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SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence platform

Timeout settings in BI Platform 4.x

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Introduction


There are several possible settings to manage timeouts in BI Platform. In this post I have collected main settings, notes, and best practices for timeout management of BI Platform. The default timeout for a logon tokens at BI platform is 20 minutes (1200 seconds), and this calculated from the last interaction with JAVA server. In the platform Enterprise sessions are generated for each connection, and one enterprise session is valid up to 60 minutes. Online sessions for Crystal Enterprise and Webintelligence applications after 10 minutes inactivity (half time) are swapped to hard disk for performance reasons. Generally data connection sessions will be disconnected after 30-60 minutes inactivity.


For changing timeouts always keep the golden rule: keep it simple!

Note: these informations and settings are based on BI platform 4.1 SP 05.if you using prior version of the BI platform consider some settings may not implemented.

CMC/BI Launchpad session timeout

Background & Process

When a user or an administrator logs on into BI Launchpad or CMC with any authentication types (may be Enterprise, LDAP, Windows AD, SAP, Oracle EBS, Siebel, JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, PeopleSoft Enterprise)  at least 2 timeout counting starts

  • Session timeout
  • Logon token timeout (see next chapter)

The timeout of a these kind of sessions are managed by the java server (by default it is the tomcat server). All applications, such as webi or explorer, or Crystal Reports Viewer using the same timeout configuration, which is driven by the session. By out of the box installation BI Launchpad and CMC displays timeout warnings when session will run for timeout.

The timeout counting is starting from last action which interacts with the Java web application server, so actions like in webi click on tabs of the report, copy any object from the report, start drill etc. restarts the timeout counting.  So best practice to set the timeout for a time which is needed to review a report, but minimum 20 minutes.

Configuration

The session timeout is set in the tomcat web server configuration. Default value is 20 minutes.

To modify this follow these steps

1. Go to <BI 4.0 Install folder>\SAP BusinessObjects\Tomcat6\webapps\BOE\WEB-INF folder

2. Open web.xml in Notepad and search for the following tag:

<session-config>     
  <session-timeout>20</session-timeout>

</session-config>


3. To modify to 60 minutes, change the value of <session-timeout> xml tag. This example increases the timeout up to 60 minutes.

<session-config>

        <session-timeout>60</session-timeout>
</session-config>

4. Save the file and restart tomcat

Windows AD authentication timeout can be modified in CMS server properties. This defines the maximum logon time without re-authentication. The default value is 24 hours as 86400 seconds.

Logon token timeout

Background & Process

Also BI Platform can be  accessed by custom applications using the RESTful web service. This service lets you access the BI platform using the HTTP protocol. You can use this web service to log on to the BI platform, navigate the BI platform repository, access resources, and perform basic resource scheduling.

After a successful authentication, the logon token timeout is counted.  Logon tokens expire after they have not been used for a certain amount of time. When that token expires, the user will be required to log in to the BI platform again. You can set the amount of time that an unused logon token remains valid.

If the security plug-in reports a successful match of credentials, the CMS grants the user an active system identity and the following actions are performed:

1. The CMS creates an Enterprise session for the user. While the session is active, this session consumes one user license on the system. (these sessions are visible in the CMC -> Sessions)

2. The CMS generates and encodes a logon token and sends it to the web application server.

3. The web application server stores the user's information in memory in a session variable. While active, this session stores information that allows BI platform to respond to the user's requests.


Configuration

By default, the logon token timeout value is 60 minutes. To modify this timeout value, follow these steps:

1. Log on to the CMC as an administrator

2. Click Servers, and then click Servers List

3. Right-click on your Web Application Container Server (WACS) and click Properties.

4. The Properties tab for the WACS server appears. In the RESTfulWeb Service area, track the followings:

  • Enterprise Session Token Timeout (minutes):  The expiry time a logon token will remain valid. Beyond this time, a new login
    token must be generated.
  • Session Pool Timeout (minutes):  The time in minutes that cached sessions will expire.

   


    

Tips and Notes:

  • Decreasing Enterprise Session Token Timeout (minutes) can make unexpected errors. In case of reducing this value, please also change CacheServers Security Cache timeout values (see later)
  • For more information see about RESTFul web service  “Business Intelligence Platform RESTful Web Service Developer Guide”  at http://help.sap.com/boall_en

Connectivity services timeout

These servers are responsible for managing of retrieving information from the reporting database. Connection Server is the data access software that manages the connection between an SAP BusinessObjects application and a data source.

