IBM Support

How to create a custom background image for all Controller users (by using the parameters 'ENABLESTARTPAGE' and 'startpageurl')

Troubleshooting


Problem

Customer would like to modify (customise) the background picture of Controller (from the default blank / white screen) to something customer-specific (or more useful).
How can a customer change their Controller client background?

Symptom

By default, the background for the Controller client is a white screen:

Customer would like to customise that to be something different, for example:

image-20191202151947-5

Cause

Fully supported:
This functionality is intended to be used by customers, so that they can choose to do the following:
  • #1 - Customer wishes to customise the application to give it their corporate branding (look and feel)
  • #2 - Customer wants to display a message visible for all users , which the superuser can control (for example "Remember, submissions must be done by the 3rd day of the month")
Limited support:
Because it allows you to link to a website URL, there are other (more advanced) functionality that can be achieved:
  • #3 - Customer wishes to integrate Controller with their intranet/web portal
  • #4 - Customer wishes to provide end users with links to other useful resources (e.g. location of helpful manuals/documentation)
However, customers should be aware that Controller will display this website inside a limited Internet Explorer frame, which means that there will be restrictions to its functionality.
  • Therefore not all websites will appear/work as desired/intended
  • TIP: For more information on this limitation, see separate IBM Technotes #1118865 & 6208312.

Resolving The Problem

(1) Add a server preference (for each database connection) called:   ENABLESTARTPAGE
  • This setting enables the functionality which allows the background image to be customised/modified.
  • This setting is stored inside the database
  • Therefore, if you have multiple databases (for example 'ControllerLive' and 'ControllerTest'), then you will need to repeat this for each database
(2) For each user, add a local preference called: startpageurl
  • This setting tells the Controller client which website to populate the background with.
  • 'Local preferences' are stored inside the user's profile. Specifically, they are stored inside the file: %APPDATA%\Cognos\CCR\ccr.config
  • Therefore, each user will have to change their STARTPAGEURL individually. In other words, this change is done on a per-user basis
     
Steps:
      
Example #1 (fully supported)
Imagine a scenario where the customer simply wanted to modify the background to be their corporate logo:
1. Launch Controller
2. Logon as a super-user (administrative) account
3. Click 'Maintain - Configuration - General'
4. Click on tab 'Server Preference'
5. Inside the field 'Variable Name' enter the text: ENABLESTARTPAGE
6. Inside the corresponding box 'Variable Value' enter the value: T

7. Click 'save'
8. Repeat the above for each database that you wish to modify.
    Afterwards, each end user must do the following:
    9. Copy the relevant picture file to their PC
    • For example:        C:\UTILS\example_logo.jpg
    10. Launch Controller
    11. Click 'Maintain - Installation - Local Preferences'
    12. Inside the field 'Key' enter the value:        startpageurl
    13. Inside the corresponding box 'Values' enter the location of that JPG file
    • for example:     file:///C:/UTILS/example_logo.jpg
    image-20191202151740-1
    14. Close Controller
    15. Test.
        
    Example #2 (limited support)
    Imagine a scenario where the customer wanted to make a website appear in the Controller packground:
    1. Launch Controller
    2. Logon as a super-user (administrative) account
    3. Click 'Maintain - Configuration - General'
    4. Click on tab 'Server Preference'
    5. Inside the field 'Variable Name' enter the text: ENABLESTARTPAGE
    6. Inside the corresponding box 'Variable Value' enter the value: T

    7. Click 'save'
    8. Repeat the above for each database that you wish to modify.
      Afterwards, each end user must do the following:
      9.  Launch Controller
      10. Click 'Maintain - Installation - Local Preferences'
      11. Inside the field 'Key' enter the value:        startpageurl
      12. Inside the corresponding box 'Values' enter the relevant website
      • For example: http://myintranet/help/ournewcontrollersystem.html
      • or: http://www.ibm.com

      13. Close Controller
      14. Test.

      [{"Business Unit":{"code":"BU059","label":"IBM Software w\/o TPS"},"Product":{"code":"SS9S6B","label":"IBM Cognos Controller"},"Component":"Controller","Platform":[{"code":"PF033","label":"Windows"}],"Version":"All Versions","Edition":"","Line of Business":{"code":"LOB10","label":"Data and AI"}}]

      Historical Number

      1033073

      Document Information

      Modified date:
      11 May 2020

      UID

      swg21347128