SAP NetWeaver BI 7.0: Unlock a World of Formatting with Themes in BEx Web

  • by Ned Falk, Senior Education Consultant, SAP
  • April 1, 2008
Find out the eight steps to design a query using BEx Web in SAP NetWeaver BI 7.0. Along with explaining how SAP NetWeaver Portal is now part of the process, these steps introduce new concepts, such as themes, portal desktops, and BEx reports.
Key Concept

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is a standard internet technology that enables Web-based formatting. Used with HTML, CSS allows designers to have more control over the output of their reports when compared to the formatting options in BEx Web Analyzer, the Excel-based option for query design. You can use CSS to determine formatting options, such as color and object placement. Furthermore, you can use multiple links to separate CSS pages on a single HTML page, allowing you to have one style for print and one style for on-screen viewing. Although CSS is the underlying technology, SAP often incorporates it through tools found in SAP NetWeaver Portal, Web, and BEx Query Designer.

Previously in this series, I introduced you to new Excel-based formatting options for BEx. Now let me show you the new formatting options for Web-based BEx output in SAP NetWeaver BI. This type of output lets you view query results from any Web browser.

In SAP BW 3.5 and earlier, you controlled the formatting options by linking the BEx Web template directly to Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). In SAP NetWeaver BI 7.0, SAP NetWeaver Portal takes over the function of assigning the style sheets through portal themes, which ultimately drives the Web output format. This makes it easier for administrators to keep a consistent look and feel across the whole user experience, regardless of the Web template author.

However, to format the Web output, you need to use two Web technologies: HTML for content and CSS for formatting. Although CSS is the underlying technology for formatting, SAP NetWeaver Portal packages CSS under portal themes. This means that end users never work with CSS.

Ned Falk

Ned Falk is a senior education consultant at SAP. In prior positions, he implemented many ERP solutions, including SAP R/3. While at SAP, he initially focused on logistics. Now he focuses on SAP HANA, SAP BW (formerly SAP NetWeaver BW), SAP CRM, and the integration of SAP BW and SAP BusinessObjects tools. You can meet him in person when he teaches SAP HANA, SAP BW, or SAP CRM classes from the Atlanta SAP office, or in a virtual training class over the web. If you need an SAP education plan for SAP HANA, SAP BW, BusinessObjects, or SAP CRM, you may contact Ned via email.

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