Archive for the ‘Cognos EP’ Category

IBM Cognos Planning Certifications

May 23, 2010

I just renewed my IBM Cognos Planning certifications. You need to take two exams for Cognos Planning modules:

Its good see certification exams included lots of BI integration questions (particularly the second exam – 480 Solution Expert).

I always believed that a strong Cognos Planning consultant should also be able to understand and work on BI to a certain degree (especially nowadays when these modules are so integrated)

COG 400 COG 480


Cognos Job Market

March 27, 2010

A good try about Cognos job market with some fancy charts (only for BI):

But there is a better site with more data (both for Cognos Planning & BI, historic & more detail) for a long time:

SQL Server log file

March 16, 2010

SQL Server default recovery mode is “Full”, so when you create an application db or a publish container they will inherit the default recovery mode. And you will end up gigantic SQL Server log files. So, the best way to prevent this is to change the recovery mode as soon as you create the databases. But if you miss that here is a step-by-step guide to delete the log file; you will need it once for each application.   

  • Make sure that there are no users in the system.
  • Take the application offline.
  • Backup DB in SQL.
  • Set the recovery mode from “Full” to “Simple” (DB>Properties>Options)
  • Detach DB
  • Rename Log file
  • Attach DB
  • New log file will be recreated
  • Delete Renamed Log file.
  • Take the application online.

Alternatively you can use some SQL codes to do some of the tasks above.

IBM Cognos 8 Planning 8.4 Fix Pack 2

January 20, 2010

Fix Pack 2 for IBM Cognos Planning 8.4 is released. (It has been about 8 months after the first one) You can download and install the fix pack from the link below:

You can directly install it even though you did not install the Fix Pack 1.

“Logins” & “Locks”

December 16, 2009

When you try to point server Filesys.ini file you may have following error and cannot login to Analyst.

Most of the time these login problems might be a security issue; user may not have enough write/read access to the related “bin” folder on the server. (Giving related access rights will solve the problem)

Or “Logins”, “Locks” files might be corrupted. (Deleting these files will solve the problem, do not worry they will be re-created during next login attempt)

In this case, the problem is with Filesys.ini file as it is mentioned in the error. Filesys.ini file on the server needs to have server paths for “Logins”& “Locks” files (like \\server\shared_directory\bin\…  ) in order to be reached by the user. Amending Filesys.ini file accordingly will solve the problem.  

Security Signature

November 1, 2009

Here is a contributor end-user error when the user tries one of the e-list nodes:

“Update of application ‘contributor 8.4’ was cancelled. The application must be updated before it can be started.  An attempt was made to download a component which does not contain the required security signature.”

Environment was the new 8.4. And this security signature error is in the official fix list of SP1. It is fixed after the installation of SP1.

Planning 44

August 5, 2009

If you have changed your PAD in the old versions, you will get the following error message in the web:


All you need to do is to open good old planning 44 page:  machinemane/cognos/contributor/planning44.asp

And update the PAD information.

Cognos Planning Troubleshooting – PAD

August 2, 2009

Here is an interesting one:

Contributor application works fine, but you cannot create new Admin Links or new Macros. Existing Macros and Admin Links are not working too.

Here is the error log:

There was a problem loading the data into the common table ‘P_MACRO’

Caused by: org.jawin.COMException: 80040002:

Failed HRESULT [0x80040002]: Can’t enumerate any more,

because the associated data is missing[src=<SupplementalInfo><Source>epMacroTaskHelper:



<PreviousUserDomain>Unknown user domain

</PreviousUserDomain><PreviousUserName>Unknown user name</PreviousUserName><PreviousComputerDomain>XXXX



See the log file for further details. 

Problem was about PAD. After a major upgrade/migration PAD was not defined in Cognos Configuration. Although the application was OK, Admin Links and Macros were not working because of missing PAD.

Saved Selections

July 27, 2009




Here is a question from Cognos discussion groups:

It appears saved selection cannot be saved (other than using deployment). It cannot be copied to somewhere and be retrieved in other application.

Does anyone know where SAVED SELECTION is stored in SQL tables? Can I copy and paste to another applications.

The answer is simply NO. You cannot copy & paste “Saved Selections”.

It is one of the tricky options of Cognos Planning. It can easily turn to a nightmare. That’s why I strongly advise you to use automated Access Tables instead.

Cognos Planning – Modelling

July 14, 2009
I will try to answer some Cognos Planning questions in the Blog when I have time:

I have a situation where there are five regions and also 4 product groups. Each region has all these four product groups. To give you an example: the regions are Texas, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and California. The product groups are Switchgears, Motors, Drives & Service.
Each of the region has a head – responsible for all product groups that it caters to. Similarly each of the product groups have a head – responsible for his particular product group across all regions.
In this case, both of them will want to view their portion of the budget/plan – cutting across regions / product groups.
So how should I define the Elist. I tried a combination – i.e. each elist item is a unique combination of region and product groups. But it is not working, when i try to total. i.e. i gave TEXAS TOTAL which is total of all four product groups in Texas. Similarly i gave MOTORS TOTAL which is total of all Motors in all regions. But since one item is getting totalled into more than one head, it is creating conflict while creating contributor application. Hope my problem is understood. Please help.

What you are trying to achieve –using a complex hierarchy- is technically impossible in contributor. Contributor accepts only a simple hierarchy as an e-list.

But, there are other things you may do as a modeller. First of all you need to identify the business problem clearly; define the process: what is the real data flow? Who is the real reviewer? Regional Manager, Product Group Manager or both? If “both” is the answer then how does it work? Or one of them just want to see the data instead of reviewing?

Once you have answered the questions and have a valid model you have some options (but it depends on what your model is).

  • You can use the second hierarchy as a d-list and control the intersections by access tables. Thus, you will have the second hierarchy in the total e-list node.


Figure 1

Figure 1



  • You can use the second hierarchy as an e-list in a second application and push & pull data between applications according to your model and data flow process.



Figure 2

Figure 2


You can have a longer list of options but as I have mentioned it depends on what your real goal is.