How to use Rational Asset Analyzer with Rational Insight for metrics reports: Part 2. Transfer data between Rational Asset Analyzer and Rational Insight

You can use IBM® Rational® Asset Analyzer to inventory and analyze distributed applications that are composed of languages such as Java, HTML, JavaServer Pages (JSPs) and, to a limited extent, C++ and XML. IBM® Rational® Insight is cross-project and product-reporting software that gives you customizable control over data and performance. Used together, they help organizations analyze applications and assess the potential to reduce associated maintenance costs. This three-part series describes how you can use Version 6 of these two Rational tools together through the Rational Asset Analyzer REST interface. Part 2 concentrates on the technical process of moving the data from the Rational Asset Analyzer repository so that you can turn it into reportable metrics within Rational Insight.

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Leigh M. Weston (leigh.weston@uk.ibm.com), Technical Enablement Engineer, Enterprise Modernization, IBM

Leigh Weston has been with IBM Rational software for more than three years, working in various teams, including Enterprise Architecture and Enterprise Modernization. His roles have been involved with product management, communities of practice, and market engineering.



Paul W. Boney (pboney@us.ibm.com), Software Engineer, IBM

Paul Boney has been a developer on the IBM Rational Asset Analyzer team for more than two years, specializing in Java, web development, and the Rational Asset Analyzer REST interface.



19 January 2011

Also available in Chinese

Part 2 in this three-part series looks at the process of extracting the required data from Rational Asset Analyzer and transferring it into Rational Insight. After the data has been transferred to the reporting tool, the tutorial describes the tasks to make the data available for use

Create the XML file from the Rational Asset Analyzer v6 REST interface

  1. Enter this address in your browser, substituting your information for the variables, which are in italics (see Figure 1 for an example):
    http://{IPAddresss}:{WAS Port}/raarest
Figure 1. REST API URL address in a web browser (example)
http://169.254.155.172:9080/raarest
  1. When you are in the REST interface, select the cq option (custom query) from the URL column of the table.
Figure 2. REST API
Description column: Execute RAA custom queries
  1. From the information from the latest scan of custom queries available, select a query to return the results (see Figure 3).
Figure 3. Custom query selection
File Counts by Language selected

Larger view of Figure 3.

Figure 4. Custom query results table in the REST API
Two columns: Language_CD, Count
  1. Amend the URL to contain the content type, ?contentType=cognos, at the end (Figure 5), and then press the Enter key.
Figure 5. Cognos content type addition to the URL
URL with content type added

This will convert the query results to an XML format that IBM® Cognos® Version 8 can use. (The 8 the metadata contains information about the XML fields that Cognos needs.)

Figure 6. Cognos XML file
Cognos XML file code

Larger view of Figure 6.

  1. Save, and then copy the XML file that contains the query to somewhere on your local system (c:/temp/Cognos queries, for example).

Create the new data source for use in Rational Insight

Within Rational Insight, you will propagate the XML file through the Cognos 8 engine, not the Insight Configuration Manager.

  1. Open the Cognos 8 Framework Manager: Click the Windows Update option under the Admin menu, and then select these options from the drop-down menus (see Figure 7): IBM Rational > IBM Rational Insight > IBM Cognos 8 > Framework Manager.
Figure 7. Opening the Cognos Framework Manager
Series of menus to the Framework Manager location

Larger view of Figure 7.

  1. Then Select File > New Project.
Figure 8. "Create a new project" selected in the Projects menu
Screen capture from the Cognos Framework Manager
  1. Name the project (for this example, use RAA Insight CQ).
  2. Select a location for the project (see Figure 9).
  3. Click OK.
Figure 9. New Project wizard in Cognos
New project wizard: Project Name, Location fields
  1. Select the language for the project.
  2. In the Metadata Wizard (Figure 10), select Data Sources under Select Metadata Source, and then click Next.
Figure 10. Select Metadata Source menu
Metadata wizard, Select Metadata Source view
  1. Select the New option.
  2. Select Next (Figure 11).
Figure 11. Cognos New Data Source creation wizard
Screen capture shows Next highlighted
  1. Click Next.

In the New Data Source wizard, follow these steps:

  1. Create a name for the new data source (for this tutorial: File By Language).
  2. Add a description if required.
  3. Click Next.
  4. For the Type property, select XML from the drop-down menu (Figure 12).
Figure 12. Specifying the connection in the New Data Source wizard
XML selected as the type
  1. Select Next.
Figure 13. Data source parameter selection
Next button highlighted
  1. In the Connection String property field, specify the path to the location of the stored XML file in your local workspace.
  2. Click Finish.
Figure 14. XML Connection String field
XML file path entered
  1. Wait for a success message like the one in Figure 15 to be displayed.
Figure 15. Final screen with success message
New data source success message

Data sources

Data sources in the Framework Manager contain information that identifies the location of any data source tables needed for the query subjects.

  1. When you are modifying a project, you can import metadata from a variety of data sources, both relational and dimensional. Before importing, it is important that you determine that the data source contains the data and metadata that meet your reporting needs. After you have successfully created a new data source for Rational Insight, go back to the Data Sources page.
  2. Select the newly created data source name (Figure 16).
  3. Click Next (Figure 17).
Figure 16. Cognos Metadata wizard
File By Language selected
Figure 17. Data source name selection in the Cognos wizard
Metadata wizard, select created data source
  1. Select the objects that you want to import: Under the folder with that name (Figure 18), check the box to choose to import Tables and, within that folder, the check box for the data source name (File By Language in this example).
  2. Click Next.
Figure 18. Select Objects window
Shows selections described
  1. Accept the defaults, and click Import (Figure 19).
  2. When the import action is complete, click Finish.
Figure 19. Generate Relationships window
Import button highlighted at bottom of screen

Test the connection

Now that you have created a data source, test the connection.

  1. Go back to the Framework Manager.
  2. In the left navigator pane (Project Viewer), expand the Data Sources option.
  3. Right-click the name of the newly created data source, and select the Test option.
Figure 20. Data source testing
Test selected on the drop-down menu
  1. Wait for a success message to be displayed.

Create a package

The data that you pull from the sources appears in the Report Studio as packages. A package is a subset of a project. You create a package to make metadata available to your users.

Packages offer a single, integrated business view of the data that has been extracted. All of the relationships and dependencies between the data are held as metadata within the package.

For example, if your data source contains information from different areas of a business, you might decide to create different packages for Human Resources and Finance. It must contain all information that a specific user or group of users needs to create reports.

  1. In Framework Manager, in the Project Viewer pane, select Package.
  2. Right-click and select Create.
Figure 21. Package creation
Framework Manager, new package creation
  1. Name the package, and click Next.
Figure 22. Package name and description dialog window
Create Package – Provide Name view
  1. Accept the defaults and click Next.
Figure 23. "Define objects" view
Default shows File By Language project selected
  1. Keep the default settings and click Finish.
Figure 24. Select Function Lists view
Package creation wizard, final step
  1. When you get the success message (Figure 25), click Yes to open the Publish Package Wizard when you are asked whether you want to do so.
Figure 25. Option to open the Publish Package wizard
Yes button selected
  1. Accept the defaults and click Next.
Figure 26. Package location type selection
Publish wizard: Select publish location
  1. Click Next.
Figure 27. Add Security view in the Publish wizard
No security desired
  1. Accept the default to "Verify the packaging before publishing," and click Publish.
Figure 28. Options view, ready to publish
Options view with Verify and Publish selected

The data is now accessible in Rational Insight, and you can use it within reports.


What’s next

Part 3 in the series covers what you can do with data in Rational Insight and how to create reports and dashboards.

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