In SAP BusinessObjects, different tool connects to HANA using different type of connections. Few of the tools connect to the Database layer - Tables, Views, etc. using a Relational connection to HANA database, however, other tools directly connect to Data Modeling layer using an OLAP connection.
An OLAP connection can be created in the Central Management Console (CMC) or a Relational connection and OLAP connection can also be defined in the Universe Designer.
A Relational connection is used to connect to the database layer in HANA. You can connect to database objects - tables, views, and design Data Foundation layer in the Information Design tool. You can also import tables and joins from the data source.
OLAP is a multidimensional connection that directly points to the business layer in a data model. It allows you to connect to the multidimensional schema directly and later, they can be used with SAP BusinessObjects reporting tools.
To connect to SAP NetWeaver BW, you can use SAP BICS client middleware to provide access to BEx query. Connections in IDT can be locally saved or they can be secured and published in a central repository.
Local connections are saved as .cnx files and they can be accessed by any user who is running IDT. Once you publish the connection to the repository, they are changed to a secured connection.
A secured connection is published into the repository and saved in the Connection folder. You can also create secured connections using Insert Relational and Insert OLAP connection commands from the repository resource view.