How to set up the Pentaho Business Intelligence Suite

Pentaho Business Intelligence Suite so far is the best freely available open-source Business Intelligence Tool. It integrates Kettle (data integration), Mondrian (OLAP server), Weka (data mining), jfreereport and a Tomcat Web server to publish business analytics.


  1. Download the latest version from Pentaho Community Web Site
  2. Extract it (e.g., ”/opt”)
  3. Grant execution rights to the BI folder and substructure

     chmod u+x bi-folder -R
  4. Make sure your JAVA_HOME variable is set properly and add it to your path by

     echo $JAVA_HOME
     export JAVA_HOME=/path/to/my/java/lib (e.g., /usr/lib/jvm/java-6-sun) 
     export PATH=$PATH:$JAVA_HOME

    Alternatively you can set your variables in .bashrc.

  5. Add BI paths (admin console & BI server) to your system PATH to be executable from everywhere
  6. Now you can start BI by executing (only works if started within the admin-console folder) for the admin console and for the BI server.

Database Connection

  1. Copy your data base JDBC driver into the BI folders, e.g.:

  2. Optional you can migrate the sample repository into your DB. See the README.txt in biserver-ce/data/ in your BI folder.
  3. After starting the Administrator Console you can easily add a new data connection
    • Insert connection name
    • Select appropriate driver class
    • Insert DB user name & password
    • Define URL according to following syntax:
      jdbc:[DB-Type(e.g.mysql, postgresql)]://[host][,failoverhost...][:port]/[database] 
       # e.g.: jdbc:postgresql://localhost:5432/mydb

Running Windows 7 on VM ESXi 3.5

Since VM ESXi 3.5 is officially not capable of hosting virtual Windows 7 machines, its not surprising that there are some problems if you try it anyway.

We found a way – thanks to several posts of the VMware Community – which we want to preserve here:

  1. Set up a new virtual machine using the Windows Vista (32 or 64 bit) template (some believe only the XP template works).
  2. After complete installation, Windows 7 hangs up while booting
  3. Power down the VM and turn off the network adapter
  4. Boot again and do an advanced install of the VMware Tools excluding SVGA drivers as well as drivers for performance measurement.
  5. Turn off the VM.
  6. Change network adapter option in the .VMX file from ‘ethernet0.virtualDev = “e1000”’ to ‘ethernet0.virtualDev = “vmxnet”’.
  7. Enable the network adapter at ‘power on’.
  8. Now it should boot without problems!

Additional Remarks

  • Migrating an existing or even fresh VM with Windows 7 onto a VM ESXi 3.5 did not work at all. VM ESXi tags the machine as ‘invalid’.
  • Detailed Information about VM network adapters can be found in the references.
  • We have not tested it for the 64bit version, though, the problem should be the same.
  • Another solution, of course, is upgrading your VM ESX to ESXi 5.

From VDI to VMX – From VirtualBox to VMware

Export the vm in VirtualBox, thereby you create a .VMDK file, which basically is a virtual harddisk. Although, VMplayer works with .VDMK files you have to configure a .VMX file in order to run it.

If you own a VM Workstation edition you just create a new virtual machine and select your .VDMK when you are ask to create a new or select an existing virtual machine disk.

In case you set the option “dynamically resizeable” in VirtualBox you might want to try these instructions. Here are the main steps to undertake this mission:

  1. Convert your .VDI to a .raw image by the vboxmanage shell command:

    vboxmanage internalcommands converttoraw .VirtualBox/HardDisks/myvm.vdi vmware/myvm.raw
  2. Convert the .raw image to a .VMDK file:

    qemu-img convert -O vmdk myvm.raw myvm.vmdk
  3. Create a VM with VMplayer and exchange the .VMDK with your own, either by renaming or changing the config in the .vmx file.

Make sure your user has read rights to the .VMDK or is owner.

Problems running VirtualBox and VM software

Running VirtualBox and VMplayer or the like in parallel leads to problems, e.g.

VirtualBox can’t operate in VMX root mode. Please disable the KVM kernel extension, recompile your kernel and reboot (VERR_VMX_IN_VMX_ROOT_MODE).

