BusinessObjects Board

XI R2 Architecture & Sizing with 4.0 Updates

We have deployed XI R2 in our organization and have the following XI R2 components in our environment . Business Objects Enterprise Premium ( provides the ability to support both classic Business Objects users (Web Intelligence & desktop Intelligence ) and Crystal Reports Users in the same environment. We also support EPM (Performance management ) Services , Dashboard Manager (Dashboards , Analytics , Metrics ) and Performance Manager (goals , strategy maps) in the same XI R2 Environment

There have been a number of posts on this forum on the XI R2 System Architecture and Sizing for the various components of the systems and thought I can share our current XI R2 production system implementation architecture on this forum. We have designed this system to support 1500 users with 400 concurrent users. We currently have three XI R2 Servers (12 CPU’s) and two windows web servers (8 CPU’s) in our implementation . We have recently added two additional web servers (tomcat) to be able to support our user traffic to the Infoview portal and the attached diagram needs to be updated accordingly. Based on our internal load testing each tomcat web server can support upto 100 concurrent users , with 4 tomcat servers we are able to support upto 400 concurrent users.

We have kept our Web Servers and XI R2 Servers on seperate servers (web tier) as this keeps our B.O Licensing costs optimal , as there is no b.o licensing required for web servers and it is also simplifies troubleshooting and takes out the web server load from the XI R2 servers.Since every XI R2 implementation and usage is different , please review the XI R2 sizing guide for more information on sizing for your environment.

Some of the key features of our XI R2 Architecture (Attached diagram ) are

XI R2 is Fully Clustered at the application level – What this means is that the B.O XI R2 Servers in the cluster communicate with each other and also provide load balancing and fault tolerance features

Consolidation on a Single Web Server Platform – It is very important to standardize on a single web server platform for both Infoview and Performance Management (App Foundation). (Tomcat ) . Web Sphere has better load balancing and Scalability characteristics. The Tomcat version bundled with BOBJ 4.0 shares many of the same characteristics you will find with Web Sphere , hence I would lean to use Tomcat as the Web Tier Server for a simpler architecture in the 4.0 version. Business Objects Infoview Portal can be rolled out in the .NET flavor or the Java Flavor. The Java version of BI Launch pad is preferred to also support BI Mobile 4.0. The Java version of the Infoview Portal would support both the traditional reporting requirements and also the EPM (Dashboard Builder/Manager & Other Perfromance Management Services).

Hence Tomcat Web Server in 4.0 version is the recommended choice for the Web Tier Servers.

Load balancing & Fault tolerance

  • Application level (Redundant Services in XI R2 provide fault tolerance & load balancing
  • Databases (Oracle Database Server resides on a Unix Cluster)

Shared Storage (FRS) for Content (Reports , Analytics , Dashboards , Excel )- This is a new concept for the Business Objects Environment where we have moved the content of the XI R2 System from Server Local Disk (hard drives) to Network Storage. This eliminates the dependency on the availability of a single server for access to the content. There are primarily two options for Network Storage 1) SAN (Storage Area Network) 2) NAS (Network Attached Storage) . The NAS is the prefered option and works well with Windows Servers and inexpensive ( 8 Terabytes for 65K).

System databases on a single platform – We designed the XI R2 system databases (CMS Databases , PM Database and Audit Database) to be on a single database platform (Oracle) to maximize availability and cross platform issues.

Integrated Portal (Java) – We have standardized on the Java Platform in XI R2 and this simplifies some of the ASP and Java issues which were encountered in the earlier b.o versions. We have integrated the Dashboard and Reporting into a single portal which means users will access the same infoview portal site and login process whether they need to access dashboards or reports. The advantage of standardizing on Java is that it supports both Reporting and EPM Applications.

Routers for Web Servers – We have procured and installed Cisco CSS routers for directing web traffic for the XI R2 Web Server Environment. In XI R2 we have dedicated Web Servers which support this environment which have a higher session timeout limit (240 minutes) . The Cisco CSS Routers also should have a 240 min session timeout limit. The Cisco CSS Routers provide Load balancing and Failover for the Web Servers supporting the XI R2 Environment.

GUI Improvements – There are quite a few custom GUI Improvements made to the Infoview portal implementation to make the screens more user friendly (company logos …) and some of these changes have already been posted in the BOB downloads section of this forum.

