Dan English's BI Blog

Welcome to my random thoughts in regards to Business Intelligence, databases, and other technologies

Archive for December, 2008

SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 3 (SP3) – now available

Posted by denglishbi on December 16, 2008

Just checked out my RSS feed into the Microsoft download center this morning and I see that all of the downloads are available for SQL Server 2005.  This is a nice addition to the ProClarity and PerformancePoint Server SP2 downloads that came out recently – Year End Downloads and Information.  There is also an updated SQL Server Feature Pack now for December 2008 with this latest service pack release.

SQL Server 2005 SP3

Download Service Pack 3 for Microsoft SQL Server 2005.

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 SP3 Readme

Before you install Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 3 (SP3), download, extract, and read the SP3 Setup documentation, and review the SP3 Readme files.
Feature Pack for SQL Server 2005 December 2008

Download the December 2008 Feature Pack for Microsoft SQL Server 2005, a collection of standalone install packages that provide additional value for SQL Server 2005.

SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with Advanced Services SP3

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with Advanced Services is a free, easy-to use version of SQL Server Express that includes more features and makes it easier than ever to start developing powerful data-driven applications for web or local desktop development.

SQL Server Management Studio Express SP3

Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio Express (SSMSE) is a free, easy-to-use graphical management tool for managing SQL Server 2005 Express Edition and SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with Advanced Services.

SQL Server 2005 Express Edition Toolkit SP3

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Edition Toolkit provides additional tools and resources for SQL Server 2005 Express Edition and SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with Advanced Services.

SQL Server 2005 Express Edition SP3

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Edition is a free, easy-to-use, lightweight version of SQL Server 2005. It is fast and easy to learn, allowing you to quickly develop and deploy dynamic data-driven applications.

-

Posted in SQL Server | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Microsoft Business Intelligence VPC Release 7.1

Posted by denglishbi on December 14, 2008

Yesterday morning I received some information in regards to the latest All Up MS BI VPC R7.1.  Now what has changed between release 7 and 7.1, not sure.  I know that the files for 7 where dated 7/22 and for 7.1 they are 9/30.  The overview file still has not been updated, so you can reference my previous posting of what changed between 6 and 7 – Microsoft Business Intelligence VPC Release 7.  According to the email I received it states that there are supposed to be some voice added demos, but I am not seeing them unless it is just the presenter scripts (guess I was thinking of videos, but maybe I am reading this incorrectly).  There are also going to be 17 localized versions of the download, but I am not sure when those will be available to access (if at all).

You are going to want to be able to provide at least 1.5 or 2 GB of RAM to this VPC (it will run optimally with 2+ GB of RAM), enable the hardware-assisted virtualization (typically requires a BIOS setting), and run the VPC from a separate drive than the hosting OS. 

As far as the performance goes for the MS BI VPC you can look at some techniques to speed it up here – Speeding up the All-up BI VPC and How to speed up the All up BI VPC 6

There are 38 SSAS databases that are part of this VPC.  This takes 300 MB of your memory right off the get go, so if you are not using some of these samples then stop the SSAS service, move the data for the SSAS databases to a backup location for future reference when needed (or you could backup the SSAS databases and then remove them from the instance – which ever one you feel is easier), and then restart the SSAS service.

And just a reminder that the Administrator password is the generic Microsoft one pass@word1 and this VPC has a time bomb of April 15, 2010.  This VPC is using Windows 2003 Server R2 SP2 Enterprise Edition, PPS 2007 with SP1, PAS 6.3 with Hotfix 2215, and SQL Server 2005 Enterprise Edition with SP2 (actually build 3068 – SQL Server 2005 Build List).  You will need to update this with PPS SP2 and ProClarity SP2 (Hotfix 2217) if you want to have them included – PerformancePoint Server (PPS) 2007 SP2 now available.

Enjoy

Did you think I would leave you hanging again and not include the links?  Here you go, take a look at the MS BI Platform and evaluate it for yourself take a look at the great demos that have been prepared and kudos to everyone that contributed to putting this together.

Business Intelligence Demo Solution – Overview and Presenter Script information (view my previous posting for the latest update on the Overview that I posted above):

VPC Image Download Files (8 files – took about 25 minutes for me to extract out to an external drive once I downloaded them):

Have a safe and happy holiday season

UPDATE (12/28/2008): If for some reason these download links do not work for you you can head over to Russell Christopher’s PerformancePoint Blog for a different set of download links – All Up BI VPC 7.1 Available for Public Download.  The links that I reference above could be for the older version 7 and not 7.1 which Russell references in his posting here:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

 I am downloading now to verify.