Connection Server allows client tools such as universe design tool (UDT), information designer tool (IDT) and SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence, and Crystal Report Designers to connect to and run queries against relational or legacy OLAP data sources.

Configuration


The Connectivity service category includes the following services:

  • Native Connectivity Service (hosted in standalone server)
  • Native Connectivity Service (32-bit hosted in standalone server)
  • Adaptive Connectivity Service (hosted in APS)

Several configuration option can be fine-tuned via CMC. To modify, follow these steps:

1. Log on to the CMC as an administrator

2. Click Servers, and then click Servers List, then locate ConnectionServer or ConnectionServer32

3. Right-click on your ConnectionServer and click Properties.

4. The Properties tab for the Connectionserver appears. In the Native connectivity  Service area you can
configure the followings:

  • TimeoutConnection Pool Timeout - Specifies the maximum idle time for connections in the pool (in minutes).  This option is editable when the connection pooling values “enabled with timeouts”
  • Transient Object Inactivity Timeout - Specifies how many minutes to keep an unused temporary object in the server. The object
    is removed afterwards and its resources are reclaimed. (in minutes)
  • Transient Object Timer Interval - Specifies the time between activity checks (in minutes). At regular intervals, the server searches for candidate objects for removal.

  • Single Sign-On Expiry (seconds) - Specifies the time, in seconds, that an SSO connection is valid before expiring. This applies to Windows AD users running reports that are configured for Windows AD SSO to the datasource. Default value is 86400 seconds which is 24 hours.

TIPS:

  • Changes of these timeouts does not require restart of the Connectionserver.
  • If the connecting pooling values “disabled” it
    has effect on the server performance.
  • Windows SSPI (SSO) connection option can be also configured in CMS Server properties, so if ConnectionServer value has to be
    synchronized with CMS server settings

Adaptive Processing Servers timeout

The installation program installs one Adaptive Processing Server (APS) per host system. Depending on the features that you've installed, this APS may host a large number of services (up to 21), such as the Monitoring Service, Promotion Management Service, Multi-Dimensional Analysis Service (MDAS), Publishing Service, and others.For more information please visit the following wiki page: http://wiki.scn.sap.com/wiki/x/mgjGE  or http://scn.sap.com/docs/DOC-31711

List of most often used APS services and usage:

ServiceApplicationService Description
Web Intelligence Monitoring ServiceWeb intelligenceMonitors Web Intelligence Servers
Excel Data Access ServiceWeb intelligenceSupports Excel files uploaded to SAP BusinessObjects BI platform as data sources
Adaptive Connectivity ServiceWeb Intelligence, Dashboards (Xcelsius), Crystal
Reports, Explorer
Provides connectivity services (replaces
Connection Server).
Visualization service

Web Intelligence, Crystal for Enterprise,  Analysis for OLAP

Common Visualization Object Model Service, used
by Web Intelligence for charts rendering in WebI reports. The CVOM is dedicated
to Web Intelligence reporting. It is what creates the charts displayed in a Web
Intelligence document.
Custom Data Acess ServiceWeb Intelligence, Dashboards (Xcelsius)Provides dynamic connections to data sources
that do not require a Connection Server. This service allows accessing and
refreshing reports created using some personal data provider like CSV files.
Insight to Action ServiceCrystal reports Dashboards (Xcelsius)Enables actions to be invoked and provides
support for Report to Report Interface (RRI)
Data Federation ServiceWeb Intelligence, Dashboards (Xcelsius), Crystal
Reports for Enterprise, Explorer
Enables multi-source universes by distributing
queries across disparate data sources federates data through a single data
foundation
DSL Bridge ServiceWeb Intelligence, BO ExplorerDual Semantic Layer (DSL) session support.
Optimizes BICS connectivity for SAP BW. Handles UNX SQL/LOV generation for
relational sources.

Configuration

Several configuration option can be fine-tuned via CMC. To modify, follow these steps:

1. Log on to the CMC as an administrator

2. Click Servers, and then click Servers List, then locate Adaptive Processing Server

3. Right-click on your APS and click Properties.

4. The Properties tab for the APS appears. In the Native connectivity  Service area you can configure the followings in the order of appearance:

  • Web Intelligence Monitoring Service

These options are editable when monitoring option is enabled.

