in System Administration

BI4 and Single Sign On

Just about every SAP BusinessObjects BI4 installation that I do these days includes the extra step of setting up Windows Active Directory authentication and Single Sign On (SSO). These features allow you to log directly into the BusinessObjects web applications, like BI Launchpad and others, without entering a password. Those of you who are familiar with this process probably have nightmares whenever you hear words like “Kerberos” or “Vintela”. But, with a little patience and attention to detail, SSO does not have to be a cause for headaches.

First, before you even consider beginning — check out Note 1631734 – Configuring Active Directory Manual Authentication and SSO for BI4. Download the PDF, read it, sleep on it, read it again. This is your bible and you’re going to follow it to the letter. Before you begin, a few tips:

  1. Get your prerequisites right — SSO requires a service account in Active Directory. You will have to work with your domain admins to get this set up correctly. Verify that everything is exactly right with the account before you begin. Make that admin send you screenshots so you can prove it, otherwise you might end up pulling your hair out later!
  2. Double check your work — At the end of each section is a test to validate that what you just did is actually working. DO NOT skip any of these tests. If the test passes, you know that everything you have done up to that point is correct. This will help immensely with troubleshooting if something DOES go wrong.
  3. Attention to detail — It’s easy to miss an important step when you’re flipping back and forth between this document and your system. Make sure you follow along exactly, because every step is important. That goes for both the document above and the other notes to follow.

Once you’ve labored through the setup and you have SSO working correctly in BI Launchpad — well, you’re not quite done. Unfortunately, if you want SSO to other applications like Explorer or Web Services (for QaaWS and Live Office), you’ll need to do a bit more. First, check out the notes below.

Similar to the BI Launchpad setup, you’ll have to hack around in a couple files to enter your service account and domain information. Thankfully, this is a lot simpler than the initial setup. Again, follow these notes exactly and you’ll be good to go with Single Sign On!

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