Monthly Archives: September 2016

Impersonating Users in Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) to Test Security

September 21, 2016

Author: Doug Ross, Performance Architects

Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) provides the capability to impersonate another user by adding some parameters to the URL when connecting to the presentation server in order to help debug user issues.  Two permissions must be added using “Enterprise Manager” to the “BI Administrator” application policy in order to enable this capability.

The steps are as follows:

  1. Log into Enterprise Manager and navigate to the Business Intelligence “coreapplication” panel.
  1. Click on the “Business Intelligence Instance” drop down and select “Application Policies.”
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  1. Click on the “Application Stripe” drop down and select “obi.” Then, click on the right arrow button at the end of the “Name” line to display all “Application Policies.”  Scroll to find “BI Administrator” and click the “Edit” button.
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  1. In the “Permissions” section at the bottom of the page, click on the “Add” button.
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  1. We will be adding two permissions using the same technique: “oracle.bi.server.impersonateUser” and “oracle.bi.server.queryUserPopulation.” When the “Add” button is clicked, the pop-up window will look like this:
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  1. Fill in one of the new permission names into the “Starts With” box and click the right arrow button to execute. The search results will then show the new permission. Click on the resulting row in the search results, and then click the “Continue” button at the bottom to proceed.  You must click on the row before clicking continue or it will not work correctly.
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  1. The following window should be displayed. Click the “Select” button to proceed with adding the permission.
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  2. The new permission has now been added to the “BI Administrator” application policy.
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  3. Repeat steps 4-8 for the other permission: “oracle.bi.server.queryUserPopulation.”
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  1. The changes in Enterprise Manager are applied immediately and no restart of any of the services is required.
  2. Now, any user who has been assigned to the “BI Administrator” application policy can impersonate another user. This is accomplished by adding parameters to the OBIEE login URL that include your username and password and the username of the user to impersonate.   For example:

p3dbwhdev.acme.com:9704/analytics/saw.dll?Logon&NQUser=dcr29&NQPassword=YourPasswordHere&Impersonate=mam682

When you use this URL and it logs in successfully, you will initially see just a blank screen.  You then have to navigate to the home screen by putting in the following URL:

http:// p3dbwhdev.acme.com:97049704/analytics/saw.dll?bieehome&startPage=1

Notice that after logging in, the username should display the impersonated user in the upper right.

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Note: when entering passwords into the impersonation URL, replace any special characters like @, %, & with their ASCII equivalent.

Example:  %25 = %

%64 for @

(ASCII chart here:  http://www.ASCIItable.com/)

So a password of Abc@%123 would be entered as:

p3dbwhdev.acme.com:9704/analytics/saw.dll?Logon&NQUser=dcr29&NQPassword=Abc%64%25123&Impersonate=mam682

 


© Performance Architects, Inc. and Performance Architects Blog, 2006 - present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog's author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Performance Architects, Inc. and Performance Architects Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Webinar Preview: How to Transform Advancement, Fundraising and Development in Higher Education

September 15, 2016

Author: Kirby Lunger, Performance Architects

The higher education market is going through a major shift in revenue sources as a result of declining federal, state and local funds; changes in student body demographics and composition; and how people are choosing to learn and teach today. As a result, funds from advancement, fundraising and development are more critical than ever for institutions of all sizes. This blog entry is intended as a preview of our upcoming live, free webinar on September 27, 2016 at 3 PM EDT; if you’re interested in joining the Performance Architects team to discuss in more detail, please register here.

Why Fundraising is So Important in Higher Education

As reported by the Council for Aid to Education in their annual “Voluntary Support of Education” report earlier in 2016, “Charitable contributions to colleges and universities in the United States increased 7.6 percent in 2015… at $40.30 billion, the total is the highest recorded since the inception of the survey in 1957.”  However, as Doug Lederman pointed out in his insightful analysis in Inside Higher Ed, “A small and exclusive coterie of institutions is disproportionately benefiting from donors’ largesse. The top 17 colleges and universities – less than 1 percent of the total universe of about 3,900 institutions – accounted for more than a quarter of the contributions, $10.42 billion. And 60 colleges and universities, under 2 percent of all institutions, received $20.15 billion, half of the total.”