    • Default Monitored Resource Cleanup Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, that the service waits for an inactive client before performing a cleanup of the client's session. By the default the initial value is 20 minutes (1200 seconds) = same as normal connection timeout.
    • Default Monitored Resource Swap Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, that the service waits for an inactive client before swapping the client's session onto the hard disk. It is recommended that you specify a value that is lower than the value for the Default Monitored Resource Cleanup Timeout property example as 10 minutes (600 seconds).

  • Excel Data Access Service, Custom Data Access Service
    • Excel Data Access Cleanup Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, that the service waits for an inactive client before performing a cleanup of the client's session. By the default the initial value is 20 minutes (1200 seconds) = same as normal connection timeout.
    • Excel Data Access Swap Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, that the service waits for an inactive client before  wapping the client's session onto the hard disk. It is recommended that you specify a value that is lower than the value for the Excel Data Access Cleanup Timeout (in seconds) property. Timeout property example as 10 minutes (600 seconds).

  • Adaptive Connectivity Service
    • see configuration at connectivity services.

  • Visualization Service
    • Visualization Engine Cleanup Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, that the service waits for an inactive client before performing a cleanup of the client's session. By the default the initial value is 20 minutes (1200 seconds) = same as normal connection timeout
    • Visualization Engine Swap Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, that the service waits for an inactive client before wapping the client's session onto the hard disk. It is recommended that you specify a value that is lower than the value for the Visualization Engine Cleanup Timeout (in seconds) property, example as 10 minutes (600 seconds).


  • Insight to Action Service
    • Maximum Connection Wait Time (in seconds): The amount of time the Insight to Action framework should wait for a response from the SAP Server before timing out (in seconds).Default value is 30 seconds.

  • Data Federation Service
    • Connection Inactivity Timeout:  Specifies the amount of time in seconds after which an inactive connection is closed, by default
      values is 3 hours(10800 seconds), this means, that the data connection timeout may be controlled by data connection options itself, not from APS
    • Statement Inactivity Timeout: Specifies the amount of time in seconds after which an inactive query statement is closed. By default the connection closes after 10 minutes (600 seconds).

  • DSL Bridge Service
    • DSLBridge Engine Cleanup Timeout (in seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds,
      that the service waits for an inactive client before performing a cleanup of the client's session. By the default the initial value is 20 minutes (1200
      seconds) = same as normal connection timeout.

TIPS:

  • You may configure APS timeouts instead of individual service timeouts. Please consider the configuration connections in individual cases, so if you increase timeouts in APS, than also check values of logon tokens and CMC/BI Launchpad

Crystal Processing servers timeout

In Bi 4.x there are several Crystal Report servers available. Let’s distinguish them by Crystal application type, Crystal Reports 2011/2013 belongs is one group, and Crystal Reports for Enterprise is the other.

  • CrystalReports2011/2013ProcessingServer: this handles the requests (on-demand) for processing of reports that have been written in any version of Crystal Reports (not CR Enterprise)
  • CrystalReports2011/2013ReportApplicationServer: used for processing of the data for dynamic parameters in reports written in any version of Crystal. Also can be used through one of the SDK's for custom Crystal processing in other applications. (not CR Enterprise)
  • CrystalReportsProcessingServer: Handles the on-demand processing of reports that have been written in Crystal for Enterprise only.
  • CrystalReportsCacheServer: used for report page rendering and caching for all types of Crystal reports.

In Bi Platform 4.0 at any patch the system uses Crystal Reports 2011 servers, and platform 4.1 any patch level the system uses Crystal Reports 2013 server versions.

When you connecting from Crystal reports for Enterprise, only one session will be created in system. When the Crystal Reports 2011/2013 designer used with data source from Repository such as Universe, the BI platform creates 2 enterprise sessions. (one for Repository connections and one for Webi Processing server)

Configuration

Note: Any properties that apply to both Crystal Reports Cache Servers and Crystal Reports Processing Servers (each Enterprise and Crystal) should be set to the same value.

