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James Serra's Blog

James is a big data and data warehousing technology specialist at Microsoft. He is a thought leader in the use and application of Big Data technologies, including MPP solutions involving hybrid technologies of relational data, Hadoop, and private and public cloud. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 30 years of IT experience. James is a popular blogger (JamesSerra.com) and speaker, having presented at dozens of PASS events including the PASS Business Analytics conference and the PASS Summit. He is the author of the book “Reporting with Microsoft SQL Server 2012”. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

Being careful in SSAS to not make a cube/dimension unprocessed

A big headache in SSAS, especially when dealing with a large cube, is making a change that when deployed, causes a cube to become unprocessed, forcing you to do a full process so the cube is usable.  Nothing is worse than making a change without realizing it will cause the need for a full process on all the partitions of a cube that will take many hours.

For example, a process full on a dimension will cause cube/measures group/related partitions to become unavailable/unprocessed.  Here are other actions that will make your cube unprocessed:

  • New measure group
  • New measure
  • Edit measure aggregation method
  • Edit dimension usage

Here are other actions that will make your dimension unprocessed (and therefore all cubes connected to the dimension become unprocessed):

  • Add an attribute to a dimension
  • Change the order by property of an attribute
  • Edit the attribute relationship
  • Add or delete dimension translation

So, make sure you understand which changes will cause an unprocessed state which makes the cube unusable so you can do it off-hours so you don’t end up getting angry phone calls that the cube is not working!

More info:

SSAS: Which change makes the cube/dimension unprocessed?

Processing Analysis Services Objects

Cube “Process State” changing to UnProcessed

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