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OBIEE Security: Usage Tracking, Logging and Auditing for SYSLOG or Splunk

April 15, 2014

Enabling OBIEE Usage Tracking and Logging is a key part of most any security strategy. More information on these topics can be found in the whitepaper references below. It is very easy to setup logging such that a centralized logging solution such as SYSLOG or Splunk can receive OBIEE activity.

Usage Tracking

Knowing who ran what report, when and with what parameters is helpful not only for performance tuning but also for security. OBIEE 11g provides a sample RPD with a Usage Tracking subject area. The subject area will report on configuration and changes to the RPD as well as configuration changes to Enterprise Manager.  To start using the functionality, one of the first steps is to copy the components from the sample RPD to the production RPD.

Usage tracking can also be redirected to log files. The STORAGE_DIRECTORY setting is in the NQSConfig.INI file. This can be set if OBIEE usage logs are being sent, for example, to a centralized SYSLOG database.

The User Tracking Sample RPD can be found here:

{OBIEE_11G_Instance}/bifoundation/OracleBIServerComponent/coreapplication_obis1/sample/usagetracking

Logging

OBIEE offers standard functionality for application level logging.  This logging should be considered as one component of the overall logging approach and strategy. The operating system and database(s) supporting OBIEE should be using a centralized logging solution (most likely syslog) and it is also possible to parse the OBIEE logs for syslog consolidation.

For further information on OBIEE logging refer to the Oracle Fusion Middleware System Administrator’s Guide for OBIEE 11g (part number E10541-02), chapter eight.

To configure OBIEE logging, the BI Admin client tool is used to set the overall default log level for the RPD as well as identify specific users to be logged. The log level can differ among users. No logging is possible for a role.

Logging Levels are set between zero and seven.

Level 0 - No logging

Level 1 - Logs the SQL statement issued from the client application.

Level 2 - All level 1 plus OBIEE infrastructure information and query statisics

Level 3 - All level 2 plus Cache information

Level 4 - All level 3 plus query plan execution

Level 5 - All level 4 plus intermediate row counts

Level 6 & 7 - not used

 

OBIEE log files

BI Component

Log File

Log File Directory

OPMN

debug.log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/OPMN/opmn

OPMN

opmn.log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/OPMN/opmn

BI Server

nqserver.log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/
OracleBIServerComponent/coreapplication_obis1

BI Server Query

nquery<n>.log <n>=data and timestamp for example nqquery-20140109-2135.log

Oracle BI Server query Log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/OracleBIServerComponent/coreapplication

BI Cluster Controller

nqcluster.log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/
OracleBIClusterControllerComponent/coreapplication_obiccs1

Oracle BI Scheduler

nqscheduler.log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/
OracleBISchedulerComponent/coreapplication_obisch1

Useage Tracking

NQAcct.yyymmdd.hhmmss.log

STORAGE_DIRECTORY parameter in the Usage Tracking section of the NQSConfig.INI file determines the location of usage tracking logs

Presentation Services

sawlog*.log (for example, sawlog0.log)

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/
OracleBIPresentationServicesComponent/
coreapplication_obips1

 

The configuration of this log (e.g. the writer setting to output to syslog or windows event log) is set in instanceconfig.xml

BI JavaHost

jh.log

ORACLE_INSTANCE/diagnostics/logs/
OracleBIJavaHostComponent/coreapplication_objh1

 

If you have questions, please contact us at info@integrigy.com

 -Michael Miller, CISSP-ISSMP

References