SAP BI 4.3, but want the BI Portal from 4.2? Here’s the solution.

SAP BI 4.3/Crystal Server 2020 comes with the new Fiori launch pad. It’s the one that looks like this:

SAP 4.3 Fiori interface

The old 4.2 looks more like this:

Admittedly, the new one is much more ‘modern’, but once you’ve got loads of users working from home right now and don’t have the time to retrain them for the new interface. It’s enough that Microsoft keep shuffling stuff around for no reason without SAP starting too!

What if you could take the old UI and copy it to the new? Before we start, what follows isn’t supported and I’d strongly recommend you test it with your own reports before deploying. I’ve only tested this with Crystal Reports so far (I’ve not had time to create a new SAP BI deployment).

  1. Search your OLD server for a file called BOE.war. Copy it somewhere convenient on your new server.
  2. On your new server, find your Tomcat conf folder (default will be C:\Program Files (x86)\SAP BusinessObjects\tomcat\conf). Make a backup copy of tomcat-users.xml.
  3. Edit tomcat-users.xml in Notepad. Just before </tomcat-users>, add the following 2 lines:
    • <role rolename=”manager-gui”/>
    • <user username=”admin” password=”admin” roles=”manager-gui”/>
  4. Restart Tomcat
  5. Go to the Tomcat Web Application Manager at http://localhost:8080/manager/html
  6. Under the list of applications, you’ll see a section headed Deploy. Enter the following (put your own path in the last bit):
  1. Click Deploy
  2. Wait
  3. and Wait a bit more
  4. You should now be able to navigate to http://<server-name>:8080/BOEOLD/BI
  5. Make sure you have the correct server name in system or you’ll just be connecting to the old server (voice of experience!)
  6. On the Home page, you’ll see an error, but the documents page works perfectly (and that’s the bit you want!).

Limitations:
The configuration in the Central Management Console relates to the new Fiori. You appear to be able to make it work with the old, but you can’t really have both.
I’ve not tested with WebI or Crystal Reports for Enterprise (but very few people use that)
The Home page doesn’t work (should be a case of finding another war to deploy)
You only get the old parameter interface, though you may consider that an advantage!

If you do deploy this, please let me know how you get on using either the comments below or the contact page.

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