One of the many benefits of working at Oracle is access to Oracle University. I just found out about this new feature in a recent class I was able to take.
With the release of OBIEE 188.8.131.52, Oracle now provides basic SVN integration in Admin Tool. It seems Oracle is moving away from storing RPD content as a binary file (wishful thinking). I think this is a step in the right direction and would like to be able to merge and diff RPD work from Admin Tool or versioning system of choice. I am assuming SVN integration in Admin Tool is just as good as in SQL Developer Data Modeler . Just like Data Modeler, you still have the option of not enabling SVN integration and using your versioning system of choice. This is what I am going to do. It gives me more choice such as which versioning system to use and independence from Oracle’s SVN feature set included in tool which is a subset of SVN anyways.
For now, versioning RPD files is a two-step process. We still have to deploy binary RPD file. The general idea is to convert RPD file into XML directory structure to put in your version control system of choice and convert back into binary to deploy.
Starting from your RPD file, go to File, then Copy As and save your work as MDS XML Documents…
Tool asks you to Select XML Directory to store the contents of RPD as XML.
Select your directory and press OK.
Instead of the RPD file, this directory is what we would put up in version control. At this point, we would do all our work from this MDS XML Document directory.
Open this location now form Admin Tool.
Notice that now, Admin Tool states that we are working out of directory instead of RPD file
Inside the directory selected (or created), You end up with a directory structure of XML files.
And inside each directory, you end up with a list of XML files, one for each element of the directory in question. I.E. – For the the Logical Table directory, you end up with an XML file per logical table in your model.
This is were it gets a bit tricky. There is no easy way to differentiate one of these XML files from the thousand of others in directory structure. This will make diffing and merging this directory lots of labor. Still, it is way better than MUD or multiple developers with inconsistent copies of an RPD file.
Since these files are XML, however, we can use our favorite editor or tool to, at least, inspect differences between iterations of our work.
I would be hesitant to do much editing of these files for fear of rendering them unusable by the Admin tool. At least we have backups now .
After you finish development (and pass review before committing), you will have to convert this XML directory back into RPD format to deploy. OBIEE can only deploy (for now?) RPD.
That is all there is to it. You end up with RPD representation of your, now versioned, model work. Yay!