SQL Server

  • SQL Server User Group – Birmingham

    It’s only a week to go until the first Midlands SQL Server User Group, being held on March 10th 2011 at the Old Joint Stock pub in Birmingham. We’ve got two of the best speakers in the UK lined up, Allan Mitchell and Neil Hambly, we’re putting food on for you (pork pies and chip butties!) and it’s being held in a pub so beer will also be involved. SQL Server, pork pies and beer – all in one place?! Go on, how can…

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  • Speed up SSIS by using a slower query

    This isn’t a technical blog post of my own, but a shout out to Rob Farley and an excellent blog post explaining how to use SQL’s OPTION (FAST x) hint. He explains how you can speed up an SSIS data flow by slowing down the source query. It may seem illogical at first, but you’ll understand after you go and read Rob’s post! Read Rob’s post here: Speeding up SSIS using OPTION (FAST)

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  • How to add calculations in SSAS cubes

    One of the most useful aspects of a Business Intelligence system is the ability to add calculations to create new measures. This centralises the logic of the calculation into a single place, ensuring consistency and standardisation across the user base. By way of example, a simple calculation for profit (Income – Expenditure) wouldn’t be provided by the source database and historically would be implemented in each and every report. In a data…

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  • OLAP Cube Documentation in SSRS part 3

    This is the 3rd and final post in this series of blog posts, showing how you can use SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS), DMVs and spatial data to generate real time automated user guide documentation for your Analysis Services (SSAS) OLAP cube. Part 1 – Creating the DMV stored procs Part 2 – Create the SSRS reports Part 3 – Use spatial data and maps to create a star schema view Download Source Code UPDATE: I presented a 1…

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  • OLAP Cube Documentation in SSRS part 2

    In my previous post I described how to create a number of stored procedures that use Dynamic Management Views (DMVs) to return the metadata structure of an SSAS 2008 OLAP cube, including dimensions, attributes, measure groups, BUS matrix etc. In this post I’m going to use those procs to create a set of SSRS 2008 reports that will serve as the automated documentation of your cube. I’m going to make the following assumptions:…

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  • OLAP Cube Documentation in SSRS part 1

    Being a business intelligence consultant, I like to spend my time designing data warehouses, ETL scripts and OLAP cubes. An unfortunate consequence of this is having to write the documentation that goes with the fun techy work. So it got me thnking, is there a slightly more fun techy way of automating the documentation of OLAP cubes… There are some good tools out there such as BI Documenter, but I wanted a way of having more control over…

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  • Leap before you can land

    Leap before you can land… Research scientists at the Southern Illinois University have concluded that primitive frogs learned to jump before they learned to land. The result being a rather inelegant crash landing. I’m sure the frogs were happy that they achieved their goal of getting from A to B, but I do feel sorry for them having to endure the presumably painful landing, not to mention the indignity of having the rest of the pond witness…

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  • SQL User Group Session 24 June 2010

    I’m excited to be presenting another session to the South Wales SQL Server User Group. On Thursday 24th June 2010, Eversheds in Cardiff are kindly hosting the event, to run from 18:45 to 21:00. The event is free, and you’ll even get pizza thrown in – what more can you ask for? Oh yes, some BI content… My session will cover data warehouse modelling, including a number of hands on business case studies including…

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  • SQL Server 2008 R2 – PowerPivot and Master Data Services

    Purple Frog spent a very interesting day at Microsoft last week, at one of their many events promoting the launch of SQL Server 2008 R2. Rafal Lukewiecki presented an entertaining (as always!) and informative series of talks covering the release, focusing on the enhanced Business Intelligence tools available. The primary changes to note are Power Pivot – An in memory, client side add-in to Excel, that allows users to create virtual cubes on…

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  • SQLBits and Microsoft BI conferences

    Following the launch of SQL Server 2008 R2 this week, the ever dedicated SQL Bits team are putting on the next installment tomorrow with SQL Bits VI – ‘the Sixth Sets’. The Purple Froggers will of course be there, hopefully in time for a pre-conference bacon butty! Also worth mentioning is ‘Microsoft Solutions for Business Intelligence’, a seminar that Microsoft are holding at their Reading campus on May 12 2010.…

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