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** Troubleshooting ** Controller client seems to launch, but after selecting the database the logon screen fails to appear

Troubleshooting


Problem

User launches Controller client. User selects database (e.g. 'ControllerLIVE') from list in selection screen. User clicks OK.

However, the logon screen (User, Password, Actuality, Period) does not appear.

Symptom

The exact symptoms will vary slightly, depending on the scenario. Typically the Controller client will launch OK, and the user is presented with the database choice menu:

After choosing the database, one of two things may happen:

(1) This screen disappears, but nothing seems to happen afterwards.

(2) Alternatively, the splash screen may appear to 'hang' (after selecting the database):


There is no error message.

Cause

There are many different potential causes for these symptoms.

In general, the root cause is that the client device cannot communicate with the Report Server (BI) which the Controller application server has been configured to use:

Below are some scenarios that have been seen, which explain this communication problem:

Scenario #1 - The end user's client device cannot resolve the name of the server (configured inside 'Report Server' in 'Controller Configuration')

  • In other words, it cannot convert this name (for example NetBIOS server name) into a valid IP address.
  • See separate IBM Technote 1647183 (plus 1449887 and 1347749 if necessary) for full details
   
Scenario #2 - The Report Server is not functioning correctly.
For example, the Cognos Analyitcs (BI) Windows service (typically called "IBM Cognos") has a problem:

There could be many possible causes for this service failing.
  • For example, the Report Service's "content store" (for example a SQL database) may have had a recent problem. In turn, this could be because the SQL server may have recently been unexpectedly rebooted. [Database interruptions can cause the report service to fail].
   
Scenario #3 - Controller application server is too busy to process the logon request.
  • For example, you may be running a new 'impossible' report, such as one with a 'circular reference'
   
Scenario #4 - Cognos Analytics (BI) report server is configured incorrectly (inside "Cognos Connection").
  • Specifically, the setting 'Allow anonymous access' was configured as 'True'.
  • See separate IBM Technote #475341
  
Scenario #5 - End user's client device (PC) has restrictive Internet Explorer (IE) trust settings, so that it is blocking client<=>application-server communication
  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1415699.
  
Scenario #6 - Firewall blocking network connection from client PC to Report Server (CA/BI server)
  • For example, Windows Firewall running on Cognos Analytics server, which is blocking traffic on TCP port 9300
  • TIP: For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1117503.
  
Scenario #7 - Oracle user (schema)'s password has expired
  
Scenario #8 - Client device has Microsoft patch KB3185319 installed.
  
Scenario #9 - The Oracle database server has a problem
  • For example, in one real-life case, the Oracle server gave an "ORA-12542: TNS:address already in use" error for any connection to the database (used by Controller).
 
Scenario #10 - Cognos Analytics (BI) report server is configured incorrectly (inside "Cognos Connection").
  • Specifically, the setting 'Restrict access to members of the built-in namespace' was configured as 'False'.
  • See separate IBM Technote #5694639
Scenario #11 - Cognos Analytics report server has been configured to use SSO, but its IIS website is configured to use the wrong (case-sensitive) values for its parameters settings (for example URL Rewrite Rules)
  • See separate IBM Technote #6218316

Diagnosing The Problem

Scenario #3 - Controller application server is too busy working on a different task to respond to a logon request.

To check this, launch 'Task Manager' on the application server

  • You may see that one CPU appears to be totally (100%) occupied.
  • For example, if the server is a dual-CPU server, then the 'overall' graph will appear to be 50%.
This 100% (or 50%) task will be running the process 'dllhost.exe'.
  • 'dllhost.exe' is the COM+ process that runs the COGNOSCONTROLLER application server itself.
  • Typically, the process 'DLLHOST.EXE' will only run at 100% during intense processes, such as during a consolidation.
  • If you are *not* running a consolidation, but the process is still consuming 100% CPU, then it is likely that you have asked the application server to perform an impossible task.

Resolving The Problem

Scenario #1 - Invalid settings inside "Controller Configuration" on the Controller application server

  • See separate IBM Technote 1647183 (plus 1449887 and 1347749 if necessary).

 
Scenario #2 - Cognos 8 Report Server's Cognos 8 BI service is not running

  1. Logon to the Report Server.
  2. Launch "Cognos Configuration" (NOTE: this is NOT the same as "Controller Configuration") from the start menu.
  3. Click the 'start service' button ("play button") at the top left-corner. After a minute or so, the service should start.

Scenario #3 - Controller application server is too busy to process the logon request.

Wait a reasonable length of time (for example 5 or 10 minutes) to be sure that the system has genuinely locked up.

  • If the logon box still does not appear, then ensure that all Controller users have exited the application, and reboot the Controller application server.
Steps:
TIP: It is possible to simply reboot the COM+ application ('COGNOSCONTROLLER' - which runs the Controller logic) instead of the entire server, by performing the following steps:
  1. Ensure no users in the system
  2. Logon to the Controller application server as an administrator
  3. Launch 'Start - Settings - Control Panel - Administrative Tools - Component Services'
  4. Launch 'Component Services'
  5. Expand the top row (Component Services - Computers - My Computer - COM+ Applications)
  6. Locate the application 'IBMCOGNOSCONTROLLER' (TIP: Older versions of Controller are called 'COGNOSCONTROLLER')
  7. Right-click on 'IBMCOGNOSCONTROLLER' and choose 'shut down'
  8. Wait approximately 5 seconds
  9. Right-click on 'IBMCOGNOSCONTROLLER' and choose 'start'.


Scenario #4 - Cognos report server (BI server) is configured incorrectly.
On the BI (Report) server, launch "Cognos Connection" and configure Cognos BI security correctly.

  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1595071.


Scenario #5 - End user's client device (PC) has restrictive Internet Explorer (IE) trust settings, so that it is blocking client<=>application-server communication
Adjust the client device's Internet Explorer trust settings.

  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1415699.


Scenario #6 - Firewall blocking network connection from client PC to Report Server (BI server)
Unblock network communication from the client PC to the application server.

  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1668168.


Scenario #7 - Oracle user (schema)'s password has expired
Disable the policy (on the Oracle server) which causes the user/schema's passwords to expire.

  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1668168.

Scenario #8 - Client device has Microsoft patch KB3185319 installed
Uninstall Microsoft patch KB3185319 from client device.

  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #1996443.

  

Scenario #9 - The Oracle database server has a problem, which means that it gives an "ORA-12542: TNS:address already in use" error
Ask your I.T. department's Oracle database administrator (DBA) to investigate why the Oracle database server occasionally gives "ORA-12542: TNS:address already in use" errors.

  • For more details, see separate IBM Technote #0725863.

   

Scenario #10 - The setting 'Restrict access to members of the built-in namespace' is configured as 'False'.
Change the setting 'Restrict access to members of the built-in namespace' to be 'True'.
  • See separate IBM Technote #5694639 .

Scenario #11 - Cognos Analytics SSO settings are case-sensitive.
Modify the values of the SSO-relates settings (such as URL Rewrite rules) so that the URLs are all lowercase.
  • See separate IBM Technote #6218316.

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Historical Number

1029812

Document Information

Modified date:
01 June 2020

UID

swg21346783