AD Integration – Active Directory Integration is a significant improvement for the user experience as they will be using their LANid/pswd to login to business objects. We have implemented User Authentication using Windows AD but the authorization (content access permissions) are still with in Business Objects. We have a single Business Objects Users Group in AD and several B.O XI R2 User Groups with in the application. The benefits of this approach include the user can still user their AD credentials (LAN user info) to login to business objects and the B.O Administrator can quickly create user groups and assign permissions with in the B.O XI R2 Application with out the need to co-ordinate this with the AD Administrator.

E-mail Integration: We have integrated E-mail functionality (Outbound SMTP Relay) into the XI R2 Application and users will have the ability to send documents using E-mail and to send the output of the reports in pdf, excel or webi documents or as an link.

An updated version of the XI R2 Cluster Implementation Architecture diagram is also available at
Standard Business Objects XI R2 Cluster Sample (100.0 KB)

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

Approved. Moved to BOB’s Downloads.

MichaelWelter :vatican_city: (BOB member since 2002-08-08)

Hi There Enterprise Architect,

We have a similar installation for XIR2 except we are running .NET framework for the application.

(1) Running IIS Web Tier
(2) two Management Tiers (CMS)
(3 and processing tier running 4 servers primarily WEBI Report and job servers

Currently running 1400 users with about 100 concurrent. We have been experiencing some instability with one of the CMS servers dropping out.

We are in the process of re-platforming under the JAVA/TOMCAT platform so we can implement PM and dashboarding. Have you had any stability issues with the BOXI Cluster ?


Gomey :australia: (BOB member since 2006-05-18)

Can you let me know what your Deski Report Server and Deski Cache server parameters are? I am comparing with what other individuals are doing to maximize their deski server parameters.


deyszum (BOB member since 2005-01-21)

We do restart all the B.O Server and Tomcat Services in the following order every day at midnight to clear up the cache.

  1. Tomcat Services
  2. CMS Services
  3. EPM Services
  4. All other Reporting and Scheduling Services ( Crystal , Webi and Deski )

This process clears the session cache and improves the stability of the system.

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

But then what do you do about any scheduled reports or other objects that need to use the system during this time? I am sure that with a userbase of 1400 (and if it spans multiple geographies), some users are bound to end up being on the system at the same time you run your nightly scripts.

It would be interesting to know what is typically done in such a scenario.


sdeshpan :us: (BOB member since 2005-06-28)

The Users are provided advanced notice of the system outage for 30 minutes at 1 AM and asked not to schedule reports at this time as a precautionary measure.

We donot actually have a full system outage during the services restart period because we have a Server Cluster available. Please refer to the attached diagram for more information.

For Example: We have CMS running on two seperate servers (CMS1 , CMS2) . When we restart services on Server 1 we lose CMS1 but we do have CMS2 available. We only bring down CMS2 after the CMS1 Service has been restarted , the same concept is applied to the Scheduling and other Services , at any given time we are only restarting services on one server , the rest of the servers and services are still functioning normally and hence no system outage for the users.

The cool thing about this design is we have builtin load balancing and failover available and never lose a full service unless both the servers go down at the same time :wave: :wave: :wave: .

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

We have just IIS .NET implementation, so in your implementation the Web application service is running in 2 servers (tomcat) how would it be for IIS?
and how would you do load balancing, would it be still done using a router?

venky80 (BOB member since 2006-11-02)


I have a doubt regarding the XI R2 install.

Suppose we are installing BO in a Dual Processor with Tomcat as Web Application Server,does that mean we have 2 Web Application services running in a dual processor?

Currently we are planning to migrate to BO XI R2 from 5x environment.
We are provided only with 2 servers.So we have no other go other than upgrading the existing 2 servers.That is the reason we are planning for Dual Processor.

We have 1500 users (400 concurrent users).

Also let me know whether Tomcat will be a better option or Websphere for the mentioned scenario.

Please help me out.

Sukanya Krishnan

bodevXI (BOB member since 2006-05-09)

(Suppose we are installing BO in a Dual Processor with Tomcat as Web Application Server,does that mean we have 2 Web Application services running in a dual processor? )

There can be only one instance of tomcat or websphere standard edition running on a single server ( 2 or 4 CPU) under the standard configuration. I think it will be difficult to handle 400 concurrent users on a single tomcat or websphere server instance. The general sizing rule is one tomcat web server instance (java memory limitation) can handle upto 100 concurrent web users.

I would recommend running seperate Tomcat or web sphere on a different set of windows servers which are different from the XI R2 App Windows Servers. I would suggest running multiple instances of tomcat/web sphere on the two different windows servers for scalability and failover purposes.

Please review the diagram in the posting for more information.

The Tomcat version 5.0.27 bundled with XI r2 has scalability issues but the Tomcat version 5.5 bundled with XI 3.0 is more robust.

