What’s New in Jedox 2018.3

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This document gives an overview of the new features, enhancements, and fixes in Jedox Release 2018.3, which is currently available at https://www.jedox.com/en/software/free-software-trial/. Changes from the previous release are listed at the end of this document. Click here to jump down.

Some new features will be labeled “IN PREVIEW” in this document. Our intention is to get your feedback on these features before making them generally available and production-ready. These in-preview features may undergo minor design changes while going through the maturation process. Features that are in preview have undergone testing and have passed quality thresholds, but they should not be used in production until they have reached “generally available” (GA) status. For features in preview, we are targeting a maximum of two releases for maturation, i.e., it will take a maximum of two releases until they become GA.

We are committed to keeping newer versions compatible with previous versions, especially solutions built with previous versions. Any changes in the software that would require a change in a solution built with the software will be announced during the ramp-up phase before the change goes into effect.

Jedox Release 2018.3

General

Cloud Security, Performance, and Reliability

As more and more customers adopt Jedox as a service running in the cloud, reliability, performance, and above all security have become essential aspects of the offering. You want your data to be managed in a secure manner, accessible only to you and people you allow. You want to store your data in a service that is reliable and scales easily with your needs. You expect service that adds to and integrates seamlessly with additional services as they become available.

A lot of effort was put in Jedox 2018.3 to ensure that the service we provide covers all the criteria above. Between 2018.2 and 2018.3, we published https://trust.jedox.com. We were re-certified against ISO 27001. And we passed the SOC2 audit.

Jedox 2018.3 is the most complete, stable, performant, and secure version of Jedox to date.

Jedox In-Memory DB

ATTN breaking change: palo.ini parameter “short-sid” has been removed

In the past, the palo.ini parameter “short-sid” (short form “r”) was used to create 4-character session IDs. Because 4-character session IDs are no longer needed, this parameter has been removed.

ATTN breaking change: increased entropy when generating session ID

Mersenne Twister 19937 generator is now used when generating session IDs. Client libraries have been adjusted to transparently handle this change.

ATTN breaking change: passwords are not retrievable via server API

Passwords can no longer be retrieved from the System database via the OLAP API. API calls that retrieve the cell value of the Password element will now return an access right error for any user making the call, including admins.

For debugging purposes, the retrieval of passwords can be enabled in the palo.ini configuration file by setting the entry enable-password-retrieval.

ATTN breaking change: MD5 hashing of passwords in /server/login

Starting with 2018.3, the unsecured MD5 hash algorithm is removed. The password parameter is now marked as obsolete. Client libraries have been adjusted to fallback to extern_password, where the password is sent as clear text.

 Note: the server must be configured to use TLS if the API interface is exposed externally.

Newly supported features in the Data-Driven Engine (DDE)

The Data-Driven Engine now supports the following functions: char, clean, code, concatenate, exp, len, lower, proper, str, trim, value, valuedate, weekday. These newly supported Data-Driven Engine functions will return null for null on the first input. This is also a compatibility change since 2018.2. For example, in 2018.2 and older, exp(null) returned 1. Now, in 2018.3, exp(null) is evaluated as null and exp(0) as 1.

Note: as a workaround to obtain the former result, you can change exp([’empty cell’]) to exp([’empty cell’]+0).

Optional shortened syntax for IF() functions in rules

When using an IF() function in an In-Memory Database rule, it is now possible to omit the third argument of the IF() function (the “false” expression). If omitted, the default value used for the third argument internally is null.

This syntax is also supported by the graphical Rule Editor. You can remove the third argument from the IF expression by selecting “Delete” from the UI control’s “wheel” menu.

New hashing algorithm for stored passwords

Jedox In-Memory DB Server now stores passwords with a new hashing algorithm: PBKDF2, with more than 4000 iterations and random salt for each password. Passwords stored in older versions need to be changed once to use the new algorithm.

IN PREVIEW: calculation profiler

Jedox In-Memory DB API has been extended to add support for profiling of requests. Further down the road, this enhancement will enable a UI that allows easier profiling and debugging of slow-running queries, e.g.:

IN PREVIEW: flexible cube layout with dynamic cell reference (DCR)

As of 2018.3, it is possible to write rules with so-called dynamic cell reference, which shortens and simplifies the use of PALO.DATA and provides support for flexible cube layout.