If you execute the VM software and then want to start a vm out of VirtualBox you will have to disable your KVM like this:

sudo rmmod kvm-intel   # for intel processors
sudo rmmod kvm-amd     # similar for amd

To enable the KVM module again just type

modprobe kvm-intel
modprobe kvm-amd

in your shell.


Re-installing Ubuntu

Since re-installing an OS in general is not exactly an event you wanna spent your whole weekend on here are some practical hints to speed up the process.

Preparation & Backup

  1. Backup your home directory
  2. Backup software in /opt
  3. Backup essential files
    • /etc/apt/sources.list
    • /etc/hosts
    • .bashrc or another bash profile file
  4. Make and backup a list of installed applications

     dpkg --get-selections > installed-software


  1. Re-install your Ubuntu
  2. Copy essential files
  3. Copy software profiles from your home folder
  4. Install dselect and start installing your applications

     sudo apt-get install dselect
  5. In parallel you already can copy your data back on your machine, as dselect will take a while.
  6. Copy software to /opt and add it to your menu

Open Problems

  • Transfer of keyrings
  • Application menu

Ubuntu and Java

Biggest pain in the ass when I changed my OS to Ubuntu were errors caused by mix up of SUN and Open Java Versions available.

Set Environment Variable

To save some trouble set the $JAVA_HOME variable in .bashrc etc.

 export $JAVA_HOME=/your/java/home/path  (e.g., /usr/lib/jvm/java-6-sun)
export PATH=$PATH:$JAVA_HOME/bin

Set Java Configuration

If you have to have two versions or as in my case Open Java is re-installing through means of magic, select the right version by

 sudo update-alternatives --config java

So far so good…

Sacher Torte


  • 20 dag (7 oz) butter
  • 8 eggs
  • 20 dag (7 oz) sugar
  • 20 dag (7 oz) chocolate
  • 38 dag (13 oz) flour (fine middlings)
  • 20 dl (6 fl.oz) milk
  • some rum (aroma)
  • 3/4 pack of baking powder
  • Glass of marmelade (apricot jam)
  • 20 dag / 7 oz. of cholcolate (orignially dark)

For a big torte with a diameter of about 28 cm. Takes about 30 minutes of active participation. Ounces are calculated the American way.



  1. Stir tempered butter till its soft, add egg yolk and sugar.
  2. Mix egg white till its stiff.
  3. Soften chocolate over a wather bath or in a pot with some oil on the bottom.
  4. Carefully stir in the soft chocolate and milk to butter-egg-sugar mass.
  5. Now fold the egg white in.
  6. Mix baking powder into the (sifted) flour.
  7. Cover(string) baking paper over the baking pan.
  8. Put the doe into the pan.
  9. Bake it for 70 to 85 minutes at 175 °C (take knife samples in the end).

Marmelade Layer

  1. Overturn the torte out of the pan.
  2. Cut it in half (horizontally!) with a thin yarn or a bread knife.
  3. Smear the marmelade onto both inner sides before you put them together again.
  4. [Optional]: cover top and side with marmelade too.

Chocolate Glazing

  1. Soften the (dark) chocolate in a water bath till its nicely runny (add butter or oil if necessary).
  2. Put it over the torte and smear it all over.


Its really easy to make, you still can eat it up to a weak later and its soooo yummy!!!
Supermarkets often offer ready-made chocolate glazings which can be quite delicious too, in case you wanna save some time!

Serve it with whipped cream!

Lightning Liquid Chocolate Cake

The name says it all, though, obviously its not all liquid, but if you eat it right a way you can enjoy a liquid chocolate core!


  • 20 dag (7 oz) dark chocolate
  • 20 dag (7 oz) butter
  • 10 dag (3.5 oz) powder sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 5 eggs

For a cake with a diameter of about 24 cm.
Takes about 10 minutes of active participation.
Ounces are calculated the American way.


  1. Pre-heat your oven at 200 °C
  2. Warm up the chocolate and butter till they merge in yummy liquid
  3. Mix up powder sugar and flour
  4. Join the yummy liquid with the powder
  5. Continuously put in the eggs
  6. Grease up your cake pan
  7. Put it in the oven for 15 min

Serve it with whipped cream to add some more calories and enjoy the fasted chocolate cake in the world!