Is it possibile to remotely process an SSAS cube throgh script?
I have an SQL Server Analysis Service (SSAS) cube (developed with BIDS 2012) and I would like to give the opportunity to the users (that use cube through PowerPivot) to process the cube in their local machines.
I found some material on how to make a scheduled job on the server through Powershell or SQL Agent or SSIS but no material on remotely process the cube. Any advice?
There are several possibilities to trigger a cube processing. The low level method is issuing an XMLA statement to the database containing the cube. To see how this looks like, open SQL Server Management Studio, connect to the AS instance, right-click on an AS database, and select "Process". Configure the processing settings, but instead of hitting OK, select "Script from the top toolbar to have the XMLA process command be generated for you. Leave the dialog with Cancel. All methods that process a cube end in some way or the other in sending a command like this to the AS database.
There are several options to trigger a cube processing:
- In Management Studio, by clicking OK in the above mentioned dialog.
- In PowerShell (see http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh510171.aspx).
- In Integration Services, there is an Analysis Services processing task (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms141779.aspx).
- You can set up a SQL Server Agent job, job steps could either be a direct XMLA step, or an Integration Services step containing the process task (among possibly other tasks).
The question, however, is how the setups described above can be accessed by end users. An important issue here is of course that the user executing the process task needs to have the permission to process the cube. As you might not want to give this permission directly, it might make sense to use some impersonation on the way of calling it. With Management Studio - and as far as I am aware with PowerShell - this cannot easily be achieved.
Integration services and Agent jobs offer the possibility of impersonations. Integration services packages are executed by the dtexec command line tool (part of the SQL Server client tools), there is also a tool called dtexecui (available as "Execute Package Utility" in a standard SQL Server client tool installation), which lets you use a dialog to configure all settings, and then execute a package, but it also can display the command line for dtexec, according to your settings.
And to call a SQL Server Agent job, an easy interface are the stored procedures (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms187763.aspx), especially sp_start_job (Note this is asynchronous, you call it, it starts the job and returns. It does not wait for the job to complete before returning.) and sp_help_jobactivity to ask for job status as well as sp_help_jobhistory for details of jobs that were running.
All in all I think there is no final solution available, but I mentioned some building blocks that you could use to code your own solution, depending on the preferences in your environment.