Building an Ad-Hoc SSAS Cube Browser in SSRS
The post I did on implementing SSAS drilldown in SSRS back in February has been one of the most popular I’ve written this year. Its success immediately made me think of taking the idea one step further and building a full, ad-hoc cube browser in SSRS – something I’ve had a crack at doing several times in the past, but which has proved to be pretty much impossible with SSRS out of the box. However I knew that with the extra flexibility that Intelligencia Query (full disclosure – I have a financial stake in this product; see here for some background on my involvement with it) gives it was going to be feasible… the next problem was that I didn’t have the time to do the work.
Luckily, my friend Andrew Wiles (who owns the company that develops and sells Intelligencia Query) did have the time to do this and blogged about it here:
He also uploaded a video demo of it to YouTube:
It’s now available as a sample app for the SQL 2008 version of IQ (it relies on DMVs, so it won’t work with 2005), and he’s made several improvements to it since. I thought I’d mention it here because it’s not only a fun demo, it shows just how flexible the combination of SSRS and IQ is: we traditionally think of SSRS as being suitable only for static or semi-static reports, but here it is working as a basic ad-hoc query tool. OK it’s not exactly elegant the way you have to rerun a report every time you click something, and of course the only form of interaction possible is clicking on links, but hopefully you get the point!