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Archive for February, 2013

TDWI Minneapolis Chapter Event: Open Source BI Considerations – March 12

Posted by denglishbi on February 17, 2013

The next TDWI Minneapolis Chapter meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday, March 12 and it will take place in Saint Paul at The Travelers. The meeting will feature author Lyndsay Wise and she will be talking about Open Source BI Considerations and Implications.

http://tdwichapters.org/Minneapolis (or http://www.tdwimpls.org/)

Here are all of the details:

When: Tuesday, March 12, 2013, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Where:  The Travelers, 385 Washington St., Saint Paul, MN 55102

The meeting will be held in the Jackson Room of the South Building.

Parking in the Travelers Visitors Parking ramp is NOT available to attendees.  Two other parking options are:
1. Smith Ave. Ramp – 145 Smith Avenue between 5th street and Kellogg.
2. Seven Corners Lot (surface lot) just opposite the Smith Ave Ramp.

Click here to register for the next upcoming event


8:00 – 8:30 a.m. – Networking and Registration
8:30 – 8:45 a.m. – Introduction and Chapter Business
8:45 – 9:30 a.m. – Open Source BI Considerations and Implications – Checklist and Guide – Lyndsay Wise
9:30 – 10:00 a.m. – Break and Networking
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Open Source BI Considerations and Implications – Checklist and Guide – Lyndsay Wise (Part II)
11:00 – 11:30 p.m. – Q&A and Collaboration
11:30 – 12:45 p.m. – Closing Comments & Wrap-Up

Click here to register for the next upcoming event


Many considerations exist when looking at whether to adopt open source BI as your BI platform or as a supplementary solution within a broader BI infrastructure. By taking a step back and looking at infrastructure, business, and technical requirements, your organization will be better armed to make the right BI choices – whether open source or not.

The checklist is from her book, with an excerpt found on the Information-Management web site.

Lyndsay Wise is the president and founder of WiseAnalytics. Lyndsay has ten years of IT experience in business systems analysis, software selection, and implementation of enterprise applications. She provides consulting services for small and mid-sized companies and conducts research into leading technologies, market trends, BI products and vendors, mid-market needs, and data visualization.

Book information – http://wiseanalytics.com/book/book.php

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Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group 2013 Q1 Meeting–Mar 28

Posted by denglishbi on February 15, 2013

UPDATE (3/22/2013): Because of the snow storm on March 5 the meeting was rescheduled and is on March 28.

The next MN Microsoft Business Intelligence User Group is coming up on Thursday, March 28. This meeting we will have two presentations starting out with a talk on Reporting Services (SSRS) and then a presentation about Data Modeling. Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.image

Here is the schedule for the quarterly meetings this year:

2013 Meeting Schedule

  • Thursday, March 28
  • Tuesday, June 4
  • Tuesday, September 10
  • Tuesday, December 3

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2013 Q1 Meeting

Sponsored by:


Date: Thursday, March 28, 2013

Check In: 2:30 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)


  • 2:30-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Effective Reporting through SSRS Advanced Authoring Features (Brian Larson)
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Top-Down Data Modeling for BI (Ross McNeely)
  • 5:30-6:00 : Social and Networking
  • 6:00: Happy Hour Sponsored by C2 at Macaroni Grill! 7651 France Ave S, Edina, MN 55435


Effective Reporting through SSRS Advanced Authoring Features – Effective reporting is not simply the output of data, but the meaningful presentation of that data in a manner that informs the user. SQL Server Reporting Services provides a myriad of features to create a clear, instructive, and interactive experience. This session will demonstrate techniques to utilize SSRS advanced authoring features to facilitate more informative communication. These features include: nesting data regions, leveraging scope, geographic/geometric reporting, complex charting, rich formatting, incorporating managed code assemblies, intuitive drilldown, data from multiple datasets in a single data region, datasets that update source data, and more.

Brian Larson, Vice President of Technology, Superior Consulting Services. As a consultant to Microsoft, Brian contributed to the original code base of Reporting Services. Brian is the Vice President of Technology for Superior Consulting Services and has presented at national conferences including SQL Server Connections, the PASS Summit, and the Microsoft BI Conference. Brian is a former columnist for SQL Server Magazine and is the author of “Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Reporting Service: 4th Edition” and “Delivering Business Intelligence with SQL Server 2012: 3rd Edition” as well as co-author of “Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power View,” all from McGraw-Hill Professional.

Top-Down Data Modeling for BI – Business Intelligence platforms are offering capabilities, such as, in-memory analytics, ad hoc reporting, and self-serve report development. These capabilities allow for rapid development and do not require a Data Warehouse. A Business Intelligence platform without a Data Warehouse works well during the pilot phase, but tends to fail when deployed to the enterprise. Join as I lay out how to implement a Top-Down Data Model that will allow Business Intelligence to be created before or in parallel with the Data Warehouse. This will allow for rapid BI development while reducing the DW development cycle.

Ross McNeely, BI Practice Manager,  C2 IT Solutions. Ross has presented at several SQL Saturday events in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa. Recently, Ross presented at ERWorld2012 on data modeling. Ross adds real-world examples from the Financial Services, Logistics, and Retail industries in his presentations. Regardless if you have a beginner, intermediate, or advanced skill set, Ross will provide a solid foundation for each topic he presents. Please join Ross McNeely for a fun and informative meeting.

This is our first meeting of the year and our first meeting as an official chapter of PASS, looking forward to a great meeting, hope to see you there!