 DCR requires a cube name to be specified in single quotes before square brackets. It can be empty to reference the “self” cube. This name specification is important to distinguish between old intracube cell references, which have many limitations and special STET representation ( STET() can be written as []). Each item MUST specify the source dimension name for the source cube in single quotes, followed by a colon and either the source element in single quotes or general string expression that evaluates an element name.

 Benefits of DCR are:

  • The dimension can be found automatically. It does not have to be specified.
  • The default read element is used if a dimension is added to the source cube.
  • The order of parameters is not important

 For example, the rule below shows the syntax before Jedox 2018.3:

 PALO.DATA("","Sales",!'Month',!'Year',!"Product",!'Customer',!'Region',"Units")

 The same rule with 2018.3 syntax is much more efficient:

 'Sales'['Measure':'Units']

 Note: support for DCR in the Rule Editor is still pending.

Jedox Web General

ATTN breaking change: new user rights for opening the Jedox Web Modeler

You need at least R rights on ste_palo and, optionally, ste_files, if you access the File Manager from the Modeler for tasks such as database scripts or backing up files. This change allows you to restrict access to the Report Designer and Reports while still allowing access to the Modeler.    

New setting key: spreadsheet.style.pdf_fallback_font

There is a new string key, spreadsheet.style.pdf_fallback_font, in Jedox Web Administration Settings. This key is used to set a fallback font for missing multibyte character languages (such as Japanese) for PDFs, if the default font “Arial Unicode MS” is not available on the Jedox server.

New setting key: spreadsheet.postmessage.enabled

There is a new Boolean key, spreadsheet.postmessage.enabled, in Jedox Web Administration Settings. When set to true, one can send postMessage from JavaScript towards a container containing a Jedox report, e.g.

<iframe id="jedox" width="80%" height="80%" src=https://to.mydomain.com/ui/lnk/?_=eJxNkD9vg0AMxb8K8oxg6cScpZUitcrKc...>

document.getElementById('jedox').contentWindow.postMessage( [ ['svar', 'Year', 2018] ], 'from.mydomain.com');

This sample script, running on a page on from.mydomain.com, would set the value of the session variable “Year” to “2018” (send postMessage to element with ID “jedox”).

New setting key: spreadsheet.postmessage.origins

There is a new string key, spreadsheet.postmessage.origins, in Jedox Web Administration Settings. It should contain a comma-separated list of URLs allowed to send postMessage.

Note: if omitted, postMessage will be allowed from everywhere.

New layout for the Options dialog

The Options dialog now has a new layout. You can now navigate the content with panels rather than tabs.

Redesigned home screen

You can now see the recently opened items list and their corresponding thumbnails on the home screen.

You can clear this list by going to Options > General and clicking the Clear List button.

Redesigned Reports panel

The items in the Reports panel are now displayed in a tile-based view, which allows you to view and open reports and to navigate to folders. You can now open reports with a single click.

Redesigned Report Designer panel

The items in the Report Designer panel are now displayed in tile view. You can select items by clicking on them or open them by double-clicking. You can also select multiple items at once by holding the Shift key and clicking the items you want to select. Additionally, you can see these items in the Navigation Panel. All the items are displayed in a hierarchical structure. Click any item or folder to open it in the Report Designer panel.

New rights objects for stored views

The rights objects for stored views have been changed. The user role now has to have the following rights:

  • For private view: D (Full Access) on the dimension object and W on the sub-set view
  • For global view: D on the dimension object and D on the sub-set view

No confirmation prompt is displayed when pasting the same file in the same folder

You can copy and paste the same file in the same folder in Report Designer. The file will automatically be renamed by appending a numeric suffix to the name. No pop-up message is displayed for this action.

Jedox Web designs

All design themes except “White” are now marked as obsolete. They will be removed in future version.

Jedox Web Spreadsheets

Support for large, complex dimensions: optimization for the display of complex dimensions in element picker

The loading of elements from complex and highly nested dimensions has been optimized in the element picker dialogs. The dialog now loads only elements for the dimension level that is currently displayed, rather than retrieving full dimension content, which allows it to display the results more quickly.

Note that if the dialog has to load a flat, large list of elements (e.g., a large list of direct children for an expanded parent) or when using the Expand All button on a highly complex dimension, the results can still take some time.

Formula preview in Subset Editor

The Subset Editor in Jedox Web Spreadsheets now shows a preview of the PALO.SUBSET formula that will be generated. This feature allows users to match the effect of UI controls in the dialog to parameters in the formula.