UPDATE (4/14/2009): The R7.1 release VPC will expire on April 15th, 2010. Userid/password is Administrator/pass@word1The VHD file is 14 GB in size and works optimally with 2+ GB RAM.

 UPDATE (5/7/2009): The download links I have listed above are for release 7 and they include demos that are not included in release 7.1 which are the links below.  I updated the links so that they should all be working since files got moved around.  There are some retail and hospitality demos and a few others that were removed in the links below.  Hopefully a new demo will be coming out leveraging SQL Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008.

Posted in Downloads | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

Year End Downloads and Information

Posted by denglishbi on December 13, 2008

A few more downloads have come out since my last posting Downloads and Catch-Up a few weeks ago.  Tough to keep up with everything, but with RSS feeds and aggregators like RSS Bandit which I use or Google’s Reader, SharpReader, FeedDemon, Bloglines, etc.  There are tons of different RSS readers that you can use to subscribe to blog sites, news, shopping deals, sports, comics, technology, entertainment, you name it, it can be used as a feed into one of these readers.  You could also use Outlook, at least with 2007 that option is available.

Enough of that chatter, now for the items that I want to make sure everyone is aware of and to share (these are in no particular order):

  1. SQL Server 2008 Upgrade Technical Reference Guide – This 490-page document covers the essential phases and steps to upgrade existing instances of SQL Server 2000 and 2005 to SQL Server 2008 by using best practices. These include preparation tasks, upgrade tasks, and post-upgrade tasks. It is intended to be a supplement to SQL Server 2008 Books Online.
  2. ProClarity 6.3 SP2 Readme (this was released last week – hotfix 2217: ProClarity 6.3 SP2 is now available and for more details refer to the ProClarity Teams Blog site)
  3. PerformancePoint Server SP2 – Planning Server SP2 Readme, Monitoring and Analytics SP2 Readme, Management Reporter SP2 Readme
    1. PerformancePoint Server 2007 Service Pack 2 (x86) 

      PerformancePoint Server 2007 Service Pack 2 (x64)

      Additional TechNet information – Service Pack 2 for Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server 2007

       

  4. SQL Load Generator Tool – SQL Load Generator is used to run multiple concurrent queries against SQL Server. The user can choose the number of concurrent queries to run, provide different queries, choose SQL or domain accounts, and provide application name settings. SLG was developed using C# 3.5. This is available for download on CodePlex here http://www.codeplex.com/SqlLoadGenerator.
  5. Andrew Fryer’s 24 days of SQL Server 2008 – great content and quick way to get yourself familiar with SQL Server 2008 new features.  I highly recommend adding Andrew to your feeds.
  6. AdventureWorksOffline Report Samples – check out the latest Reporting Services (SSRS) sample reports utilizing the new charting, gauging, and text formatting functionality with SSRS 2008.  A great set of samples to use to be able to learn how you can apply customizations to the new features.
  7. PowerGUI – an extensible graphical administrative console and IDE for managing systems based on Windows PowerShell. See the PowerGUI homepage for more information about the product.
  8. OLAP PivotTable Extensions – an older one that I have had around for a while, but figured I should post.  This is an Excel 2007 add-in which extends the functionality of PivotTables on Analysis Services cubes. The Excel 2007 API has certain PivotTable functionality which is not exposed in the UI. OLAP PivotTable Extensions provides an interface for some of this functionality.  Allow yourself to easily view the MDX generated by using PivotTables.

And I will be doing another posting for the latest and the greatest All Up Microsoft BI VPC Release 7.1 (BI VPC R7.1) tomorrow, so stay tuned.  I was just informed of the new release this morning for the most recent VPC for download and will be sending out the link information tomorrow morning so that everyone can test drive the Microsoft BI Platform (VPC still utilizes Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2, SQL Server 2005 SP2, PAS 6.3 Hotfix 2215, and PPS 2007 SP1).

Enjoy and happy holidays  Stay tuned for more…

Posted in Downloads | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

MSDN Forums new look official

Posted by denglishbi on December 13, 2008

So the old forums area was locked down on 12/11 and moved over to the new Social format [MSDN Forums moving…tomorrow (12/8)].  Here is a link to some of the areas that I visit frequently and also subscribe to feeds so I can reply to posting and stay informed of postings and resolutions.  Great content available in the forums and strongly encourage people to use them for FAQs, knowledge center, and great information.

