First off, yes, Interactive Reporting is no longer Oracle's Strategic Reporting tool. You can find out more here.
The Statement of Direction
Oracle will support Interactive Reporting version 11.x through various levels of support and you will need to get that from your Sales Person.
From a pure technology perspective you will be better served getting up to 184.108.40.206 due to browser and operating compatibilities with version 9.3.1.
OBIEE is a completely different animal and paradigm from Interactive Reporting. OBIEE uses the Common Enterprise Information Model (CEIM) within a centrally managed RPD that contains the Data Model and all the business logic.
You will find more information, documentation, demos and samples related to OBIEE
I strongly suggest you spend some serious time reviewing how it works from a user, developer and administrator perspective. Converting to OBIEE is not a straight forward conversion. There is a utility that has been provided by Oracle to *aid* in this process but you really need to have someone who is strong in the OBIEE - RPB Modeling. Note that there are parts of a BQY that will flow through the utility and others will not. You will really need to spend some time with the documentation and practicing.
You may also want to look at BIPublisher as an alternate target for your conversion. If your BQYs are primarily just producing paginated reports and little to no dashboards you may find that BIPublisher is a better fit.
Thanks a lot. That was really valuable information.
Do you know any known issues or major post upgrade issues that we might face after upgrade from 9.3.x to 220.127.116.11?
Also, Can you suggest EPM 18.104.22.168 is best fit or 22.214.171.124 (as far as IR is concerned) ?
I believe Oracle has added feature of supporting excel files of .XLSX format from 122, which is good. But not sure on stability of IR in 126.96.36.199.
It comes down to an issue of maintaining compatibility with current software versus having a product that actually works.
I upgraded from 9.3.3 to 188.8.131.52 (On MS Windows Server 2008 R2/SQL Server 2008 R2/Windows 7 64-bit). Here are the changes:
- IR will now export to a version of Excel that's 10 years old (.xlsx) rather than 20 years old (.xls from Excel 2).
- Service management is done through the web and is at a finer grain. This really simplifies service management. The small services restart very quickly so I am comfortable restarting one at lunch rather than waiting for a maintenance window.
- Names of functions have been made more obvious and meaningful (for example, you can now open a job instead of retrieving it). This is a plus and a minus. If you have been using the system for a while you'll initially have trouble finding things.
- The new version is incapable of handling non-trivial queries developed in the UI. Several documents developed in 9.3.1 and 9.3.3 using derivable queries and append queries work fine. The inevitable minor changes required as business adapts to the world, however, are not possible. For queries of any complexity, IR sends the aliases (like the names of the queries seen in the section list) to the SQL Server. Of course, SQL Server can't find objects with those names so the queries fail. My solution is to use stored procedures. At that point, I can migrate to any other (non-Oracle) product, so I'm actually happy they've pushed me in that direction.
- For large local results queries, the system will run out of memory if the query is run with UAC turned on and logged on as a non-admin user. Oracle says this is because the new version has more features and, therefore, uses more RAM. Oddly enough, the queries run fine when run as an admin with UAC turned off because they don't use as much RAM. It looks more like a compatibility problem than more features. Again, my solution was to push the work to SQL Server by developing stored procedures.
I was testing 184.108.40.206 while planning an upgrade and found:
- There are more new bugs than the bugs that are fixed.
- No IE10 compatibility (documented). Since we're skipping IE9 and moving straight to IE10, my main reason for upgrading (IE9) is gone. IE10 compatibility should be in 220.127.116.11 near Christmas 2013.
Recommendation: TEST EXTENSIVELY. Paint a clear picture for management showing that newer isn't necessarily better.