Default values for Data Filter in Subset Editor

When the Data Filter is enabled in the Subset Editor, the first root element in each dimension will be preselected. This enhancement prevents the inadvertent processing of extremely large cube areas.

The preselection can be disabled in the element picker by clicking on the Deselect All icon in the Select elements dialog, as shown below:

New ribbon format: Simple Ribbon

The Simple Ribbon is now available in the Spreadsheet Editor. This UI option merges the advantages of a ribbon, such as grouping buttons by functionality, with those of a toolbar, such as using less space and preventing clutter.

Jedox Integrator

Salesforce Connection

Jedox Integrator now supports Salesforce API version 43.0. Salesforce Webservice URL is now called Salesforce Endpoint Host.

In previous versions of Jedox Integrator, the complete Webservice URL had to be defined, including the Salesforce API version (e.g. https://login.salesforce.com/services/Soap/u/31.0). Now the API version is set automatically. Manual updating and generating of a Salesforce client is no longer required.

Salesforce Extract now called Salesforce Object Extract

The extract type Salesforce has been renamed to Salesforce Object to distinguish it from the new extract type Salesforce SOQL. It has also been enhanced with new functionality for sorting, aggregation, having-filter, distinct values, limit and offset.

For very large result sets, it is possible to switch to the Salesforce Bulk API:

Salesforce SOQL Extract

This newly available extract type allows the definition of a generic SOQL query. Salesforce uses the proprietary query language SOQL (Salesforce Object Query Language) for data retrieval. It has similarities to the SELECT commands of SQL (Structured Query Language), but it is not compatible with ANSI-SQL.

Salesforce Load

As of 2018.3 it is not only possible to read data from Salesforce; you can write now data directly to any Salesforce.com object with the Salesforce Load type (see screenshot below).

MySQL and MariaDB connection

With the connection type MySQL, you can now connect to the relational database management system MariaDB.

Additionally, for MySQL databases the buffered fetch mode can now also be used if multiple queries or loads to the same MySQL Server are done during an Integrator job. This leads to a higher performance.

Unicode normalization

The Java API and Dimension/Cube load now handle the check on identical element and attribute names analog to the OLAP database. Matching is done on Unicode ICU secondary comparison level; for example, elements named “M2” and “M²” are handled as identical. A warning is raised during a Dimension load if an attempt is made to create several such identical elements.

The function UpperLower has a new option called Normalize Unicode, which returns the normalized value. In general, it’s not necessary to apply this function in Dimension/Cube load processes.

Drillthrough requests handled as execution

Each request for drillthrough data is handled now in Jedox Integrator as an execution, similar to data previews, component tests, or job executions. As a result, they can now be monitored and stopped (currently only via Integrator CLI).

Jedox Excel Add-in

ATTN breaking change: new user rights for opening the Jedox Web Modeler in Excel

You need at least R rights on ste_palo and, optionally, ste_files if you access the File Manager from the Modeler for tasks such as database scripts or backing up files. This change allows you to restrict access to the Report Designer and Reports while still allowing access to the Modeler.    

Previously, users needed at least R rights on ste_files and ste_reports for the Modeler to be accessible to users in Excel.   

Configurable log levels

You can now enable different log levels for Excel Add-in. You can define a log level for each logged message and an accepted log level for the system.

Language option applicable without restart

You no longer need to restart Excel when you change the language of Jedox Excel Add-in in the Options dialog.

Jedox Mobile

Background update of documents (iOS)

The list of documents for the active account is regularly updated in a background process of the app, and a notification will be displayed for each new document along with a preview icon and its name. Tapping on this notification will open the document in the app. The documents are stored on the device, meaning that they are available even if no connection to the Jedox server can be established (offline mode). This feature can be disabled in the app settings.

Setup

Windows and Linux Setup

During an update installation, existing Jedox configuration files will be saved with timestamp in filename

For each update, Jedox Setup now creates an additional backup copy (including a timestamp in filename) of the following configuration files

\olap\data\palo.ini
\core\config.xml
\core\palo_config.xml
\core\macro_engine_config.xml
\httpd\app\etc\config.php
\httpd\conf\httpd.conf
\httpd\php\php.ini
\httpd\conf\ssl\server.crt
\httpd\conf\ssl\server.csr
\httpd\conf\ssl\server.key
\tomcat\webapps\etlserver\config\config.xml
\tomcat\webapps\etlserver\config\standard\component.xml
\tomcat\conf\server.xml
\tomcat\conf\keystore
\tomcat\bin\setenv.bat
\tomcat\client\config\profiles.xml
\tomcat\webapps\rpc\WEB-INF\classes\etl-mngr.properties
\tomcat\webapps\rpc\WEB-INF\classes\store.properties’
\odbo\config.ini
\svs\sep.inc.php
\svs\php.ini

This behavior is implemented in Windows Setup as of version 2018.3 and in Linux Setup as of version 2018.2.

