the below link:

Happy learning!!!