Aug 22 2011

System Requirements and Support Plans For Universe Compare Tool

Categories: VBA Tools Dave Rathbun @ 8:00 am

This post details the system requirements and support plans for my universe compare tool which will be posted for downloading later this week. Comments are off for this post; any questions should be posted in the release topic, once it’s available.

System Requirements


I have tested this tool on BusinessObjects 6.5, on XI R2, and XI 3.1. The only host operating system I have tested is Windows XP. (Yes, still on XP here.) The code as released is configured for XI 3.1. There are minor changes that would be required to run for XI R2 which I will include in the support post. Microsoft Excel acts as the host for the VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) script; I have not tested on all different Excel versions so there may be some issues there. There is one additional library that must be available in order for the script to run. You must have available on your system the Microsoft Scripting Runtime which on my system is found in C:\WINDOWS\system32\scrrun.dll. If you don’t have this file, the script will not run. You may need to search the Microsoft web site for a downloadable version that is compatible with your operating system.

Along with this library the script references the Business Objects library for the appropriate version (11.0 or 11.5 for XI R2 – may depend on patch version – or 12.0 for XI 3). It also includes references to the Excel object library (for obvious reasons). The script can only be run on a workstation with both Excel and the Business Objects Universe Designer application installed. The Excel and Business Objects libraries required should be already on your system if the appropriate programs are installed.

None of these libraries are provided with the script so you are responsible for finding legal and appropriate means to install these items on your system.

There is no Unix version of this script, nor will there be. As stated earlier, it is designed to be run on a system that has the XI Universe Designer application installed. As there is no Unix universe designer, there is no option for this tool to run on that platform.

There is no batch version of this program. It is designed to run interactively as it prompts the user to open the two different universes that are to be compared. It is certainly possible to create a batch “wrapper” for this program that would automate the comparison of multiple pairs of universes but it is not my intention to work on such an enhancement at this time.

Support

Support will only be provided via this blog only on an “as time is available” basis. There will be no email, twitter, or phone support, free, paid, or otherwise. I will not support this program via BOB, SCN, or any other online community. “As time is available” means it may be hours, days, or even weeks before your question is answered, depending on what else I am working on at the time. If you are not comfortable with those terms, please do not download or use this software. I will have a blog post dedicated for posting support questions, and a link to that post will be included in the software that you download.

There is no guarantee that support will continue as I reserve the right to discontinue support at any time and for any reason.

I do not plan to support any questions on Business Objects 6.5 or earlier versions, although it is entirely possible that this script will work there I no longer have a platform on which to test or diagnose bug reports.

Future Plans For BI 4.x Implementation

This script may work on .UNV files under BI 4.0 but will not work on .UNX files, nor are there any plans on my part to make a BI 4.0 version that supports .UNX files. The new Information Design Tool does not currently offer an SDK. Future versions of the IDT may offer an SDK but it is likely to be java-based so this tool would have to be rewritten on that platform. It will not be possible to create a BI 4.x version of this script until an SDK is available.

Warranty

From the GNU GPL license:

15. Disclaimer of Warranty.
THERE IS NO WARRANTY FOR THE PROGRAM, TO THE EXTENT PERMITTED BY APPLICABLE LAW. EXCEPT WHEN OTHERWISE STATED IN WRITING THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS AND/OR OTHER PARTIES PROVIDE THE PROGRAM “AS IS” WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. THE ENTIRE RISK AS TO THE QUALITY AND PERFORMANCE OF THE PROGRAM IS WITH YOU. SHOULD THE PROGRAM PROVE DEFECTIVE, YOU ASSUME THE COST OF ALL NECESSARY SERVICING, REPAIR OR CORRECTION.

16. Limitation of Liability.
IN NO EVENT UNLESS REQUIRED BY APPLICABLE LAW OR AGREED TO IN WRITING WILL ANY COPYRIGHT HOLDER, OR ANY OTHER PARTY WHO MODIFIES AND/OR CONVEYS THE PROGRAM AS PERMITTED ABOVE, BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR DAMAGES, INCLUDING ANY GENERAL, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES ARISING OUT OF THE USE OR INABILITY TO USE THE PROGRAM (INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO LOSS OF DATA OR DATA BEING RENDERED INACCURATE OR LOSSES SUSTAINED BY YOU OR THIRD PARTIES OR A FAILURE OF THE PROGRAM TO OPERATE WITH ANY OTHER PROGRAMS), EVEN IF SUCH HOLDER OR OTHER PARTY HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.

Usage Restrictions

There are none. :) If you are a consultant or contractor, feel free to use this program for personal use or within your company environment or at client sites. In other words, I do not place any restrictions on how or where you can use this program. Your company or client policies may prevent you installing this program on their networks or using it in their environments so be sure to check for and understand their specific policies regarding third-party software. The only restrictions are applied by the GPL, which is to say that if you distribute the script you must include my copyright information and the full GPL license, and if you base any derivative works on this program those derivative works must also be bound by the GPL license.

I’ve been using this code for over two years, making tweaks and adjustments along the way as needed. I have no problem using it in my environment. The program does not write anything into your universe. The only operations performed are “open” and “read” and those operations are only applied to the two universes that you are attempting to compare. I have never had this script corrupt a universe. I have occasionally had the script bomb because of a bug or some unanticipated scenario. If you encounter an issue, please add a comment to the dedicated support and FAQ post, which will also contain the link to download the latest version of the program.