IBM Support

How to SFTP to Cognos Analytics on Cloud

How To


A how to document for Cognos Analytics on Cloud Customers looking to connect to their cloud instance using SFTP. SFTP is useful for migrating and moving content to cloud. Some examples are data source drivers, images, deployments, and Power Cubes.


The objective is to create an SFTP connection to your cloud instance.


The steps are for 11.1.x cloud instances and have some differences for 11.0.x versions of Cognos Analytics on Cloud.


  • SFTP Client installed (Terminal or FileZilla)
  • Create your SSH Keys
Note: The public key needs to be shared with IBM and installed by IBM onto your server. Log a support case to have it installed on your IBM server. The private key is used in the SFTP Client for connection
Terminal SFTP Client (recommended for Linux™ and Mac™)
  1. Using the command line for Terminal
    sftp -i <private-key-file> sftpuser@upload.<release url>
    for example, sftp -i ~/.ssh/id_rsa
  2. A connection using SFTP  is now possible
FileZilla SFTP Client (recommended for Windows™)
  1. Launch FileZilla
  2. Go to File tab on upper left of FileZilla screen
  3. Select Site Manager
  4. Create a New site
  5. Input the name of the site
  6. Input the following:
    Protocol: SFTP-SSH File Transfer Protocol
    Host: upload.<environment url>
    Logon Type: Key File
    User: sftpuser
    Key File: <browse or insert the key file location>
  7. A connection using SFTP is now possible


Additional Information

with Directory Structure
The user upload directories are organized as shown:
  |- dropbox       
      |- certificates      
          |- datasource      
          |- oidc 
     |- deployment
     |- powercubes (closed by default) 
     |- webcontent
Users can use the standard SFTP "put" command to upload certificates onto datasource and OIDC directories under certificates.
Data source Certificates
Data source certificates uploaded into certificates or data source directory are imported into both JVM truststore and CAM truststore on all BIApp containers in order to support various JDBC driver implementations. Here are some technical details:
  1. Depends on the driver's caching strategy, restart of Cognos Analytics is required for drivers that cache the certificates without any dynamic cache-refresh mechanism in place. 
  2. For drivers that able to react to keystore updated: 
    • If the driver uses CAM crypto's implementation of the SSLSocketFactory, then Cognos Analytics would need to be restarted.
    • If the driver uses CAM crypto's implementation with WebSpheres SSLSocketFactory, then no need to restart Cognos Analytics because WLP will reload the keystore every 60 secs if it changes.
    • Restart of Cognos Analytics is not required for driver that uses JVM truststore.
A restart is required each time a data source certificate is uploaded to the environment.
Authentication Provider Certificates
  • Only OIDC authentication provider certificates are supported.  
  •  OIDC provider certificates uploaded onto certificates or OIDC directory are imported into CAM truststore on IBM Content Manager containers
  • Removing certificates from certificates or OIDC directory does not delete the corresponding certificates from the CAM truststore.
Note a restart is required contact support after certificates are uploaded.
Deployment import or export
Import deployment archive
  • User can use the standard FTP `put` command to upload deployment archive onto the deployment directory.
  • Upload deployments to the deployment directory are replicated onto a shared volume consumable by Cognos Analytics.
  • After the replication process is completed, user is able to import the deployment archive that uses the product UI. Depends on the size of the archive, the replication process can take few seconds to minutes.
  • User can safely delete the uploaded archive once the import is completed. When the uploaded archive is removed from the user home directory, the corresponding replicated copy on the shared volume are removed.
 Export deployment archive
  • Deployment archive exported by the user is available for download from the deployment directory once the export process is completed.
  • User can then use the standard FTP `get` command to download the archive onto a local storage.
  • After the archive is downloaded, user can safely delete the archive from the deployment directory, which will remove the archive from the product directory.  
  • User can also download deployment through FileZilla.
Export deployment from SFTP
  • Open Administration console
  • Choose Configuration Tab and click Content Administration
  • Use New export to create a new deployment
  • Log to FTP server and change the directory to deployment
  • Issue a get command to download deployment
Power Cubes
Upload of Power Cubes is closed by default and enabled only on demand because the Power Cubes are not set up by default. User can contact support to set up Power Cubes.
Web Content
  •  User can use the FTP's `mkdir` and `put` commands to create the wanted web content overlay directory structure and content. Users can create subfolders to help you organize images.  
     |- webcontent
         |- FolderA
             |- folderA
             |- folderB
             |- folderC
  • All web artifacts (for example, JavaScript, images) uploaded to the web content directory is replicated onto a shared volume consumable by Cognos Analytics.
  • Removing web artifacts from the web content directory removes the corresponding replicated copy on the shared volume is removed.
Dropbox compressed file
Instead of uploading files one at a time, user can upload a "dropbox compressed file" onto the dropbox directory, and it is expanded onto all subdirectories under the dropbox directory automatically:
  •  The compressed file must be uploaded onto the dropbox directory.
  • Only .zip file format is support, and the file extension must be ".zip".  
  •  Once the compressed file is uploaded, the upload service decompress the content onto the dropbox directory. Therefore, all paths within the compressed file must be relative to the dropbox directory.
  • Only content under the predefined directories (that is, certificates, deployment, Power Cubes, web content) is extracted from the compressed file. Other contents are ignored.
Import Images
Webdev is not enabled, user cannot browse images -
  • User can review images by hitting:  https:// <release url><images name>
  • User needs to input PATH in the image Picker for example:
    • /logo.jpg 
    • /bi/images/logo.jpg
    • /bi/images/tool.png
SFTP Commands
Basic FTP commands that are allowed:
Ls: list the contents of the current directory 
Cd: change the directory on the remote host
Put: copy a file from local computer to the remote host
Pwd: show the present directory
Rm: remove file on the remote host
Mkdir: create a directory on the remote host
Get: copy a file from the remote host to the local computer

Document Location


[{"Business Unit":{"code":"BU059","label":"IBM Software w\/o TPS"},"Product":{"code":"SS6G84","label":"IBM Cognos Analytics on Cloud"},"Component":"","Platform":[{"code":"PF002","label":"AIX"},{"code":"PF033","label":"Windows"}],"Version":"11.1.x","Edition":"","Line of Business":{"code":"LOB10","label":"Data and AI"}}]

Document Information

Modified date:
08 November 2021