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MDX with SSAS 2012 Cookbook [Kindle Edition]

Sherry Li , Tomislav Piasevoli
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

In Detail

MDX is the BI industry standard for multidimensional calculations and queries. Proficiency with this language is essential for the realization of your Analysis Services’ full potential. MDX is an elegant and powerful language, and also has a steep learning curve.
SQL Server 2012 Analysis Services has introduced a new BISM tabular model and a new formula language, Data Analysis Expressions (DAX). However, for the multi-dimensional model, MDX is still the only query and expression language. For many product developers and report developers, MDX is the preferred language for both the tabular model and multi-dimensional model.

MDX with SSAS 2012 Cookbook is a must-have book for anyone who wants to be proficient in the MDX language and to enhance their business intelligence solutions.

MDX with SSAS 2012 Cookbook is packed with immediately usable, practical solutions. It starts with elementary techniques that lay the foundation for designing advanced MDX calculations and queries. The discussions after each solution will provide you with a solid foundation and best practices. It covers a broad range of real-world topics and solutions and provides you with learning materials to become proficient in the language.

This book will guide you through the hands-on and practical MDX solutions, best practices, and many intricacies that hide within the MDX calculations and queries.

We will start by working with sets, creating time-aware, context-aware calculations, and business analytics solutions, through to the techniques of enhancing the cube design when MDX is not enough. We will then move on to capturing MDX generated by SSAS front-ends and using SSAS stored procedures, and we will explore the whole range of MDX solutions for real-world BI projects.



The book includes 90 detailed and step-by-step recipes

Who this book is for

This book is aimed towards developers. However people experienced with other BI and/or SSAS functions will be able to use this book. If you are a Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services developer and want to improve your solutions using MDX, then this book is for you.

This book is also an essential resource for report developers who need to access the multidimensional cubes through the MDX language.

The book assumes you have some basic working knowledge of MDX and a basic understanding of dimensional modelling and cube design.

Product Description

About the Author

Sherry Li

Sherry Li has worked with Microsoft SQL Server Business Intelligence stacks for many years. She lives in Phoenix, Arizona where she works for a major fi nancial organization with responsibilities in implementing data warehousing and BI solutions. She specializes in ETL, dimensional modeling, cube design, and reporting in MDX and T-SQL. Sherry Li maintains her blog at

Tomislav Piasevoli

Tomislav Piasevoli ( is a Business Intelligence Specialist with years of experience in Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS). He lives in Croatia and works for SoftPro Tetral d.o.o., a company specializing in development of SSAS frontends and implementation of BI solutions.

His main interests are dimensional modeling, cube design, and MDX about which he blogs at Tomislav also writes articles and speaks at regional conferences and user groups. For his contribution to the community, Microsoft awarded him with the Microsoft SQL Server MVP title.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 10018 KB
  • Print Length: 420 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (26 Aug. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00ESX1A0O
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #358,941 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good approach to learning MDX 17 Sept. 2013
By Vincent
Format:Kindle Edition
I must say that the 2012 version gives more clarity than the 2008. Working with sets such as NOT IN, OR and iterating are now put into a separate chapter. I'm a bit disappointed that chapter 7 (context-aware calculations) were removed from the new version. I found it very useful, because they contained stuff related to the result of MDX queries, for example finding out the number of rows that the query will return.

As before, to try the examples in this book we need to have 2012's Adventure Works cube (Multidimensional Models). Most of the samples work with 2008's Adventure Work cube, just need to replace put back the years by 5 years, i.e. 2002 instead of 2007.

This 2012 version is a bit shorter than the 2008 version. The 2012 is 396 pages where as the 2008 is 447. But it really doesn't matter.

Overall, like the 2008 version, this book provides a practical way to learn MDX. In my opinion it is the right way to learn, i.e. by examples. Learning by example is faster than learning by theory. On every technique, the book provides a bit of concept, then the example, showing how it is used in practice. This practical bit is such valuable because it enables us to use it. We just need to replace it with our own case. Hence this book can also be used a reference book, particularly for those of us who already working in MDX. Sometimes we forgets. Sometimes we don't know. Whichever the case, we can just look it up to quickly understand it. And apply it in our projects.

