Being asked a bit too often how we can process Analysis Services databases (or cubes and dimensions) here is a list of 7 different methods:
1. Through the GUI
This one is obvious. We can do it through both SSMS and BIDS.
2. XMLA Script
To generate the script we can use the hefty Script button in SSMS. Simply configuring the processing settings and then instead of clicking the all too usual OK, we can as well click on the little button in the top left corner of the Process window:
Then, we can just execute the generated query.
3. SSIS Analysis Services Processing Task
This Control Flow task allows us to configure any settings and then add it to our ETL process. Quite handy.
4. SQL Server Agent Job
This one is really an automation of Method #2 – XMLA Script. We can encapsulate it into a job of SQL Server Analysis Services Command type:
5. .NET Code
This allows us to process cubes as a part of an application. Nice if we want to let our users process our cubes on-demand. Of course, better left to application developers, but still a good trick to know. Especially if we want to seem all-knowing when it comes to databases of any type. To achieve this objective, we use AMO (Analysis Management Objects). An API can be found here:
6. Command Line – ascmd
The command line utility can do a lot – including processing SSAS objects. For a full readme you can go here:
7. Command Line – PowerShell
This PowerShell script will perform a Full Process of Adventure Works DW 2008 on localhost:
$databasename=$servername.Databases.GetByName(“Adventure Works DW 2008”)
Using AMO we can do any maintenance tasks through PowerShell, including an object process.
Probably not a fully exhaustive list, but I hope it helps with giving developers some options when it comes to this trivial and crucial part of the development and deployment process.