BI Publisher Licensing considerations

By Paul Bullen, Senior License Consultant for Rocela

Recently we’ve heard about the many advantages and considerations of using BI/XML Publisher against Oracle E-Business Suite. Like many Oracle products, this provides some very powerful functionality which once mastered can revolutionise your use of applications. However, this functionality comes at a cost. As part of any (correctly) licensed Oracle E-Business Suite applications, you receive a restricted use license for Business Intelligence Publisher. What does this mean? Well, unfortunately the restrictions really are quite significant. Looking at standard terms and conditions, you are allowed to use Business Intelligence Publisher to publish and/or view:

1)      Shipped Oracle Business Intelligence Publisher reports: you are allowed to make changes to the layout of these reports

2)      Shipped or newly created Oracle Business Intelligence Publisher reports that are modified to access data from existing Oracle E-Business Suite Applications schemas that have not been customized

So, you can use the shipped reports and change their layout. Or you can create new reports which access non-customised schemas. In order to gain most business benefit from the BI Publisher, you’re probably going to want to create your own reports or query against schemas which have customisations.

Oracle provide further clarification:

Full use of Business Intelligence Publisher is required if any shipped, modified or newly created Oracle Business Intelligence Publisher report:

1)      Accesses data from a non-Oracle E-Business Suite Applications data source, or

2)      Accesses data from a new schema within the Oracle E-Business Suite Applications that is not shipped by Oracle, or

3)       Accesses data from a modified Oracle E-Business Suite Applications schema (e.g., by adding columns to an existing table).

Given how BI Publisher is Oracle’s strategic enterprise reporting tool, and may well become yours, it is imperative that you understand how you are licensed for using it. As a separately licensed product, it is available in either Named User Plus (£308 each, list price, minimum of 50) processor metric (nearly £31k per processor, list price), or Employee metrics.

The above restrictions are standard terms and conditions, they do vary and so it is worth checking your license documentation, bearing in mind your license may have been purchased before BI Publisher was released. If you are in any doubt, contact Rocela!


6 Responses to BI Publisher Licensing considerations

  1. Pingback: BI Publisher Licensing with Oracle EBS | STR Software

  2. Brent says:

    Thanks for the helpful post. Being in the BI Publisher space, I’m asked about licensing all the time – I refer to this post in my recent blog post on the same topic.

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  5. Rohan de Silva says:


    Can you tell us how much we have to pay for licensing for the below scenario.

    We are an independent software house developing Oracle Forms & Reports business applications using Oracle Forms 10g and 11g. We have a Telco application developed in 11g Forms (latest Forms). Now, we have decided, instead of using the traditional Oracle Reports to use Oracle BI Publisher (BIP) to develop the reports for this Telco application.

    We don’t have not use Oracle EBS, JD Edwards or any other similar Oracle product. Even our customers also don’t have EBS or JDE or anything. We just have Forms and Reports. Our method is, we develop Forms (and Reports) using Form Builder and deploy them in the customer site in the WebLogic Server.

    Now, we don’t want to develop the reports in Oracle Reports and instead want to user BIP. We will call the BIP report from our Form using a Web Server Proxy stub created using JDeveloper.
    So, when the user presses the button in the form (after specifying report parameters), we pass the parameters to the stub and it will show the report as a PDF in the web-browser in the client user’s machine. These reports are simple standalone reports. No bursting type reports or interactive type reports, although we might want to develop such reports in the future, but not now.

    There are 100 such reports we want to develop and deploy in the customer site. The number of named users (i.e. Oracle users who use the application) is 50.

    So, my questions are:

    (1.) Do our customers, who already have WebLogic server license (to run Forms) need to purchase BIP license? Is it a server license or client license? How many licenses do they need? Do they have to buy a license for each report or each user?

    (2.) What do WE, as developers have to purchase (license)? We also already have WebLogic Server. Do we also have to purchase BIP Server license as well?

    • Rocela says:

      Thank you for your interesting question. You’ve provided a lot of detail and, with some assumptions I expect that the following should answer your questions. It is worth bearing in mind that the application server products do not include an allowance for BIP and so some type of license will be required. BI Publisher is available as a standalone product in its own right.

      1) Your customers will have to purchase BIP to run this type of report: this is on the assumption that when a customer runs a report, BIP is producing the report based on their ‘pushing of the button’ – i.e. they are indirectly (not visibly or consciously) interacting with the software.
      2) I do believe that you will also have to purchase BIP for the same reasons as above: Oracle’s application server products do not include an allowance for it.

      BI Publisher as a standalone product is available in Processor, Named User Plus or Employee metrics, unfortunately the Named User Plus metric has a minimum of 50 licenses (note: this is not 50 per Processor, but ‘just 50’), Employee metric is subject to a minimum of 1,000. Interesting the narrative about BIP does mention it being used as an option to Application Server Enterprise Edition so apparently this is a common requirement and not an oversight by Oracle.

      Hope that helps, please let me know if you have any further questions.”


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