Software // Information Management
News
7/27/2006
05:36 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Pentaho Woos Excel Users to Open Source BI

Pentaho Spreadsheet Services lets business users access OLAP data using Microsoft Excel PivotTables.

Pentaho today rolled out a feature that sweetens its already-popular (more than a half million downloads to date) open source Pentaho BI Suite: Pentaho Spreadsheet Services, which lets business users access OLAP data using Microsoft Excel PivotTables. "There are plenty of people out there who still aren't familiar with BI, it's an ethereal term to them," notes Lance Walter, Pentaho's vice president of marketing. "But tons of people use Excel for data analysis and some level of reporting. Instead of asking them to learn to use a different tool or Java interface, we're letting them keep the tool they love." The new feature costs $90 per named user.

So who's using Pentaho BI (which is based on the Mondrian open source OLAP project and provides reporting, analytics, dashboards, and data integration) so far? Walter says that when he came to the company nine months ago, he expected to see organizations making a religious shift to open source -- switching to Linux, MySQL and so forth throughout the enterprise. In reality, such commitment is rare, and most companies buying Pentaho already have three or four traditional BI systems in place (e.g. Crystal Reports, Hyperion, Cognos, Business Objects), and they're trying the open source alternative for a new project. For instance, some are using it to provide new reporting tools to their HR department, or to build an extranet application that lets customers look at their online ordering and purchase histories. Such extranet applications make sense -- not only are open source BI's standards and architecture friendly to web applications, the CPU-based licensing model is more amenable than a named-user model to an extranet where thousands of people who are not employees interact with the tools.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
The Agile Archive
The Agile Archive
When it comes to managing data, don’t look at backup and archiving systems as burdens and cost centers. A well-designed archive can enhance data protection and restores, ease search and e-discovery efforts, and save money by intelligently moving data from expensive primary storage systems.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest - July10, 2014
When selecting servers to support analytics, consider data center capacity, storage, and computational intensity.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join InformationWeek’s Lorna Garey and Mike Healey, president of Yeoman Technology Group, an engineering and research firm focused on maximizing technology investments, to discuss the right way to go digital.
Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.