In this Blog we look at some of the options and steps of using Query as a Web Service in Xcelsius. I also take a look at the benefits and limitations of this popular interface to external data and services.
The Steps to Make it Work
Query as a Web Service (QaaWS) can be used as a data connection within Xcelsius. To use QaaWS as your data connection within Xcelsius:
1. Go to Data Manager and click Add --> Query as a Web Service
2. Copy the URL created by the Query as a web service designer.
3. Click on the Definition tab in the Xcelsius Connection Manager window and give your dashboard a name
4. Click the Usage tab and select Refresh On Load
5. Link the QaaWs data to the cell range where you want the data in Xcelsius, and connect your new dashboard to that cell range
12. Click Preview and log on when prompted
13. Publish dashboard to media (i.e. Web, PDF etc.)
Using QaaWS as a connection within Xcelsius dashboard designer presents some limitations in the way data is manipulated, viewed, and ease of use. QaaWS does not allow you to preview the data set that is returned from the query as shown in the example below.
The left table area contains the result set from the query but the actual data isn’t visible within Excel. The right table is the actual output as viewed at runtime in the dashboard. This limitation can make working with QaaWS more cumbersome and less appealing.
The dashboard author must have a working knowledge of the contents of the query being used to be productive when designing a dashboard based on a QaaWS. The ability to rely on pre-designed queries can reduce the time needed to complete a dashboard by eliminating the need to design a query from scratch.
-Green faces are where the data source allows the user to view the data being used.
-Red faces mean that the data being used cannot be viewed in the development environment.
Native to Xcelsius
-Green faces are where the data source connection is packaged with Xcelsius.
-Red faces are where the data source connectionis a third party add-on to Xcelsius.
Ability to Edit Query
-Green faces mean that the query can be modified by the dashboard developer.
-Yellow faces mean that the query can be modified but is intended for power users.
-Red faces mean that the query cannot be modified by the dashboard developer.
Next we will take a look at some of the BW 7.3 features and the upgrade process.