OLAP performance tuning

28 January,2014 by Jack Vamvas

OLAP performance  and SQL performance are often compared and contrasted. I prefer to view SQL and OLAP performance working in tandem. Many of the concepts are similar and quite often interdependent.

 Some quick tips on how to make OLAP faster with some performance tuning tactics

1)   Focus on writing optimised MDX queries

2)   Consider the use of aggregations for standard reports. Aggregations can cause a drastic improvement on performance

3)   Experiment with Cache warming for daily reports. On some systems starting with  a cold cache  will cause queries to run slower - initially.   The purpose of Cache warming  is to  execute higher used  queries against the recently reprocessed cube. This constructs the cache before the users start querying . For great information on caching check http://blogs.msdn.com/b/sqlcat/

4)     If there is a large amount of historical data , partition on date.  A single partition is used by default. Map out and test multiple partitions and review the aggregation strategy. Work on refining the partitioning implementation. Ask the right questions

5)     The Analysis Service Engine processes and queries OLAP partitions in parallel. It’s interesting to note and compare against SSAS tabular partitions which don’t support parallel processing.

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Author: Jack Vamvas (http://www.sqlserver-dba.com)


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