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

Thanks for the information.
We are provided with only 2 systems for BO XI install.
So will it be a better option to install Websphere in both the systems along with BO XI (or)

Request for one more system and use it as a dedicated Web App Server by installing WebSphere.


bodevXI (BOB member since 2006-05-09)


I have seen the architecture diagram, i have implemented very much similar kind of an architecture.

I am curious to know if there is a way we can have clustering at the application server. I mean, when a user logs in both the application servers should be aware of it.

Is there a way both the application server keeps the tokens in a bucket which can accessible by each other.


learner57 :us: (BOB member since 2007-03-20)


Rodger (BOB member since 2007-09-16)

This can be done in Websphere but challenging in the tomcat world.

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

It is recommended that the Deski Report server setings are set to handle unlimited Jobs. The B.O Server has an internal algorithm to calculate the capacity of the server for optimal performance.

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

From my experience never set the BO Report server to unlimited when you throw big loads of work at it you will get very strange error messages.
It is much better and stable to create many report server and limit every single one of them to 5 jobs.

I did that on a 4CPU box with 8GB of Ram and we can manage 120 concurrent deski sessions with 0% failed refreshes or other error in the last 1year.

ClaireB :de: (BOB member since 2002-08-09)

Hi Enterprise Architech,

I have couple of basic question , sorry if they seems very basic, it would be great if you can help me on the same.

I am planning a XI3.1 installation on IIS. I am plannng to have one app tire server(A) with all BO services and two web servers(B,C)(IIS) .

My requirement: To have dedicated servers/server for web application.

As per the BO documentation , for this type of set up I have to Installation a new installation on my App server (A)and I have to Install “Webtire installation” on my web servers(B,C). Please correct me if my understaning is wrong.

Now , questions I have are: 1) If we do an webtire installation on your we servers B and C. What are all the futures that will get installed, isn’t it Infoview and CMC? or only infoview ?

  1. The way I am connection to my infoview is http// server name/ infoviewapp.asp… If I install wire tyre installation on both web server . Isn’t it true that I end up have different URL of webserve one and webserver 2 ? and same with CMC?..

I undestand that I am messing here big time but, I am not sure how to handle with multiple CMC Url and Multiple Infoview Urls.

  1. If I have to configure SSO/Windows AD , where do I need to configure my SSo/AD on server A or ServerB or ServerC?

  2. Where can I set up SSO/AD if I have only server A and server B. Server A will all BO features and server B with wedtire installation. (no server c here) ?

As this is something similar to your installation , any help on this is really appareciated.

I am sure that I am missing something, it would be great help if any one can clarify me on these thing .

Thanks, in advance for all your time and help

Rodger (BOB member since 2007-09-16)

The only way to have a Single URL for Infoview when using multiple web servers is to have the URL DNS Translation occur outside of the web servers.
This can be done in a couple of ways

  1. Have a Router such as Cisco CSS assign a single DNS Website Name and handle the load balancing across multiple web servers which pass the request to the B.O Servers.

  2. Implement a Round Robin DNS Alias on the network where the first request gets sent to Web Server 1 and the second request is sent to Web Server 2.

  3. Some Web Servers like Web Sphere have built in load balancing capabilities and can translate the web servers requests from a single DNS Website name such as http://Infoview and route the request to multiple web servers which pass the request to the B.O XI Servers.

I hope this answers your question.

EnterpriseArchitect :us: (BOB member since 2006-03-23)

Thanks alot for your quick reply.It answered one of my question.

I need to do a webtire installation on my webservers, is that right ?

What are all the features that will get installted if I install a webtire installation ?

I am planning to have a separate server for CMC and Infoview-Server B?

I have installed new installation on server A(IIS/XI3.1) and CMC and infoview are working fine.

1)NOw, If I install webtire installation on Server B, the only link I am seeing is infoview , I am not seeing any CMC or CCM…?? Is this is hte way it works ?

2)If yes? If I configure AD/SSO on Server A , can I able to access infoview on Server B with AD credentials, As I am not seeing any CMC on server B , there is no way that I can configure SSO /AD here ?

Tahnks once again for your quick response and all your time.

Rodger (BOB member since 2007-09-16)

Hello Enterprise Architect,

Can you please tell me if it is even possible to cluster the Tomcat servers with XIR2 ?

The issue that i face when attempting to cluster the Tomcat servers is that I cannot replicate session information because BO session information is not serilizable.

Do you know of any way to overcome that issue?

ayadav (BOB member since 2009-04-01)