Cognos Access Manager to Active Directory
Several long-time Cognos customers in Western Canada are still using Access Manager to manage security for their IBM Cognos BI environment. (You’re not alone!) It was a great tool that has some handy advantages for administrators, however it is outdated and there are many reasons to move over to Active Directory to manage security going forward. This includes compliance with other server upgrades.
We’ve been able to successfully help our customers in Calgary and Victoria make the transition to Active Directory smoothly and easily. Here are the steps we followed and some rough timeframes in case this is on your to-do list in the near future.
Steps to Migrate
- Purchase and install Avnet BSP Lifecycle SMSS software (we can help)
- Recreate Access Manager security structure in Active Directory
- Validate accounts and mapping between AD and Access Manager
- Migrate each environment (typically Dev, Test, and Production)
- Basic functionality and user access needs to be tested. However the most important part of testing is to ensure all My Folder objects are available under the new security model.
- Who should test depends on the environment but it is recommended that each user logs in and checks that their My Folders objects exist in the migrated environment
Keys to Success
- Minimize changes to accounts
- Freeze changes to Access Manager so account validation only occurs once
- Key user involvement for testing and sign-off
- There are several factors in the timeframe of this type of project, including how many other changes are being made at the same time, however if this is the only project and the basic security structure will stay the same then we can say moving one environment with an average number of objects will take 2-5 days, increasing the number of objects means an increase in the overall duration project. Testing can also increase the overall duration as it may take several days and even weeks before all users have approved the change and confirmed their My Folders objects exist and nothing is missing.
- It can be so much easier than you think to move over to Active Directory and shut down the old server that’s supporting Access Manager. Ask us how we can help. We can even do this remotely – we can help you wherever you are, not just Calgary, Alberta Canada. (That means US too, and with the Canadian dollar exchange rate we can make this very easy price wise too.)
We would be misleading you to suggest that this method is the only option for moving over to Active Directory – there are other software options and there is a manual approach, however this is the one that we recommend and can back up with happy customers.
Manually moving over accounts introduces greater risks of missing objects, missing scheduled tasks, etc., in addition the time it takes would quickly add up to the equivalent cost of the software purchase unless there are so few users and My folders objects that it wouldn’t be a significant amount of work or lost objects anyway
Other software options are available and should be considered however we like the Avnet BSP Lifecycle SMSS tool for the simplicity of moving all account objects directly over to the new Active Directory accounts. Other options provide an extra layer of mapping between the old and new accounts – this works well but again, we like the simplicity of running this once and being completely transitioned over to Active Directory.
Are you ready to move your Cognos security over to Active Directory? Give us a call and we can set up a meeting to review your environment and come up with some guidelines for making this move. We can meet locally in our Calgary downtown office, in your office or via a conference call.