Have you ever wished you could evaluate the impact of a new version of a Cognos package before you promoted it into production? Deploying significant package changes into a live Cognos environment can create a fair amount of anxiety. For example:
- Will all of the user authored reports still work against the new version of the package?
- Will the reports still produce the same data as before?
- How will the new version of the package affect report performance?
MotioCI's Impact Analysis feature is designed to provide quantitative answers to these questions. Impact Analysis allows BI teams to evaluate the performance, accuracy and consistency of a new version of BI content in another Cognos environment before committing to the deployment (e.g. you can evaluate how the new release of BI content performs in the production environment before going live with it in production).
In today's example, we'll evaluate the impact of promoting a new version of "Package D" from the Cognos Development Environment to the Cognos Production Environment.
In the diagram depicted below, we have a "Dev" Cognos Environment on the left, and a Production Cognos Environment on the right. Version 15 of Package D has been in production for the last 4 months and is widely used by both published reports and user authored reports (My Folders content). The BI Team has been hard at work on the next release of BI content in the "Dev" environment, and would now like to evaluate the impact of the new version of Package D (version 22) on the Production reports.
MotioCI allows BI development teams to create test cases for BI content which can be used to verify data accuracy, report performance and/or report consistency. These test cases are normally utilized by MotioCI to provide Automated Testing / Continuous Integration for Cognos.
Impact Analysis utilizes these same test cases when verifying that a new version of the BI content will behave as expected in a different Cognos environment.
In the MotioCI screenshot shown below, test cases have been created for Report A, Report B, and Report C.
A MotioCI label can be used to group together a set of related Cognos BI content in MotioCI's version control repository. In this example, we'll create a label which contains only Package D (not the Reports). We're doing this because we want to evaluate the impact of the package changes only (NOTE: we could just as easily create a label which contained the package plus all of its associated reports).
Now that the Label has been created, we'll add an Impact Analysis which can be used to analyze the behavior of the label's BI content in a different Cognos environment.
Once created, the Impact Analysis will now be visible under the Impact Analysis tab for the Label.
At this point we can execute the Impact Analysis immediately ("run now") or schedule it to run at a later time.
Let's take a look at what happens behind the scenes when we perform the Impact Analysis. In this scenario, we're evaluating the impact of promoting version 22 of Package D from the Development Cognos Environment to the Production Cognos Environment. First, MotioCI will determine which reports in the Production Cognos Environment are associated with Package D.
Once the potentially affected reports have been determined, MotioCI will find and execute any test cases associated with these reports against the current version (version 15) of Package D in the Production Cognos Environment. The Impact Analysis stores the results of these test cases marked as "Before" (these results are used as a baseline when comparing against the new version).
After all the affected reports with Test Cases have been executed, MotioCI will promote the new version (version 22) of Package D into a staging area in the Production Cognos Environment. The same Test Cases will be executed once again, but this time each report which is tested will be associated with version 22 of Package D (since we're evaluating the impact of promoting this new version of the package). This second set of results will be marked as "After". When all the testing has been completed, you will be able to review the results, and compare the behavior of the "Before" vs. the "After" (results against version 15 of the package vs. results against version 22 of the package).
You can view the result of Impact Analysis to see which test cases failed. The screenshot below displays the impact of promotion of version 22 of Package D on Report C. This report was executing just fine against the original version of the package, but will fail once the new version of the package is promoted into the Production Environment.
You can compare the before and after results of promotion to see which reports will be impacted by the new version of the package. You can fix the affected reports (or make adjustments to the package), and then repeat the process again until you are confident that promoting Package D into the Production Cognos Environment will have no adverse effects.
MotioCI's Impact Analysis capability is a simple to use yet powerful feature to help determine the impact of promotion from one environment to another.
Posted by _ at 6:10 AM
To get the most from IBM® Cognos Controller, you must deploy it effectively.
This means installing and configuring IBM Cognos Controller so that it integrates with your information technology infrastructure and meets your financial consolidation and reporting requirements.
To deploy IBM Cognos Controller effectively, do the following:
- Familiarize yourself with the IBM Cognos Controller
architecture.Read the chapters 1 to 5 of this book. It will help you understand the components that make up IBM Cognos Controller, their functions, and the ways in which they interact with each other, your infrastructure, and your authors and users.
- Decide how to install and configure IBM Cognos Controller Installation options.Know what your options are for installing and configuring IBM Cognos Controller, and decide which option best meet your needs.
- Decide how to maximize IBM Cognos Controller
performance in your environment Performance planning and tuning.Understand the factors that can affect IBM Cognos Controller performance, and plan to ensure and maintain adequate capacity for IBM Cognos Controller in your environment.
- Decide how to configure IBM Cognos Controller
multilingual capabilities Globalization considerations.If you will use IBM Cognos Controller in a global environment, decide how to configure IBM Cognos Controller so that interface elements and reports appear in the languages that users need.
When you complete your planning and are ready to install and use IBM Cognos Controller, refer to the other IBM Cognos Controller documents for step-by-step instructions Introduction.
Posted by _ at 5:45 AM
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