Physical Architecture (Analysis Services - Data Mining)

Microsoft Analysis Services uses both server and client components to supply data mining functionality for business intelligence applications:

  • The server component of Analysis Services is implemented as a Microsoft Windows service. SQL Server 2008 Analysis Services (SSAS) supports multiple instances on the same computer, with each instance of Analysis Services implemented as a separate instance of the Windows service.

  • Clients communicate with Analysis Services using the public standard XML for Analysis (XMLA), a SOAP-based protocol for issuing commands and receiving responses, exposed as a Web service. Client object models are also provided over XMLA, and can be accessed either by using a managed provider, such as ADOMD.NET, or a native OLE DB provider.

  • Query commands can be issued using the following languages: Data Mining Extensions (DMX), an industry standard query language oriented toward data mining. Analysis Services Scripting Language (ASSL) can also be used to manage Analysis Services database objects.

Architectural Diagram

An Analysis Services instance runs as a stand-alone service and communication with the service occurs through XML for Analysis (XMLA), by using either HTTP or TCP. AMO is a layer between the user application and the Analysis Services instance. This layer provides access to Analysis Services administrative objects. AMO is a class library that takes commands from a client application and converts those commands into XMLA messages for the Analysis Services instance. AMO presents Analysis Services instance objects as classes to the end user application, with method members that run commands and property members that hold the data for the Analysis Services objects.

The following illustration shows the Analysis Services components architecture, including all major elements running within the Analysis Services instance and all user components that interact with the instance. The illustration also shows that the only way to access the instance is by using the XML for Analysis (XMLA) Listener, either by using HTTP or TCP.

Analysis Services System Architecture Diagram

Server Configuration

One server instance can support multiple Analysis Services databases, each with its own instance of the Analysis Services service that responds to client requests and processes objects. All communications between a client and the Analysis Services server use XMLA, which is a platform-independent and language-independent protocol. When a request is received from a client, Analysis Services determines whether the request relates to OLAP or data mining, and routes the request appropriately. For more information, see Server Folders and Files (Analysis Services - Multidimensional Data).

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