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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Smart View 11.1.2.1 bugs

In my previous post, I had discussed about some of the intricacies associated with Smart View 11.1.2.1 and some workaround to avoid the same. There is an update on the first two (Decompression Failed error & Search functionality error), that is, Oracle has identified these errors as bugs.

Bug 11846992 – Decompression Failed – Invalid Pointer Error On Refresh after Session Timeout.
It will be really good if Oracle finds out a resolution to this error message. All users working with Smart View surely know the pain of receiving this error on regular basis.
Anyhow, there seems to be a yet another workaround for this error which appears to be more potential than the rest. We are required to update following entry as true in essbase.properties file:
smartview.webservice.gzip.compression.disable= true

Bug 12913916 - Member search functionality error
As discussed earlier, the workaround is to enable Alias table, fetch the required member and then turn-off the Alias table ( it will be rather good to use alias names in data-sheet to avoid the pain of changing over Alias tables)

Recently, I also came across an error where a user gets a pop-up when open MS PowerPoint, with the message:
SHAPE.TAGS : INVALID REQUEST. PRESENTATION CANNOT BE MODIFIED
It appears some user had already registered it with Oracle and they have identified it as yet another bug.
Bug 12418027: SMART VIEW ERROR : SHAPE.TAGS : INVALID REQUEST. PRESENTATION CANNOT BE MODIFIED

I just hope, Oracle do find out a solution to these errors and release some patch soon. Anyhow you can surely log a SR with Oracle to ask for an intermediate solution for your specific environment before any formal release is carried out.

Keep you posted !!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Smart View 11.1.2.1 and intricacies associated with it

Smart View 11.1.2.1 has been around for a while and has added some enhanced features to its list. The new office ribbon, ability for 'single sign on' and quickly flip between applications without the pain of entering your credentials over and again, and some more to add. But not to forget, good things always carry a "BUT" with it.
Surely the users know what I am talking about. In the following post, I will be discussing about some intricacy which hangs around with Smart View 11.1.2.1.

1. Decompression Failed Error
While working with Smart View 11.1.2.1, user may come across an error when it pops-up on the screen with the message "Decompression Failed" and sometimes followed by "Invalid Pointer". It may occur at different instances as in sometimes while refreshing a worksheet, or performing an adhoc analysis, or leaving the connection till session time out.

There is a workaround which may help you to avoid this error to some extent but not completely.
  • In EAS, expand the view on left hand side to reach Provider services
  • Right click on server name and 'Edit' properties
  • Edit the session time out value to increase it, say 1 or 2 hours
  • Restart APS services
There is a second workaround to avoid the same, but I would highly recommend to take necessary back-up of the Registry, before carrying out any changes. Please apply the following changes in Dev/QA environment first to avoid any break-down in Prod environment.

Make following changes to EAS, APS, Essbase, EPMA, Planning servers. Go to HKEY/Localmachine/System/CurrentControlSet/tcip/parameters and change the values for the following.
  • TCPTimedWaitDelay dword decimal value of 30
  • MAXUSERPORT dword decimal value of 65534
  • MAXFreeTcbs dword value of 6250



2. Member search functionality does not work in Smart View 11.1.2.1
This is kind of a weird error but yes it is part of Smart View 11.1.2.1. When a user tries to search for a desired member (with member name) in a hierarchy using member selection, the search functionality does not work. The top member of the hierarchy gets selected, although the member still exists in the hierarchy.
Though Oracle would surely take some time to resolve this issue and come up with some patch in future, you can try out a work around to make the search work. Before doing a member selection, turn ON the alias table. Go to Essbase tab, click on 'Change Alias' and then select alias table (or default). try to search for the desired member using Search member functionality, you should get the desired member. Better way to check it by selecting the drop-down beside find button and select 'Check All Found'. It will check all members which match the search string.

3. Smart View Log file error
In order to setup a new connection in Smart View, it is required to update the Shared Connections URL. Shared connections URL can be updated by going into Smart View tab -> Options -> Advanced and provide the URL. While changing this Shared Connections URL, user may encounter a log file error.
Need to update the logging file location. Under Smart View tab -> Option -> Advanced, check the box "Route Messages to file" and update the file path to your desired location. It will stop popping the log file failure message.

4. HsTbar.xla not found
Upgrading to Smart View 11.1.2.1 brings along an error when user opens the Excel file.
Here goes the solution:
  • Go to Excel options
  • Add-ins
  • Go to the bottom
  • Uncheck the box HsTbar. If it prompts you "If you want to remove from list", click 'No'
  • Click OK. Close excel and open again

5. Essbase tab in Excel does not show all the time
When a user opens a Hyperion sheet created with Smart View version prior to 11.1.2.1, user is able to view 2 tabs “SmartView” and “Essbase”. But sometimes Essbase tab goes away displaying only “Smart View” tab.

It is actually no error but the way Smart View 11.1.2.1 has been designed to work. Smart View tab shows up all the time when even when you open a blank excel sheet. Essbase tab shows up only when user is connected to Hyperion system or do an adhoc analysis.

6. Alias names and Sheet formatting
Users, who migrate from prior versions of Smart View to 11.1.2.1, usually encounter a state where their old Smart View reports, when refreshed in new version lose their grouping, member name changes, lose formatting, etc.
This usually happens when the old sheet is saved with Alias name set to some Alias table, but the new Smart View 11.1.2.1 connection is set to "None" or vice-versa.

To correct the same:
  • Connect to the database (Shared or private connection)
  • Right-click on database and select "Set Alias table"
  • Select the desired 'Default' or 'None'
  • Now load the file
Smart View 11.1.2.1 also gives an option to retain excel sheet formatting. This helps to refresh the sheet without losing any customized formatting done to sheets.
Go to Smart View tab in excel. Select ‘Options’ from excel ribbon. Go to ‘Formatting’ and check the check-box which says “Use Excel Formatting”. This helps the user to retain customized formatting in the sheet.

7. Smart View tab disappears from Excel
While working with Smart View, user may receive a pop-up mentioning about encountering an error and excel crashes. The next time excel is started it prompts the following error.

The Smart View tab is not visible in the top menu.In such cases, follow the below steps:
  • Navigate to 'Excel options'
  • Select 'Add-ins' tab from left panel
  • Go to Excel Add-ins (at bottom, with a drop down), click on the drop-down arrow and select disabled add-ins, click 'Go'
  • In the disabled add-ins, select Hyperion and click 'Enable'
  • Close excel and re-open