Portal Tabs: Past, Present and Future


Portal Tabs: Past, Present and Future

June 14, 2018

Security, governance & administration, Security, Governance & System Admin

Defining Custom Landing Pages in Cognos Analytics

In IBM Cognos BI 8-10, the Portal Tab feature was an extremely useful one. The ability to define a custom landing page for different users and groups made it easy to find and access the required reports, while also securing areas that should be locked down.

With the advent of Cognos Analytics, a brand-new UI was introduced, and Portal Tabs disappeared. Since 11.0.5, Cognos Analytics included features that could be easily setup to provide the same capabilities as in Cognos BI 8-10. And now…Portal Tabs are back!

In this webinar recording, we look at how Portal Tabs have been integrated into the new Glass UI of Cognos Analytics. We review how to set them up and the pitfalls and work-arounds required to use this re-introduced feature.

On a Cognos Analytics roll? Then, you may also be interested in these other resources:


Cognos Analytics


Chris McPherson 
Senior Offering Manager
Data Science & Business Analytics

Chris’s areas of responsibility include the Cognos Portal, APIs, Mobile and the Business Partner Channel. He joined Cognos in 2005 and held a number of senior technical roles in the Support organization before moving to Product Management in 2008 when Cognos was acquired by IBM.   

Todd Schuman
Practice Lead – Installations, Upgrades and Performance Tuning
Senturus, Inc.

Todd has over 16 years of business analytics experience across multiple industries. Todd also regularly connects with the IBM product development team and has been in the forefront of the Cognos Analytics upgrade and installation process since it debuted.

You might also be interested in reading Todd’s blog Windows vs Linux: What’s Best with Cognos Analytics? in which he discusses the pros and cons of each to help you assess the best fit for your organization.


Cognos 8/10 Portal Tabs

  • Navigator
  • Search
  • Viewer
  • HTML
  • Images
  • RSS
  • Strengths
    • Easy to set up
    • Custom landing page for groups/users
    • Simplify Cognos portal
    • Only expose folder/content needed for user/group
  • Weaknesses
    • Cognos 10.2.X standard support ended 4/30/2018
    • Cognos 10.2.X is now in extended support

The Present: Portal Tabs in Cognos 11.0.11

  • Where are they?
  • Disabled by default
  • Use the config setter to enable
  • Log in as administrator
    • Add “:/bi/utils/ConfigSetter.html” to your Cognos URL
  • Name: ContentApps.enableMyPortalPages
  • Value: True
  • Strengths
  • Quick transition for Portal Tab users to move to Cognos 11
  • Provides similar look and feel
  • Weaknesses
  • Difficult to edit once migrated
  • Unable to use interactive viewer or Cognos 11 dashboards

The Future: Extensions

  • Create customs buttons for
    • Dashboards
    • Reports
    • Folders
    • Websites
    • More
  • Add/remove buttons for each Cognos role
  • Strengths
    • Fully integrated with Cognos 11 UI
    • Unlimited customization options
  • Weaknesses
    • Requires admin to rebuild Portal Tabs
    • Requires context menus to be edite/restricted
    • Requires basic understanding of json code


  • Review ConfigSetter tool
    • Enable/disable Portal Tabs in 11.0.11
  • Review sample IBM extensions
    • How to upload and enable
  • Review process to create custom extensions
    • Quick edits to json code
  • Assign extension to Cognos roles
  • Set as home page
  • Share/embed Portal Tab
  • Custom folder