OBIEE Step by Step Guide

July 6, 2010

OBIEE Interview Questions

Filed under: OBIEE FAQ — harikv @ 5:21 pm

Dear folks,

These are just something that I have found to be some of the very general questions coming around from many different interviewers for the last 3 quarters. I have divided them by complexity and hope these questions help you in bossting your confidence.

Remember that “Practice and Experience are the best learning methods for your next job” but getting to know what kind of questions that people ask for is also good.

We will start with easy questions first and slowly gear towards the complex questions that may make your head spin 🙂

To make this more relevant, lets assume you are running 0n OBIEE version

1. What is the default location of a repository file?

2. How many repository files can be loaded to a BI Server simultaneously? Assume its a single server with single instance of BI Server running just to keep things easy 🙂

3. If you have more than 3 repository files mentioned in your NQSConfig.ini file as default, which one gets loaded to the memory when the BI Server is started?


Star = SamplerRepository1.rpd, DEFAULT;

Star = SamplerRepository2.rpd, DEFAULT;

Star = SamplerRepository3.rpd, DEFAULT;

4. How do you import Essbase Cubes into your repository?

5. Whats XMLA and where is it used for in OBIEE context?

6. Can you change the location of your rpd file in your OBIEE Configuration? If Yes, Where would you mention the new location of this rpd file for Bi Server?

7. What kind of joins would you perform in the physical layer of the repository file when opened with Administration tool?

8. What are the minimum services needed to load a repository file onto memory and view a dashboard which has reports that have been refreshed on a scheduled basis?

9. Can you use an OLTP backend database for creating a dashboard?

10. How many tables are needed in minimum to pass through the Consistency Checking in Logical Layer (Business Mapping and Modeling Layer) of the repository?

11. Can you create new views in the database using OBIEE Administration tool? Can you explain the procedure for doing this?

12. What is a complex join in OBIEE and why, where is it used?

13. Is it mandatory to have hierarchies defined in your repository? If Yes, where does it help? If No, what happens in the reports?

14. How do you create outer joins in physical layer?

15. What does Consistency Checking perform; What are the minimum criteria to pass consistency checking for a given repository?

16. Does OBIEE store physical sql ? How is physical sql generated in OBIEE environments?

17. Are there any occasions where physical sql is not generated when running against a backend database like Oracle, SQL Server or any other relational database?

18. What is the best default logging level for production users?

19. What is the difference between logging level 1 and 2?

20. What are the different places (files) to view the physical sql generated by an Answers report?

21. Where does the BI Server logs its start, stop and restart times in the file system?

22. You have two tables Table 1 and Table 2 joined by a foreign key in the database? They are imported together from the database into your physical layer. Is this relationship still preserved in the OBIEE physical layer?

23. Same as question 22 but what happens if you import each table seperately?

24. If Table 1 and Table 2 are dragged from physical layer to BMM layer, which table becomes a Fact Table and which table becomes a Dimension Table?

25. What if the tables (Table 1 and Table 2) are not joined, then what happens in BMM layer?

26. What is the difference between logical table and logical table source?

27. How many LTS (Logical Table Sources) can a logical table have? Whats the minimum and maximum?

28. How many server instances can coexist in an OBIEE cluster?

29. Whats a dimension only query in OBIEE?

30. Aggregation rules are set on top of …………… columns (Physical Columns or Logical Columns or Both)

Lets get to questions that are little more complex in my opinion 🙂

31. What is alternative drill path? How do you set alternative drill path in OBIEE?

32. What are the pre-requisites for using aggregate persistence wizard? What does aggregate persistence wizard create and what does it help with?

33. Can you import data in multiple sheets from an Excel file? How do you import data from an Excel sheet? (Forget about csv files for now)

34. What are the uses of “Execute Direct SQL” feature in Answers? Is it a good practice to allow this feature for production users?

35. How do you disable “Execute Direct SQL” feature for all the users of your repository?

36. I want to store the value of the last time the respository was updated and show it in the dashboard? What type of variable can be used for this purpose?

37. Is there any way to see a list of all the repository variables defined in your repository using Answers tool?

38. What are Chronological Keys in OBIEE? How are they different from Logical Keys?

39. You want to use a database built-in function bypassing the functions defined in OBIEE? What OBIEE function helps in achieving this? Whats the syntax for this function?

40. What are the different ways to authenticate an user in OBIEE system? Can OBIEE authenticate a user passing through multiple authentication methods?

41. How do you resolve M:M relationship between tables in OBIEE? Explain a scenario where this would help?

42. Does OBIEE support ragged hierarchies? What is the procedure to import ragged hierarchies from Essbase?

43. You are trying to open a repository using Admin tool and when you click to say “Open Online”; a dialogue box pops up saying “Your rpd is available in read-only” mode. How can you edit this repository by opening online?

44. How do you set up usage tracking in OBIEE? Is the Usage Tracking mechanism in OBIEE configurable to capture new identified metrics by your department?

45. What is the default configuration for caching in NQSConfig.ini file? How method does the OBIEE use for clearing its cache?

46. Table 1 and Table 2 are joined together in an Answers query. Table 1 is defined as cachable and Table 2 is defined as not cachable? What happens to the resultset used in the Answers tool? Is the result cached or not cached?

47. What is MUDE/ MUD in OBIEE? On what basis would you create projects?

48. Two people (Developer A and Developer B) are assigned to the same project inside MUD and opened the same project simultaneously. Developer A made some changes to the project and merged his changes to the original repository. Developer B also made some changes and commited his changes to the original repository? Does the MUD environment preserve both Developer A and Developer B changes?

49. In MUDE, Can two resources checkout the same project simultaneously?

50. In MUDE, what happens if the physical tables are shared between projects?

51. What are the different types of utilities provided in OBIEE? Explain any two utilities used in your previous projects and what are they used for?

52. What are the different documentation mechanisms available in Admin tool? How do you create documentation for your Answers users against all objects available in your subject areas?

Please comment if you would like to add any new questions or suggestions to this list.

Until next time, Kudos to all OBIEE evangelists 🙂

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