BusinessObjects Board

DeskI End of Life announced (!)

It will be available in XI 4.0, thanks to the ASUG’s WebI Influence Council last year. :smiley:

substring :us: (BOB member since 2004-01-16)

Having the ability to ‘Evaluate the formula in its context’ when defining a variable. It’s such a useful tool for ensuring that your syntax is correct.

anorak :uk: (BOB member since 2002-09-13)

Taken from the EOL document

“Most SAP BusinessObjects Desktop Intelligence functionality will be directly available in SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence.”


Never understood why BO couldn’t have continued with it as a product. The simple deployment approach never washed with me especially with virtualisation technology being a viable option for a lot of companies. And I don’t see Microsoft creating a thin client version of their Office suite.


jakeh1969 (BOB member since 2004-08-20)

Hi jakeh1969,

Can you please give me some details on how did you used Microsoft virtualisation technology in regards to Deski?


JohnJustus :us: (BOB member since 2007-06-25)

Yes, I can’t imagin companies could still choose such a day to make annoucements, in particular such one. But this new is not a surprised. Bye Bye Deski, I will miss you :frowning:

bernard timbal :fr: (BOB member since 2003-05-26)

Hello All,

Could somebody post the Article here if that is possible ?, I mean i dont have access to SAP Market Place site :crazy_face:

Thanks in advance.

BOBJ_Novoice :india: (BOB member since 2010-04-14)

Sorry but if you are not able to follow the link on the top of this thread, it means you have not a valid agreement to access BO-SAP techsupport website content. And it is against bob forum’s rules to post directly copyrighted materials as the one you mention.

bernard timbal :fr: (BOB member since 2003-05-26)

That is sad… It all started with DeskI…

I could list huge lots of things why it is still one of the best tools. I have been using it for more than a decade. If I think about re-creating most of my current reports in Crystal Reports, as I will have to, since the formatting capabilities in WebI are so weak, I think … I’ll rather quit … :slight_smile:

There are lots of things that you can not do in WebI. Only half of my work is done in WebI, the other half in DeskI. If you have to turn to Crystal Reports, that is a completely different tool, with a completely different logic and technology, there are things that you cannot do in that either. Actually, I know, you can re-create 99% of the reports, and even better ones, but for many of them it will take much-much longer! … and if you take 7000 documents… Well… :hb:

Of course, it will not help if we just keep lamenting here. Does anyone know how desperate they are about getting rid of DeskI? They had wanted to do it before, but changed their mind as the user community made their voice heard. It was tested for a long while without DeskI but in the final release it was included… Does anyone think we have the same or similar chance now? I do not care if they do not develop it any further, just do not throw the Still-Best-Desktop-BI-Tool into the bin…

bobano :hungary: (BOB member since 2004-10-21)

No. Deski will not be part of XI 4.0.

Nick Daniels :uk: (BOB member since 2002-08-15)

You don’t have to. WebI is getting better and better in every new release. You can do folding/unfolding in XI3.1 SP2, and you will be able to view your data cube in XI 4.0. Therefore, you should be able to reproduce your DeskI reports in WebI and not with Crystal. I actually have created a P&L report with a lot of formatting using WebI, and it is working just fine. :slight_smile:

I cannot imagine all of them still being used on a regular basis. This might be the perfect opportunity to get rid of the one that are no longer being used.

substring :us: (BOB member since 2004-01-16)

How do they handle macros in the Deski-less world? What do they tell users with large deski communities that lean on macros - it sounds like they’re telling them to twilight the tool.

I personally prefer Webi, but I’ve supported the former - they’ll never go to 4, and eventually that will be the reasoning to move to Microsoft or worse… I’m torn, I’d like to see it go, too - but when do you pull the rug out from under a base like that?


bdouglas :switzerland: (BOB member since 2002-08-29)


I wouldn’t be so sure.

In Mark Twain’s words, “The reports of Deski’s death are greatly exaggerated.”

I am reliably informed that if there is enough customer resistance, then it will be a case of Edit>Undo Delete!

anorak :uk: (BOB member since 2002-09-13)

That’d be good…but I bet you 10p it doesn’t happen…or if it does the whole release is 3 months late :lol:

Nick Daniels :uk: (BOB member since 2002-08-15)

Much of the Deski macro functionality is now native functionality in the scheduler. The ability to email reports and report bursting is available as a native part of the scheduler. Other functionality is handled very well with program objects or as part of the extension points part of the product. This leaves very little that can’t be performed in Webi.

