A while ago I presented Pentaho – an open source BI solution. Like many other open source ‘commercial’ projects, Pentaho provides a free to download version from sourceforge. They also offer a version of their BI suite that comes with support,enhanced security features and better administration tools.
BI projects are complicated. A real BI solution provides much more than simple reporting. The large,commercial BI solutions are typically made of a large set of tools, in many cases from different software vendors that were added through acquisitions, facilitating the process of extracting data from the source systems (ERP or CRM, for example), updating a dedicated database with the extracted data (a data warehouse) and providing flexible,powerful tools to analyze the data in the data warehouse. Pentaho is no different.
In the coming weeks, I will provide a complete end-to-end guide on how to install, configure and connect Pentaho to Openbravo open source ERP. I hope Openbravo (and other open source ERP) customers will find this integration useful. Using BI on top of your existing ERP solution provides a lot of added value for your investment into the ERP project.
In the next few weeks, I will cover an entire integration scenario between Pentaho and Openbravo. I will begin by a detailed installation walkthrough of Pentaho, followed by some basic how-to guides. I do not plan to dive too much into Pentaho because the world of BI is huge and my main focus is bringing Openbravo and Pentaho to play together (the tune should be beautiful…).
Once Pentaho is up and running, we will extract data from our Openbravo installation and upload it to a dedicated database – that will act as our data warehouse – which will be used as the data provider for the reporting and analysis by Pentaho.
My goal is to provide to the community an easy to follow, working guide that will make the Openbravo-Pentaho integration a feasible solution. That is not going to be easy – since BI solutions are so powerful,they require deep know-how and experience. A major issue facing any BI project is system performance – since you are trying to analyze large amounts of historical data, the decisions on how to build your data warehouse are not simple. I will tackle the performance issue specifically.
If you are an existing Openbravo customer and are interested in integrating Pentaho free,open source BI solution with your existing Openbravo system, I would be glad to get requirements you might have.