Configuration options can be fine-tuned via CMC. To modify, follow these steps:

1. Log on to the CMC as an administrator

2. Click Servers, and then click Service Categories, then locate Crystal Report services

3. Right-click on your Server and click Properties.

4. The Properties tab for the selected server appears. In the “Service” area you can configure the followings:

  • Idle Connection Timeout (minutes): Specifies the maximum amount of time, in minutes, that a Crystal Reports Server waits for a request from an idle
    connection. This setting is valid for each Crystal server types.
  • Idle Job Timeout (minutes) Specifies the maximum length of time, in minutes, that the Crystal Reports Servers wait between requests for a given job. This setting is valid for each Crystal server types.

  • Security Cache Timeout(minutes): Specifies the amount of time, in minutes, that the server uses cached logon credentials, report parameters, and database connection information to serve requests before querying the CMS. This option is valid only for CR Cache server.

  • Single Sign-On Expiry (seconds) - Specifies the time, in seconds, that an SSO connection is valid before expiring. This applies to Windows AD users running reports that are configured for Windows AD SSO to the datasource. Default value is 86400 seconds which is 24 hours.

TIPS:

  • Windows SSPI (SSO) connection option can be also configured in CMS Server properties, so if “All Crystal Servers” value has to be synchronized with CMS server settings.
  • If the validity value of logon token is less than Security Cache Timeout (minutes), that the session can expire during report editing. For more information see Session Token Timeout (minutes) of WACS or Session management.
  • Idle Connection Timeout for RAS: Setting a value too low can cause a user's request to be closed prematurely, and setting a value that is too high
    can affect the server's scalability (for instance, if the ReportClientDocument object is not closed explicitly, the server will be waiting unnecessarily for
    an idle job to close).
  • If you change any timeouts of Crystal Services, please also check relevant settings for Adaptive processing server timeouts
  • In case of universe based reporting the Crystal Reports 2011/2013 designer also communicates with Webi processingServer, so if you have timeout issues with CR Designer and universes, webi processing server timeouts must be also harmonized with CR processing servers.

Webintelligence processing server timeout

Webintelligence is the most often used ad-hoc reporting tool of SAP Business Intelligence platform. Many of configuration is managed via Adaptive processing server settings. Webi has own processing engine, which is responsible for processing of reports and caching.

Webi and Deski applications are enterprise sessions. When webintelligence application is used, the main timeout is managed by the BI Launchpad timeout, but when a webi rich client is used, the timeout is counted by logon tokens.

Timeout Configuration

Several configuration option can be fine-tuned via CMC. To modify, follow these steps:

1. Log on to the CMC as an administrator

2. Click Servers, and then click Service Categories, then locate Web Intelligence services

3. Right-click on your WebIntelligenceProcessingServer and click Properties.

4. The Properties tab for the selected server appears. In the “Web Intelligence Core service” area you can configure the followings:

  • Timeout Before Recycling (seconds): Specifies the time, in seconds, the server is idle before the Server Intelligence Agent (SIA) stops and restarts the server when the total number of documents processed is above the value specified with the Maximum Documents Before Recycling property. By the default the initial value is 20 minutes (1200 seconds) = same as normal connection timeout.
  • Idle Document Timeout (seconds): Specifies the amount of time, in seconds, before the Web Intelligence Processing Server session will be swapped.
    Therefore, when the client is not generating requests during this period of time, the session will be swapped onto the hard disk, freeing up resources for
    an active session. Default value is 30 seconds.
  • Idle Connection Timeout (minutes): Specifies the amount of time, in minutes, that the server waits for a request from an idle connection. By the default the initial value is 20 minutes (1200 seconds) = same as normal connection timeout.
  • Single Sign-On Expiry (seconds) - Specifies the time, in seconds, that an SSO connection is valid before expiring. This applies to Windows AD users running reports that are configured for Windows AD SSO to the datasource. Default value is 86400 seconds which is 24 hours.

TIPS:

  • Windows SSPI (SSO) connection option can be also configured in CMS Server properties, so if “All Crystal Servers” value has to
    be synchronized with CMS server settings.
  • Idle Connection Timeout (minutes): Setting a value that is too low can cause a request to close prematurely. Setting a value that is too high can caused
    requests to be queued while the server waits for idle requests to be closed.
  • You need to restart web intelligce processing server to take changes effect, when the timeout values are modified.

References

1837122 - How to increase session timeout value for BI Launchpad and CMC in BI 4.0

1901350 - How to disable the timeout warning dialog box in BI 4.0 CMC and BI launch pad?

Business Intelligence Platform Admin guide

Business Intelligence Platform Data Access guide