November 19, 2020
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by admin

SAP BW Terminology

Info Objects

Being building blocks for cubes, InfoObjects include characteristics and key figures.

Info Providers

Any SAP BW datra structure available for reporting and analysis, are InfoProvider. Consider following objects:

·        Info Cubes

These are primary objects that SAP BW uses to store data. These define a specific domain of analysis, like finance or sales. Data, physically stored in Star Schema, is organized by dimensions, with fact table at the center of an InfoCube.

·        ODS objects

ODS stands for Operational Data Storage. These objects are flat relational tables.

·        Multi-Providers

When two or more InfoProviders are in logical union, combining data from two different subject areas, are known as Multi-Providers. For example, two InfoCubes or three ODS objects

Query Cubes

It is a subset of data from InfoCube or InfoProvider. It include dimensions/attributes and key figures. Query cubes are to InfoCube what reports are to data warehouse.


It is a classification of a dataset, like customer, fiscal year, product etc. Characteristics specify the degree of detail at which key figures are stored in InfoProviders

  • Attribute
    • Display – it provides additional information about characteristics
    • Navigational – used to navigate the query and flagged a navigation characteristic in InfoProvider
  • Time characteristics – date, fiscal year etc.

Key figures

This describes numeric data, like sales, profit, discount etc. It could include amounts, quantities, dates and times, all that are in InfoCubes, ODS objects and master data.

  • Calculated key figures – it is similar to derived measure
  • Restricted key figures – conditional measure


Hierarchies define relationships between elements of characteristic, like parent-child relationship. For example, Continents –Countries-Regions-Cities


These are parameters/variables of Query cubes. Like characteristic variable, hierarchy variables, text variable and formulas.

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