SAP Knowledge Base Article - Public

2588157 - Counter in Custom Data Sources is Wrong


You have created a joined data source and would like to use the key figure Counter. However you notice that depending on which characteristics you add in the view, the counter might show an unexpected result. For example, it may change to a higher number once you add a field, and then change back if you remove the field and refresh the report.

You may also notice another behavior, for example that different users see different values in the counter. The main issue is that the counter of a joined data source shows a wrong value.


  • SAP Business ByDesign
  • SAP Cloud for Customer

Reproducing the Issue

  1. Open the report based on your joined data source.
  2. Check the key figure Counter. It shows for example the counter 10.
  3. Add a characteristic to the view.
  4. The report result is now broken down to separate values, depending on the characteristic. The counter may now show numbers like 3,5 and 7. In total, this is more than 10, which was shown initially.
  5. Remove the characteristic from the view and click on Go again.
  6. The counter changes back to 10.

Please note that other scenarios are possible. They all have in common that the counter in a joined data source shows unexpected results. Any custom key figure based on the counter may show the same behaviour.


Let us assume that you have created an inner join, with the join conditions set to the characteristic Account. If you do not display any other fields in the report view, the counter will show the number of accounts that both data sources have in common. Now, if you add a characteristic from one of the data sources to the view where there is more than one entry per account, the counter will change. For example, if you add the field Sales Order to the view, the counter will change to show the number of sales orders per account. If you then remove the field and refresh the report, the counter will once again show the number of accounts.

In summary, the counter will initially show the count of results of the join conditions. However it may vary depending on which other fields you add to the view.

In the case where different users see different values: This usually happens when you compare users with different access contexts (for examples a business user with an access context in the report, and the key user with administrator access). The access context and the specific restrictions on a user may impact the counter value.


This is the expected behaviour for a counter in a join.

We would strongly recommend to not use the counter of a custom join in your report, or for further custom key figures since the result is not reliable.

If you need to use the counter, please contact your implementation parnter for assistance on modelling and the correct interpretation of the values.


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