Take snapshots of Investment Analysis data in IBM Rational Focal Point

You can use the version attribute in IBM Rational Focal Point to take snapshots of data, including data from the Investment Analysis component. This article explains how and provides an example of how to work with snapshots.

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Björn Kylberg (bjorn.kylberg@se.ibm.com), Senior Software Developer, IBM

Author1 photoBjörn Kylberg is a senior software developer at the IBM Nordic Software Labs in Linköping, Sweden. He has been a member of the Rational Focal Point team since 2005 and has contributed with development of various components. Most recently, he has been working with the Investment Analysis component. He has a Master of Science in information systems analysis from Linköping University.



11 September 2012

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You can use the version attribute to take snapshots of an element in IBM® Rational® Focal Point™, including Investment Analysis data. When a new version is created, the current value of all attributes is recorded. The version attribute keeps a list of all recorded versions.

The version attribute is usually set up so that a new version is automatically created when certain attributes change. But you can also increase the version manually, which makes it possible to take a snapshot when you want to. It is also possible to take snapshots of several elements at the same time.

Prerequisites

You will need a time grid attribute configured for Investment Analysis. You can also retrieve investment analysis results in attributes (for example NPV Mean), and snapshots of these can be valuable to have. See the IBM Rational Focal Point documentation on how to set that up.

The version attribute is available in all supported versions of IBM Rational Focal Point and can be used for taking snapshots in the described way. Investment Analysis is available starting with Version 6.5.0.0.


Configuration

To take snapshots, you need a version attribute and a text attribute. The text attribute is used to store a label for the snapshot.

To configure a snapshot label attribute and a snapshot attribute:

  1. Select Configure > Attributes, and add a text attribute to the module where your time grid is. Give the text attribute a descriptive name, for example Snapshot label.
  2. Add a version attribute to the same module.
  3. In the version attribute configuration, specify that the snapshot label should increase the version by setting "Increased by attribute" to Major (1) for Snapshot label.
Figure 1. Configuring the version attribute
Screen capture of version attribute configuration

Working with snapshots

You can now take a snapshot by editing the snapshot label. Here is an example of how you can work with snapshots.

Procedure

  1. Add a new element. The snapshot attribute will start at 1.0.
  2. Edit data in Investment Analysis mode and save.
  3. Edit the snapshot label, and enter a label for the snapshot. The snapshot attribute is incremented to 2.0.
  4. Change data in Investment Analysis mode and save.
  5. Click the link in the snapshot attribute. When the list of versions is displayed, it should show 1.0 and 2.0.
  6. Select version 2.0.
  7. The element is displayed with the values it had when the snapshot was taken.

If you have several snapshots. it is also possible to compare two different snapshots.

Note:
Time grid attributes can be compared in IBM Rational Focal Point starting with Version 6.5.2.

It is also possible to take snapshots of several elements at the same time.

Procedure

  1. Display a view in tree mode.
  2. Select the elements that you want to take a snapshot of, using Ctrl+click or Shift+click. You are now in the "Edit one attribute for all selected elements" mode.
  3. Edit the snapshot label attribute and save.

You have now taken snapshots of all of the selected elements. The version attribute has been incremented for each element, and all of the selected elements have the same snapshot label.


Limitations

You cannot launch Investment Analysis for an earlier version. It is in display mode only.

The time grid attribute is always displayed in a table mode, regardless of the display setting used when the snapshot was taken. All current rows and sheets are displayed.

If the time grid configuration has been changed since the snapshot was taken, any removed row will not be displayed.

It is possible to roll back an element to an earlier version, but not all attributes can be rolled back. A time grid configured for Investment Analysis is one of those attributes that cannot be rolled back. So if you are using a version attribute to take snapshots of Investment Analysis data, the rollback function is of limited use.

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