A description of the top five takeaways from MicroStrategy World's HIgh Performance Panel.
Optimal data analysis is dependent on high performance from one’s analytic software. At MicroStrategy’s recent European user conference in Barcelona, a performance panel, which reflected a combined 60+ years of MicroStrategy experience, answered some of the audience’s biggest performance questions.
Below we highlight our top takeaways to help you optimize the performance of your analytics platform.
Takeaway #1: How you structure your database or data schema to optimize performance is dependent on the type of database you are currently using.
It is important that you initially design your data schema to address your business problem; otherwise high performance will mean nothing. Thus, you will want to first create a logical data model and then transform that model into Third Normal Form (3NF) on the database side. 3NF removes data redundancy, and therefore, increases data integrity. Then, depending on the database platform, you will want to add various performance enhancing techniques, all of which have pros and cons.
There is no technique that works for every database—performance enhancing techniques that are used for traditional database platforms like SQL Server and Oracle DB2 are not the same techniques that are suggested for databases with MPP (massively parallel processing) architecture, like Actian Matrix and HP Vertica, and vice versa.
To understand how to integrate your data model and database platform for optimum performance, leverage MicroStrategy’s best practice integration papers, which are available on the MicroStrategy support website.*
Takeaway #2: Optimizing the connections settings between your front-end analytics software and your back-end database results in better performance.
When you are beginning to set up the connections from the front-end software to the supporting database, it is important to optimize your connection properties. Be certain to take into account the number of defined connections and the number of queries that can be executed in parallel against your database, as both can significantly influence performance.
It is best to use MicroStrategy provided tools to set up connections because MicroStrategy, behind the scenes, incorporates optimal connectivity properties.
Takeaway #3: MicroStrategy’s main goal is to push analytics to the data, not data to the analytics.
If you feel that you are not getting the performance you desire from your in-memory database, MicroStrategy’s in-memory technology is designed to support you and accelerate your analysis by bringing a portion of your data into MicroStrategy’s memory layer.
For very large amounts of data, MicroStrategy now has a new in-memory data store and accelerator called MicroStrategy PRIME. To learn more about PRIME click here or download the brochure here.
Takeaway #4: Set up statistics logging.
MicroStrategy has a tool called Enterprise Manager, whose sole job is to provide reports that allow you to monitor your usage facts. For example, it provides answers to questions such as which reports are run the most, how much time do those reports take to run, how many rows do those reports retrieve from the database? Statistics logging provides the information you need to identify areas where you can improve, as well as areas you should troubleshoot or need to fine tune. Start with basic statistics logging and only turn on advanced statistics when they are needed.
Takeaway #5: It only takes two steps to solve your performance issues.
Whenever you find that you are not getting optimal performance, it is important to first isolate the problem in order to identify where the problem lies—and, the problem’s symptoms are important indicators to help you accomplish this step. In addition, there are numerous tools, like MicroStrategy’s Enterprise Manager, that may lead you to the root of your performance problem. Once you have an idea of the source of your problem, access MicroStrategy subject-matter experts, who will help you to quickly resolve your performance issues.
If you would like to learn more about the high performance panel that occurred at MicroStrategy World in Barcelona, watch the session recording here.
If you would like to learn more about what is possible utilizing high performance analytics, download the white paper here.
*A MicroStrategy account is required.