Data Mining Services and Data Sources

The server component of Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services is the msmdsrv.exe application, which ordinarily runs as a Windows service. This application consists of security components, an XML for Analysis (XMLA) listener component, a query processor component and numerous other internal components that perform the following functions:

  • Parsing statements received from clients

  • Managing metadata

  • Handling transactions

  • Processing calculations

  • Storing dimension and cell data

  • Creating aggregations

  • Scheduling queries

  • Caching objects

  • Managing server resources

XMLA Listener

The XMLA listener component handles all XMLA communications between Analysis Services and its clients. The Analysis Services Port configuration setting in the msmdsrv.ini file can be used to specify a port on which an Analysis Services instance listens. A value of 0 in this file indicates that Analysis Services listen on the default port. Unless otherwise specified, Analysis Services uses the following default TCP ports:




Existing instances of SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services.


Default instance of SQL Server Analysis Services.


Redirector for other instances of SQL Server Analysis Services.

Dynamically assigned at server startup

Named instance of SQL Server Analysis Services.

For more information about controlling the ports used by this service, see Specifying and Restricting Ports.

Working with Data Sources

Whenever you create or update a data mining structure or model, you use data that is stored in a data source view. Although the data source view is the object that provides data to the model or the structure, the DSV itself does not contain the data; rather, the DSV uses the connection information that is stored in the underlying data source to obtain the data. Therefore, when you define a data source, you must ensure that the connection can be accessed even if the data mining solution is moved to another location.

You must also configure the security properties of the data source to ensure that models or structures based on the data can be processed or queried even when the model has been moved, or when different users are working with the model. The Data Source wizard supports four options for defining security on a data source: impersonation, impersonation with delegation, impersonation using the service account, and the default, which changes the credentials that are used depending on the operation. For more information about these options, see Defining a Data Source Using the Data Source Wizard (Analysis Services).

In addition to defining the security context for the data source you must ensure that the account used for connecting to the remote data source has, at minimum, read permissions to the data. Analysis Services supports many different kinds of data sources, including Excel workbooks, text files, and SQL Server databases; therefore, a complete description of how to set these permissions is beyond the scope of this topic. For more information, see the documentation for the provider. For general information about the interaction of providers with Analysis Services, see Clients (Analysis Services - Multidimensional Data).