By Paul Hausser, Envisn, Inc.
Learning from our customers at the same time we’re helping them address a major issue is one of the most gratifying things we do. Here we showed a customer how to recreate the FM model they never had.
The customer situation was such that they never had the FM model that they needed. They’re using a third party software application purchased specifically for their primary line of business. Reporting for the application was based on Cognos. What they received was a standard set of reports covering most of the things that the application either performed or was able to report on. But they were limited in that since they never received the FM model with the application, it was not possible to add additional tables to the model or modify it. The only alternative would be to contract with the original vendor to create new, custom reports which they could otherwise do equally well themselves if they had a published model. Plus, they considered it unlikely that they would get the model even if they requested it.
They asked one of our support team if there was anything that our NetVisn product could do to help in this situation. We showed how it was possible for them to use NetVisn to create the FM Model that didn’t exist.
The steps involved in doing this are:
- 1. In Framework Manager create a new, blank FM Project
- 2. Copy the model specification from NetVisn
- 3. Replace the model.xml file copied from NetVisn into the new FM Project
- 4. Validate and test new FM model
- 5. Use the FM model as you would the original published model
So How Does This Work?
Just to be clear on the problem statement here, the FM model is there, inside the Content Store, but it’s not accessible through Cognos Connection. But the structure of the model specification in Framework Manager is the same as that in the Cognos Content Store. What this means is that you can create a new Framework Manager Project from the specification that’s in the Content Store.
When NetVisn is installed in a customer’s Cognos environment it automatically captures and stores the model specification from the Content Store along with all metadata for all of its objects. This is captured and documented so it can be used in multiple different ways. Here we simply copied the model specification and used it in a new FM project. The customer was then able to add to or modify the model as needed in Framework Manager. Problem solved.
This process would work equally well if you had to recreate an FM Model that was mistakenly deleted. The process would work exactly as outlined above.
Also, the caveat here is that this process will only recreate that portion of the model that was originally published. This is often, but not always, the complete model itself.
And it’s recommended that you follow best practices and have in place code versioning software to manage your FM model development.
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