Technical health

In Jedox Version 2018.3, the following components were updated:

Component

Version

Apache

2.4.34

PHP (Apache)

7.2.8

PHP (SVS/SSS)

5.6.37

Tomcat

8.5.32

Tasks implemented since release 2018.2

The following issues (features, tweaks, and bugs) reported in Jedox 2018.2 have been fixed/implemented in Jedox 2018.3. The development team thanks those customers and partners who have reported issues.

Component

Tickets

OLAP Server

141

SVS

4

Excel Add-in

60

Office Add-in

0

Client Libs

9

Integrator Server

81

Jedox Web

225

Jedox Mobile

5

Jedox Cloud

51

Demo content

10

Documentation

35

Setup/CI/CD

51

Models

96

 

     

What’s New in Jedox Release 2018.2

Jedox In-Memory DB

IN PREVIEW: Optimization for database file storage

A configuration option for Jedox In-Memory DB Server allows storage of cube data on the server’s hard drive only in binary format, not in CSV format. The binary format greatly speeds up the time needed for processing files on the file system in comparison to CSV, such as when the server is shut down. This configuration option is now in preview. It can be used by setting the value “no-csv-save” in the palo.ini configuration file.

New rule template types for subsets

Two new rule template types have been added: global subset element and global subset element (list). These types allow you to build a rule template that will generate instances based on the elements returned by a stored, global subset in a dimension.

New rule template types for grouping elements by attribute values

Three new rule template types have been added. They enable a set of elements to be retrieved from one dimension and additional sets of elements to be fetched from one or more other dimensions based on an attribute pattern. The returned results of these queries are combined into the overall record set for the template.

Information about unprocessed journal files in log

If a database contains journal files that are not in the expected enumeration sequence, these files will not be processed when the server starts. In this case, it will now print an explicit message into the log file and rename the unprocessed file in the database directory.

GPU Accelerator ships with CUDA 9.1 runtime

The Jedox GPU Accelerator is now based on CUDA 9.1, utilizing up-to-date CUDA compilers and runtimes. Please note that this change requires the use of a Nvidia graphics driver with version 390 or higher.

Jedox Web General

Modeler: cube templates create dimension elements

The cube templates in Modeler will now create missing dimensions needed for a given element, including a default set of elements within the dimension.
If the dimensions already exist with the expected name, they will not be re-created, and no elements will be created or modified in them. These dimensions will be used in the created cube.

Confirmation prompt about unapplied changes in Time Editor

When using the Time Editor to make changes in a dimension of type “Time”, a warning will now appear when the user tries to navigate out of the Time Editor without updating the dimension.

Tagging enabled for all file types

Setting custom tags is now enabled for all file types in Report Designer, including Framesets and PDF files. Using tags makes it easier to look for corresponding files.

IN PREVIEW: batch export in PNG format

Besides export of reports in PDF and XLSX format, it’s now also possible to create tasks that will export the report in the PNG image format.

Jedox Web Spreadsheets

PDF export of framesets

In a frameset, several frames can now be selected to be exported as PDFs. The frames to be exported can be selected in the frameset properties by checking them with the “Use for Export” option.
When opening a Frameset in Report Designer, the new dialog “Frameset Page Setup” allows content to be resized by percentage, in which case the content will be exported in the chosen page orientation and format, or by using the “Fit to…” option, which currently only allows the 1×1 setting. When used, the PDF will consist of a single page, showing the original size of the frameset content.
Note that print range settings from individual frames will be ignored if the PDF consists of multiple frames.

Automatic switch of text metrics engine

Jedox Spreadsheet Server’s text metric engine, which determines the required row height and column width based on the spreadsheet content, will now automatically be adjusted to the browser being used, as the accuracy of a machine depends on the browser.
It is still possible to force a persistent text metric engine in the configuration of the Spreadsheet Server.

Function Wizard shows evaluated function arguments

The Function Wizard in Jedox Web spreadsheets now shows the evaluated value of arguments used in the function:

Jedox Integrator

New dialog layout and icons

The layout of the dialogs and new icons in Integrator Manager has been redesigned for better screen use:

Subset filter with array variables in cube and dimension extract

In dimension, cube and cube slice extracts, filters on global subsets can now contain all kinds of subset variables, like array variables for attribute filters. Previously, only scalar subset variables could be used.