The content of this book is 80% the same as the 2008 version. So if you have 2008 version already, not worth buying this book. But, most people start with 2012 these days, so for them they should buy this book (they can't use the 2008 version. Well they can, but they shouldn't).
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5.0 out of 5 stars MDX rocks ! 14 Jun. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Someone is saying that DAX is the future, but when you have at your disposal books like this, full of REALLY useful ideas, are you still in doubt ? MDX rocks !
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Probably good--but hard to get through 12 April 2015
By Brian J. Murtha - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Full disclosure: I haven't finished it yet. So far, while I don't doubt the validity of the content, it can be hard to follow (poor organization/editing), contains frequent english syntax errors (poor translation?), and is uncharacteristically dry even for a technical book. Three stars because, while I feel there are better intro alternatives (some free online), this content of the book will make you an MDX pro if you can get through it.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read for all MDX developers 19 Dec. 2013
By Gerhard Brueckl - Published on
This book is the follower of the "MDX with Microsoft SQL Server 2008R2 Analysis Services Cookbook" originally written by Tomislav Piasevoli. For this second edition Sherry Li joined Tomislav and they combine their in deep knowledge of MDX and Analysis Services to bring the content of the book to an even higher level. The structure of the books is very similar and is again very easy to follow. It starts very simple with basic MDX techniques, evolves to frequently used patterns for e.g. TOP N calculations up to time intelligence calculations. Each single recipe describes a specific real world business scenario and splits it up into 4 sections: Getting ready, How to do it ..., How it works ... and There is more ...
Getting ready … explains the general prerequisites and when a given recipe can be applied
How to do it … describes the basic idea and each single step in detail finally coming up with a solution
How it works … gives further insights on the elaborated solution and why it works like that
There is more … is dedicated to those who want to dig deeper into a given recipe/topic and the used techniques
This structure is what makes this book a “cookbook” – search for your topic and you find all necessary information in one place instead of having to work through several different chapters and topics.

One of the things I liked the most about the book is the fact that it is not dedicated to MDX only. It also shows how to solve common problems without using MDX but by doing simple changes to the underlying data model which make calculations simpler and also improve overall performance of the cube. It also features some sections about MDX Script and cube calculations in general which you also barely find in any other book.

All in all I would say the book is a good read for all beginners and intermediate MDX developers but also experts will learn some new things too – just as I did!
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have book on MDX 29 Oct. 2013
By hxy0135 NJ - Published on
This is a very advanced MDX book. But if you are a beginner and you are willing to spend time to go over the book a couple of times, it can boost your MDX skill a lot in a short time frame. It offers many very practical examples you can mimic to solve the problems in your daily job projects.

I love the book. I bought the first version for SQL 2008 R2. It helped me a lot in my projects and helped me advanced my MDX skill in a very short time. So I bought and read this version for SQL 2012. I feel its explanations on some topics and examples have improved and are clearer. It is very easy to read. Learning by example is an easy and fast way to learn MDX skill. Highly recommend it. A Must have book to a MDX developer!
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Regress 9 Jun. 2014
By Dimitri Shvorob - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
Originally, I gave the book three stars, but after seeing "Microsoft SQL Server 2008 MDX Step by Step" by Smith and Clay I want to give it a zero. Frankly, I am pretty upset with the authors, who produced *this* even with the benefit of seeing *that*.

I am also pretty upset with the clueless reviewers: not one of them picked up on glaring exposition defects, and just one mentioned another MDX book. A review that lacks awareness of alternatives is really not helpful. I myself was taken in by the positive reviews, and feel pretty sore about the wasted time and effort.

Don't waste a second more on this inferior product - get the book by Smith and Clay.

PS. I am an MCSE: BI.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The cookbook that will get your MDX sizzling in no time:) 24 Nov. 2013
By Dan English - Published on
This is a definite must have MDX reference book for anyone that is learning or already doing multidimensional Analysis Services development. The information contained in this book goes from elementary to novice to expert. What I like about the cookbook style is the scenario and solution design. Not only are the solutions provided, but it also explains them, which is extremely helpful. The recipes start out with a getting ready section, then explain how to do it, then explain how it actually works, and then wait, 'there's more':) So if you are getting into OLAP development or have been doing it for years, this is a must have book to add to your library.
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