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Smart Business Intelligence Solutions with Microsoft® SQL Server® 2008 by Kevin S. Goff Lynn Langit Davide Mauri, Sahil Malik, and John C. Welch

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Using Dimensions

After you’ve created all the dimensions (including defining hierarchies and attribute relationships) you need to meet your business requirements, you’ll begin to combine those dimensions with measures (derived from fact tables) to build OLAP cubes. Microsoft made a major change to the possible cube structure in SSAS 2005. In our experience, most customers haven’t fully grasped the possibilities of this change, so we’ll take a bit of time to explain it here.

In classic dimensional source modeling for OLAP cubes, the star schema consists of exactly one fact table and many dimension tables. This was how early versions of Microsoft’s OLAP tools worked as well. In other words, OLAP developers were limited to basing their cubes on a ...

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