The issue here, according to Kellie Woodhouse in Inside Higher Ed is that, “The 20 wealthiest private institutions receive just 15 percent of their annual revenues from tuition and other student charges, according to Moody’s. The rest of the pack? Roughly three-quarters – the vast majority of their budgets [come from tuition and other student charges]…Wealthy institutions also attract wealthy donors: 60 percent of all money raised by the 500 colleges rated by Moody’s goes to the 40 wealthiest institutions, both public and private.”

This means that if you’re one of the “rest of the pack” there is a huge opportunity to diversify revenue streams with a little more effort and focus on development and advancement.

How to Improve Fundraising Activities

The old saying, “The devil’s in the details” is very applicable here.

  • Implement a solution to track constituent behaviors across the lifetime of a prospective donor. Institutions are in a unique position where a constituent can hold many roles over the course of their lifetime in relation to the organization. It isn’t unusual for us to see the same person playing the following roles: recruit; undergraduate student; graduate student; research assistant; adjunct faculty member; tenured faculty member; donor; and relative of a student, donor, and/or faculty member.  Schools cannot afford to allow old divisions between groups and divisions inside their institution to persist if they want to effectively fundraise as one unit to maximize donations.  Luckily, the software and process to make this happen now exists, and we will discuss tips and techniques on how to make this happen during the webinar.
  • Better profile current and prospective donors. The author of Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll, famously said, “If you don’t know where you are going any road can take you there.” Your fundraising team can waste tremendous amounts of time going after the wrong prospective and current donors because they aren’t aware of the profile of a high-likelihood donor, or how different age groups and audiences might prefer to interact with your staff.  Again, the technology to investigate and identify strong prospective donors is now available, and we will discuss how you can apply this technology in your own institution.
  • Organize for success. Change is difficult, and thinking as “one institution” about fundraising requires many of us to modify behaviors that have been in place for many, many years. This task is made doubly difficult because unless you have a top-down directive to change behavior, you’re often having to influence peers to make changes that are uncomfortable.  We will provide pointers on how to organize for success based on our experience with many institutions that have implemented these kinds of fundraising changes and will provide case studies on how they started down this path.

 


© Performance Architects, Inc. and Performance Architects Blog, 2006 - present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog's author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Performance Architects, Inc. and Performance Architects Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

How to Address “The Startup Folder Specified Does Not Exist in the Repository” Error in Oracle EPM (Hyperion) Workspace

September 7, 2016

Author: Andy Tauro, Performance Architects

During a recent project, where we were upgrading the base operating system (OS) of an Oracle Exalytics X2-4 In-Memory machine to Oracle Linux 6 image, we had to create a temporary pre-production server. This machine was meant to stand-in for production support activities, while the Oracle Hyperion Planning environments that the Exalytics machines hosted were offline. As part of this, the solutions deployed on the Exalytics machine were migrated over to the temporary server, and one of the tools used was the LCM (Life Cycle Management) utility. This is a popular utility for moving solution objects between environments of the same version.

After we migrated the solution artifacts during the usual health check, we discovered that every user, be it an Administrator, or a Report Viewer, was getting this error when they open the “Explore” module of Oracle EPM Workspace to access their reports: “The startup folder specified does not exist in the repository.”

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As per Oracle KB article 2132131.1, the cause is due to an incorrect interpretation of user preferences as they were imported into the target environment.

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To fix this for an individual user, the user must update ‘Preferences.’

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The ‘Default’ and ‘New Document’ folders point to incorrect locations.

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These folders need to be changed to point to a valid location, such as the ‘Root’ folder.

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Once both options have been updated, log off and log back in and the error message should not appear anymore.

 


© Performance Architects, Inc. and Performance Architects Blog, 2006 - present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog's author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Performance Architects, Inc. and Performance Architects Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.