Tools for Analysis Services
APPLIES TO: SQL Server Analysis Services Azure Analysis Services Power BI Premium
Find the tools and applications you'll need for building Analysis Services models and managing deployed databases.
Create and deploy models
Tabular and multidimensional model projects are created by using project templates in Visual Studio with Analysis Services projects extensions (VSIX). Project templates provide model designers and wizards for creating the data model objects that comprise an Analysis Services solution. Analysis Services projects extensions are supported on all Visual Studio 2017 and later editions, including the free Community edition.
SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) has been an integral part of creating Analysis Services solutions since SQL 2005. With the introduction of project extensions in Visual Studio, SSDT has been phased out in favor of Visual Studio with Analysis Services projects. Much of the Analysis Services documentation here refers to SSDT, and images often show SSDT windows and dialogs. While Visual Studio 2017 and later with Analysis Services extensions are installed differently and offer even more functionality, the user interface in Visual Studio is much the same as SSDT. Documentation will be updated with new naming and images over time.
Administer servers and databases
The Azure portal is the primary tool for creating and managing Azure Analysis Services resources. To learn more about the portal and other tools used with Azure Analysis Services, see Azure Analysis Services tools.
SQL Server Management Studio
SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) is the primary administration tool for Azure Analysis Services and SQL Server Analysis Services servers and deployed model databases. SSMS is a free web download updated monthly.
SQL Server Profiler
SQL Server Profiler, installed with SSMS, is a graphical user interface to SQL Trace for monitoring a server instance. You can capture and save data about each event to a file or table to analyze later.
SSMS includes extended events (xEvents), providing a lightweight alternative to SQL Server Profiler traces used for monitoring activity and diagnosing problems on Analysis Services servers. See Monitor Analysis Services with SQL Server Extended Events to learn more.
PowerShell commands are used to perform many database administrative tasks in both Azure Analysis Services and SQL Server Analysis Services. To learn more, see PowerShell reference.
Azure Analysis Services has its own set of PowerShell commands for managing Azure resources. To learn more, see Manage Azure Analysis Services with PowerShell.
Open source tools
Tabular Editor - An open-source tool for creating, maintaining, and managing tabular models using an intuitive, lightweight editor. A hierarchical view shows all objects in your tabular model. Objects are organized by display folders with support for multi-select property editing and DAX syntax highlighting. XMLA read-only is required for query operations. Read-write is required for metadata operations. To learn more, see tabulareditor.github.io.
ALM Toolkit - An open-source schema compare tool for Power BI datasets, most often used for application lifecycle management (ALM) scenarios. Perform deployment across environments and retain incremental refresh historical data. Diff and merge metadata files, branches and repos. Reuse common definitions between datasets. Read-only is required for query operations. Read-write is required for metadata operations. To learn more, see alm-toolkit.com.
DAX Studio – An open-source tool for DAX authoring, diagnosis, performance tuning, and analysis. Features include object browsing, integrated tracing, query execution breakdowns with detailed statistics, DAX syntax highlighting and formatting. XMLA read-only is required for query operations. To learn more, see daxstudio.org.