Click here to monitor SSC
SQLServerCentral is supported by Redgate
Log in  ::  Register  ::  Not logged in

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 ( 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.

Microsoft Data Explorer

Data Explorer (download), which I first mentioned in my blog about PASS Summit 2011 (SQL Server 2012 and other PASS announcements), has finally taken the next step and is now a public preview.

Think of Data Explorer as a self-service ETL tool for the Excel power user.  The official title is now “Microsoft Data Explorer Preview for Excel”.  It enhances the self-service Business Intelligence experience in Excel by simplifying data discovery and access.  In short, you can quickly and easily import data from a variety of sources.  It even has an Online Search which enables you to search the web for datasets.

With “Data Explorer” you can:

  • Identify the data you care about from multiple sources (SQL Server, Windows Azure, Access, Oracle, IBM DB2, MySQL, SharePoint List, OData feed, Hadoop HDFS, Windows Azure Marketplace, Active Directory, Facebook, Web pages, Excel, text and XML files, Windows Azure HDInsight, Teradata, PostgreSQL)
  • Discover relevant data using the search capabilities within Excel.
  • Combine data from multiple, disparate data sources and shape it in order to prepare the data for further analysis in tools like Excel and PowerPivot.

I am looking forward to using Data Explorer as I believe this is a powerful tool that will enable users to pull in their own data without having to bug IT.

More info:

A new build of “Data Explorer”, and an Auto Update feature

Data Explorer Help

Announcing Microsoft “Data Explorer” Preview for Excel

Exploring Data Explorer

Using Data Explorer with Power View

Public Preview of Data Explorer

Get Microsoft “Data Explorer” Preview for Excel today

Data Explorer hits full preview

Data Explorer brings Big Data connectivity to Excel 2013

Best Oscar winning Film? My first Data Explorer adventure…

SharePoint OData and the Excel Data Explorer

Importing Data From Multiple Log Files Using Data Explorer

Introduction to Data Explorer Preview for Excel

Installing Data Explorer Preview & Demo with IMDB Data

Microsoft Data Explorer Preview for Excel–Part 1


Getting Started with Microsoft Data Explorer

“Introducing” Data Explorer

Using Data Explorer with SSIS

Excel Data Explorer and the Twitter Search API


Leave a comment on the original post [, opens in a new window]

Loading comments...