How to use Rational Asset Analyzer with Rational Insight for metrics reports: Part 3. Create Rational Insight reports and dashboards

Using these two applications together helps you understand how people in your organization are using which software and where you could reduce application maintenance costs. This final article in a three-part series explains how to use the data imported from IBM® Rational® Asset Analyzer to create IBM® Rational® Insight dashboards and reports.

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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.



25 January 2011

Also available in Chinese

This final article of this three-part series explains what you can do after the data is published and available to use within IBM® Rational® Insight, including how to create reports and dashboards.

Add another custom query (optional)

  1. Create another custom query (Halstead Effort) by using the same process steps within IBM® Rational® Asset Analyzer and the code in Listing 1.
Listing 1. Sample custom query code
SELECT m.member_name, m.member_id, a.attr_num_value
FROM ${tschema}.dmh_member m
JOIN ${tschema}.dmh_mem_num_attr a ON a.member_id = m.member_id AND a.attr_type_id = 602
WHERE m.member_id = a.member_id and attr_type_id = 602
  1. Create the XML file within the REST interface and create a new data source within the Framework Manager (as before).
  2. To create the extra data source in the same package, you will need to start the Metadata Wizard. In the Project Viewer (Figure 1), under the RAA Insight CQ package, right-click the model name (File by Location) and select Run Metadata Wizard from the drop-down menu.
Figure 1. Launching the Metadata Wizard in the Framework Manager
Framework Manager, Run Metadata Wizard menu

From here, you can create the data source in the same way that you did previously (see Part 2 in this series). After the new data source has been created, you will publish it into the same package, as the next section explains.


Publish the data source into the same package

  1. Right-click the package name.
  2. Select the Publish Packages option from the drop-down menu (Figure 2).
Figure 2. Publishing to the same package
Framework Manager, Publish Packages menu option
  1. Click Next (see Figure 3).
Figure 3. Selecting the location type in the Publish Wizard
Package location selection
Figure 4. Publish Wizard options
Verify the package… checkbox checked
  1. Leave the default options selected and choose the Next option.

You will be notified that a package with the same name already exists (Figure 5), and that the new data source (recently created) will be added if you republish the package

Figure 5. Notification that requires a response
Package exists, model version will be added
  1. Click Yes to proceed with publishing the package.

In the Package Definition window (Figure 6), you can see that the Halstead Complexity data source is included in the package.

Figure 6. Package Definition view
Define what is in the package
  1. To test that the new data source is included in the package, right-click the package and select the Edit option.

Create Rational Insight reports

To access the Report Studio, follow these steps:

  1. Open Rational Insight in a web browser.
  2. Click Launch in the Rational Insight toolbar, toward the top, on the right.
  3. Select Report Studio from the drop-down menu.
Figure 7. Rational Insight report packages
Report Studio menu

Larger view of Figure 7.

  1. Select the package that you created (RAA Insight CQ) to launch the Report Studio (you might need to disable any pop-up blockers).
Figure 8. Select a report package
Select a package menu
  1. Within Report Studio, select create a new or open an existing report template.
  2. Select the type of report that you want to create (select chart for this example).
  3. Select the type of chart that you want to use.

After the report is opened, you can view and access the packaged data within the Insertable Objects pane.

  1. Simply expand the projects and drag the data into the report.
Figure 9. Report Studio
Report Studio fields

Larger view of Figure 9.

  1. To run the report, simply click the Blue arrow button: blue arrow icon

The output will then be loaded onto the screen.

  1. From here, you can Save the report into the package for all of your team to be able to use.

After it is saved, the report is accessible from the main Rational Insight page when the package has been selected.

Figure 10. Report: Count of Files by Language
Finished report bar graph

Larger view of Figure 10.

Figure 11. Report: Halstead Complexity
Finished report bar graph

Larger view of Figure 11.

Straight away, you can tell that the Halstead Effort of file DMHSRC02 is a lot higher than the rest and will take a lot more mental effort to maintain. You can see that the source for its related program might add more costs to your budget; therefore, you can mark it for further investigation.

You can load these reports into role-specific dashboards, along with any other queries pulled out of Rational Asset Analyzer and combined with other Rational Insight reports, to present a broader range of information to the team members.

Update the reports

To update the information in the report, simply replace the XML file on your machine with the latest data from Rational Asset Analyzer.

