C.1. Analysis Services
In the book proper, we talked some about OLTP-versus OLAP-oriented databases. Most of the book focused on Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) databases, because those are, far and away, the most common kind of database out there. There is, however, another, and Online Analytical Processing (OLAP) deserves its due. Indeed, OLAP continues to increase in importance, and it is no coincidence that SQL Server added support for analytical applications back in version 7.0. Since then, it added data mining support, and, with this release, completely rewrote everything from the ground up with more customer input and a lot of extra experience under their belt.
So, the question may come about why I don't have a chapter on this. The answer is that I did have a chapter in it on prior editions of this book but decided to forgo a full-blown chapter on it this time. This topic has really grown to a degree where full coverage of it is just too much for one chapter in this book.
So, instead of a larger treatment that couldn't be complete what I hope to do here is much of what I did in the past—just in a bit more compact form. What is that exactly? Well, that is to give you a taste for what can be done. From there, you can pursue the many books that are exclusive to just Analysis Services (and I'm not kidding when I say it needs and deserves its own book).
C.1.1. A Brief Review of OLAP vs. OLTP
OLAP databases—which serve as the backbone for most Analysis Services applications—have ...