Looks like my history for past 30-days might have been wiped out for contributing to the forums (refer to my previous posting about the forums moving above).  I went in and checked my forum threads and my threads and no history That is irritating because I liked to reference the threads that I had contributed to and reference the information.  So now what?

Anyway, just want to post that this is available and in a new format.  If you are not using the Microsoft forums yet, then please start, you won’t be disappointed in viewing the information or posting questions.  This is an excellent way to contribute to the community and find resolution to your issues or solutions that you are currently working on.

Here is the list of all of the forum areas with the new link references:

  • MSDN
  • TechNet
  • Expression
  • Microsoft
  • Posted in Personal Comments | Leave a Comment »

    PerformancePoint Server (PPS) 2007 SP2 now available

    Posted by denglishbi on December 8, 2008

    Service Pack 2 for PPS 2007 is finally here and available for download along with the documentation.  Check out the PerformancePoint Server 2007 Help and How-to Home Page for all of the information, downloads, and documention as far as the enhancements go.  We now get full support for SQL Server 2008, support for Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V (PerformancePoint Server SP2: Hyper-V is supported), and Time Intelligence filter improvements.

    Planning Server SP2 Readme

    Monitoring and Analytics SP2 Readme

    Management Reporter SP2 Readme

    ProClarity 6.3 SP2 Readme (this was released last week – hotfix 2217: ProClarity 6.3 SP2 is now available and for more details refer to the ProClarity Teams Blog site)

    Here are the download links (thanks to Jeremy Kashel – PerformancePoint SP2 Released!):

    PerformancePoint Server 2007 Service Pack 2 (x86)

    PerformancePoint Server 2007 Service Pack 2 (x64)

    Make sure you take a look at the Readme files for additional known issues and workarounds too.  Very useful information and tips.  Here is a snapshot of the Monitoring and Analytic changes (for Planning the only addition listed in the Readme file was the Hyper-V support).  

    What’s new in PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2?

    PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2 includes the following changes and additions to PerformancePoint Monitoring components:

    Addition/Change

    Explanation/Description

    You can now use SQL Server 2008 with PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2.

    Important: To use SQL Server 2008 with PerformancePoint Server, you must install PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2 before you install SQL Server 2008.

    You can now use the Show Details action on PerfomancePoint reports that use data that is stored in SQL Server 2008 Analysis Services.

    Show Details enables dashboard consumers to right-click in a cell or on a chart value and see the transaction-level details for that value.

    PerformancePoint Server 2007 with SP2 now supports Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V.

    Hyper-V creates new opportunities for server virtualization. You can use Hyper-V to make more efficient use of system hardware and host operating system resources to reduce the overhead associated with virtualization.

    For more information, see the PerformancePoint Server 2007 Hyper-V guide (http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=9639690).

    You can now use Dashboard Designer on a computer that us running .NET Framework 3.5 alongside .NET Framework 2.0.

    You must install .NET Framework 2.0 before you install .NET Framework 3.5.

    You can now use PerformancePoint Server with domains that have apostrophes in their names

    In previous versions of PerformancePoint Server, when a domain name included an apostrophe, the configuration tool failed for both Planning Server and Monitoring Server.

    Scorecard key performance indicator (KPI) queries are improved. 

    Timeout errors no longer occur with scorecard key performance indicators (KPIs) that use data that is stored in SQL Server 2005 Analysis Services.

    Time Intelligence Post Formula filters now display the correct number of days for each month.

    In previous versions of PerformancePoint Server, the calendar control for Time Intelligence Post Formula filters sometimes displayed 31 days for each month. This is no longer the case.

    Time Intelligence filters now work on scorecard KPIs that use data that is stored in Analysis Services

    In previous versions of PerformancePoint Server, some Time Intelligence expressions caused filters that were linked to KPIs to fail.

    For example, when a compound expression such as (Day-7:Day-1) was used in a Time Intelligence Post Formula filter and that filter was linked to a KPI, an error message occurred. In PerformancePoint Server 2007 PS2, single and compound Time Intelligence expressions work with KPIs that use data that is stored in Analysis Services.

    PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2 includes the following changes and additions to PerformancePoint Planning components:

    Addition/Change

    Description

    Support for Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V™

    You can now use PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2 with Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V.

