PowerPivot Installation

I hope my PowerPivot posts and videos are proving useful, and continuing this them I want to cover off installation.

PowerPivot for Excel is a free download for Excel 2010 and simply doesn’t need any edition of SQL Server behind it.  It comes in 32 bit and 64 bit depending on which variant of Excel you have installed and you can get it the beta of this from the http://www.powerpivot.com site.

However to deploy that PowerPivot to SharePoint 2010, you’ll need to do quite a bit of work.  Rather than rewrite these I will simply direct you to the set of draft setup guides on the PowerPivotGeek blog.

The basic setup is to..

  • Install but not to configure SharePoint 2010
  • Install SQL Server 2008 R2 analysis services using the analysis services integrated option…


  • and then complete the post configuration guides to setup the PowerPivot gallery in SharePoint.  The oddest one of these that I found I had to do was to make sure that the profile for the SharePoint service account had the fact that SharePoint is in the intranet zone!

I have used the first option, a single server setup to produce my PowerPivot videos and posts.  However my demo rig is a bit more complicated in that I have three virtual machines (vms) on my shuttle (BINKY) which has 4 cores 8Gb RAM and 2 x NICs which are setup as follows:

  • a Windows Server 2008 R2 domain controller so I can use domain accounts for all the services. This has 768Mb RAM  and 1 x logical processor. I do this because I use the DC for all my demos and because it’s closer to the real world.
  • a client virtual machine that is domain joined.  This has 2gb RAM and 1 x logical processor.  It is running Excel 2010 with the PowerPivot add-in on Windows 7 x86 as well as the SharePoint designer, and the SQL Server client tools.
  • The SharePoint vm is running Windows server 2008R2 x64 with 4.5gb RAM  and 4 x logical processors. which is way below the recommended production specification of 64Gb, but performs OK for single client access against a couple of PowerPivots.  This VM also has Reporting Services installed in SharePoint integrated mode so I can show the interoperability of Reporting Services and PowerPivot. BTW There is also an install guide for this on the PowerPivotGeek blog.

It’s a miserable Friday out there so why not persuade the boss for a bit of R&D time and set this up this afternoon.

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