Optimizing Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services: Optimization Tools: Basic Usage

  1. Click Finish to close the wizard, and to return to the Analysis Manager console.
  2. Exit Analysis Manager, as desired.

Toward More Sophisticated Approaches for Utilization Analysis

I often receive e-mails and calls from clients, as well as from members of my general audience, asking how they can approach the creation of a more sophisticated report to assist in their usage analysis pursuits. This is sometimes based upon a need to create a report similar to the pre-defined, on-screen reports, but in a way that allows for printing, publishing to the web, or otherwise delivering report results to information consumers. Moreover, some users simply want to be able to design different reports that they can tailor themselves, to meet specific needs not addressed by the Usage Analysis Wizard’s relatively simple offerings. Others want a combination of these capabilities, and / or simply do not like the rather basic user interface that the wizard presents, as it is relatively awkward, does not scale and so forth.

All of these needs can be met in numerous ways, including the use of multiple external reporting options. In later articles, we will take a look at approaches to the need for more sophisticated analysis, exposing the data source itself, and how we might access it in addressing these needs.

Summary

In this lesson, Basic Usage Analysis, we introduced the topic of usage analysis for our multidimensional cubes, and discussed its importance as a contributor to overall performance enhancement. We contrasted the Usage Analysis Wizard with the Usage-Based Optimization Wizard, and then focused on the Usage Analysis Wizard as a “quick and dirty” means of viewing cube processing activity statistics both in development and production. Next, we modified an illustrative standard report, examining options for how we can tailor (by filtering) our selections to more closely meet our needs.

Our hands-on examination of the Usage Analysis Wizard in its simplest form, together with a discussion of the somewhat limited on-screen report set it offers, undoubtedly leads the experienced developer and operator to foresee the inevitable need to extend our reporting capabilities for various business reasons. In subsequent articles, we will examine the source of cube performance statistics. We will expose ways that we can directly obtain more detailed information surrounding cube processing events, in a manner that allows more sophisticated selection and filtering. Furthermore, we will discuss options for more customized reporting of these metrics, as well as a wider range of delivery choices.

Copyright 2004 by the author.

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