Types of data sources

You should do an assessment of the data sources that your current applications use. This is to ensure that they are suitable for IBM® Cognos® Business Intelligence. It also provides an opportunity to reevaluate your data strategy.

IBM Cognos BI separates your data strategy from the user experience. In IBM Cognos Series 7, you use IBM Cognos Impromptu® or Impromptu Web Reports to create reports from data stored in relational databases. You use IBM Cognos PowerPlay® Client for Microsoft Windows or PowerPlay Web Reports for data stored in multidimensional (OLAP) data sources.

IBM Cognos BI provides open data access by using enterprise information integration (EII) and extract, transform, and load (ETL) software to supplement direct access.

Data integration enables businesses to bring together information from multiple disparate systems, such as ERPs, mainframes, RDBMS, and flat files for reporting purposes.

IBM Cognos BI can access many kinds of data. How the data is modeled determines which studios will be available to you. There are three types of data sources:

Each studio can use the different data sources, as shown in the following table:

Table 1. Data sources supported by IBM Cognos BI studios
Studio Relational Dimensionally Modeled Relational Multidimensional
IBM Cognos Report Studio (advanced and managed reporting)

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IBM Cognos Query Studio (adhoc and light reporting

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IBM Cognos Analysis Studio (data and comparative analysis

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IBM Cognos PowerPlay Studio (exploration and light analysis)    

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Enterprise Information Integration (EII)

Composite software provides heterogeneous query access by retrieving data from different data sources using a single connection. Composite Information Server provides access to additional data sources such as LDAP, JDBC, Open XML, and WSDL, and improves performance when querying data that spans data sources.

Dimensionally Modeled Relational

If you want to model relational data sources dimensionally, you can first use the migration tools to migrate your reports, then modify your model to add dimensional information.

Third party OLAP

If you use OLAP data sources other than PowerCubes in IBM Cognos PowerPlay, then you can either stay in IBM Cognos Series 7, or migrate reports to Report Studio or Analysis Studio.