How to Migrate an Older Linked Universe to a New Merged Universe in BusinessObjects 4.0

  • by Shreekant W. Shiralkar, Global Head, SAP Analytics CoE, Tata Consultancy
  • Meenakshi Chopra, Solution Architect, SAP Analytics CoE, Tata Consultancy Services
  • Vinayak Gole, Senior Business Intelligence Consultant, Tata Consultancy Services
  • November 14, 2013
SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0 supports two types of universes, unx and unv. The unx universes, introduced in the 4.0 version, can be used to connect to a multitude of visualization tools such as BusinessObjects Explorer and Crystal Reports Enterprise. On the other hand, the unv universes do not support connectivity to these tools and therefore it is advisable to convert them to unx. BusinessObjects 3.x supported linked universes to enable developers to share common resources across multiple universes. Linked universes are no longer supported in BusinessObjects 4.0. However, linked universes can be converted as merged unx universes. Merged universes maintain the same features of linked universes along with the ability to connect to all the extended suite of BI tools from BusinessObjects.
Learning Objectives

After reading this article, you will:

  • Understand the concept of linked universes along with their advantages and disadvantages.
  • Become acquainted with the new merged universes that replace the older linked ones.
  • Know how to convert the linked unv universes to the new merged unx universes.
Key Concept

A universe is the semantic layer that connects the reporting layer to the database layer. A semantic layer shields the report user from the complexities of the database and the SQL queries. Requirements and situations dictate the need for linked universes. A linked universe is comprised of two or more universes linked together to form a super or subset of the core or master universes. Linked universes are supported in BusinessObjects until version 3.1.

With the new SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0 version, the concept of the universe and the subsequent design has been completely overhauled. BusinessObjects BI 4.0 introduced unx universes as the semantic layer and the Information Design Tool (IDT) for designing them.

However, BusinessObjects BI 4.0 does not support linked universes. When you migrate to the new version, these linked universes are no longer recognized by the new BusinessObjects Enterprise reporting suite tools such as Explorer, Crystal Reports Enterprise, and SAP HANA. The linked universes have to be converted to the new concept of merged universes by using the IDT. On conversion, these universes with the new .unx extension are able to connect to the reporting suite as well as other BusinessObjects tools.

Traditionally linked universes have provided BusinessObjects developers with a means to connect multiple universes and also create reusable universe components. BusinessObjects 4.0 encourages the use of the new unx universes.

Shreekant W. Shiralkar

Shreekant W. Shiralkar is a senior management professional with experience on leading and managing business functions as well as technology consulting. He has authored best selling books and published many white papers on technology. He also holds patents for innovations. Presently he is global head of the SAP Analytics Centre of Excellence at Tata Consultancy.

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Meenakshi Chopra

Meenakshi Chopra is an associate at Tata Consultancy Services with 15 years of experience in IT serving the banking, manufacturing, and travel & hospitality Industries. Meenakshi is part of the leadership at SAP Analytics and SAP HANA Center of Excellence at Tata Consultancy and is engaged in architecting and designing solutions on SAP BusinessWarehouse, SAP BusinessObjects, and SAP HANA platforms. She is an engineer with specialization in electronic instrumentation.

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Vinayak Gole

Vinayak Gole is a senior Business Intelligence consultant with 15 years of experience in IT across multiple business domains. Part of the global SAP Analytics Center of Excellence at Tata Consultancy Services, Vinayak has been engaged in architecting solutions on SAP Business Objects suite including Lumira and Business Objects cloud.  

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