BI Three-Front War

Acquisitions and partnerships seem to be the standard for today’s BI market.  The pure-play vendors (Actuate, Business Objects, Cognos, MicroStrategy, Information Builders and SAS Institute) are fighting a three-front war. Pure plays are feeling bottom-up pressure from the database vendors, such as Oracle and Microsoft, and top-down pressure from the application vendors, such as SAP. Database vendor Oracle acquired pure-play vendor Hyperion Solutions and application vendor Siebel Systems.  Meanwhile, small vendors with attractive price points and innovative technology are also being swallowed up.  ProClarity and Applix can be taken off the small vendor list as they have been acquired by Microsoft and Cognos respectively.

Is Informatica the next to be acquired?  The author of this article believes so:
http://seekingalpha.com/article/48226-is-informatica-an-acquisition-target

It seems the winner in the BI market will be the one that can integrate all these technologies into a single platform.  Microsoft wants to take the market by storm with the release of its latest product, PerformancePoint Server 2007 (PPS).  It focuses on Monitoring, Analytics, and Planning.  I’ve been fortunate enough to be working with this product since May 2007 in its pre-release form.  I plan on posting many entries on this exciting new software in the near future.

Advertisements

Busy month for Cognos

Cognos, one of the world leaders in business intelligence and performance management solutions, has been very busy this month.  On September 5th they made the announcement that they are acquiring Applix, Inc, for about $339 million.  Applix is most widely known for its TM1 product.  TM1 handles budgeting, forecasting, planning, reporting and analytics.  It will be interesting to see how Cognos integrates the overlapping technologies. 

http://www.cognos.com/news/releases/2007/0905.html

In addition, Cognos announced on September 10th that they have signed a worldwide reseller agreement with Informatica for its products, Informatica Data Quality and Informatica Data Explorer.   This will improve Cognos’ perfomance management portfolio.

http://www.cognos.com/news/releases/2007/0910.html

Cognos releases their FY08 2nd Quarter financial results on Sept 27. 

SSIS Script Task bug

I was running Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services Designer Version 9.00.2047.00 and encountered the following error when using the Script Task component in SSIS 2005.

The task is configured to pre-compile the script, but the binary code is not found.  Please visit the IDE in the Script Task Editor by clicking Design Script button to cause the binary code to be generated.

In your script window there is a setting called PrecompileScriptIntoBinaryCode.  If you set this to False, the error will disappear, but you won’t be able to run the package any longer through the SQL Agent. 

This error is a bug and MSFT has come up with a fix.  The problem is caused by a recent change to the CLR (Common Language Runtime) workstation runtime for builds of the Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0.  See Microsoft kb article:  KB932556.  I installed SSIS SP2, and it corrected the issue.      
After the upgrade I am now running Version 9.00.3042.00.  However, once I opened my SSIS package and set the PercompileScriptIntoBinaryCode to True, and I still got the same error.  I had to open the script and hit the space bar a few times, resave the script, and the error disappears.

-ez

Links:
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=932556
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=8AF6C597-0F18-4E61-B3D2-AAD66CDCACF5&displaylang=en

Posted in SSIS. 5 Comments »

Hello World!

Cheers to my first blog entry.  This blog will be focused on BI solutions using the Microsoft BI tool suite with a emphasis on PerformancePoint Server 2007.  We currently have PPS CTP4 Planning running in a production environment.  I’ve been focusing on the data integration aspects of PPS and I will use this blog to share my experiences and provide tips that will hopefully help others.  I’ve been using SQL Server 2005 Integration Services (SSIS) to perform this task, so you will likely find many entries on SSIS also.  Thanks for dropping by and I hope to have many more entries published in the near future.

-ez