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What tool to document the data warehouse and/or cubes for our end user community?


What tool to document the data warehouse and/or cubes for our end user community?

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Eric Mamet
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Dear all,

Like many, we built a data warehouse (datamart?) and a set of cubes and we'd like our users to be able to query the database themselves through some tool like SSRS or PowerPivot as well as querying the cubes through Excel Pivot tables.

Obviously, we need to make clear what our database/cubes contain and the exact meaning of each field, etc...

In your experience, what tool (free is better!) would you recommend for doing this?

I was wondering about using a WIKI because it would make it easier to have this maintained by a group of users... rather than just me!


Thanks for your help


Eric Unsure
twin.devil
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just to get an idea. that you are looking for Alternative of SSAS. Am i right ?
Eric Mamet
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Not really, more a complement.
It's mainly documentation we are trying to produce so that our users can use the data available.

There are things in our datamart we don't expose through SSAS and queries across dimensions and/or facts not covered by our cubes.

Powerpivot is indeed an alternative to SSAS but our main OLAP reporting will remain SSAS (multidimensional)
Rob Taylor
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Eric Mamet (12/5/2013)
Like many, we built a data warehouse (datamart?) and a set of cubes and we'd like our users to be able to query the database themselves through some tool like SSRS or PowerPivot as well as querying the cubes through Excel Pivot tables.

Obviously, we need to make clear what our database/cubes contain and the exact meaning of each field, etc...

In your experience, what tool (free is better!) would you recommend for doing this?

I was wondering about using a WIKI because it would make it easier to have this maintained by a group of users... rather than just me!

I've used a Wiki in one environment and Excel at another job and wasn't really satisfied with either. The biggest problem was keeping these manual solutions up to date (probably a failing of mine :laughSmile

I'm looking for a better way to document our BI stack as well; I'm going to take a look at Pragmatic Works BI Documenter http://pragmaticworks.com/Products/BI-Documenter.aspx. It's not free, but the price doesn't seem to bad (starting at $595).

My two cents,
Rob
Eric Mamet
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Could Master Data Management help?

I know that's not really the main purpose of that tool but isn't there a documentation aspect to it?
Scott Murray-240410
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A little self promotion, but take a look at this MSSQL Tip which uses a linked server and some SSAS DMVs.

Scott

http://www.mssqltips.com/sqlservertip/2603/build-a-sql-server-analysis-services-data-dictionary/
Eric Mamet
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Scott,


Thanks for that. It's really interesting and I will certainly "pinch" the idea for some project but it may not answer exactly my current problem.

The documentation I am looking for should cover both the Datamart(s) and OLAP levels as well as (if possible) help some avanced users build their own queries.
Although we don't know yet which tool the users would use for querying, I need to try and explain how they should join tables/views, etc.
Ideally, sprinkling a few pictures in the middle to make the relationships more intuitive.

Maybe a mixture of Visio/Excel/Sharepoint would work...



Many Thanks


Eric ;-)
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