Currently, only single snapshots can be shown within reports, so you cannot combine live information from Rational Asset Analyzer so that you can easily see trends from the data. You can do this by using the XML configuration, but is not a small task, currently, because you would need to configure each custom query. The plan is that, in the future, the Rational Insight report will read directly from the REST interface of Rational Asset Analyzer, and temporal analysis will be possible.


Create dashboards and reports

Dashboards present a snapshot of program and project status information. Reports for different projects or work areas of a project can be seen at a glance and in one place. Adding reports enhances the utility of a dashboard to project managers and makes it a powerful and flexible tool for assessing project or program health.

This example will walk you through how to add your reports to an existing dashboard.

The first step is to create a copy of an existing dashboard:

  1. On the Rational Insight main page (IBM® Cognos® connection), select Public Folders> Dashboards by Category > Project Level Dashboards (see Figure 12).
  2. To the right of the Defect dashboard row, click More to create a copy.
Figure 12. Project-level dashboards
List of dashboards with Defect and More selected

Larger view of Figure 12.

  1. On the Perform an action page for the Defect dashboard (Figure 13), click the Copy icon: copy icon.
Figure 13. Copying Rational Insight dashboards
Icon shows two pages overlapped, with Copy
  1. On the Save as a copy page (Figure 14), enter a name (for this example, use RAA Metric Dashboard).
  2. Under Location, choose Select My folders and then click OK.
Figure 14. Specifying a name and a location
Dashboard copying process

The next step is to create a folder containing the reports that you want to include in the dashboard.

  1. Navigate to the Public Folders page (Figure 16), and select the name of the package that you created earlier.
Figure 15. Creating Rational Insight dashboards
Public Folders tab, RAA Insight CO selected

Larger view of Figure 15.

  1. Within the package, select the report names that you want to select.
  2. After it is selected, choose the Copy icon from the toolbar.
Figure 16. Selecting and copying the reports
Existing reports in public folders

Larger view of Figure 16.

  1. Navigate back to the My folders section and select the New Folder icon (Figure 17).
Figure 17. Navigate to the folder to place the reports
Dashboard Reports folder selected

Larger view of Figure 17.

  1. Within the New Folder, select the Paste icon option from the toolbar.

The reports should now be displayed in the folder.

Figure 18. Paste in the reports that you want to appear
Two reports listed

Larger view of Figure 18.


Add the reports to the dashboard

The final step is to add the reports to the new dashboard.

  1. Select the dashboard in My Folders, and click the Set Properties icon to the right of the page (Figure 19) to open the Set Properties page.
Figure 19. Selecting the Set Properties icon
First icon on left for each report, under Actions

Larger view of Figure 19.

  1. Click the Layout and Content tab (see Figure 20). Select the last instance of Cognos Viewer from the Selected Entries list on the right, and click Remove.
  2. Click Add.

A list of portlet groups will be displayed.

Figure 20. Layout and content properties of dashboards
Add selected under left pane

Larger view of Figure 20.

  1. In the Available Entries section on the left (Figure 21), select Dashboard.
Figure 21. Select portlets view, available and selected entries
Dashboard item selected under Name

Larger view of Figure 21.

  1. To move the portlet to the Selected Entries area, check the Multi-page check box, and then click the right-arrow icon between the two sections.
Figure 22. Selecting multipage entries
Shows the selections described

Larger view of Figure 22.

  1. Click OK, and then click OK again.
Figure 23. Rational Asset Analyzer Metric Dashboard tab view
Shows several dashboards, but not yet populated

Larger view of Figure 23.

  1. Click the link to open the dashboard. An empty frame of the multipage portlet is displayed.
  2. In the portlet toolbar at the bottom, click the Edit icon
Figure 24. Multipage portlet view in the dashboard
Edit icon (pencil) highlighted
  1. When the portlet Properties page opens, in the Folder section, click Select an entry.
Figure 25. Setting the properties
Folder section highlighted
  1. Browse to the Dashboard Reports folder that you created earlier (Figure 26), select the folder, and click OK.
Figure 26. Selecting a location
Shows selections described
  1. Click the dashboard link to view the customized dashboard. Verify that the two added reports are displayed at the bottom of the screen.

You have now customized the dashboard to include additional reports in a multipage portlet. You can also use Rational Insight to drill down to related reports at a more detailed level.

Figure 27. Dashboard reports populated with graphs and data
Rational Insight dashboard with reports

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