As far as I am concerned this ends up being a pain in that I have to convert everything but I have found very little that I cannot convert at this time.

Steve Rademacher :us: (BOB member since 2004-02-17)

With the greatest of respect Steve, how can you possibly make such a statement? Macros are VBA and therefore, have an (almost) unlimited flexibility for a programmer to manipulate a report output. By its very nature, you cannot possibly predict what people are using that for!

For example, we use a macro to open a data connection and update a database table when it has run to allow subsequent processes to continue. It is likely that we will have to ditch BO for this altogether when we migrate to XIr3.

Apart from that, we use a Macro for performance reasons. We need to split data from a single report into 3000 excel spreadsheets and PDF’s simultaniously. Although in theory, this is possible to do without Macros, it takes much much longer. (i.e. minutes become hours). For this report alone, I am very concerned for when we have to migrate from XIr2 to XIr3 “sans DESKI” !

(p.s. If you know a good way of doing this, I would love to know!!)


rob_bo :uk: (BOB member since 2005-08-04)

There are a number of, big, international, companies I have worked with where certain business units only use Deski, rightfully or wrongfully, down to the use of macros. That having being said, in most cases, the same could have been achieved by using the Java SDK.

To be frank Rob, shouldn’t / couldn’t this sort of thing be taken care of, using a database routine?

Hopefully :twisted: , report bursting - single pass - will eventually work as well as something like Infoburst. This is core functionality IMO.

Mak 1 :uk: (BOB member since 2005-01-06)

I did not say that it would work exactly the same way or as efficiently, just that you can perform nearly all “normal reporting” functionality by using the native functionality built into the XI scheduler. Things outside of what SAP considers normal reporting functionality may be more difficult to get done but it still can be converted to work using things such as scheduled Program Objects.

To use Program Objects, you will have to rewrite some of your code but it can be done using the SDK. Check BOB’s downloads for an example of a .VBS program object that I wrote that uses the SDK to perform some functions in Business Objects. You can do almost anything within the SDK from the command line. It is just a little more difficult than it was embedding your VBA in a report. You can also start learning Java and use the Java SDK if you choose to.

Business Objects reports were never designed to update databases. Sure you can write this type of code since VBA is nearly unlimited but updating databases in your reports is not what I would consider “normal reporting”. If you really need to do this, try doing it from the command line using a scheduled program object or use an ETL tools or a scheduled SQL procedure.

Deski is still included in XI3. It will go away in Xi4.

Publishing is designed to handle bursting a report into many different parts. I have no idea if it will work for you in your situation but that is all I can come up with as a solution for this. Again it might not be as efficient as the hand-coded logic that you were using and may be more work to setup but it should get the job done. If it takes hours instead of minutes, you may want to talk to SAP and find out why publishing takes so long to perform certain things. Publishing could use some performance and functionality improvements but it is somewhat usable if you know the limitations.

You can also use a program object that calls the SDK to retrieve a report from your repository and do things with it. This may meet your needs.

Worst case, you can use multi-pass report bursting. I would not recommend that unless you have a long time to wait for your reports to complete and don’t mind beating up your database.

Steve Rademacher :us: (BOB member since 2004-02-17)

Who said anything about reporting “normally” ?? :wink:

We may have used macro’s in a way that takes BO outside of its intended usage, but the fact is, they have allowed us to do things quickly and efficiently. If/when we upgrade, we’ll have to re-address these reports differently which will cost far more and take far longer with no additional benefit.

Unfortunatly, our company cannot (or will not!) afford the skills required to build bespoke functionality from the SDK so we will have to look at developments outside of BO. I just hope that the removal of such functionality is to help improve the stability of the product rather than just to help improve their profits!! (Cynical? Me? :slight_smile: )

Incidentlly, do SAP now refer to BO XIr2 as Crystal XIr2?
They only list Crystal XIr2 in the End Of Life list here:

PS. Steve…thank you for your links. I’ll check them out

rob_bo :uk: (BOB member since 2005-08-04)

Does anyone know if XI4 Webi will be able to fit a sheet to a page when I go to print it?

If not, can you pop round and explain to my MD why it’s better? :wink:

I asked this question at the ASUG conference and the answer is yes (finally).

BoB LoblaW :us: (BOB member since 2007-10-23)