Hide empty project groups

As of 2018.2, project groups with no content will not be displayed in Integrator. If necessary, use the Settings Menu to toggle the behavior within a session.

Drillthrough rows have been changed from unlimited to 50,000

In the SVS sample scripts sep.inc.drill_through.php and sep.inc.drill_through_etl.php, which uses Jedox Integrator, the maximum number of rows has been changed from unlimited in older Jedox versions to 50,000. In the named sample scripts, the entry $line = 50000 can be adjusted to your needs. The value for unlimited rows is 0.

SOAP connection: new option for SOAP body

There is a new option “Wrap SOAP body with operation” to support further specific SOAP-based web services.

Basic sets in SAPERPHierarchy extract

Basic sets as defined in the SAP component Special Purpose Ledgers (FI-SL) can now be retrieved with the extract type SAPERPHierarchy.

Security of script jobs and functions

It is now possible to execute all Groovy functions and jobs inside of a Groovy Sandbox. This allows the definition of allowed and forbidden Java/Groovy classes and packages. Moreover, you can now entirely deactivate unused Integrator component types, like JavaScript or R.

Jedox Excel Add-in

New Connection Assistant

The Connection Assistant in Jedox Excel Add-in has been redesigned. There is now only a single type of Connection. The connection properties consist of settings for both connection to the In-Memory DB Server (such as from the Paste View dialog) and Jedox Web (such as in the Modeler).
Existing connections will be converted to the new Connection Assistant.

Adding TLS client certificates in the Excel Options dialog

The client certificates required for secure communication with the Jedox In-Memory DB Server can now be edited via the Options dialog in Jedox Excel Add-in.

Setup

Windows Setup

Automatic Java installation has been removed

The Jedox Windows Setup 2018.2 does not automatically install the needed Java Runtime Version 8.
If this software is not found, you will receive the following message, prompting you to download the software from the Java website:
If a higher version of Java Runtime Environment is found, then make sure that the Jedox installation uses Java Runtime Version 8.

New software requirement: Visual C++ 2017 Redistributable

Jedox Windows Version 2018.2 requires additional software, Visual C++ 2017 Redistributable. If Visual C++ 2017 Redistributable is not installed on the target computer, the Jedox Windows Setup 2018.2 will install it automatically.

Jedox Release 2018.1

General

Release naming

Beginning with this release, Jedox is introducing new release naming policy. Public release names will now be in the format <YEAR>.<NUMBER>. The current release is thus named 2018.1.

Internal version numbers in the form <MAJOR>.<MINOR>.<PATCH>.<BUILD>, e.g. 7.1.1.18530 will be kept where applicable, as shown in the screenshot below:

Release pace

Beginning with this release, Jedox is aiming at delivering 4 releases per year.

Jedox In-Memory DB

Jedox Views can be stored on the OLAP Server

It is now possible to store Jedox Views on the server as a global view (accessible for all users) or as a private view (accessible only for the current user). Thus, a Jedox view definition can be stored centrally, and the Jedox View will then be available simultaneously on all frontends (Excel Add-in, Jedox Web, Jedox Mobile) that have access to the server.

Improved effective rights calculation and caching

As of 2018.1, calculation and caching of effective rights has been rewritten to better address complex scenarios where effective rights calculation would take a long time, such as environments with many users (hundreds+), groups, and detailed rights settings.

 

Jedox Web General

ATTN: Private tasks can’t be created in Scheduler anymore

As of 2018.1, private tasks are no longer supported. It is not possible to create new private tasks or change existing tasks to private.

 

Jedox Web Spreadsheets

Autocomplete option in Macro Editor is turned off by default

As of 2018.1, the autocomplete option in Macro Editor is turned off by default. In previous Jedox versions, it was turned on by default and, for example, automatically added closing brackets when starting brackets were entered.

This option can be switched on and off with a new button in the toolbar of the Macro Editor, as shown below:

Jedox Integrator

Cube Load with persisted Drillthrough

In the relational database used for the persistence of the drillthrough data, the schema and table may now have names that are not in upper case.

The same goes for the table columns; the column names must match dimension names only in a case-insensitive way.

Setup

New Jedox Setup languages

The Jedox Setup 2018.1 supports Estonian and Serbian as new languages.

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