    Hyper-V creates new opportunities for server virtualization. You can use Hyper-V to make more efficient use of system hardware and host operating system resources to reduce the overhead that is associated with virutalization.

    For more information, see the PerformancePoint Server 2007 Hyper-V guide.

    Make sure you refer to the Readme file for all of the requirements to use SQL Server 2008 with PerformancePoint too, very important since it relies on quite a few SQL Server 2005 items that you can download from the Feature Pack (Using PerformancePoint Server 2007 SP2 with SQL Server 2008).

    Just to let you know, not all of the content and links have been posted to the TechNet library, so be patient.  Enjoy!

    Posted in PerformancePoint | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

    One Year Blog Anniversary:)

    Posted by denglishbi on December 7, 2008

    I am a few days late since I did start this last year on December 2, 2007.  Anyway, I am really enjoying the blogging and having another option to share and communicate with the community.  I am looking into enhancing the blog – I did add the searching widget to my space early this year on the right so that you can search within my blog

    image

    and I am definitely open to suggestions and comments. 

    I am not a big fan of the very limited statistics that Live Spaces provides (very high level and only can see detail for current week).  I did create a feedburner link and I am exploring what this can provide and will post this to replace my RSS feed link possibly in the near future.  I also explored Google Analytics but that requires embedding javascript which I cannot do on Live Spaces.  Same thing with including snap shots for links which I really like, but that includes embedding javascript also

    This past weekend I went over 50,000 page visits Averaging over 100 page views a day

    image 

    I think this is amazing.  I know that some of the main content that people are looking at when finding my blog postings is about Using Reporting Services (SSRS) with SSAS data, SQL Server 2008 Intellisense – SQL Server 2008 (RC0) Intellisense Enhancements, the MS BI VPC (including the password that people are looking for) – Microsoft Business Intelligence VPC Release 7, MS certification exam feedback and information – Training, Online PerformancePoint Server (PPS) 2007 Training, Report Builder 2.0 RTM install and overview, SSAS MDX Round = Banker’s Rounding, SSAS Deployment Wizard Retaining Permissions, Filtering PerformancePoint Server (PPS) KPIs, PerformancePoint Server – Monitoring & Analytics Tech Night Recording, and VB Power Pack 3.0 – DataRepeater Control.

    I want to thank everyone for the comments they have left and please feel free to leave them because I definitely monitor them and will reply.  My doors are always open and I am more than happy to lend a hand and help out.

    Posted in Personal Comments | 1 Comment »

    MSDN Forums moving…tomorrow (12/8)

    Posted by denglishbi on December 7, 2008

    Just checking out my RSS feeds this morning and saw that there was a posting in all of my MSDN forum feeds – This forum is moving the week of 12/8/2008.  So I went over to the sandbox area to check out the new social experience Sandbox forum.

    In the new area you can setup an avatar and put in a little description of yourself.

    msdn_social_forums_profile

    And yes I am a fan of the movie Matrix.  I don’t see a spot in the new profile area to setup your display email like the old forums and the recognition stars have currently been replaced with medals now because of the new addition of the avatar that appears.

    I checked out my points tracking in the current forums and it shows the following:

    image image

    I do use a gmail account for my display email and the main reason for this non-Microsoft item is because I use Google Alerts to get notified if PerformancePoint, Dan English, or Magenic is used on the Internet so that I can receive daily updates on what is being talked about and stay current.  And I currently have two stars and a long way from getting anymore for the time being since you have to go over 2000 points.

    image image

    I am still not sure how the medals work since I don’t have any currently, but we will see how this new layout pans out over the next few weeks and if the medals stick around.  There have been comments that people like the old school star recognition and also about using the thumbs up/down approach (why would you get a thumbs down…ouch).

    image

    I do like how it gives a breakdown on the right of Top Microsoft Answerers, Top MVP Answerers, Recent Moderators, and Top Answerers for the last 30 days off on the right.  Before there was a list, but it didn’t give you this kind of a breakout and it was just the Top Answerers in the forum (at least it showed the response number though in the old one). 

    image image

    I haven’t seen a posting in the PerformancePoint TechNet forums yet for the switch over to the new format, so maybe it is just the MSDN forums for now…are these really different though (I don’t think so, so we will see tomorrow).

    Posted in Personal Comments | Leave a Comment »

     
    Follow

    Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

    Join 93 other followers