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PASSMN February 2013 Meeting

Posted by denglishbi on February 13, 2013

The next Minnesota SQL Server User Group meeting is next Tuesday on February 19.  This month the two presentations will be on (1) rules-based backup and index maintenance and (2) database corruption.  Be sure to register so that your name badge will be available for you at the Microsoft Technology Center when you arrive.Minnesota SQL Server Users Group

The sponsor for this month’s meeting is Emergent Networks.

Location: 3601 West 76th Street, Suite 600 Edina, MN 55437

Date/Time: Tuesday, February 19 from 4 to 6 p.m.

Live Meeting:
• URL: https://www.livemeeting.com/cc/usergroups/join?id=SRR9DN&role=attend&pw=zd%3F9c.2KJ
• Meeting ID: SRR9DN
• Entry Code: zd?9c.2KJ


  • 4:00 – 4:10 : Registration / hospitality / networking
  • 4:15 – 5:15 : Presentation: Shoveling Frogs into a Wheelbarrow
  • 5:15 – 5:45 : Presentation: An Overview of Database Corruption
  • 5:45 – 6:00 : Announcements and prize giveaways

Please click here for meeting details and to RSVP for the event


Shoveling Frogs into a Wheelbarrow (by Merrill Aldrich)

If you face managing over a hundred, or perhaps thousands of databases, automation, standards and a “policy-based” mindset are critical. In this session we’ll do a walk-through of a rules-based backup and index maintenance solution suitable for zillions of smaller databases, and talk at a high level about features and techniques for multi-server management including monitoring, performance data collection, jobs automation, PowerShell and PBM. (The core of it will be a walkthrough of the solution athttp://sqlblog.com/blogs/merrill_aldrich/archive/2012/08/01/rules-driven-maintenance.aspx and the update published athttp://sqlblog.com/blogs/merrill_aldrich/archive/2013/01/16/update-to-rules-driven-maintenance.aspx)

Merrill Aldrich is a SQL Server DBA with one of the largest credit unions in the US, located in the Seattle area. He’s currently responsible for corralling a sprawling and very diverse collection of ISV-provided SQL Server databases that together serve the organization’s 800,000 members. In a past life he was trained in Architecture, designed buildings, and taught three-dimensional modeling and building information modeling.

Blog: http://sqlblog.com/blogs/merrill_aldrich/default.aspx

Twitter: @onupdatecascade

An Overview of Database Corruption (by James Larson, United Health Group)

An Overview of Database Corruption that will include warning signs, causes and scenarios with repair options

James Larson is a Database Consultant\ Team Lead at United Health Group. Has over 15 years of experience with SQL Server. James also has 4 years of experience developing applications with Visual Basic 6.0. James has been working in the Health Care field for over 8 years and currently holds a Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Implementation and Maintenance Certification.

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PerformancePoint Filter – Save as my defaults permissions

Posted by denglishbi on February 8, 2013

It has been a while since I did some blogs, so time to get going again.  What better way to start than with a PerformancePoint one, right?  This is a post that I have been meaning to do, particularly after I responded to a post about it in the PPS M & A forums here – PerformancePoint Filter – Save as default permissions.  I had come across this particular issue at a few client sites as well.  The ‘Save as my defaults’ option for filters was a new capability that was added with SharePoint 2010 SP1 and I posted a blog on the new features added to PerformancePoint with SP1 here PerformancePoint 2010 Cascading & Apply Filters – SP1 Features.

So, for those of you not familiar with the ‘Save as my defaults’ option here is what it looks like:


And it is part of the Apply Filters settings in the ‘Save options’ towards the bottom, you can either show or hide the check box to save the filter choices.


First off, the Apply Filters button allows users to make changes to the filters without the changes immediately refreshing the content they are connected to (similar to the View Report or Apply button for Reporting Services reports).

The ‘Save as my defaults’ check box pretty much does as it says, a user can make a selection, check the box, and then click the Apply Filters button.  This when then store the parameters for this particular dashboard page so that when the user returns to this page the selections will be restored.  So even if the user makes different selections from the list, PerformancePoint will remember the values that were saved when the check box was enabled.

In the image below I make the selections ‘Accessories’ and ‘North Amer’ and check the box to save the defaults.


I then click the Apply Filters button and the dashboard items refresh and you will notice that the check box is disabled.


If I make a change to the geography filter and select Europe and click Apply Filters the dashboard items connected to the filters will refresh.


Now if I refresh the entire page (click F5) I see that my original filters that I selected and applied when using the ‘Save as my defaults’ check box are restored.


So this is pretty cool, but how does this work for a typical user that has view-only permissions to the dashboard.


Well, it doesn’t because the option to ‘Save as my defaults’ is disabled.  Hmmm… well that doesn’t help.  So what is the secret SharePoint permission that needs to be added so that this is enabled without making the user a dashboard admin?  Good question.  Well I wasn’t able to find any documentation on this and even when these new features came out there wasn’t that much documentation.  Basically after a little trial-and-error (or guessing-and-testing) I came across the additional permission that is needed.  The permission that is needed is in the Personal Permissions section and is ‘Update Personal Web Parts – Update Web Parts to display personalized information.’


Once that is added then the check box is enabled for the user and can be used.


Pretty simple. 

NOTE: one thing I noticed with this, and I would say that it is a bug in my opinion (don’t believe this has been fixed in a CU), is that if the same filters are used on other pages and changed and you come back to the original page where you used the Apply Filters and ‘Save as my defaults’ option, the values will be overridden based on the selections on the other page.  The original defaults will not be used, so seems to be a scoping thing in my opinion as to how the filter values are saved, not working as I would expect, they are saved at the filter level versus the page.  So the defaults can actually be wiped out if the same filters are used on other pages without the Apply Filters button.  If the Apply Filters button is used on all pages then it appears you are okay.

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