Pentaho Delivers First Open Source Metadata and Ad Hoc Reporting Capabilities

Pentaho Corp., creator of the world’s most popular open source business intelligence (BI) suite, today announced delivery of Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6. The new release provides general availability of major new enhancements including an enterprise BI metadata layer that streamlines use of BI data as well as a thin-client reporting interface enabling business users to create their own ad hoc queries and reports.

Business User Self Service in Open Source BI

Historically the domain of traditional proprietary BI vendors, business user self-service enables flexibility and agility for users who need to answer their own unique business questions while preserving centralized security, business definitions, and IT control. Pentaho is the first company to provide these capabilities in an open source BI suite, dramatically increasing the value of the Pentaho platform to end-user organizations.

A centralized metadata layer allows IT professionals to create reusable business definitions for business-user reporting, while abstracting users from the underlying structure and complexity of corporate applications and databases. From a web technology perspective, Pentaho 1.6 improves on traditional approaches by using thin-client AJAX technology for maximum interactivity and enterprise-class scalability.

“The demand for BI, from self service reporting access to embedded reporting and rapid assembly of dashboards, requires metadata to integrate the diversity of capabilities while centralizing maintenance,” said Mark Smith, CEO and EVP of Research at Ventana Research. “Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6 brings new advancements in an open source BI suite to provide organizations with the capabilities required for broad deployments.”

New Metadata Layer for Lower TCO

Pentaho has also taken a number of steps to further reduce total cost of ownership (TCO), a factor that is frequently cited as a primary reason that organizations choose open source software, by offering innovative benefits at the metadata layer level.

First, Pentaho’s BI metadata layer allows for centralized maintenance of global metadata, including the ability to streamline and simplify multi-lingual deployments by allowing administrators to centrally define multiple translations for business terms such as “customers,” “sales” or “regions.” This eliminates the time and cost associated with legacy approaches that require redundant maintenance of multiple metadata layers to accommodate different languages for globally distributed organizations. Pentaho’s end-user tools are also able to automatically detect the user’s language and locale from the web browser in order to deliver business information in the user’s language.

Second, the open source metadata layer in Pentaho 1.6 has been designed around the Common Warehouse Metamodel (CWM) specification as defined and maintained by the Object Management Group. This continues Pentaho’s commitment to supporting open standards wherever available to simplify integration, reduce costs, and provide greater technology durability over the long-term. The CWM specification is also supported by many BI and data warehousing vendors including Informatica, Oracle, SAS Institute, and others.

Third, Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6 supports both organizational and ad hoc reporting needs on a common infrastructure that eliminates the need to deploy separate reporting tools and infrastructures as required in some of the traditional proprietary BI suites. Both the business user ad hoc reporting interface and the Pentaho Report Designer for power users employ the same underlying reporting engine and metadata layer. In addition, reports can be shared from the business-user environment to the power user Report Designer, allowing organizations to tailor ad hoc reports to make them part of the organization’s standard reporting library without redesigning the reports.

“Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6 is an outstanding release,” said Casey Potenzone, CIO at Uniloc USA. “The combination of ad hoc reporting and open source metadata increase the business value of Pentaho’s BI suite, and deliver a robust solution for those of us who are building enterprise applications using open source platforms.”

Leveraging Pentaho’s Low-Risk BI Deployment Model

With these upgrades, Pentaho increases the ability of its Open BI Suite to enable long-term BI success and reduce the risk of unsuccessful or abandoned BI projects. Pentaho’s commercial open source business model eliminates large up-front software licensing fees, reduces technology vendor lock-in, and avoids the unpredictable long-term costs and hidden licensing or upgrade fees associated with proprietary BI software. The Pentaho Subscription includes professional technical support, intellectual property indemnification, certified versions of Pentaho software and other benefits. Pentaho’s subscription services are also designed to deliver customer success throughout the BI deployment lifecycle, from initial requirements gathering and design through production deployment and future upgrades.

“Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6 brings the benefits of open source BI to more users than ever before,” said Richard Daley, CEO of Pentaho Corporation. “Whether they’re looking for a departmental solution or an enterprise-class BI suite delivering full business user self-service, Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6 provides a standards-based, open source alternative for their full spectrum of BI needs.”


The new release is available today at . Professional support, certified versions, IP indemnification, training, and consulting for Pentaho Open BI Suite 1.6 are all available immediately from Pentaho.

About Pentaho Corporation

Pentaho Corporation provides a full spectrum of open source Business Intelligence (BI) capabilities including reporting, analysis, dashboards, data mining, data integration, and a BI platform that have made it the world’s most popular open source BI suite. Formed by a highly experienced team of industry veterans, Pentaho’s mission is to bring innovative, high quality technology and professional support to the BI market. Pentaho uses a revolutionary approach to development, distribution and support made possible by a commercial open source business model. Pentaho is the primary sponsor and owner of popular open source projects including JFreeReport, Kettle, Mondrian, and Weka. Pentaho’s technologies support a wide range of business initiatives from sales and profitability analysis, customer analysis, HR reporting, Financial reporting, KPI dashboards, Supply Chain analytics, and operational reporting. For more information, visit