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BI Source (GBMv2) Overview

Business Intelligence APIs (GBM V2)


These APIs allow admin users to manage virtual BI server sources on an Alation instance. The GET API requests from this set of APIs will work for both real and virtual BI server sources on GBM V2, although all other methods can only be used to manage virtual BI server sources.

Virtual BI server sources in the Alation catalog do not use a real connection to the BI server and are managed via APIs only. External tools and integrations must be used for extracting and maintaining the metadata from the BI server.

These APIs will work when the Generic Business Intelligence Model V2 (GBM V2) is enabled in the Alation instance.



The feature flag alation.feature_flags.enable_gbm_v2 should be set to True to use these APIs.

Virtual BI Resources

The resource oriented nature of the APIs defined for virtual BI servers, allow a developer to manage these resources using bulk, batch and point operations.

The following resources are available for virtual BI server sources using GBM V2:

  1. BI servers
  2. BI Folders
  3. BI Reports, Report columns, and Report images
  4. BI Datasources and Datasource Columns
  5. BI Connections and Connection Columns
  6. BI Users
  7. BI Permissions

The following diagram illustrates the relationship of these resources.

Virtual BI Operations

The RESTful operations supported by virtual BI APIs allow developers to manage resources via a set of CRUD operations referring to Create (POST), Read (GET), Update (PATCH) and Delete (DELETE).

Bulk, Batch, Point Operations

The path URL defines the type of operation for various resources. Each HTTP method alongside with the corresponding query parameters, payload parameters, path parameter and the path URL defines the type of REST operation. The following combination of RESTful services is possible using the virtual BI endpoints.

  • HTTP GET supports bulk, batch and point GET (Read) functionality
  • HTTP POST supports bulk create functionality
  • HTTP PATCH supports point update functionality
  • HTTP DELETE supports point delete functionality

Virtual BI APIs: Open API 3.0 Specification

Virtual BI APIs are described using the Open API 3.0 Specification (OAS). OAS is a broadly adopted industry standard for describing APIs. To see the specification, replace {AlationInstanceURL} below with your Alation instance's URL and visit the link:




  1. These APIs are available in Alation version 5.11.0 and later.
  2. These APIs are enabled by default in version 5.11.0 and later, but require the GBM V2 functionality to be enabled on the Alation instance.
  3. The Swagger UI is not enabled by default on an Alation instance. Please set the flag alation.feature_flags.enable_swagger to True using alation_conf.
  4. Only GET APIs will work for non-virtual APIs. Other methods cannot be used to manage BI objects for non-virtual BI server sources which use real connection to a BI server.

Configurable UI names for Virtual BI Server

For a virtual BI server sources various catalog pages displaying Folders, Reports, Datasources and Connections are configurable via the server endpoint. Refer to a server's schema to update configurable UI names.