General Tasks for Cubes

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Prerequisites for Cubes

A cube can be quite complex. Accordingly, someone who is familiar with OLAP design and the business goals for a particular cube should design the cube before you create it. For details about the design and structure of a cube, see the SAS OLAP Server Administrator's Guide.

The metadata for the source tables that supply information to the cube must be available from a metadata repository. For examples of the kind of tables that can serve as inputs to a cube, see "What Are the Time and Place Dependencies of Product Sales?" on page 32.

The Cube Designer wizard does not require a connection to a SAS OLAP Server, but it does require an OLAP schema, a metadata object that is used to control access to a group of cubes. Accordingly, before using the Cube Designer in SAS ETL Studio, it is recommended that administrators perform the following tasks:

  • Install a SAS OLAP Server.

  • Add metadata for the SAS OLAP Server. (You can specify the SAS OLAP Server as one component of the default SAS application server for SAS ETL Studio.)

  • Define an OLAP schema and assign the SAS OLAP Server to the schema.

For details about these tasks, see the SAS OLAP Server Administrator's Guide.

Working under Change-Management Control

Unless your user profile includes administrative privileges, you will be working under change-management control. For a general description of how change management affects user tasks in SAS ETL Studio, see "Working with Change Management" on page 64.

When working with cubes in SAS ETL Studio, the main impacts of change management are as follows:

  1. To update an existing cube, you must check out the cube.

  2. Metadata for a new cube is added to the Project tree. At some point, you must check in new objects to the change-managed repository.

Using the Cube Designer to Create a Cube

Assume that the prerequisites that are described in "Prerequisites for Cubes" on page 162 have been met. The general steps for using the Cube Designer wizard to add a cube are as follows.

  1. From the SAS ETL Studio desktop, select Tools Target Designer from the menu bar. The Target Designer selection window is displayed.

  2. Select the Cube Designer and click .

  3. Enter other metadata as prompted by the wizard.

For an example of how the Cube Designer can be used, see "Example: Building a Cube from a Star Schema" on page 164. For an alternative, see "Example: Using the Source Editor to Submit User-Written Code for a Cube" on page 172.

Viewing the Data in a Cube

You cannot view the contents of a cube in SAS ETL Studio. You can use Microsoft Excel or SAS Enterprise Guide to view the data in a cube. For details, see the SAS OLAP Server Administrator's Guide.

Updating a Cube or Its Metadata

After a cube is built on the file system, you can update its metadata or the cube itself.

The properties window for a cube enables you to view or update some of its basic metadata. The basic metadata includes a descriptive name for the cube's metadata object, metadata for the user who is responsible for the cube, and a read-only table that shows the cube's structure. To update other cube metadata, or to update the physical cube, you must use the Cube Designer wizard.

Perform the following steps to update the metadata for a cube or to update the cube itself. The cube is assumed to be under change management control.

  1. On the SAS ETL Studio desktop, display the Inventory tree.

  2. In the Inventory tree, open the OLAP folder.

  3. Select the cube to be updated, then select Project Check Out. The metadata for the cube is checked out. A check mark is displayed next to the cube in the Inventory tree. An icon indicating a checked-out cube appears in the Project tree.

  4. Display the Project tree, right-click the cube, then select the appropriate option from the pop-up menu.

    Note that you must display the cube from the Project tree in order to update it. Displaying the cube from the Inventory tree enables browsing only.

The options that you can select from the pop-up menu include the following:


The properties window displays information about the cube and includes the following tabs:


The General tab displays the cube's name and description. It also lists users who have been assigned either owner or administrator responsibility for the cube.

Extended attributes

The Extended attributes tab displays site-defined metadata that is not part of the standard metadata for cube. You can enter attribute information on this tab.


The Advanced tab displays the metadata information registered for the selected cube in the active metadata repository. The information on the Advanced tab is read-only.


The Structure tab displays the cube structure. It has a standard navigational tree structure on the left side and a blank window on the right side. The navigational tree contains folders that represent the components in the selected cube, such as dimensions, hierarchies, measures, and aggregations. The information on the Structure tab is read-only.


The selected cube metadata is re-read and the cube is re-created. The existing cube is overwritten.

Edit cube structure

The Cube Designer is displayed. You can then step through the Cube Designer windows to edit the metadata for the cube.

Manual Tuning

You can add new aggregations, modify user-defined aggregations, and delete aggregations for the cube from the Manual Tuning window.

Save PROC OLAP code

The PROC OLAP code that is used to create the selected cube is saved in a text file. In the Path field on this window, enter a fully qualified path to the location of a text file. For example, you might enter

for a cube that contains financial data.


The cube metadata is deleted.


You can specify a user-defined group for a selected object. The Select Group window allows you to select the user-defined group into which the current object should be placed.


The cube metadata is re-read, and the cube is updated.

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SAS Institute - SAS 9.1.3 ETL Studio. User's Guide
SAS 9.1.3 ETL Studio: Users Guide
ISBN: 1590476352
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2004
Pages: 127
Authors: SAS Institute © 2008-2017.
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