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Oracle® Enterprise Manager Cloud Control Extensibility Programmer's Guide
12c Release 4 (12.1.0.4)

E25159-10
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7 Using the Reporting Framework

This chapter includes the following sections:

7.1 Introduction to the Reporting Framework

The powerful reporting framework of Enterprise Manager makes information about your managed environment available to audiences across your enterprise. Strategically, reports are used to present a view of enterprise monitoring information for business intelligence purposes, but can also serve an administrative role by showing activity, resource utilization, and configuration of managed targets. IT managers can use reports to show availability of sets of managed systems. Executives can view reports on availability of applications (such as corporate e-mail) over a period of time. Enterprise Manager ships with over 100 reports addressing these various needs; additionally customers create their own customized reports.

7.2 What's New in Reporting?

BI Publisher is Oracle's enterprise reporting server to author, manage, and deliver all types of highly formatted documents. End users can design report layouts directly in a web browser or using familiar desktop tools, dramatically reducing the time and cost required to develop and maintain reports. Extremely efficient and highly scalable, BI Publisher can generate tens of thousands of documents per hour with minimal impact to transactional systems.

Since Enterprise Manager Release 10.2, the product has shipped with Information Publisher, an embedded reporting solution. However, as of this release, the Information Publisher reporting framework is deprecated in favor of developing reports using the BI Publisher product. New reports must be developed using BI Publisher and old reports transition to the new technology. Enterprise Manager Information Publisher will continue to ship with Enterprise Manager 12c Release 4 (12.1.0.4) and the existing out-of-the-box reports based on this solution are still present and supported.

Customers can take advantage of the standard features of BI Publisher, such as generating reports in printable PDF format and scheduling with various delivery options such as e-mail, FTP, and print. Customers can also develop their own custom reports against the Enterprise Manager repository. Customers access BI Publisher reports using the BI Publisher UI or by launching the BI Publisher UI by selecting reports from within the Enterprise Manager console.

The integration between Enterprise Manager and BI Publisher allows the administrator to establish security settings in BI Publisher and Enterprise Manager so that an Enterprise Manager user can log on to BI Publisher with their Enterprise Manager user name and password. This authentication delegation mechanism works for the following:

  • Enterprise Manager native authentication (for example, repository/dbms-based authentication).

  • Enterprise Manager SSO backed by LDAP authentication.

    BI Publisher will share the same LDAP authentication mechanisms that Enterprise Manager uses in this case. However, BI Publisher will not be configured to use SSO and will instead use the BI Publisher native login screen.

Enterprise Manager 12c provides a loose integration between BI Publisher and Enterprise Manager. BI Publisher is installed as a separate product into its own Oracle home directory.

7.3 Choosing a Reporting Technology

You can develop new reports using either BI Publisher or the Enterprise Manager Information Publisher (IP) reporting framework based on your product requirements. However, Information Publisher reports are deprecated from release 12c Release 1 (12.1.0.2), therefore Oracle recommends BI Publisher.

BI Publisher reports have the following advantages:

  • Highly formatted, professional quality, output-only reports, with pagination and headers and footers.

  • PDF, XLS, and HTML output formats.

  • Enterprise Manager repository access model supported through Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) data source and per-process function for Virtual Private Database (VPD) (VPD is set as a logged on BIP user). Supports select statements and pipelined PL/SQL functions available to the MGMT_VIEW account.

  • BI Publisher report access model using ”foldering” and granting access to folders.

  • Scheduling capabilities and delivery mechanisms (FTP and others).

  • Formats can be edited separately from the report definition.

  • Parameterize with BI Publisher parameter capabilities as a report is generated.

Enterprise Manager Information Publisher reports have the following advantages:

  • Reports that looks like Enterprise Manager console pages (no tight control over layout).

  • Tightly coupled with Enterprise Manager Oracle Management Services (OMS) and repository.

  • Integrated Dashboards.

7.4 Developing BI Publisher Reports

BI Publisher reports have data model, layout, and translation components. The data model component is modeled using the BI Publisher UI. The report layout is generated using RTF templates. RTF templates are authored by BI Publisher report developers using the BI Publisher Desktop application, which is delivered as a Microsoft Word Plug-in.

A complete example of a BI Publisher report ships with the BI Publisher integration. This includes a data model and a report definition.

When a report has been developed and tested, all of these components can then be exported from BI Publisher as files and packaged as part of the plug-in.

For more information about the report development and packaging process, refer to the Programmer's Reference.

7.5 Developing Enterprise Manager Information Publisher Reports

Enterprise Manager Information Publisher reports are defined in XML and packaged with the plug-in. These report definitions specify the layout and content of the report. You should use the BI Publisher interfaces to develop new report definitions. You should not utilize the Enterprise Manager Information Publisher PL/SQL APIs.

These APIs are still supported for reports included in plug-ins created before Enterprise Manager 12c Release 1 (12.1.10.2), but are converted to 12c Release 1 (12.1.10.2). These APIs are not supported for the development of new reports.